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the charity of the poor petitioner. If the HEART be right, the errors of the understanding and of the lips will pass unnoticed. Yet it is decent and reasonable to take care, according to the best of our knowledge, not to offer up prayers in which there is any known defect unworthy a creature furnished
by the Creator with those intellectual powers, which surely can never be more honourably exerted than in the service of Him who gave them.
O ALMIGHTY AND EVERLASTING GOD, I prostrate myself before thee to present my humble prayers, and devout supplications, before the throne of thy sacred
* Books of Prayers, says an admired writer, composed for private devotion, are very useful; and they are certainly not to be examined with great severity of judgment.
+ "Let that day,” says the late pious and exemplary Bishop of London, (Porteus) be kept sacred to its original destination by all ranks of men, from the highest to the lowest. Let it not be profaned by needless journies, by splendid entertainments, by crouded assemblies, by any thing in short which precludes either ourselves, our families, or our domestics, from the exercise of religious duties, or the improvement of those pious sentiments and
prayer, or in the domestic circle of my family, be conducive to my own peace and comfort, as well as to thy honour and glory. May it sink deep into my heart, and shine forth in my life and conversation. Let me be, O blessed Lord, not only a hearer of thy Word, but a doer* of it; that so I may be found worthy of thy protection, and be more fit for thy heavenly kingdom. Instil into my mind the genuine doctrines of Christianity. Give me grace to imitate the example of my blessed Redeemer, and to walk in his steps all the days of my life. Make me circumspect in all my doings, and mindful of my duty to thee, and my fellow-creatures. My sins and transgressions are many; and in
* Read attentively the 1st chapter of The General Epistle of James.
spite of my best endeavours to lead a holy and exemplary life, I am but too often led away by the customs and examples of this evil world. O pity my weakness, forgive my infirmities, and lay not to my charge the imperfections of my religious duties. Animate my sluggish heart, and cleanse it from all impurity. Replenish
my soul with thy Holy Spirit, and make me fruitful in every good word and work. Show me in time the uncertainty of this life, and the awful concerns of a future state of existence. Let all my views be directed to that solemn end; and before I die, let my sins be blotted out for the
sake of Jesus Christ, our blessed