accompany us in our every- day walk, as every Jew bore about with him the mark of Circumcision, visibly impressed on his flesh : as every Christian was continually reminding himself, in old time, by the sign of the Cross, Whose he was, and Whom he served. We must not keep our patience and self-command to be exercised only on great and solemn occasions : we must be con- tinually sacrificing our own wills, as opportunity serves, to the will of others : bearing without notice sights and sounds that annoy us ; setting about this or that task, when we had far rather lie doing something very different ; persevering in it often, when we are thoroughly tired of it ; keeping company for duty's sake, when it would be a great joy to us to be by ourselves : besides all the trifling untoward accidents of life : bodily pain and weakness long continued, and perplexing us often when it does not amount to illness : losing what we value, missing what we desired : dis- appointment in other persons, wilfulness, unkindness, ingratitude, folly, in cases where we least expected it. There is no end, in short, of the many little crosses, which, if quietly borne in a Christian way, will, by God's grace, do the work of affliction, and help to tame our proud wills by little and little. I say, tame our proud wills, because Holy Scripture sets forth this as one of the particular objects for which circumcision was 12 THE CURE OF WILFULNESS. appointed, that God's people might learn by it, not only to get over what are commonly called the Lusts of the Flesh, but the angry, and envious, and proud feeling also ; as the Text seems especially to hint : Circumcise there/ore the foreskin of your heart, and be no more stiff-necked. As if stubbornness, and obstinacy, and, in one word, wilfulness, (for that is the meaning of a stiff neck,) were to be cured by the same kind of discipline as sensual passions, lust, and greediness. We know what power may be gained over these by duly and prudently mortifying the body. Fasting, for example, tends to cure greediness : when people are used now and then to go without anything to eat, it makes them more moderate and less particular in all their refreshments of that sort. If they can go without, much more can they content themselves with less than they would like, or with what is un- palatable to them : much more can they give up something in this and in other trifling matters, for those who are in want or in sickness. In short, it is not hard to understand how the body, which greatly affects the mind, may be tamed and brought into subjection, by a quiet and discreet method of Fasting, accom- panied, of course, with Alms and Prayer.