Hall - HP BX5133 .H34 1647

Cent. Ill. Meditationi and JTowes. 59 - A hand ol charitablecon(huclion ; or the fini!ler interpretation o_f mal.icr,&fufpicion: and all things doe fo fucceed, as they arc taken. I have noted e~1IIatilons well taken, pllfe curr3nt for either indifferent or commendable 1 Contranly a good fpecch or atlion ill taken, fcarcc allowed for indifferent ; an indi~ercm one, c~n_fured for evil!; an evil\ one for notorious:So favour makes vcrtucsofvtecs;and fufp1c1on mak.s vcrrues faulrs1;nd faults crimes. Ofthe two, I had rathermy right ~and fl10uld ?ffend' It is alwayes fafer olfending on the better part. To con!lruean cv1ll att well, IS but a pleafing and profitable deceit ofmy fclfe:but to mifconllrue a good thing, is a treble wrong· to my fclfc,theatlion, the author. Ifno good fenfc can be maocofade<d or fpeech\et the blame Jighrupon the author:Ifa good interpretation may begivcn,and I chuf~a worfe, let me be as·much ccnfurcdofothers, as that mifconccit ispunithB mentto my felf. . 97 I know not how it comes to palfc, that the mind ofman doth naturally both over· prizehis owne,in comparifon of others, andlet.contemn.< a~d neglett his own, in comparifon of wh.at he wa~ts.Th~ remedy o th1s later ev1ll1s, eo compare the good things we have,wlth the ev1ls wh1chwe have nor,and othersgrone under. Thou art inhealthandregardeftitnot; Look on the miferyof rhofewhichon rheirbed of fickne(fe through extremity ofpain and anf.uilh,intrcar death to releafe them. Thou hall clea;eye-fight, found Jimbs,ufc ~f re~ on1~nd palfcft thefe ove~ with fleighr re· fpctl: Think howmanythere a~e wh1ch ~n the1r uncomfortable blmdne!fc, would give all theworld for but one ghmpfeofhght: how manythat deformcdly crawl on C allfourc,aftcrthcmannerofthemoftloachfomc creatur<S: how many that in mad phrcnfies arc worfo then brutilh,worfe thendead: thus thou mighte!l be,and art not. If! be not happy for the good that I have, I am yet hadpy for the evils that I might have had, and have cfcaped.l h1ve deferved thegreate evil1every evil! that I milfo, is a new mercy. 91l~ Earth, which is the bafeft clement,is bothour mother that brought us forth, owr !lage that hears us alivc,and our grave wherein at !all we areentombed; giving to us both ouroriginall,our harbour,ourSepulcher:Shebathyecldcd her back t0 bearthoa. fands ofgenerations;&at !aft opened hermouth to receive thcm1fo fwallowingrhem up,rhat lhe ftill both bearethmore,and looks for morc;not bewraying any chatige in D her fdfe,while lhe fo oft harh cbanf"dher brood,and her burden. It is a wonderwe can be proud ofour parenrage,or o our fclves,while wefce both the bafenelTe&!labiliryofthe earth,whencewe came.What difference is there~ Living earth rteads up6 the dead earth,\Vhich aftenvards defcends into the grave, as feofcle!fe &dead,as the earth that receives it.Not many are proud oftheir foules; and none but fooles can be proud oftheir bodies.While we walk& look upon the earth,we cannot bur acknow. ledge fenfible admonitions ofhumility;andwhilewe remember them,we cannot forget our fdvcs.It is a mother-like favour ofthe earth,tliaHhc bearcsand nourilhesme and at the !all entertaines my dead carkalre:but it is a greater pleafurc that fl1e teach: crh me my vilcne!fe by her own,and fends me to heaven,for what {be' wants. 99 E _The wicked man carriet~ every day a b~and to his hell,till his heap hecome to the he1ght:rhen he ceaferh finniDg,& hegiDs h1s rormenr;whereas the repentant in every fit ofholy forr~w, c.arri~ away a whole_fagot from the flame, and qucncheth the coals that r~maiD,wuh hiStcares. Thcr~ts notor~ent for ~he penirenr;noredemption for the obfhnate. S1fcty confifteth nor ID not finmng,bur ID repenting:neither is it fin that condemnes,but impcnitencc.O Lord,I cannot be righteous, let me be repentant. I OO . The ellare ofhea~enly and ea~hly things is plainly rrprofenred to us, by the two l ~ghrs ofHeaven,wh1ch are appomt~d to ~le the night& the day.Earrhly things are ng~tly refembled by theMoon,whtch be~ng neerc!lto the region ofmortality, is e. ~er~~ chang_cs,and neverlooks upon us twiceWith the fame flee; and when it is at the full, IS blem1lhedWith fome dark blots, not capable ofany illumination. Heavenly things