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some sin, from the gripes of a galled conscience, which yet never came where true repentance grew; in whom the conscience plays at once the accuser, witness, judge, tormentor: but an earnest grief, for the want of grief, was never found in any but a gracious heart. You are happy, and complain. Tell me, I beseech you; this sorrow which you mourn to want, is it a grace of the Spirit of God, or not? If not, why do you sorrow to want it? If it be, oh how happy is it to grieve for want of grace! The God of all truth and blessedness hath said, “ Blessed are those that hunger and thirst after righteousness ;” and with the same breath, “ Blessed are they that mourn; for they shall be comforted." You say you mourn; Christ saith, you are blessed: you say you mourn ; Christ saith, you shall be comforted. Either now distrust your Saviour, or else confess your happiness, and with patience expect his promised consolation. What do you fear? You see others stand like strong oaks, unshaken, unremoved: you are but a reed, a feeble plant, tossed and bowed with every wind, and with much agitation bruised; lo, you are in tender and favourable hands, that never brake any whom their sins bruised; never bruised any whom temptations have bowed. You are but flax; and your best is not a flame, but an obscure smoke of grace: lo, here his Spirit is as a soft wind, not as cold water; he will kindle, will never quench you. The sorrow you want, is his gift : take heed lest, while you vex yourself with dišlike of the measure, you grudge at the Giver. Beggars may not choose. This portion He hath vouchsafed to give you; if you have any, it is more than he was bound to bestow : yet you say, What, no more? as if you took it unkindly that he is no more liberal. Even these
holy discontentments are dangerous. Desire more, (so much as you can,) but repine not when you do not attain. Desire, but so as you be free from im. patience, free from unthankfulness : those who have tried, can say how difficult it is to complain, with due reservation of thanks. Neither know I whether is worse, to long for good things impatiently, or not at all to desire them. The fault of your sorrow is rather in your conceit than in itself. And if indeed you mourn not enough, stay but God's leisure, and your eyes shall run over with tears. How many do you see sport with their sins, yea, brag of them!How many that would die for want of pastime, if they might not sin freely, and more freely talk of it! What a saint are you to these, that can droop under the memory of the frailty of youth, and never think you have spent enough of tears! Yet so I encourage you in what you have, as one that persuades you not to desist from suing for more. It is good to be covetous of grace; and to have our desires herein enlarged with our receipts. Weep still, and still desire to weep; but let your tears be as the rain in the sunshine, comfortable and hopeful; and let not your longing savour of murmur or distrust. These tears are reserved; this hunger shall be satisfied; this sorrow shall be comforted. There is nothing betwixt God and you, but time. Prescribe not to his wisdom; hasten not his mercy. His grace is enough for you: his glory shall be more than enough.