Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 4 (1883 - 1886)


Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 4 (1883 - 1886)



Lt 1, 1883

Andrews, J. N.

Healdsburg, California

March 29, 1883

Portions of this letter are published in TSB 34-35; 2MCP 461, 463; UL 102; OHC 363; Ev 96; 3MR 318, 337; 9MR 370; 10MR 8.

Dear Brother Andrews:

I have heretofore written you several letters and never sent them, so I attempt to write you again. I know your temperament is peculiar, and I have felt that you were not able even to bear the truth if it conflicted with your ideas. I met Brother Gardner and anticipated a visit with him to learn something in regard to Europe but was forced away from Oakland, unable to bear the coast climate. I hear nothing from brother [S. N.] Haskell in regard to Europe. He will be on this coast in about three weeks. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 1

You remember I wrote you from Texas to obtain a wife before you returned to Europe. Do you suppose I would have given you such advice if I had had no light upon the matter? Be assured, no such counsel would have been given you without good reason. I was shown [that] you follow your own judgment and your own ideas altogether too tenaciously. If you were more willing to be counseled by those you should confide in and trust less to your own feelings and impressions, the result for yourself and for the cause of God would be far better. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 2

I was shown that you made a mistake in starting to Europe without a companion. If you had, before starting, selected you a godly woman who could have been a mother to your children, you would have done a wise thing, and your usefulness would have been tenfold to what it has been. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 3

You are not a domestic man. You were in no way qualified to take charge of your children; you were unprepared to manage these children and fill the place of father and mother to them. The advice, the caution, the care a young growing girl needs, you are ignorant of; and the comforts and conveniences you could have had in your domestic arrangement, you did not think of. Your mind and your thoughts had been given to other things. You needed many things you did not have which you could have easily obtained if you had had any experience and if there had been one who had a right to tell you how to arrange your housekeeping, not after the European customs but after American conveniences. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 4

You felt you were a martyr missionary, but it was not so. In your letters your words were of that character that the impressions received by your brethren called out their sorrow and their sympathies for you. They would have plucked out their eyes for you. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 5

Now, my dear and much respected brother, this is a weakness in your character which is your birthright, which has been a grievous hindrance to you through all your religious experience. The association of the two families, Stevens and Andrews, fostered this evil. You were too much blinded to the detriment of both families, but the tendency was strengthened to crave for sympathy, to love to be pitied, to be regarded as one suffering privations, and as a martyr. This spirit has been with you and grown in you. Any who viewed matters as you did, who accepted your views and ideas of matters, were cherished as your best friends, while you were not drawn toward those who, from a sense of duty, differ from you in plans and the execution of them. You did not see and understand the nature, the cause, and [the] result of this trait in your character. It has strengthened in you a disposition to dwell upon your own self, to talk of your trials and of your troubles, and every time you have spoken of them you have regarded them in an intense light and your craving for sympathy has increased. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 6

God did not decree that you should die, but the course you have pursued in following your own judgment and dwelling on your own impressions has been a species of fanaticism. God was not in it; you have magnified your own afflictions. You have seemed to take satisfaction in enshrouding yourself in clouds of gloom and talking over and over where others have done you wrong and where you have suffered in consequence. The enemy has magnified these matters before you until molehills have been increased to the proportion of mountains, and these imaginative sufferings have been a reality to you. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 7

While you were living at Sister Harris’, you had the same complaints to make. You thought you were enduring great privations, and the sympathies of many were drawn out in your behalf. They came to me with the matter, and my sympathies were awakened, but when I had an opportunity to learn the facts, I knew that there was a deception on your mind [and] that these feelings had no foundation in facts. It was a vivid imagination that had been cultivated and strengthened by sympathy of your friends who were not wise, who did not possess sanctified judgment. Your sympathetic friends have been worse to you than your enemies in their pity and sympathy to you. I know whereof I write. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 8

Now if you go down into the grave, I do not want you should go down in a deception. I advised you not to go back to Europe without a wife. This was not from my own mind. The Lord knew what was best for you. I have been shown more recently that errors and mistakes would have been avoided had you pursued this course. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 9

Your family is not as it should be. I was shown one who it were better had she never connected with you—Sister Oyen. She is self-confident; she has a high opinion of herself, and she takes the position in reference to you in many respects as a wife. How much better would it be for you if you had a good wife to care for you and perform the duties of a wife. The matter as it now stands is not right. This is not the person to help you. She accepts all you say; she credits all your imagining; she sympathizes with all your conversation in regard to your trials. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 10

Now, Brother Andrews, this is a species of selfishness to keep your mind dwelling upon yourself. It is not at all like the apostle Paul, who was a man of infirmities, yet himself was the last subject of his thoughts. He had trials such as you have never experienced nor ever will be called upon to endure, and yet he turns away from these; he does not dwell upon them, but magnifies the grace of God. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 11

Your wife was the subject of disease and death. Your grief was just as intense as all your other troubles. You hugged the grief to your bosom, you loved to dwell upon it, and you allowed your mind and thoughts to be selfishly occupied with your grief, and as a consequence your health suffered. Then your daughter’s death was indeed a sad blow, but others have passed through the same under more trying circumstances. You allowed this affliction to unman you; you dwelt upon it, you talked of it, you aggravated your soul over a matter you could not change or help. It was a sin to take any of these afflictions as you have done. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 12

I know whereof I speak. If the mind is permitted to be clouded with grief, the food is not digested, and as a result the system is not well nourished. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 13

As we are not our own, as we are bought with a price, it is the duty of every one who professes to be a Christian to keep his thoughts under the control of reason and oblige himself to be cheerful and happy. However bitter may be the cause of his grief, he should cultivate a spirit of rest and quietude in God. The restfulness which is in Christ Jesus, the peace of Christ, how precious, how healing its influence, how soothing to the oppressed soul! However dark his prospects, let him cherish a spirit to hope for good. While nothing is gained by despondency, much is lost. While cheerfulness and a calm resignation and peace will make others happy and healthy, it will be of the greatest benefit to one’s self. Sadness and talking of disagreeable things is encouraging the disagreeable scenes, bringing back upon one’s self the disagreeable effect. God wants us to forget all these—not look down but up, up! 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 14

Sadness deadens the circulation in the blood vessels and nerves, and also retards the action of the liver. It hinders the process of digestion and of nutrition and has a tendency to dry up the marrow of the whole system. You are a dyspeptic. Mental depression causes dyspepsia, and this aggravates the mental disorder, and unless you can be induced through change of some kind to be attracted away from yourself and from your complaints, you will cut short your life, and while you do live, [you will] be unable to think healthfully and to work healthfully. Your imagination will play you tricks, your fancy will lead you to wrong conclusions, your imagination will be diseased; you take for reality impressions in which there is no truth and for which there is no foundation. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 15

You have been alone too much and yet you choose this rather than to be connected with others. If you had now some very light physical employment it would divert your thoughts from yourself and be of great advantage to you. It would not have been any injustice to your children if you had taken a good wife, but it would have been justice and mercy to them. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 16

If those around you are of that class who do not seek to turn your conversation and the current of your thoughts, if they sympathize with all your impressions as if they were a reality, the less you have of the society of this class, the better. They are not your friends but your worst enemies. The Lord would have you be cheerful. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 17

You have buried dead friends; so have I; but I dare not ask, “Why hast Thou cast me into the furnace? Why have I been afflicted again and again?” The answer comes back to me down along the lines, “What I do thou knowest not now, but thou shalt know afterwards.” [John 13:7.] 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 18

God’s purposes are often veiled in mystery; they are incomprehensible to finite minds; but He who sees the end from beginning knows better than we. What we need is to cleanse us from earthliness, to perfect our Christian character that the robe of Christ’s righteousness shall be put upon us. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 19

It has been unfortunate for your children in some respects that they had not a different element brought into their education. You have succeeded in binding them to yourself, but there are chapters in their experience they have not had opened to them which were essential for the makeup and development of their character. In some things you have not an evenly balanced mind; to reproduce these defects in your children would not be the best for them. You have not been wise in giving your children your mold of character by education. They ought to have had one who by right could correct their errors and at the same time lead them onward and upward to a purer and more perfect development of character. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 20

You have been very anxious [that] your children should come up free from vicious habits which characterize the youth of this age; in this you have been successful; but you had not the ability to carry them forward and upward to thorough development of the ability God had given them. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 21

Your caution has kept your son back; you have not allowed him to take responsibilities; you have not prepared the way that he should know how to work and use his own mind, while you should guide that mind. You had not the qualities in you to place the right mold upon his character so that he would feel his individual responsibility. You have taught him to rely upon you in the smaller matters as well as [the] larger until he is the shadow of yourself. And now, when he is a man in years, he is but a child as far as individual independence is concerned. You have not seen the necessity of his perfecting his experience by practice. Of course he will make mistakes in learning, but he will never learn unless he is trusted to do things, to think and to act and [to] feel that he is a responsible agent. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 22

From the very first of your commencing your work in Europe, you ought to have had one connected with you who would dare to differ with you in your plans and the execution of them, if he saw defects and errors in these plans. There should have been some one with whom you could consult about the work in your home and in the cause of God. One man’s mind and one man’s judgment should not be woven through the entire work. You have been engrossed in study and books and have not duly considered [that] the one great and important part of your work was to allow and teach others to work with you. Lay upon them the burdens and care of very many things you have done yourself which have been extra draughts upon your precious strength, that have used up your vitality so that you had not the strength to devote to duties far more important. This was the course my husband pursued in many things. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 23

Now, my dear brother, many of your sorrows and trials have occurred because of defects in your character and [the] manner of labor [that] has been presented before your mind; and you are so constituted that you could not bear that your course of action should be questioned, and you have thought it a personal injury done to you which has been the cause of your physical weakness and mental gloom; but, my brother, this is not in all respects the true light in which you should view this matter. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 24

You have been censured many times unjustly; you have been counseled and entreated for your good, which by you has been construed into reproof. You have been too often inclined to think your opinion infallible, and your early experience in connection with early associates has deepened this opinion; and it has let you in later years to treat others, wiser even than yourself, as children in knowledge, especially where yourself was concerned. This has been your infirmity. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 25

There have been your near and dear associates in your early experience who have flattered you, petted you, and construed your defects into virtues. Now these needed no strengthening, but to be depressed, to be held in check, to be reformed, which would have saved you many hours of suffering of mind and increased your usefulness in a great degree in the work and cause of God. I would send away the deception which has for long years enveloped your mind in darkness. Oh that I could send away this impression that you are continually suffering through the wrong course others have pursued towards you! Oh that you look away yourself, cease to bemoan yourself, and trust yourself fully and entirely in the hands of Jesus! Think of His love! Talk of His goodness and His mercy! 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 26

My dear brother, you should have been working to the end to have all about you do all they can do. Very many things you have continued to retain, and have done [the things] your son should have done, [so] that if you should, in the providence of God, leave the work, he could take it and carry it forward. You should, as well as every responsible man, be urging responsibilities upon others, that as the work extends, others can work as well as you. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 27

God never designed that you should mold your son or any other man to work according to your peculiar style, but according to their own ability which God has given them. You have held things in Europe from advancing because you wanted them to go according to your plans and your ideas, and you have thought they had better not go at all than not follow the exact channel you had marked out. You should have done less yourself and taught your son how to work, how to take responsibilities. If there are mistakes made, kindly and patiently teach him how to improve. This is the very way to educate and bring up helpers in the work and cause of God so that your son and your brethren may be growing all the while in talent by improving the talent God has given them. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 28

The work will not advance in Europe until there shall be men of different minds to affect different individuals. You are keeping the work encircled in your own arms, which will never do. It will not grow as God has designed it should. You have peculiarities that are detrimental to the advancement and healthy growth of the work. Unless it shall go in the channel you have marked out, you would not have it go at all. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 29

Your concentrativeness has been carried to great lengths, to settle down in one groove, to wish to remain there undisturbed, although changes could be made for the better; yet disease has had the effect to make you regard with great reluctance any change, even though it would be better in every respect. You had certain plans and ideas that you were hoping to accomplish, and you could not seem to get your mind upon anything else. Those whose minds had not been on the strain as yours could see where great improvements could be made; but their counsel has appeared to you calculated to injure you and injure the work. You have been exceedingly pained because you thought they did not understand the matter as well as you, and you have not been inclined to follow the plans or to be advised to make any change in your manner of living or in your location or in your plans of operation. This is partially owing to disease and to an erroneous imagination. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 30

A formal routine is to be avoided by all laborers in the work and cause of God. There has ever been a drawback in your labors in writing and preaching because if you could not have all things move forward with perfection you would not have them move at all. And while you are getting ready to do something, the opportunity has passed for doing anything you hoped to do that would have resulted in great good in the advancement in the work. While we are getting ready to do a great work, if we are not prompt, the opportunity for doing a small work passes; a good work, if not so thorough and perfect, passes by and nothing at all is done, waiting to do everything by rule. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 31

Oh how much has been lost through ministers getting ready to do some great thing by and by and neglecting to improve present opportunities of doing something, although it may appear small and crude! The love of approbation and praise should not be in the hearts of God’s workmen. Human applause amounts to more harm than good; reaching but for human sympathy is another dangerous indulgence. It flatters, it deceives, it ruins. And all laborers should not be too exacting, [should] not make self a theme of thought and dwell upon their suffering. You see errors in your brethren; but if you are not responsible for these errors, you should not enshroud your soul in gloom and despondency. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 32

You have too often sacrificed your own happiness because your brethren did not come up to your ideas of duty. You cannot drive them by forever dwelling upon their delinquencies. Their combativeness and opposition is at once raised. Dwell upon the perfection of Christ’s character, making no allusion to them, and if they really love Jesus, they will be softened and subdued and will of themselves come into the right position. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 33

My dear brother, you reproduce your trials and past grievances by talking of them. Sister Oyen listens to all these recitals and encourages the conversation by her abundant sympathy. She does you no good in this. Someone should be with you who will call your attention from yourself and from unpleasant subjects and introduce matters of a cheerful character. I tell you, God is not glorified by any such themes of conversation. You magnify your trials; you magnify your self-sacrifice; and magnify the errors of your brethren. “Finally brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report ... think on these things.” [Philippians 4:8.] Look away to Jesus, the eternal reward, the immortal inheritance. There is a safe channel for our thoughts. We may think all we please here and with perfect safety. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 34

It was a mistake in permitting you to go into the field, the important missionary field, alone. One or two more should have stood with you engaged in the work, not [to] be under your supervision, not [to] follow your ideas, but for you to counsel together and move harmoniously, [so] that the weak traits in the character might not have a predominating power upon the work in Europe, that each should move in perfect harmony with the other. But left as you have been, almost alone, you have felt that any division from your ideas and your plans was a wrong done you. You have pursued that plan of labor that no one could connect with you for they were not men after your own mind. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 35

If you could find one or two who should accept all your plans and who should sympathize fully with your grievances, in your judgment they would be just the men for the place, but they would not be the wise laborers whom God would choose, for this class would ruin the work in Switzerland. Man seeth not as God seeth. He would connect with you kindhearted, true, earnest workers who would in all kindness differ from your plans and from your opinions and feelings from a sense of duty when they saw the cause of God demand it. There should have been men of experience at this time fully qualified to be entrusted with the work, and these men should have been sharing the responsibilities, learning how to bear them. Everything you can make others do will be giving them intelligence in the work. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 36

You have not wanted men should come to Europe, fearing they would not do the work just after your plan, and you would not trust them. This is not right. God did not want it thus. You see that your brethren do not do as you wish them to do. After you have done what you think is your duty to them, then you should go forward, trusting in the Lord to touch their hearts. You should not allow your spirit to grieve over their imperfections. By so doing you disqualify yourself for doing them good. If you pass along, doing your work given you of God, showing that you rely upon the Mighty One, [being] a sunshiny Christian, showing that you are living in the light of the Sun of Righteousness, that you are walking in the light as He is in the light, [you will see that] the trials you bemoan were designed for your good. If you have not profited by them, if they have not proved an advantage to you in many respects, it is because you have not received these adversities in the right spirit. God designed all these trials, not to discourage, but to develop a class of Christian virtues which seldom are seen in the sunshine of prosperity. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 37

Faith, patience, forbearance, heavenly-mindedness, trust in your wise heavenly Father are the perfect blossoms which mature amidst clouds and disappointments and bereavements. God designs you and I should both know the discipline of adversity. [You are] not to mourn and distress your soul over the providence of God, but say from the heart, “It is good for me that I have been afflicted” [Psalm 119:71]; that you could from the heart say, “I have been deprived of earthly dependence that I might trust more continually in my Saviour.” 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 38

It may seem that invincible forces are arrayed against you, but dare you look at these adverse powers? Look away and cry out, “Greater is He that I love and whom I serve than all the powers of darkness!” It is faith, trusting faith, that you need. As long as you are true to yourself, no adverse powers of earth or hell will be able to destroy your peace or make you unhappy. Your unhappiness is of your own creating. If you fear God, you need fear nothing else. Oh my brother, nine-tenths of all your trials are born of your imagination. There are thousands who have had far greater real troubles and have not made themselves unhappy over them, but maintained a cheerfulness in God. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 39

Did the great apostle to the Gentiles make any real sacrifice when he exchanged Pharisaism for the gospel of Christ? We answer, No! With decided purpose he turned away from wealth and from friends and social distinction, from public honor, and from his kinsmen whom he loved fervently and earnestly. He chose to link his name and his destiny with that of a people he had regarded as low and the offscouring of all things; but for the sake of Christ he suffered the loss of all things. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 40

His labors were more abundant than any of the disciples, his stripes above measure. He was beaten with rods, stoned, shipwrecked, in deaths oft. He was in peril by land and sea, in the city and in the wilderness, from robbers and from his own countrymen. He prosecuted his mission under continual infirmities, in painfulness, in weariness, in watchings often, in cold, in nakedness. When he became Paul the aged, and the crown of martyrdom was to be his, he was left almost alone. When he answered the bloodthirsty Nero, no man stood with him, but all men forsook him, leaving him alone. But did Paul devote his precious time to the relation of his grievous abuses? No, he called the attention from himself to Jesus. He did not live for his own happiness, yet he was happy. Amid all his conflicts, that which he felt the keenest were trials brought him in consequence of false brethren; yet he presents a cheerful front. “I am filled with comfort, I am exceeding joyful in all our tribulation.” [2 Corinthians 7:4.] And in the last days of his life, with a martyr’s death in full view, he exclaims with satisfaction: “I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith.” And fixing his eye upon the immortal future, which had been the grand, inspiring motive of his whole career, he adds, in full assurance of faith, “Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day”—and then this man who had lived for others forgets himself—“and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.” [2 Timothy 4:7, 8.] Oh noble man of faith! 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 41

God did not design [that] you should walk a path of loneliness and suffer privation in any respect, amid plenty. When you first went to Europe, the people did not understand you, and you did not understand them. Had you then had a good wife who understood the wants and means essential for the comforts of domestic life, you would have avoided great evils; but your ideas and your plans were strictly carried out to your inconvenience, to the hindrance of the work. You have not understood yourself, and some of a different tendency of mind should have been connected with you who would have given a more cheerful, hopeful, encouraging feature to the work. In connection with you, such an element would have placed an altogether different stamp upon the work in Switzerland, while it has been managed and carried almost solely by yourself. Should you through sickness or any cause be removed from it, it would be difficult for one to take it where you left it and place a different mold upon it. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 42

God designs that more minds than one shall engage in this work. This missionary field needs a different element woven into the progress of the cause. If any changes are suggested where improvements can be made, it produces a most painful impression upon your mind. I am aware of this as I write, and I scarcely dare open to you that which has been opened to me, but in your last letter you asked me to give any light I had for Europe. How would I be clear if I did not comply with this request? 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 43

You have shut yourself within yourself. You think you know just how the work shall go, and your brethren in Switzerland will not now cooperate with any effort that you do not lead out in, fearing it would be disrespect to you; and you have not had the faculty to engage them in taking responsibilities in connection with you. You have felt that these brethren were not giving you aid and sympathy as they should, and they have not; but why? Because they have not been educated to do this and have not been drilled to help financially. Had they been instructed as they should have been from the first, the cause would today be self-sustaining; but it is not. Switzerland has to be carried by the American brethren; and your feelings are deeply grieved because all the means you desired have not come from your American brethren. Your very necessity was sufficient excuse for you to press your demands upon your brethren in Switzerland which, had it been done wisely, it would have been the best thing for the mission and for those who were accepting the truth. These brethren investing the means in the cause and in the work would have felt a greater personal interest in the work from the very fact they had invested something in it. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 44

You have been liberal with your own means to aid others when you were not called upon, neither was it the best to do this. This has brought you into strait places, and then have come feelings that in America they had neglected you, while at the same time you have not plainly expressed your wants and made known your situation. There has not been all that prompt attention given to the situation on every occasion that ought to have been, but there has been no design to cripple your efforts for the want of means. God lays no sin to their charge for there has not been any wilful neglect. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 45

Knowing your peculiarities of character, it was not wise to permit you to go to Europe alone to engage in the work. You follow impressions too much; you think your impressions are as the voice of God, when your impressions were not always infallible and safe to follow. You have not discernment of character. You worship intellect. If a man has learning, you place high hopes upon him if he embraces the truth. You will dispense to him means and will give him every advantage in influence, when he may use both to work against the cause of present truth and connect with those who would do us harm. You could not see and understand that Brother Repton was one who was not united with us in heart and soul. This man was allowed to draw largely from the treasury until it was exhausted—for what purpose? To carry out his own plans, to fulfill his own purposes. But very little good did he do in the missionary work. He was united with us when means were wanted, but his influence was strengthening others who had no interest with our work much of the time. For this reason you should have [had] the help of other brethren to supply this deficiency in your character—[this] want of discernment. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 46

Those who have sent you aid from America, those who have given to you most liberally are the ones who stand as possessing superior piety and spiritual perfection; those who have sympathized with you the most have been reckoned as your very best friends. Now God places no such estimate upon these very persons you esteem so highly. Some of these very ones will move impulsively and be wrought up to do great things for poor, suffering Brother Andrews, while they will do great injustice to the worthy objects, Christ’s little ones, humble children of God right in their midst. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 47

Your feelings must not be regarded as infallible, and your impressions need to be criticized by other and clearer minds. You have had a great dread of any one coming from America, fearing they would question your labors and present some changes that should be made, when you should have greeted any help that was brought to you from your brethren as a godsend. When any proposition has been made for improvement in the work, you have not cooperated with them, but met them with “You do not understand the people in Switzerland and the people in England and Norway.” 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 48

More missionaries must enter these fields and learn the wants of these fields. It has not been in the order of the Lord, when you first entered the field, that you should have so few to cooperate with you. It was not in His order that you should stand alone for reasons already given. It has not been in His order that one man’s mind should plan and devise and execute the work to be done in these different fields of labor. He would have the several laborers in Europe [hold] council meetings together oft, as the brethren in America [do], advising and counseling and laying open the plans for criticism and for improvement that the work should not be narrowed and circumscribed to certain limits to bear a certain mold of one man’s education and character. There should be perfect agreement in the work, and if there is but one man in Switzerland who understands the people of Switzerland, the General Conference should select men who have ability to go to Europe and put themselves in the way of knowing the people in Switzerland, in England, and in Norway, and take the position of knowing every field of labor and having a general oversight of all. Switzerland is only one part of the great field, and the workers there are shut up so closely to themselves, as though that were the whole world; so with England and with Norway. There has not one-tenth been done that could have been accomplished had the efforts been more general and more extended. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 49

Your fears, my dear Brother Andrews, have led you to neglect to present before your brethren the necessity of their doing all that was in their power to do and not rely upon help from America. They should have been educated long ago to self-denying, beneficent effort to carry forward the work in their own country. You have been so fearful that someone would think you wanted their means, you have neglected to educate them. Many feel no spirit of self-sacrifice, no burden of labor, and no special interest in the work. If anyone has been at liberty to connect with you, you have not felt at liberty to connect with them. You thought one more would add to the expense, and much time has been lost when you could avail yourself of opportunities to secure help. You have not done so. You have thought it unnecessary. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 50

Now my dear brother, no longer must you feel thus; no longer must it be left for you to say what help shall come to Switzerland. Your feebleness is sufficient excuse for you to lay off these responsibilities. While the means to run these missions has been drawn from America, it was the duty devolving upon the General Conference to have a voice in the matter [as to] who should work in Switzerland, in England, and Norway. Much time has been lost in consequence of these fields not being sufficiently manned. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 51

Christ sent out His disciples two and two. He connected an impulsive, bold, ardent Peter with the more mild and loving John. These men were diverse in character; one would reach a class that the other could not; where John might be wanting in decision, Peter would supply the deficiency. When Peter was rash and impetuous, John’s patience, forbearance, and love would have an influence to counteract this spirit, which would do harm if not modified. God did not design that Peter should mold John to his ideas and his style of character; and He did not design that John should take Peter in hand; but He designed [that] both should exert an influence for good on each other and work together in perfect harmony, each blending together in their labor, each having a correcting influence over the other; each was to preserve his individuality and each labor according to his several ability. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 52

There is where Elder [J. N.] Loughborough has made a great failure. His plans are the plans to a minutia; no one must have any plans of his own, but all must accept and work after his plans and follow his judgment if they worked at all. There was left no chance for other minds to plan and to execute. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 53

Elder Matteson makes a similar mistake. He encircles the work; he is the center around which everything must revolve. He must place his mold upon everything. Every one of these is working from a wrong principle, and are not giving the Lord a chance to work through other minds and other talents. God wants these men to not take so much burden on themselves and give Him place to work through whom He will. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 54

Elder [D. T.] Bourdeau should be in Europe. He was not right when there first, but there is work that he can do, and the way should be open before him not to connect with Elder Andrews, but to labor in some part of the field. If he will learn the lessons God designs he should, he will be qualified to put his ability to good use among his countrymen. The Lord will soon come to reckon with His servants. The doings and trusts of all will be scrutinized. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 55

The brethren in Switzerland are far behind. They have let worldly interests separate their affections from God; they have not done the work they ought to have done in advancing the truth. The order of providence in relation to His people is advancement, progression. Continual advancement is the way of holiness, rising higher and higher in the knowledge and love of God. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 56

According to the faith and obedience of God’s people will be the fulfillment of His promise. God is unchangeable—the same yesterday, today, and forever. Faith must be exercised in all our prayers, for it has not lost its power, nor humble obedience its reward. If our brethren, who profess to believe the truth, would show their faith by their works, they would honor God and be enabled to convince many souls that they have the truth, for according to their faith and their obedience will they realize the fulfillment of the promises of God and be endowed with power from on high. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 57

God has chosen a people out of the world. They are peculiarly distinguished and favored of God and will work the works of God. Time is short and our efforts will not be needed long in bringing souls to repentance. God has committed to His servants in Switzerland sacred trusts or talents which have not been put out to the exchangers; and the day of reckoning is not far distant when every slothful servant will receive as his works have been. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 58

We are all of us responsible agents from the lowest unto the greatest, and all are invested with the goods of heaven. Light and truth are not to be hid under a bushel but [are] to shine forth and be reflected to others. The varied trusts are proportioned to our several capabilities. He has given to every man his work. Now there are those who can labor for the Master who have not done what they could have done in warning the world. God does not expect of any one talents which they cannot give. There has not been with many, any disposition to use their ability unselfishly in the upbuilding of our Redeemer’s kingdom. There is needed, with some deep, earnest heart work, a consecration by the surrendering of the soul to God. Unless the root be holy there can be no sound fruit. There are men whom God calls upon to give themselves to God. He wants you all to be workers. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 59

I call upon you, my brethren in Switzerland, to awaken to your solemn obligations. Those whose means, opportunities, and abilities are greatest have the greatest responsibilities. God calls upon you to put the same tact and sharpness and diligence into your work for Him that you put into your temporal matters. You ought, many of you, to be now experienced men in working in God’s cause. How little have many of you invested, how little have you been willing to sacrifice! God will hold you accountable for souls who are in the darkness of error. You who have seen the light of present truth, put out this talent to the exchangers; labor with your whole souls to convert others to the truth. Work, all work as best you can. He does not expect the lowly, uneducated Christian to fight like the champion of faith. He does not expect from poverty the alms it has not to give; nor from the feeble, sick, and suffering the active energies of those blessed with health. But spend no time in mourning that you cannot glorify God by talents He never gave you and for which you are not responsible. Though you may be restricted to the one talent, use that one well, and God will accept your efforts according to what man hath, and not according to what he hath not. Let not one remain idle, aspiring after great things in order to do great service, but do what you can with earnest fidelity. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 60

I call upon you, my brethren and sisters in Switzerland, do the work resting upon you now, although it may be small in your sight; awaken to a sense of your solemn responsibility for the right employment of all your talents entrusted to you by the Lord. The rill does not say, I need not pursue this narrow course because I am not a river. The humble shrub need not say, I will not try to grow because I am not a forest tree. The lamp does not say, I will not shine because I am not a star; nor the star, I need not shine because I am not a sun. Oh let every one do all he can in his sphere and God asks no more. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 61

But the work was represented to me as almost standing still in Switzerland when it should be grandly triumphant. Jesus has been shedding His light upon us age after age. One generation after another has been receiving additional light and truth, and these hereditary trusts put into the hands of His apostles have descended to us with increased light appropriate for our time. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 62

What are you doing with this truth, ye hired servants of Jesus Christ? What are you doing in the vineyard? The Lord Jesus has paid you the wages of His own blood and His own sufferings to secure your willing services. Do you sense you are not your own, that your time is not your own? Your property is not your own, that you are bought with a price? You belong to Jesus Christ to work for Him, to suffer for Him, to deny self for His sake. Do you feel that all you have is a loan from the Master? That you are stewards of His grace? The humblest service, the lowliest gift may become consecrated if performed with a willing heart. God help you arise from your deathlike stupor and work for the salvation of your countrymen. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 63

D. T. Bourdeau is far from being a perfect man; but he has an individuality, and he must labor very much in his own harness or he can do nothing. Now the laborers in Europe, England, Norway, and Switzerland should be counseled and advise with one another. Elder Loughborough will never advance the work very far in England. His narrow plans, his limited ideas, his mind concentrated on little mountains so much, he gives the wrong mold to the work. Oh how hard it is to overcome the traits of character and education received in childhood! How difficult to work out and away from self! How hard to not make our own individual ideas and our own plans infallible. God help us all to learn of Him, to have mutual esteem for one another and work with perfect harmony to the one great end to disseminate light. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 64

The work in every field opened in Europe has been made to bear the impress of the men who opened them. In a degree this is as it should be, if these minds are evenly balanced. If their defects are to be reproduced, it is an error and will greatly retard the important work. In the first place these missionaries called of God should wheel into the service every available help possible, for time is short. Had you, my brother, worked more through an interpreter in the place of studying so much to speak the language, you would have been working your way into the hearts of the people and into the language too, and kept up better courage all the time. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 65

Now, Elder [B. L.] Whitney is coming to Switzerland. Do not mark out his way and make him feel that he must look to you in all his movements. He must not follow the track you have passed over. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 66

He must be left to bear the mold of God. He will, if humble and waiting upon God, understand the divine will concerning his work and mission. You have been long sick and feeble; you have viewed many things in an intense light. Now we do not want that Elder Whitney should fall into the same error. You have excused in a great degree the brethren in Switzerland from doing what they ought to have done long ago to make the work self-sustaining in Switzerland. Now we do not want this error should be reproduced in Brother Whitney’s labors. You have concentrated your efforts mostly in one locality. Now this must not be acted over by Brother Whitney. Time is short; the message is to be carried to all nations, tongues, and people. You are now in feeble health and cannot endure exposure. Elder Whitney is young. Leave him as free as possible to seek counsel of God and do his work according to the ability which God has given him, even if it does not exactly meet your ideas. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 67

We are none of us infallible, and none of us should allow himself to become set and exacting. Let every soul lift the weight he can. Let them release you of every responsibility they can. Let other minds devise and execute plans. God does not mean we shall be stereotyped in our ways and ideas. While we must rivet our souls to the eternal Rock, we must be continually laying upon this foundation gold, silver, and precious stones—a variety of material. Let every man work who can work. The very best general is not the one who does the most work himself, but one who will obtain the greatest amount of labor from others. Such generalship is greatly needed in Europe in order to make the work a grand success. 4LtMs, Lt 1, 1883, par. 68