Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 3 (1876 - 1882)


Lt 7, 1880

White, James

On the train within nine hours of Ogden, Utah

February 27, 1880

Previously unpublished.

Dear Husband:

Another night has passed. Slept well. Have had a liberal breakfast. I limit myself to one meal a day. I bathe quite thoroughly morning and night. I hope to come out all right if I take good care of myself. I have passed over the road fourteen times before this and have never been as free from annoyance as this time. There are only two ladies beside ourselves. No children. The car is cool all the time and well ventilated. But there is one chance of the kind amid one hundred, I suppose. Only seventeen in the car and everything is so nice. 3LtMs, Lt 7, 1880, par. 1

I meet quite a number who have heard me speak. A young man living in Denver, a book agent, on the train this morning says he heard me speak several times in Boulder. A man by the name of Emery, from Maine, was at Waterville camp meeting; he is a nephew to Daniel Chase, and is on this car en route for California. 3LtMs, Lt 7, 1880, par. 2

We would advise you to take something like pressed meat and a two-quart pail. Put water to the meat, place upon the stove in passenger car and it will be boiling hot in a few minutes. Crumb in your bread and you have a rare warm dish. I have not seen anything so easily prepared and so palatable as this. This morning was exceedingly cold but with our hot chicken soup we were excellently provided for. 3LtMs, Lt 7, 1880, par. 3

Our screen is a success. You should have one when you come. The weather is pleasant today and clear and sharp. I wish when you do come you could have as pleasant and comfortable a journey as we are having; no dust, no cinders. 3LtMs, Lt 7, 1880, par. 4

We passed through a succession of snow sheds yesterday. There is but little snow on the ground, but conductor says we shall find snow in abundance in about forty miles. We hope there will be no hindrance. I have felt like breathing out my soul in prayer much of the time for the preservation and watchcare of our heavenly Father on this journey. I have some faith. I believe God will hear, that He will answer, and we shall be cared for. Then again I have pleaded for wisdom to know what to do and say after we reach Oakland. I feel to simply trust in God for His guidance. He will not turn us away when we ask in sincerity and faith. 3LtMs, Lt 7, 1880, par. 5

My lungs are not well. They trouble me considerable. 3LtMs, Lt 7, 1880, par. 6

I dreamed night before last that I was talking with two ladies who had been privileged to learn the truth had they desired it, but they would not yield to evidence. I was telling them this. I told them they chose darkness rather than the light. I commenced at the law given from Sinai and came down to Christ’s sermon on the Mount. I repeated these words: “Except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 5:20. I felt more and more the Spirit of God until they saw and felt that it was no more I that spoke but God speaking through me. They turned pale and trembled. I was conscious I was in the Spirit, elevated above myself; God was using me as His mouthpiece. I seemed to be soaring up from earth to heaven, and as I was repeating these words, “Ye will not come to me that ye might have life.” John 5:40. I cried it out so loud and shrill Mary awoke me, and lo, it was a dream. It made quite an impression on my mind. 3LtMs, Lt 7, 1880, par. 7

I have a request to make: that three times each day we shall devote some time to self-examination and prayer. Let us be in earnest in this matter to obtain for ourselves the evidence of the love of God. Let us not think or talk of ourselves, but let us talk of Jesus and His love. Self has gotten in the way so that Christ has not been discerned. Oh, how many precious blessings have been lost to us, how many precious views of Jesus [have] been eclipsed, because self has been exalted, coming in between us and our Redeemer. I want a humble mind. I want to cultivate meekness and lowliness of heart. I want to humble myself that God may exalt me. It is a critical time for the cause. We are not safe counselors if self comes in to control or bias our judgment. We must live for the next life, for it is uncertain how long we shall have in this life. Be careful of your health. 3LtMs, Lt 7, 1880, par. 8

Your Ellen.