Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 3 (1876 - 1882)

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Lt 20, 1880

White, James

Oakland, California

April 7, 1880

This letter is published in entirety in Testimony of Jesus by F. M. Wilcox.

Dear Husband:

I am very cheerful and happy now. The Lord has graciously blessed me and His peace is abiding in my heart. This morning we met in the basement of the church at half-past five. I was led out in prayer and my faith grasped the promises of God. I learned anew that my heavenly Father answers prayer. “Whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.” John 14:13. My soul is continually yearning for my Saviour. 3LtMs, Lt 20, 1880, par. 1

“Let me to Thy bosom fly,
Hangs my helpless soul on Thee.
Leave, oh, leave me not alone;
Still support and comfort me.”
3LtMs, Lt 20, 1880, par. 2

This has been the language of my soul ever since I have been upon this coast. All are so very busy. I am alone in my room nearly all the time, and my mind has been very perplexed, my anxiety very great. My prayers have come from a burdened heart. But Jesus has lifted my burden and He is a wellspring of joy in my soul. Christ’s words seem to be spoken to me. In the night season I seem to hear His voice; “If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.” John 15:7. 3LtMs, Lt 20, 1880, par. 3

I had the assurance that the Lord will bless you and let light shine upon you. 3LtMs, Lt 20, 1880, par. 4

I talked some this morning to our ministers upon faith. Everyone who is trying to labor is crippled with physical feebleness. How clear and positive the promises of God, and why not claim them? Why not accept the blessings presented? The conditions must be met on our part first—the claims of the gospel upon us, urging upon us consistency of character in accordance with our profession—and then we may without presumption claim the promise. We are to conduct ourselves as the representatives of Christ, knowing that the church and the world are looking to us and taking knowledge of us whether we are indeed like Christ, self-denying, cross-bearing, and cultivating not our own natural tempers but the spirit which Jesus possessed. The moral forces of our natural tempers must be resisted or we shall strengthen the Satan-side of our character, and self-respect is lost, reliance in God is gone, and the promises are not claimed because we cannot come with assurance through Christ to the throne of grace. The Holy Spirit is grieved, darkness envelops the soul, and yet many ministers are trying to labor in this very state. They constantly have an aching void, but do not attribute it to the right cause. 3LtMs, Lt 20, 1880, par. 5

Jesus will work with our efforts if we do what we can on our part. Ministers may labor with the blessing of God abiding upon them. Jesus has bequeathed peace to His followers. He has saved us by the offering of Himself to God, a spotless offering, that those He came to save may be, through His merits, unblameable, pure, and holy. In order to do men good we must inspire them with confidence in our piety. We must show the Christ-side of our character. If they see we reflect the image of Christ in our words and deportment, then they will be affected, convinced, and saved. 3LtMs, Lt 20, 1880, par. 6

Our meetings move off well. We feel, deeply feel, our great need of Jesus, and oh, such matchless love as He has expressed for us! My heart is melted with this love. 3LtMs, Lt 20, 1880, par. 7

I must now go to the eight o’clock meeting. Let us pray much, and watch thereunto. I can trust everything in the hands of God. 3LtMs, Lt 20, 1880, par. 8

I shall have clear light in regard to my duty, and I will try to follow where Jesus leads the way. In much love, 3LtMs, Lt 20, 1880, par. 9

Your Ellen.