There are two things, which I have always looked upon as difficult. The one is-to make the wicked sad; the other is-to make the godly joyful. Dejection in the godly arises from a double spring: either because their inward comforts are darkened, or their outward comforts are disturbed. To cure both these troubles, I have put forth this ensuing treatise, hoping, by the blessing of God, that it will buoy up their desponding hearts, and make them look with a more pleasant aspect. To know that nothing hurts the godly, is a matter of comfort; but to be assured that all things which fall out shall cooperate for their good, that their crosses shall be turned into blessings, that showers of affliction water the withering root of their grace and make it flourish more-this may fill their hearts with joy until they run over!
Thomas Watson was an English preacher and author who obtained great fame preaching until the Restoration when he was ejected as the vicar of St. Stephen's Walbrook for noncomformity. Watson continued to exercise his ministry privately and upon the Declaration of Indulgence in 1672 he obtained a license to preach at the great hall in Crosby House.