From a sick, and, in all human probability, a dying bed, the writer of these pages feels an earnest desire to be enabled, with the blessing of God, to execute a little plan which has at different times crossed her mind, but which she never found leisure to accomplish, till the present season of incapacity.
"The importunity of friends," - that hackneyed apology for works of inferior merit, is not, in the present instance, the less true for being worn threadbare. By many partial friends she has frequently been desired to write a volume exclusively on Prayer. With this request she has always declined complying; because, among other reasons, she was aware that she had previously exhausted - not the subject itself, which is indeed inexhaustible, - but the slender resources of her own mind.
In her, perhaps too numerous, printed works, written on different subjects, and at distant periods, there are very many volumes, in which not only some reference has been made but some distinct portions assigned, to the all-important subject of Prayer.
It is now her latest and wannest wish to be permitted to collect and examine some of those portions which treat more directly of this great duty; to unite the scattered members into one compact body, and to bring each under its proper head, into one point of view. All she is herself able to do, is to hear these extracts read by kind friends, and to adopt such passages as she may think proper for selection.