Abernathy - Houston-Packer Collection BX9178.A33 S4 1748 v.1

12 of Self -Denial. SE R M. Laflly, It fhould be our conftant care, that. I. our thoughts do not unduely dwell on the ob- L -V.ft.+ jells of the lower appetites and panions ; for the tendency of this is to ftrengthen our affec- tions to them, and increafe their influence on our praéice. We cánnot hinder the firfi im- preffions of thefe objefts, nor the fail mo- tions of our affections and defires to them : but the entertaining them in our thoughts, and meditating upon them is more voluntary. The imagination is often employed a&ively in colouring them, and fetting them off with ad- vantage ; in forming fcenes of pleafure which heighten delire, and various projeas in order to fulfil it. This might be in a great meafure reftrained, by a careful attention and purpofe of heart to exercife our thinking powers in a better and more proper manner: but when our vain thoughts lodge within us, and the fancy, not correaed by reafon, heightens the appa- rent agreeablenefs of tempting objeas, the mind is thereby betrayed into a compliance with the motions of lufts beyond the bounds which God's law has fet us : and this by fre- quent indulgence grows into habit, which be- comes a firong principle of aäion, forming the temper, and depriving the fuperior powers of their juft dominion. As