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measure entrusted with them; should not such baseness fill you with disdain and abhorrence ? Can any of you be so mean, so surpassing mean, as to doat on the traitors ? Even where their aim is not destruction, where merely for amusement they flatter or soothe, should ye suffer yourselves to be seduced into fondness? How foolish to be taken with those little superficial attentions, that are so easily learnt in the school of fashion, and so frequently practised to hide a hollow, or disguise an unfeeling soul?
Are ye ignorant of its being an established system among men of gaiety and pleasure, that your sex have no principles ; that you are designed only to serve their purposes ; and that; when you refuse to do so, it is mere pride or gross dissimulation? Can ye think of this, and not be offended ? Will ye continue to prefer such characters to the sober, sedate, and sentimental ?
You often behold the wrecks of beauty that has been blasted, and of innocence that has been betrayed. Providence allows those miserable beings to carry their effrontery so far as to appear withiout shame in every public place, the monuments of male falsehood as well as female infatuation ; and can ye fail of being impressed with salutary ter
Can ye restrain the spirit of indignant virtue from darting out on those men that, in your company, dare to speak a language unfit for you to hear ? Should not your eyes at least make them sensible of the affront offered to your ears?
And if they are hardened enough not to be ashamed, does it not become you ever after to shun their sight, as you would shun a bear or a satyr? I am sure you will
think so, if you consult either the dignity of your sex, or the purity of your minds.
Love grafted on esteem, or fed by it, is a just and noble principle. But how has it been disgraced by worthless pretenders! Join, my sisters, with all your power to vindicate its honours. Let the sanc, tity of your conduct serye, as much as possible, to recall the passion from empty form and criminal indulgence, from the blind admiration of an out, side, and the short-lived gratification of youthful desire, to a genuine, holy, and enlightened affection; such as springing chiefly from a sympathy of honest and generous hearts, shall flourish when fancy, youth, and beauty, are no more.
If women will marry men of bad morals, if from whatever motive they will manifestly endanger their own salvation, by forming so intimate a connexion with those who betray a total neglect of theirs ; what can we say, either for religion or the sex, that will make any impression on those who are prejudiced against both ?
What can she plead that accepts without scruple the hand of a man, who is seldom or ever seen in a place of worship, and whose companions are known to be profane or licentious ? Is this to act, in the greatest concern of life, like a person of principle ?
It is a common complaint, nor can the fact be denied, that most of our young gentlemen now a days entirely disregard religious institutions. But how can it be expected they should do otherwise, so long as they find themselves, in general, no way the less acceptable to the ladies, for such fashionable impiety? What a scandal in “ women professing « Godliness!”
Amidst so much disorder, and so many snares on all hands, what can be so wise for you, my
christian friends, as to take refuge more and more in the sanctuary of Devotion ?-Let us not dissemble the truth. The greater part of either sex study to prey on one another. The world, in too many instances, is a theatre of war between men and women. Every stratagem is tried, and every advantage taken, on the side of both. On the side of the former, strength and daring, are joined to art and ambition, in which the latter abound. To make a truce they often meet. Even preliminaries towards a peace are often proposed. Individuals pass over to the camp of the enemy, and are reconciled. But what shall we say of the contending powers at large? Methinks they resemble this and a neighbouring kingdom, between which a general truce is always short, and a national peace never
To many young women the preacher will seem
one that mocks. The men they consider as their best friends; and a lasting union is what they long for as the height of happiness. A union, by some or- other, will probably take place. And if it shall, to know that it proved lasting, entire, and happy, as happy as the present state permits, would, you may be well assured, give the preacher pleasure. But if from this, or any imaginable connexion upon earth, you hope for complete felicity; your hopes will be vain. Imperfect yourselves, you have no right to expect perfection from men. In the most agreeable attachInents, you will still find a mixture. The best characters will sometime's say, or do that, which shall occasion pain; daily intercourse will dull the relish of delight ; and disagreeable accidents, but especially severe distress, will not improve the taste for it. Devotion, dearly beloved, Devotion will
ever be your surest and sweetest resource. “ quaint yourselves therefore now with God, and “ be at peace.”
Even now, I doubt not, some of you perceive that all besides is uncertain and unsatisfactory. Your father and mother have forsaken you by death ; or, which is far worse, by unnatural cruelty, or horrible selfishness. You have not perhaps in the world a friend to supply their place : Or if you have, you cannot but know that human friendships are often fallacious, and like other human comforts always precarious. Every thing in nature is subject to vicissitude ; and nothing more usual than for men to adopt a different deportment as their circumstances or interests, their opinions or humours, vary.
There is but one immutable friend, a friend that sticks closer than a brother,” a lover, a parent.
“ He is the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever. He will never leave you : " he will never forsake you." He has engaged himself by his promise ; and “ he is not man that " he should lie, neither the son of man that he should " repent.”
I have often thought that, in some respects, there is not any creature so forlorn or exposed, as a young woman, beautiful, unexperienced, single, almost wholly friendless, bred to affluence, left in dependence, perhaps in indigence, of which some wretch curst with wealth is willing to avail himself for the vilest ends. While I paint such a situation, who does not see the need of piety? What remains for this pretty sufferer, but to hold fast her innocence at all adventures, and look up to him * with whom the fatherless find mercy.
- Pro.tect me, O my heavenly Father, my only sure • and never-failing friend ; protect thy poor, de
pendent, helpless creature. From this wilderness of life I lift up my eyes to Thee ; to thy throne ' of pity I stretch out my arms for succour. 'hold, I am needy, and feeble, and full of afflic
tion. I tread among snares ; I tremble for fear. " But Thou art merciful. Save me, O Lord, most mighty ; save me from evil men, from vain companions, from folly, from myself. My wants supply, most gracious : my weakness strengthen ; • for ever guard the virtue by Thee implanted. • Thou art the guide of my youth ; lead me in a
plain path, because of my enemies. Let none • have power to hurt me ; may some have the good
ness to support my steps. Send down wisdom • from thy holy heavens that she may labour with
me continually, and sweetly counsel me in all my doings. In Thee, O God, in Thee alone have I 6 put my trust: let me never be confounded. Be my
God for ever and ever, and my guide even ' unto death. I ask it for the sake of • Redeemer. Amen.'