so that if in this life we would enjoy the peace of paradise, we must

accustom ourselves to a familiar, humble, affectionate conversation with

Him: we must hinder our spirits wandering from Him upon any occasion:

we must make our heart a spiritual temple, wherein to adore Him

incessantly: we must watch continually over ourselves, that we may not

do, nor say, nor think anything that may displease Him. When our minds

are thus employed about GOD, suffering will become full of unction and


I know that to arrive at this state, the beginning is very difficult;

for we must act purely in faith. But though it is difficult, we know

also that we can do all things with the grace of GOD, which He never

refuses to them who ask it earnestly. Knock, persevere in knocking, and

I answer for it that He will open to you in His due time, and grant you

all at once what He has deferred during many years. Adieu. Pray to Him

for me, as I pray to Him for you. I hope to see Him quickly.


From his death-bed.  Repeats the same exhortation to knowledge, that

we may love.

GOD knoweth best what is needful for us, and all that He does is for our

good. If we knew how much He loves us, we should be always ready to

receive equally and with indifference from His hand the sweet and the

bitter; all would please that came from Him. The sorest afflictions

never appear intolerable, but when we see them in the wrong light. When

we see them in the hand of GOD, who dispenses them: when we know that

it is our loving FATHER, who abases and distresses us: our sufferings

will lose their bitterness, and become even matter of consolation.

Let all our employment be to know GOD: the more one knows Him, the more

one desires to know Him. And as knowledge is commonly the measure of

love, the deeper and more extensive our knowledge shall be, the greater

will be our love: and if our love of GOD were great we should love Him

equally in pains and pleasures.

Let us not amuse ourselves to seek or to love GOD for any sensible

favours (how elevated soever) which He has or may do us. Such favours,

though never so great, cannot bring us so near to GOD as faith does in

one simple act. Let us seek Him often by faith: He is within us; seek

Him not elsewhere. Are we not rude and deserve blame, if we leave Him

alone, to busy ourselves about trifles, which do not please Him and

perhaps offend Him? 'Tis to be feared these trifles will one day cost

us dear.

Let us begin to be devoted to Him in good earnest. Let us cast

everything besides out of our hearts; He would possess them alone. Beg

this favour of Him. If we do what we can on our parts, we shall soon

see that change wrought in us which we aspire after. I cannot thank Him

sufficiently for the relaxation He has vouchsafed you. I hope from His

mercy the favour to see Him within a few days. Let us pray for one


[He took to his bed two days after and died within the week.]

Appendix A - The electronic edition.

It is a privilege to release this Public Domain edition of Brother

Lawrence's Practice, though I fear I know very little about it.

It would appear from internal evidence to have been first published

between 1670 and, say, 1700. The text given here is taken from a 16vo

paperback pamphlet of unknown date; Edgar Charles Barton was Book

Steward of the Epworth Press from the time of the Methodist Union of

1932 until 1948, which gives the limits within which the edition came


In order to distinguish this version from a subsequent corrected copy,

I label this release 1.0; and to facilitate ARCHIE location, request

that all distributed copies bear the name

John Harris e-mail:

mail: 24 beaconsfield rd, bristol, bs8 2ts, uk

tel: +44 272 738386 (fax same number, call voice first)

27th January 1994, Bristol, England.