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book, and for the first time in my life wept over myself as a sinner exposed to much spiritual evil and many peculiar snares. Then it was I experienced what some may condemn as enthusiasm, but what I at this day humbly hope was the still small voice of God. While weeping over my forlorn condition, these words, “I will never leave thee nor forsake thee,” were impressed on my mind with such a distinctness and power, that, had a voice pronounced them, they could not have been received more distinctly. I had then never seen or read them to my knowledge, but from that instant I felt confident they were a part of Holy Writ, and conceived some hopes of their being sent as an assurance of the Lord's mercy and goodness to me. And will the Almighty never leave, never forsake me? I said to myself
. The thought filled my eyes and my heart, as they had never been filled before, and as I cannot describe to others.-But O what a base ungrateful wretch did I soon prove !—The world and its honours—the flesh and its lusts—the devil and his wiles, shortly united to quench this ray of the Spirit; and they but too well succeeded! On our voyage home I could not forget that more than six years had elapsed since I turned my back on the Lord's house, and all the mercies of a quiet family. And I knew also, that often during the last two years of our abode in the Mediterranean, I had pleased myself with the thought of attending his courts if I lived to return. But when that event really took place, and some favorable opportunities did offer, I neglected them all, gave myself to the service of Satan, and pole luted the Lord's Sabbaths, seeking my own pleasure,
and doing my own will. Such was the state of things when the E was put out of commission, and I joined the D
to offend still more, and to receive yet greater mercies.
GOD SPEAKETH ONCE, YEA TWICE, YET MAN PER.
CEIVETH IT NOT."-JOB xxxiii. 14.
Alas! poor sinful, wretched, rebel man! Little does it avail that some pronounce great things in thy praise; little does it change the nature of things, though they “spend all their powers of rant and rhapsody" in eulogies of moral rectitude!. “All is but the tinkling cymbal and high-sounding brass; smitten in vain!" For thy Maker's voice is disregarded. He who formed thee from the womb, proclaims, “Although the ox knows his owner, and the ass his master's crib, Israel does not know, his people do not consider.” They consider neither his calls of mercy nor his voice of judgment, but are ever disposed “to revolt more and more, seeing the whole head is sick, the whole heart faint." Do any of my
readers doubt this Bible statement ? Let them look abroad; let them “examine themselves truly;" or let them peruse these brief memorials of a stranger; and the result will be, a conviction that “the heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked.”
It was in May, 1803, when we returned to England. The short peace of Amiens had then expired, and war again sounded the alarm, and we were instantly directed
to prepare to face our enemies, when we had been calculating on returning to our friends. As honour and glory, falsely so called, were then my idols, I rather rejoiced at this circumstance; and especially so when I obtained a situation under one of our very influential and first-rate officers. Most striking were the leadings of Providence in bringing me under this officer's command and patronage, although, at that time, I saw but little of the hand of God in them. Indeed, the world was now so completely my object, that, notwithstanding the tender mercies of a heavenly Father had watched over and returned me in health to my “long lost native shore,” he was seldom in my thoughts: I reflected not on the thousands who once sailed with me, but whose . carcasses had fallen in distant lands, or been ingulfed in the ocean, while I had been preserved. Nay, when his gracious providence had again prospered my way, and given me a few opportunities of attending his house of prayer, I not only neglected to embrace them, but, as was observed in the conclusion of the last chapter, I devoted these seasons to the service of Satan, and polluted his Sabbaths by seeking my own pleasure, and doing my own will. In the D-I found a large and gay society of young men, whose only object, like my own, was to obtain that honour which cometh from man;" and happy and enviable was his lot esteemed who outstripped his competitors in the ardent race. The world caressed me, and I gave it my heart. My practice as a Christian became more lax: I gave way to furious angry passion : sought my happiness in the smiles of man; and more and more forgat God. Who, then, will be
surprised to hear, that my little scriptural light became darkness; or, that on my having grieved and quenched the blessed Spirit, Satan should be again permitted to exert great power over me! I shudder at the recollection of this period ! Merciful God; well might thy blessed Son declare that the things which are highly esteemed among men are abomination to thee-in my own case I know it must have been so.*
Such was the determined manner in which I went through all the boisterous duties of my station, that I was appointed to head a party of the boarders in time of action, and also to command a company of men selected to combat and extinguish fire whenever it might occur in the ship. In short, I left my companions at a dis
* The writer wishes it to be clearly understood, that no part of his own irregularity could be ascribed to the want of good order and discipline on board this ship. Captain H— (who lately departed this life a titled admiral, and justly honoured by his sovereign) was too good an officer, and too moral a man, to suffer any to trifle in his presence, either with their public duties, or the sacred name and things of God. Wherever he conceived that he found merit, there he promoted it to the utmost of his power;
and if his ship had not a pious chaplain on board, it was not his fault. He watched over the conduct of those young men more immediately under his care, with the vigilant eye of an intelligent father; and formed the character and sent forth not a few who at this day are officers high in rank and respectability in the service. Had all commanders of his Majesty's ships and vessels of war been like him, perhaps the writer would this day have been very differently employed to what he now is : but be that as it may, so long as reason and memory maintain their empire, so long will the name and remembrance of Sir G. H. be honoured and respecte ed by him.