Selected Messages Book 3


Ellen White's Appraisal on the Closing Day

(Written to a member of her home family, November 4, 1888).

Our meeting [The Minneapolis General Conference session] is closed. I have on last Sabbath given my last discourse. There seemed for the first time to be considerable feeling in the congregation. I called them forward for prayers although the church was densely packed. Quite a number came forward. The Lord gave me the spirit of supplication and His blessing came upon me. I did not go out to meeting this morning. This has been a most laborious meeting for Willie, and I have had to watch at every point lest there should be moves made, resolutions passed, that would prove detrimental to the future work. 3SM 177.3

I have spoken nearly twenty times with great freedom and we believe that this meeting will result in great good. We know not the future, but we feel that Jesus stands at the helm and we shall not be shipwrecked. My courage and faith have been good and have not failed me, notwithstanding we have had the hardest and most incomprehensible tug of war we have ever had among our people. The matter cannot be explained by pen unless I should write many, many pages; so I had better not undertake the job. 3SM 177.4

Elder Olsen is to be president of the General Conference and Brother Dan Jones, of Kansas, is to help him. Elder Haskell will serve until Brother Olsen shall come from Europe. [In the absence of George I. Butler, president of the General Conference, Elder Haskell chaired the General Conference session. Shortly after the close of the session, W. C. White was asked to serve as acting General Conference president, which he did for nearly six months.] I cannot tell what the future may reveal, but we shall remain for about four weeks in Battle Creek and get out a testimony that should come out just now without delay. Then we can see how matters move at the great center of the work. We are determined to do all we can in the fear of God to help our people in this emergency. 3SM 178.1

A sick man's mind has had a controlling power over the General Conference Committee and the ministers have been the shadow and echo of Elder Butler about as long as it is healthy and for the good of the cause. Envy, evil surmisings, jealousies have been working like leaven until the whole lump seemed to be leavened.... 3SM 178.2

Today, Sunday, I have not attended meeting, but have had to visit considerably. I am grateful to God for the strength and freedom and power of His spirit in bearing my testimony, although it has made the least impression upon many minds than at any period before in my history. Satan has seemed to have power to hinder my work in a wonderful degree, but I tremble to think what would have been in this meeting if we had not been here. God would have worked in some way to prevent this spirit brought to the meeting, having a controlling power. But we are not the least discouraged. We trust in the Lord God of Israel. The truth will triumph and we mean to triumph with it. 3SM 178.3

We think of you all at home and would be pleased to be with you, but our wishes are not to be consulted. The Lord is our Leader, let Him direct our course and we will follow where He leads the way.—Letter 82, 1888. 3SM 179.1