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gerous intimacy which I see so frequently springing up around me, between families of opposing creeds. This is full of danger: kindness received, claims gratitude in return, and gratitude seals the lip to all that might be uncongenial to its object; affection for the people, engenders complacency to the system, and by degrees the wealth which God has given, is bestowed to advance what he abhors; a sickly liberality of sentiment takes the place of firmness of principle, exclusiveness and not Popery is what is protested against, and out of this spring those unhallowed unions, so fatally common, with their mocking stipulation; and is not the result almost in every case, with those walking in such ways of temptation, even as it was witb Solomon, “ the heart is turned away after other gods and the Lord is provoked to anger." ' 1 Kings xi. 4.
• Does not all you have said, dear aunt, apply as much to worldly people in general, as to Romanists?'
. It does apply, but not I think so strongly: professedly guided by the same standard, and living in the use of the same means of grace, we can never want opportunities of speaking a word in season to their souls, and they know little of the subtleties of Romanism who suppose the same spare awaits the believer in the opposition offered to the truths of the gospel, by the mere worldling, as in the specious sophistry by which the benighted opponent seeks to involve him in a maze of doubtful questions and traditional absurdities, and lead bim from his stronghold, the word of God.'
. And do you really think there would be danger in your entering into familiar intercourse with them?' rejoined Alice.
There is always danger,' replied Miss Annesley, 'in exposing ourselves to any temptation, that does not lie in the obvious path of duty; but even if I felt secure, we see others every day perishing in those quicksands of error, and it would be a very doubtful benevolence that would lead me, through fancied zeal for the welfare of the enslaved children of Rome, into a course, where many a weak brother is made to offend. Rom. xiv. 13. 1 Cor. viii. 10–12.
In no way can we so effectually show our love to our neighbour, as by keeping ourselves from even the appearance of evil, manifesting the power of the truth we hold, by a holy life and conversation. 1 John v. 18.
I remember hearing of one, who had long scoffed at the doctrines of the gospel, but was afterwards, by God's sovereign grace, snatched “as a brand from the burning," that he confessed, wbile Satan supplied him with a thousand arguments against Christian truth, and while he imagined he could, in the exercise of his proud reason, overturn the whole delusive bugbear of Religion, he never could sabdụe the influence exerted on his mind, by the consistent walk of a holy man of God.'
• But, Aunt, does not withdrawal from ungodly people, who are still outwardly moral, savour somewhat of a self-righteous spirit, as if we said, “stand by thyself, I am holier than thou.”' Isa. Ixv. 3.
"It is a favourite charge against it, dear Alice, a device of the arch-enemy to bring down God's children into evil, by this false humility. “ Cast thyself down,” he would say, “ angels shall have charge over thee; keep the light within, as bright as you will, but cover it up closely-do but seem to worship
me, and be a little less separated to God, and you will escape the reproach of self-righteousness." When we listen to suggestions of this kind, we are parleying with the Tempter, and we would do well to take heed lest we fall. How soon would our doubts, as to what we may do, find an end, if our hearts were really given to God! Tben nothing, about which a doubt arose, would be entered upon, and the anxious excuses put forward now, to satisfy questioning conscience, would be unknown. Pilgrims and strangers here, journeying on to a home where pothing unclean can enter, we should carefully avoid all needless handling of uncleanness now ;-and surely the knowledge that every good thought or word, or action, is the work of the Spirit within the soul, while the sips, wbich do so easily beset us, are all our own, ought to be sufficient to check overweening self-righteousness. Besides, the Christian knows it is not in his own garment, even if unsoiled, tbat he can appear at the marriage supper of the Lord. Believe me, dear Alice, we need every thing to strengthen us in our warfare here, as well as to shun all that could tempt us ;--if our God calls us to the enemy's camp, he will enable us there to conquer in his might; till he does, may we choose, like David to be “a companion of those that fear him and keep his precepts,” and may our's be the blessing promised to him, that “ walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners.”' Ps. cxix. 63. i. 1, 2.
AN IRISH LADY.
Oh! pardon these rebellious tears as gushingly they
spring, O’er early joys, once bright and fair, left dull and
withering; Nor blame thy froward child, who now, when all
around is dark ; Would float o'er memory's sunny tide, in fancy's
Who that has cherish'd loveliest flowers, and watch'd
their opening bloom, Could see them unmatur'd decay, nor mourn their
blighted doom? Who that has linger'd foodly in hope's glowing
garden land Could roam alone, with eye undimm’d, o'er sorrow's
surge-lash'd strand ?
I must be sad, I cannot gaze in solitude forlorn; And coldly see life's roses fade; and leave the change
less thorn, I cannot mark each fountain dry, each earth-light
die away, Nor, grieve for the refreshing spring, the bright
though fitfal ray!
Hush! restless dreams! methinks a voice breathes
o'er my soul like balm, And memory's breezes sink to peace, thought's toss
ing billows calm; O'er my spirit's gloom the rainbow of the Word
divine is thrown, And it seems an arch from brighter worlds for seraphs
to glide down.
“ Frail, child of earth! why weepest thou ? oh! why
so slow to learn, That clouds and tempests oft convey a blessing few
discern ? Why linger still with vain regret in pleasure's hap
less bowers, Why wilt thou sorrow idly thus o'er earth's decaying
If now thy path seem dark and drear; oh! can'st
thou not confide That He, whose mercy Hagar cheer'd beside the
flowing tide * Can, if He knows it to be best, ope many a hidden
spring, And make the desert, with a word, in new-born
Oh! trust Him! though a threat'ning main lay
dark before thy path, Though hosts pursuing gather'd strength in fierce
relentless wrath ;
* Genesis xxi. 17.