« PreviousContinue »
thy wise counsels) to praise thee in the great assembly of saints and angels in heaven; through Jesus Christ our Lord and only Saviour, to whom, with thee and the Holy Spirit, be all praise, love, and obedience, world without end. Amen.
Prayer for the Grace of Patience, and a suitable
Behaviour in a Sick Person to Friends and At
tendants. HELP thy servant, O thou merciful Redeemer and lover of souls, to undergo this load of affliction which thou hast laid upon him with patience. “Lead him” gently by the hand to “the waters of comfort,” and let “thy rod” and “thy staff support” him, now that he is obliged to "walk in the valley and shadow of death.”
Let him consider thee, O blessed Jesus, in all thy weary pilgrimage and sufferings here upon earth, before thou enteredst into glory, “ that he be not weary and faint in his mind.”
If relief does not come from thee so soon as he expects or desires, enable him still to hold out with long suffering, and to wait with patience for it. And whatsoever thou doest with him, O Lord, let him be “dumb, and not open his mouth” to murmur or repine, because it is “ thy doing.” Make him acquiesce and rest satisfied, even in the bitterest dispensations of thy providence; and let no pains or sufferings ever drive him from thee, considering that no “ temptation hath befallen him” but “what is common to men.'
And, together with this patience towards thee, give him patience, O merciful Lord, towards all those who
kindly and charitably minister to him, and attend about him.
Keep him from being humoursome, and showing crossness to their good counsels, or from being causelessly angry and exceptious against their kind endea
evil accidents or indiscretions happen, let him not presently be outrageous to aggravate them, or break out into any reproachful or unseemly behaviour against them; but let him be pleased with the least expression of their kindness, and interpret every thing favourably; and on all occasions let him make it his study to oblige those who are obliging to him in this time of necessity, receiving with thankfulness their good offices, and praying God to reward them for his Son Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.
A Prayer for Spiritual Improvement by Sickness.
(From Dr. Inet.) O MERCIFUL Father, who scourgest those whom thou lovest, and chastisest those whom thou wilt receive; let thy loving correction purify thy servant, and make him great in thy favour by his present humiliation. -O let him learn “thy statutes” in this school of “ affliction ;" let him “ seek thee early” in it; and when his “heart is overwhelmed, lead him to the rock of salvation."
Let thy “rod” awaken him from his former security in sin, and let him sensibly find that thou “ chastisest him for his profit, that he may be partaker of thy holi
Teach him, by this proof of thy fatherly correction, to be more dutiful for the time to come; to repent of
his former offences, and to “redeem the time past," by a double diligence for the future, if thou shalt in mercy raise him up again. Let the remainder of his life be thine, and let nothing separate him from thy love and service; but let it be his whole care and study to provide oil for his lamp, and prepare for eternity; that so “all the days of his appointed time he may wait till his change come,” and be ready whensoever his Lord shall call him. Amen.
For a Sick Person who is about to make his Will.
O LORD, who puttest into our hearts good desires, and hast inclined thy servant to “set his house in order,” as well in relation to his temporal as his spiritual concerns, grant that he may do it with exact justice, according to the rules of our own religion and the dictates of right reason. He unfeignedly thanks thee for thy great mercies, in having so liberally provided for him, that he may be rather helpful than chargeable to any, and die a benefactor, and not in debt.
We charitably hope that what he is now about to dispose of was all procured by fair and righteous dealings, that he may comfortably feel that “it is more blessed to give than to receive."
Let him be ready, with good Zaccheus, to make restitution in the best manner he is able, and to say with Samuel :
“ Behold, here I am ; witness against me before the Lord; whose ox have I taken, or whose ass have I taken, or whom have I defrauded; whom have I oppressed, or of whose hand have I received any
bribe to blind mine eyes therewith; and I will rez store it.”
Lord, give him strength to order all things in as due and regular a manner as if he were well. Let his memory be perfect and his judgment sound, and his heart so rightly disposed that he may do nothing amiss, or through partiality, but that justice and integrity may be seen through the whole conduct of his will.
(If rich, add this.) Let the light of his charity likewise shine gloriously before men, that out of the abundance thou hast been pleased to bless him with, he may plentifully give to the poor and distressed, though no otherwise related to him but as they are members of Jesus Christ, and brethren and sisters of the same communion.
Let him, 0 let him, now, O Lord, and at all times, if thou shouldst graciously continue him here any longer, make to “himself such friends of the unrighteous mammon, that when these fail they may receive him into everlasting habitations." Amen.
A Prayer for a Sick Penitent.
(From Mr. Kettlewell.) RIGHTEOUS art thou, O God, in all the pains and sorrows which punish our sins and try our patience, and we have none to accuse and complain of for the same but ourselves. This is the acknowledgment which thy servant makes, whom thou hast now afflicted. He receives it as the chastisement of a sinner, and is willing to bear chastisement for his sins, that he may
thereby be reclaimed from them.
Correct him, o Lord, that thou mayest not condemn him; and let him be judged by thee for his sins, and judge himself for them here, that he may have nothing but mercy without judgment to receive at thine hands hereafter.
But judge him, O God, with mercy, and not in thine anger. Judge him not according as his sins have deserved, but according as his weakness can bear, and according as thy compassions are wont to mitigate thy judgments: and let his afflictions work in him a true repentance, “not to be repented of,” and prove a happy means, in the hand of thy mercy, to reclaim him perfectly from all the errors into which he hath fallen; and to confer that rest and peace upon his soul, which is denied to his body; for our dear Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ's sake.
Thou smitest him, O gracious God, that thou mayest cure him; and punishest his sin, that thou mayest thereby amend and reclaim the sinner: and he is weary of his sins, which have brought upon him all these sorrows, and which, as he seems now deeply sensible, will bring infinitely worse, unless he prevent the same by his timely and sincere repentance.
Help him, therefore, to search them out; and when he sees them, let him not stop at any one, but steadfastly resolve to renounce and amend all: Let thy love make him hate every evil way, and render his purposes against them strong and resolute, and his care in fulfilling the same vigilant and patient; and grant that the remainder of his days may be one continual amendment of his former errors, and dedication