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All the treasures of the earth are not to be compared to the least virtue of the soul.
Our pleasures, for the most part, are short, false, and deceitful; and like drunkenness, revenge the jolly madness of one hour with the sad repentance of many.
All men of estates are, in effect, but trustees for the benefit of the distressed; and will be so reckoned, when they are to give an account.
Cast an eye into the gay world, what see we, for the most part, but a set of querelous, emaciated, fluttering, fantastical beings, worn out in the keen pursuit of pleasure; creatures that know, own, condemn, deplore, yet still pursue their own infelicity? The decayed monuments of error! The thin remains of what is called delight.
There needs no train of servants, no pomp or equipage, to make good our passage to
heaven; but the graces of a honest mind will serve us upon the way, and make us happy at our journey's end.
The true honour of man consists not in the multitude of riches, or the elevation of rank, for experience shews these may be possessed by the worthless, as well as the deserving.
How often does pride turn the scale of our actions. Pride is the serpent's egg laid in the hearts of all, but only hatched by fools and wicked men.
Gold is made to solace the wants, and not to nourish the passions of men. In this view, it was generally brought from the mines, purified, struck and stamped. He who expends it properly is its master; he who lays it up, its keeper; he who loves it, a fool; he who fears it, a slave; he who adores it, an idolater; the truly wise man is he who despises it.
There are voices which sing around us, but whose strains allure to ruin. There is a banquet spread where poison is in every dish. There is a couch which invites us to repose, but to slumber upon it is death.
The roses of pleasure seldom last long enough to adorn the brow of him who plucks them; for they are the only roses which do not retain their sweetness after they have lost their beauty.
PROSPERITY AND ADVERSITY.
THE hope of receiving much spiritual ad
vantage should reconcile us to the severest afflictions.
Some of our principal blessings are wrapt up in the darkest providences.
God sometimes corrects with outward af flictions, but at the same time, smiles with inward manifestations, the latter sweeten and alleviate the former.
There is no pill so bitter in this world but the love of God can sweeten it.
Whatever draws the soul near to God cannot be real adversity, and whatever allures it from God, cannot be real prosperity.
Afflictions in regard to all God's children, shall have a corrective, but not a destructive influence: they shall purge away sin, but not destroy grace.
The cross though weighty, does not enfeeble the christian, it only makes him sensible of his weakness, that he may learn to depend only on the arm of the Almighty.
Nature accustoms us to suffer from our infancy, in order to teach us how to suffer.
We mount to fortune by several steps, but require only one step to come down.
Prosperity is not without its troubles, nor adversity without its comforts.