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often unfathomable; well knowing while the head is filling this way, the heart is cooling and emptying in one of the most essential properties it can possess, namely, divine love.-O how frequently has the arch-fiend made the terms adoption and election a terror and stumblingblock to young beginners! Yes, those very terms, which are as celestial harmony to many, he converts into a soul-distressing evil to others. Alas! it is too true he is ever seeking whom and how he
devour. But could the sin-burdened soul, under its pressure
of an accusing and guilty conscience, be brought to hear the blessed Jesus inviting all that are in such circumstances to come directly to him, instead of tarrying by the way to enquire about their election or non-election, they would most assuredly find that peace to their souls, which He who invites them to come would most certainly bestow."
After this digression I shall resume the narrative, by observing, that in the night-watches at sea, when all is quiet, and the weather fine, it is customary for those men who are on duty to sit down in little companies and sing songs, or tell marvellous tales from the Arabian Nights, &c. &c. by way of keeping each other awake. On these occasions the serious part of the people generally assembled together, and either sung hymns or psalms, or discoursed on the things which made for their everlasting peace. Many a time has my heart been lightened of its burden, as I have listened to those honest fellows, while they sang,
“Weary of wand'ring from my God,
I hear, and bow me to the rod;
To Thee, not without hope, I mourn;
Captain B. had undoubtedly heard the same more than once, though with very different feelings to my own, yet he seemed to want resolution to suppress it. At length, walking the quarter-deck, one fine quiet night, about eleven o'clock, as the crew were singing and relating their stories as usual, he affected surprise, and inquired what noise it was he heard just beneath him. The senior lieutenant, who was then at his elbow, answered in a very significant and sneering tone, it was a party of men singing psalms. “Singing psalms !" replied the infurated captain; “I'll have no such doings in my ship. Go down this instant, Mr.-" continued he, addressing one of the midshipmen, “go down and ascertain whether they are singing songs or psalms.” As the young man quickly returned and reported it to be the latter, an official order was immediately given to disperse the offenders, and to report for punishment any person or persons who might in future be found doing the like. And now our old enemy, the senior lieutenant, recalled the captain's attention to the evening meetings in the wing. The latter affected not to know of any such thing having existed and gave immediate orders for their suppression, and for certain officers to visit all parts of the ship every evening, and make report of any assemblies that might be formed for religious conversation, singing, &c. &c. These orders were communicated to me the next morning. It was in vain to
contend against unlimited power. Submission now became our duty, and we endeavoured to act on this principle, though we certainly might have advanced much against the folly and injustice of such proceedings. It was, however, some consolation to know, that all the other officers in the ship, except the first lieutenant, viewed these arbitrary mandates in a proper light, and seemed anxious to express their regret at what had happened, by showing me every little attention in their power, and by extending their kind regards to those young gentlemen who more particularly fell under the oppressive hand of their enraged commander. It was now very common for two or three of the commissioned officers to meet in each other's cabins for serious conversation and reading the Scriptures; but it was, at the same time, a painful thing to witness many of the poor unthinking crew rejoicing at the suppression of our evening meetings, singing of psalms, &c. &c. But such is the enmity of the carnal heart against God!
For some time past my friends had been employed in fruitless endeavours to obtain leave for my return to England, as more than twelve years' unremitting active service on the great deep had much shaken my constitution. The repeated changes of climate, sickness, and various hardships encountered in that period, had laid the foundation of rheumatic and other complaints, independent of the effects of that anxiety of mind under which I had, for more than three years past, laboured in endeavouring to maintain the narrow path of duty, between the trying circumstances of my public station, and those of a follower of Him, whose kingdom and
people are not of this world. These altogether had produced an effect on the constitution, which, to say the least, required some retirement and repose to counteract. Yet hitherto all endeavours had been unavailing, because my little work was not quite done. But, now that the Sabbaths were almost entirely profaned, and our evening meetings altogether suppressed; now that the people were forbidden to engage in religious conversation, or to sing praises to God, under pain of being flogged; now that some were driven out of the ship, and all whom I in any way noticed were oppressed and persecuted; it seemed to myself clear, that my little christian labours were drawing to a close in this place. Under that impression, I besought the Lord to remove me thence, to mark out my future path, and to give me grace to see and follow it. That his gracious providence had opened a way for the introduction of religion, and had blessed the means in various instances, I could have no doubt. I felt equally certain that the change I then beheld could not have happened without his permission. It was not for me impatiently to ask, "O God, how long shall the adversary do this dishonour ? how long shall the enemy blaspheme thy name?" I found it more profitable to meditate on our blessed Lord's declaration, and that of his servant, “What I do thou knowest not now, but thou shalt know hereafter”—“ Now we see through a glass darkly, but then face to face," &c. In this manner I passed not more than two or three weeks, when, to my joy and surprise, the long wished-for order arrived, and I was directed to take a pas. sage in one of the ships then about to sail for England.
forenoon I had held the command on deck from eight to twelve o'clock, and
with the heat of the weather and activity of duty, I had gone down to my cabin, stretched myself at full length on a sofa, and was half asleep, when one of the midshipmen came running in, and said, “Sir, I am just returned from the admiral's ship with the order for you to get yourself and luggage ready, and repair on board the Royal Sovereign, as she will leave the fleet in one hour's time." And so it was, that in one hour from being engaged in all the activity and responsibility of my naval profession, and at a moment when I almost despaired of ever obtaining a respite, or seeing again the interior of my native land, I found myself divested of all these cares and responsibilities; removed from under the controul of my un happy commander; and standing in the quiet capacity of a passenger on my way home; meditating on the impossibility of man's foreseeing what a day may bring forth.
The moment of quitting the C was no uninteresting one to my feelings. Many came on deck to see me depart, and many wished me well. I looked round for the last time on a people and place familiar to me for more than four
A thousand tender recollections were revived; for from the day in which I joined this vessel, to the hour of leaving her, mercy and goodness had not ceased to follow me. My own mind had undergone a great change since the former period, and the same change had been experienced by several others. It was the Lord's doing, and marvellous in my eyes. I could say but little to my poor dejected fellow Christians. Their peculiar case lay near my heart, and that heart