Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 1 (1844 - 1868)


Lt 6, 1861

Loughborough, Mary

Battle Creek, Michigan

June 17, 1861

Portions of this letter are published in 1Bio 448, 469-470; 5MR 379.

Dear Sister Mary [Loughborough]:

I received your welcome letter yesterday and I need not assure you that I was glad to hear directly from you. My health is quite good. James is too busy to know whether he is sick or well. He has some complaints which are threatening, but our trust is in the Lord. I believe he will be spared to do good. My children are usually well. Jenny is quite well now, for her. We are rather cluttered up, but in two weeks shall be permanently settled. We have things now progressing which will be convenient, and I hope make Jenny’s work lighter. We have been in your house. Looked in the cellar, and now keep our butter there, which we do not need just now to use. We want our cellar fixed and expect Brother Leighton tonight to commence the work tomorrow. 1LtMs, Lt 6, 1861, par. 1

We have heard from Brother and Sister Lockwood by way of Sister Eliza Waggoner. She says that the church there are in confusion. There is likely to be a division of the church; part will go with old Brother Andrews. The bone of contention is the visions. I expected this. John is not open as he should be. He lacks frankness. I am going to write to Brother and Sister Lockwood soon. 1LtMs, Lt 6, 1861, par. 2

Mary, you write about quilted skirts, that it is wrong to wear heavy skirts. My answer you will see in next paper. If that does not convince and settle your mind, please write again. The more I dwell upon this matter, the plainer is it to me that the wearing of hoops is one of the abominations of the land that God would have us utterly discard. Our practice and example should be a standing rebuke to this ridiculous fashion. This I believe is one of the abominations which causes God’s people to sigh and cry. The more I investigate, the plainer does it appear that the people of God should not have the least to do with it. 1LtMs, Lt 6, 1861, par. 3

Mary, we have mighty truths and are not afraid that they can be gainsaid, and we are, I fear, lifted up, rich and increased in goods and have need of nothing. I feel fearful for the church of God. They are fast losing their peculiarity and their simplicity, and are imitating the fashions of the world. Mary, you can see this. It is too plain to be hid. My mind is seriously affected in regard to these things. “Be zealous and repent,” is addressed to us, and unless we do this and heed the call of the True Witness, we shall be spued out of the mouth of the Lord. [Revelation 3:19, 16.] I feel solemn and much like mourning. 1LtMs, Lt 6, 1861, par. 4

Mary, dear sister, let us covenant together to earnestly seek the Lord and learn wisdom of Him. Oh, for vital godliness! We must be examples to others around us, and never let us be a cause of stumbling. I am very desirous that you should continue to enjoy the free Spirit of God. Do not be content without it. It is your privilege to have it. Let us have strong confidence in God. Come to Him with living faith and let us rely wholly upon God. 1LtMs, Lt 6, 1861, par. 5

Dear Mary, I went up to Oak Hill Cemetery and fixed our babes’ graves and also Clara’s. Fixed ours exactly alike. Put some pansies on the graves, and some myrtle, and at the foot of the stake put a bunch of the tall moss. It looked very pretty. We shall go up again soon and see if the flowers are doing well. 1LtMs, Lt 6, 1861, par. 6

Please write often. Give my love to Brother and Sister Newton and Brother and Sister Berry’s family, and Brother and Sister Lathrop, and Sister Golden, and all who love God. Should love to hear from them. Tell them to live for God, to carry out the truth, to purify their souls by obeying it. 1LtMs, Lt 6, 1861, par. 7

I would say to Brother and Sister Ferrin, to live humbly and walk carefully before the Lord, to work out their salvation with fear and trembling. Stormy times are before us, and how very important that God’s children be all united, loving and serving God and strengthening each other that together they may stand in the fearful day. 1LtMs, Lt 6, 1861, par. 8

Mary, fear not to speak to me freely and fully your feelings. Others have no business with what we write. Let us be faithful to each other. Your letter cheered and encouraged me. Love to yourself and John. 1LtMs, Lt 6, 1861, par. 9