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an idle compliment; in the mouth of many more, it is forgotten as soon as spoken, or at best never followed up by practice. It is not so with us: our wish, which this morning lies on your table, we intend to follow up with all the might that God may give us; and that too, whether cheered by approving smiles, welcome as December's suns in this cold world, and hope-inspiring as April's gleams amidst its showers; or scared by disapproving frowns, dark as the Atlantic blasts, which ever and anon sweep, as with the besom of destruction, over the astonished face of our Cornish Moors,“ through evil report of good report."
In order to follow up thiş our wish, as it regards our different readers, it is our intention, "whereto we have already attained to walk by the same rule, to mind the same thing;” still would we follow up our wish to those that seek their happiness in sin, by, solemnly testifying that “there iş uo peace to the wicked;" to those that seek it in the world, that “the fashion of this world passeth away,” that "if any man love the
if any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him," that a
world can never satisfy a never-dying soul; to those who inquire the way, by shewing them the Scripture-path of happiness-peace with God as a reconciled Fatherto be sought and welcomed through our Lord Jesus Christ; and to those that are acquainted with that blessed way, by the word of comfort, encouragement, exhortation, by bringing forth out of our stores things new and old as God may euable us. More than this, we desire to forget the steps already trod; to lay ourselves out for your happiness with more zeal, love, and prayerful diligence, and so much the more, as we see - the day approaching."
We have passed together through a year marked by no common events. The awful pestilence, which has ; carried off its thousands; the moral pestilence which has so largely shewn itself this year in the unbelieving rejection of Jehovah as the Sovereign Lord of Heaven and Earth; in the wide-wasting sin of Sabbath-breaking; in the spirit of disaffection to all rightful order and Government in Church and State; 'we have felt to be dark and solemn signs of the times. We enter upon another year; and lo! wondrous mercy! the pesa tilence which has made so many childless, has well nigh left our shores, yet must it be said, “ Ye have not returned unto me.” Well, then, the alarm of war, another of God's judgments, sounds in our ears. After
peace, the rumour of war is heard, a war too, which, however it may end, leads us to tremble for that which is or ought to be dearer to us than all beside our Protestant Constitution in Church and State. *
But if these things be so, where is the prospect of a happy New Year? Why let the believer know,“ The Lord reigneth;" amidst the darkest clouds, the chariot wheels of Providence and Grace roll right on to the final consummation of the glorious purposes of Jehovah; the same signs too that discover the great wrath of Satan, shew us (blessed be God) that his time is short. The Lord too has given us some brighter signs. We have still some salt in our land; some that plead hard with
* From the circumstance of its being carried on in Union with Infidel and Republican France, against (as far as we know) the only Government in Europe true to the Protestant cause. It is a striking fact, that the King of Holland, contrary to the pattern set him by the unbelieving Governments of these days, has publicly acknowledged the Sovereignty of the Lord of Hosts, by appointing a day for himself and his people to approach God in prayer for his protection in the event of war.
God; a remnant, but for whom we had long ago bern as Sodom, and been like unto Gomorrah. We have had some to fight the battles of the Lord in our last Pailiament,* and every ground to hope the Lord will raise up some in this also; above all, it is a cheering sign that God is evidently raising an increase of' faithful men in the ministry of our Church, and still using us as a great means to carry His (iospel into the dark corners of the carth, and still crowning that Gospel with success--still then, amidst every dark cloud, a happy New Year to you.' But if there ever was a time when happiness was confined to the little flock” of them “ that are Christ's," surely it is now. Now, when God is so evidently shaking every nation, every constitution, every foundation, surely the man that has nothing to look to for his happiness beyond the things that may be shaken, and will be removed by being shaken, (Haggai ii. 6, 7, with Hebr. xii. 26, 27,) had better call his condition madness than happiness.
0, our Readers, you that are still rejoicing in any thing that may be shaken, if you would see a happy New Year, these old things must pass away, and all things become new, your happiness has no foundation, be you
who or what you may. Search our pages, you will see that Scripture statement, living and dying scenes, bear witness that happiness is no where to be found but in the love of God as a reconciled Father in Christ Jesus—it is our best New Year's wish, that you may be led this year there to seek and there to find it.
To you who have found it there, it is our best * As Churchmen and Cornishmen, we camot pass over in silence the powerful and Christian, though alas, unsuccessful, opposition of the Bishop of our own Diocese, to that most dismal effect of the Infidel Liberalisin of our times—the yielding to the Papists in the Question of Irish Education.
New Year's wish that your hearts may be comforted, strengthened, stablished, settled; it will be our endeavour, therefore, that you may find in our pages both milk for babes, and strong meat for those who “by reason of use" are able to digest it. Thus we set out with the desire to provide for the happiness of every Reader, as God may enable us; beseeching you to unite with us in prayer, that He who alone giveth the increase, may grant us such wisdom and grace, faithfulness and love, that our Monthly Visits may bring glory to His Name, and make good, in many a blessed instance, the desire of our hearts, 'A happy New Year to you.'
THE CHRISTIAN NATURALIST.
“O Winter, ruler of th' inverted year,
And dreaded as thou art !” Thus sung a Poet of the last century, whose harp genius strung, and religion tuned in so noble and delightful a manner, as to make us forget, while we listen to his sweet and pious strains, the dreariness of the present season. So enamoured was Cowper with Winter, that he composed no less than three separate poems upon this subject. If any therefore of our readers are disposed to think that the Poet chose but a barren theme to occupy his muse, we recommend them to read his “Winter Evening,' and the Winter Morning Walk,' as well as the “Winter's Walk at Noon.' When they have followed him in the series of meditations to which he and his lofty predecessor, Thomson, have
struck the finest chords of poetic feeling and description, we think they will agree with us, that Winter may be as full of agreeable and profitable ideas as even summer itself. It is therefore much to be lamented, that so many persons, especially of the poorer class, are apt, like the dormouse, to sleep away so large a portion of those wintery hours, which would if rightly employed have been highly favourable to the purposes of mental cultivation, and religious improvement.
To the Christian Naturalist, Winter abounds with subjects of grand and interesting contemplation. What indeed can be more worthy of attention, than that beautiful, fleecy, mantle in which nature so often wraps herself during this season. Let us stand a moment,
and watch the descending shower of snow! With what softness and grace does it fall, and repose upon the bosom of the earth! How lovely and pure the whiteness of the flakes, and how curiously disposed in chrystals of various forms! And then, how marvellous the process by which water in its descent from the clouds is thus suddenly charged into a substance as entirely