Spiritual Gifts, vol. 2


Chapter 35—Visit to Ohio

In the spring of 1858, we visited Ohio, and attended conferences at Green Springs, Gilboa and Lovett's Grove. Bro. Tillotson took us from Green Springs in his carriage to the places of meeting. At Lovett's Grove the Lord met with us, and his blessing rested upon us. First-day afternoon there was to be a funeral at the school-house where our meetings were held. My husband was invited to give a discourse on the occasion. The people could not all get into the house. My husband was blessed with freedom, and the power of truth seemed to affect the hearers. 2SG 265.1

When he closed his remarks, I felt urged by the Spirit of the Lord to bear my testimony. As I was led to speak upon the coming of Christ and the resurrection and the cheering hope of the Christian, my soul triumphed in God. I drank in rich draughts of salvation. Heaven, sweet heaven, was the magnet to draw my soul upward, and I was wrapt in a vision of God's glory. Many important things were there revealed to me for the church. 2SG 265.2

I saw that those who profess the truth should hold the standard high, and induce others to come up to it. I saw that some would have to walk the straight path alone. Their companions and children will not walk the self-denying pathway with them. Patience and forbearance should ever characterize the lives of those lone pilgrims, following the example of their blessed Master. They will have many trials to endure, but they have a hope that makes the soul strong, that bears them up above the trials of earth, that elevates them above scorn, derision and reproach. Those who possess a hope like this should never indulge a harsh, unkind spirit. This will only injure their own souls, and drive their friends farther from the truth. Treat them tenderly. Give them no occasion to reproach the cause of Christ; but never yield the truth to please any one. Be decided, be fixed, be established, be not of a doubtful mind. 2SG 266.1

But if your companions and children will not come, if you cannot win them to yield to the claims of truth, make their lives here as pleasant as possible; for all they will ever enjoy will be this poor world. But let not your duty to them interfere with your duty to God. Pursue a straight-forward course. Let nothing they may do or say provoke an angry word from you. You have a hope that will yield you consolation amid the disappointments and trials of life. Your companions and children who will not be induced to tread the narrow, cross-bearing pathway with you, have not this divine consolation. They should have your pity, for this world is all the heaven they will have. 2SG 266.2

I was shown that all who profess the present truth would be tested and tried. Their love for Jesus’ coming will be proved, and manifested to others, whether it is genuine. All, I saw, would not stand the test. Some love this world so much that it swallows up their love for the truth. As their treasures here increase, their interest in the heavenly treasure decreases. The more they possess of this world, the more closely do they hug it to them, as if fearful their coveted treasure would be taken from them. The more they possess, the less do they have to bestow upon others, for the more they have, the poorer they feel. O, the deceitfulness of riches! They will not see and feel the wants of the cause of God. 2SG 267.1

I saw that God could rain means from heaven to carry on his work, but he never would do this. It is contrary to his plan. He has entrusted men on earth with sufficient means to carry forward his work, and if all do their duty there will be no lack. But some will not heed the call for their means. They are willing to see the work of God go forward. They are anxious to see the cause prosper, provided they can keep their riches, and make no sacrifice, only bestow a trifle now and then, which should cause them shame for its being so little, and so grudgingly bestowed. Said the angel, “God loveth a cheerful giver.” Individuals who have means are convinced of the truthfulness of our position. They embrace it. They are tested. Opportunities are presented for them to help the cause of God with the unrighteous mammon (this world's riches), and make friends that when they should fail here, they may be received into everlasting habitations. But some love this world so well that they will not even for the immortal inheritance sacrifice their treasure here. They harden their hearts, and will not do their part as God has prospered them. They are fully tested. The world lives in their hearts, and the truth dies out. They lose the crowns laid up in heaven for them, and God raises up others who come up and fill their places, and take their crowns. Men are raised up who consider it a privilege to sacrifice something for Jesus who sacrificed so much for them. I was shown individuals who although they have heard the solemn truths for these last days, and the coming of Christ is brought nigh them by the fulfillment of prophecy, have no thoughts of loosening their grasp of this world. They have no idea of sacrificing their treasure here. O that these covetous ones could get a view of heaven, of its purity, its loveliness, and behold the holy angels engaged in the salvation of man! All heaven astir! Angels are going forth on their mission, descending to watch over the tempted children of God, and shield them from the power of the evil angels. And while these angels are descending, others are ascending to bear their tidings for an additional angel to administer relief to this or that lone desponding one who is fiercely buffeted of Satan. Angels are constantly passing, and repassing each other, in their upward and downward flight, fulfilling their mission of love. Would that they could get sight of this. Me-thinks that they would catch a little of the zeal and fervor of these devoted angels, which they manifest for the salvation of man. It would inspire them with that interest which would call forth effort, and they would cheerfully sacrifice for the salvation of their fellow-man. In addition to this, all the happiness derived from earth, and from a selfish hoarding of earth's treasure, would appear so small and meager compared with the beauty and unsurpassed glory of heaven, that earth's treasures would be eclipsed, and would appear but dross could they win the heavenly treasure. How strange it looked to me, as I saw that all heaven was interested in our salvation, and then saw the little interest man manifests for his fellow-men. They throw their arms about their treasure here as though it was their Saviour, and could impart unto them eternal life. I was ashamed, distressed, agonized, that such should ever bear the name of disciples, or profess the name of Christ. I saw that they should cheerfully say, Here, Lord, is the little of earth's treasures thou hast lent me; take any portion of it; take it all, it is thine. Let me do my part in saving my fellow-men, and let me be raised up with the redeemed to dwell with thee for ever. Tremblingly will such disciples lean upon the strong promises of God. Earth fades before their vision. Heaven magnifies, and no sacrifice is too dear for them to make for the far more, the exceeding, and eternal weight of glory. 2SG 267.2

In this vision at Lovett's Grove, most of the matter of the Great Controversy which I had seen ten years before, was repeated, and I was shown that I must write it out. That I should have to contend with the powers of darkness, for Satan would make strong efforts to hinder me, but angels of God would not leave me in the conflict, that in God must I put my trust. 2SG 270.1

After I came out of vision, the afflicted friends, and a portion of the congregation, bore the body to its resting-place. Great solemnity rested upon those who remained. 2SG 270.2

Monday we commenced our journey homeward with Bro. and Sr. Tillotson. The next day we took the cars at Freemont for Jackson, Mich. While riding in the cars we arranged our plans for writing and publishing the book called the Great Controversy, immediately on our return home. I was then as well as usual. On the arrival of the train at Jackson, we went to Bro. Palmer's. We had been in the house but a short time, when, as I was conversing with Sr. P., my tongue refused to utter what I wished to say, and seemed large and numb. A strange, cold sensation struck my heart, passed over my head, and down my right side. For a while I was insensible; but was aroused by the voice of earnest prayer. I tried to use my left arm and limb, but they were perfectly useless. For a short time I did not expect to live. It was the third shock I had received of paralysis, and although within fifty miles of home, I did not expect to see my children again. I called to mind the triumphant season I had enjoyed at Lovett's Grove, and thought it was my last testimony, and felt reconciled to die. 2SG 271.1

Still the earnest prayers of my friends were ascending to heaven for me, and soon a prickling sensation was felt in my arm and limb, and I praised the Lord that I could use them a little. The Lord heard and answered the faithful prayers of his children, and the power of Satan was broken. That night I suffered much, yet the next day was strengthened to return home. For several weeks I could not feel the pressure of the hand, nor the coldest water poured upon my head. In rising to walk, I often staggered, and sometimes fell to the floor. In this condition I commenced to write the Great Controversy. I could write at first but one page a day, then rest three; but as I progressed, my strength increased. The numbness in my head did not seem to becloud my mind, and before I closed that work, the effect of the shock had entirely left me. 2SG 271.2

At the time of the conference at Battle Creek, June, 1858, Sr. Hutchins, who now sleeps in Jesus, was greatly afflicted with sickness, and we all felt that she would then go down into the grave unless the Lord raised her up. While praying for her the power of God rested upon us all, and as it came upon me, I was taken off in vision. In that vision I was shown that in the sudden attack at Jackson, Satan designed to take my life to hinder the work I was about to write; but angels of God were sent to my rescue, to raise me above the effects of Satan's attack. I saw, among other things, that I should be blest with better health than before the attack at Jackson. 2SG 272.1