The fift Chapter, Of the euerlasting daie, and anguish of this life.
OBlessed mansion of thy heauenlie Citie! O most clearest daie of eternitie, whom the night may neuer darken!
This is the daie alwaie cleare and mer∣rie, alwaie sure, and neuer changing his estate.
Would to God this daie might shortlie appeare, and shine vpon vs, and that these worldlie fantasies were at an end.
This daie shineth clearlie to thy Saints in heauen, with euerlasting brightnesse: but to vs pilgrims in earth it shineth obscurelie, and as through a mirrour or glasse.
The heauenlie Citizens knowe how ioious this day is; but we outlawes, the children of Eue, weepe and Page 92 waile the bitter tediousnes of our daie, that is of this present life, short and euill, full of sorowe and anguish,
Where man is oftentimes defiled with sinne, in∣cumbred with affliction, inquieted with troubles, wrapped in cares, busied with vanities, blinded with errors, ouercharged with labours, vexed with temp∣tations, ouercome with vaine delights and pleasures of the world, and grieuouslie tormented with penurie and neede.
O when shall the end come of all these miseries?
When shall I be clearelie deliuered from the bon∣dage of sinne?
When shall I Lord haue onelie mind on thee, and fullie be glad and merrie in thee?
When shall I be free without letting, and be in per∣fect libertie of bodie and soule?
When shall I haue peace without trouble: peace within and without, and on euerie side stedfast & sure?
O Lord Iesu, when shall I stand and behold thee; and haue full sight and contemplation of thy glorie?
When shalt thou be to me all in all? And when shall I be with thee in thy kingdome, that thou hast ordei∣ned for thine elect people from the beginning?
I am left here poore, and as an outlawe, in the land of mine enimies; where dailie be battels, and great misfortunes.
Comfort mine exile, asswage my sorowe; for all my desire is to be with thee.
It is to me an vnpleasant burden, what pleasure soeuer the world offereth me here.
I desire to haue inward fruition in thee; but I can not attaine thereto.
I couet to cleaue fast to heauenlie things; but world∣lie affections plucke my mind downeward.
I would subdue all euill affections; but they dailie rebell, and rise against me, and will not be subiect vnto Page 93 my spirit.
Thus I wretched creature sigh in my selfe, and am grieuous to my selfe, while my spirit desireth to be vp∣ward and contrarie, my flesh draweth me downward.
O what suffer I inwardlie! I go about to mind heauenly things, and streight a great rable of world∣lie things rush into my soule.
Therefore, Lord, be not long awaie; ne depart thou in thy wrath from me.
Send me the light of thy grace; destroie in me all carnall desires.
Send foorth the hot flames of thy loue, to burne and consume the cloudie fantasies of my mind.
Gather, O Lord, my wits, and the powers of my soule togither in thee; & make me to despise all world∣lie things, and by thy grace strongly to resist and ouer∣come all motions and occasions of sinne.
Helpe me thou euerlasting truth, that no worldlie guile nor vanitie hereafter haue power to deceiue me.
Come also thou heauenlie sweetnesse, and let all bit∣ternesse of sinne flie far from me. Pardon me, and for∣giue me as oft as in my praier my mind is not surelie fixed on thee.
For manie times I am not there, where I stand or sit; but rather there whither my thoughts carie me.
For there I am, where my thoughts be, and where as customablie is my thought, there is that that I loue.
And that oftentimes commeth into my mind, that by custome pleaseth me best; and that delighteth me most to thinke vpon.
Accordinglie as thou dost say in thy gospell: Where as a mans treasure is, there is his hart.
Wherefore, if I loue heauen, I speake gladlie ther∣of, and of such things as be of God, and of that that apperteineth to his honour, and to the glorie of his Page 94 holie name.
And if I loue the world, I loue to talke of worldlie things, and I ioie anon in worldlie felicitie, and so∣rowe and lament soone for worldlie aduersitie.
If I loue the flesh, I imagine oftentimes that, that pleaseth the flesh.
If I loue my soule, I delight much to speake and to heare of things that be for my soules health.
And whatsoeuer I loue, of that I gladlie heare, and speake, and beare the images of them still in my mind.
Blessed is the man that for the loue of the Lord, set∣teth not by the pleasures of this world, and learneth trulie to ouercome himselfe, and with the feruour of spirit crucifieth his flesh; so that in a cleane and a pure conscience he may offer his praiers to thee, and be ac∣cepted to haue companie of thy blessed Angels, all earthlie things excluded from his hart.