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love and worship. They receive daily the blessings of the Father's love through faith in the Son's salvation, by the applying power of the holy Spirit, and hereby they are reconciled to the first and great commandment; it is become the delight of their souls to love the Lord God.
Here consider, O my soul! whether thou art acting upon the principle of gratitude to thy God. If thou art, then his yoke will be easy, and his burden light. Thou wilt not go to duty in bondage, hoping to gain his love by the desert of what thou doest, or fearing to be beaten with many stripes for not doing it well. Thy God, whom thou servest, is thy most loving friend, and tenderest father. He loved thee in Jesus, freely by grace, not by works done by thee, or to be done. Immanuel is thy Saviour: his love to thee is made up of miracles : nó understanding of angels or of glorified spirits can conceive how great it is : for it passeth knowledge. Nevertheless, the holy Spirit has revealed it unto thee. He loves thee, as the Father and the Son do, with the same divine
affection. Thy debt is equal, thy gratitude should be the same to the blessed Trinity. In the sense of thine infinite obligations thou art called upon to walk in the way of duty. Love to the person, whom thou art to serve, will make service pleasant: and thou dost love thy God. He has given himself with every covenant blessing to be thine, and these blessings are to be enjoyed in thy walk with him. With this faith look at duty. It is the expression of gratitude to thy dearest friend, and it is the way to enjoy his divine friendship. He requires it out of love to thee, and would have thee to do it out of love to hiin. O! how exalted is duty, when communion with God is carried on by it! He would have thee to keep close to him, in order to maintain a sense of his gracious presence in thy heart, and so to walk with him as to have his love to thee confirmed at every step : and therefore thou shouldst seek to preserve a constant nearness and holy fellowship with him in every thing thou doest. This is the will of thy God. May it be thine, O my soul! Study this glorious way of gospel duty.
Pray to be taught it better, and to go on in it more spiritually every day. Bring it into all thy affairs. In thy calling as well as in the means of grace, in temporal as well as in heavenly matters, set the Lord always before thee, and so live and act in every thing as to keep up communion with thy God and Father in Jesus by the grace of the holy Spirit.
When God is thus become the dear object of thy happy heart, then every way wherein his love is to be enjoyed will become delightful. The time, the place, the means of meeting with him will be greatly desired and much longed for. Thy heart cannot but be, where thy treasure is. Thou wilt want no spur to duty, no whip to drive thee to ordinances. It will be enough, that the Lord is there. As when he said to David-Seek ye my face-his heart replied–Thy face, Lord, will I seek. His heart said it. Ilis affections were set upon God, and he was ready to seek, wherever God was to be found. No hunted hart ever panted more after the water-brooks, than his soul did after God. His hope in doing any thing was to have God's gracious presence with him; and his happiness in it was to have communion with God. This is gospel duty. And what a glorious privilege is it! O that it may be my happy experience thus to meet God in all his ways, and to enjoy him in my daily walk. That thou mayest grow in this divine fellowship, consider, O my soul, some of the duties of the first table, and learn to practise them upon gospel principles. The first and chief is PRAY ER, which consists in keeping up daily converse with thy God upon all occasions. This is the breathing of the newborn soul. It wants to draw the air of heaven, and to live in its own proper element. There is a way opened for it unto the throne of glory, and the children of God may approach it with boldness : for it is a throne of grace, and he that sitteth upon it loves to hear and to answer their petitions. He is their Father; “I go, says Jesus, to my Father, and to your Father; my Father himself loveth you; ask what ye will of him in my name, lae will do it. This is the beloved object of
prayer--a reconciled Father in Jesus-whose heart is full of tenderness to the complaints and miseries of his family--his promises are the declarations of his pure love-a dependence upon his fulfilling them does honour to his truth and faithfulness, and always brings down the blessing. The Holy Spirit.abides with the children of God to teach them thus to pray in faith. He helps their infirmities in prayer, strengthens their graces, and bestows on them their cornforts. He enables them to come with boldness, and to have access with confidence. Whatever their Father has freely promised to give them in Jesus, they will ask in faith, nothing wavering; for they know his promises cannot fail. They find them daily fulfilled, whereby their holy familiarity with their Father increases. He draws near to them, and they draw hearer to him. This their mutual intercourse may be interrupted, but it cannot be entirely broken off. God is always disposed to hear, although the believer be not always able to pray rejoicing. It is still his privilege, although he may not find any great delight in