Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 4 (1883 - 1886)


Lt 15a, 1883

Whalin, Brother

Battle Creek, Michigan

November 18, 1883

Portions of this letter are published in 3Bio 235, 239.

Dear Brother Whalin:

I received your letter about one hour since. I will say, do not let any work stand in the way of your interest. I would advise you to take this job of work if you did not touch my house at all; but I think if you get the matter underway so that in your judgment other hands could complete it, I will be perfectly satisfied. So go right along as you see best. 4LtMs, Lt 15a, 1883, par. 1

Now I am sorry that your family must go back to Oakland. I do wish it were not so. I wish I were on the ground. I believe I could find a place for your family somewhere; but if you must take your family back, you must. Why not take them with you South? If you will have a long job, would not that be less expensive? You could be with them, and you could save something in this direction and it would be so much more pleasant for your wife and children. 4LtMs, Lt 15a, 1883, par. 2

We are going to bring no families to set up for themselves. All will find positions in the Oakland office, in the boarding house in Healdsburg, or in the Health Institute in St. Helena. There will be a party of thirty—not all Sabbath-keepers. We shall not leave here before the fifteenth of December. 4LtMs, Lt 15a, 1883, par. 3

The Lord has blessed me greatly since these meetings have been in progress. We have had meetings for the ministers every morning at five o’clock and I have been able to attend them and speak a short time to them. I have had special words given me as they needed. I was surprised to find so little faith to claim the promises of God. But as our meetings have progressed there has [come] great freedom into the meetings. One after another have come into the light, [have] risen above discouragement, and are rejoicing in the peace and rest in Jesus. The spirit of tenderness and love and contrition has characterized these meetings. The blessing of the Lord has come in and the rich promises of God have been verified. The work has gone deeper and deeper, and I think all will work in the future from a higher standpoint. 4LtMs, Lt 15a, 1883, par. 4

We are more that ever convinced that unbelief is the great hindrance to spiritual growth. It keeps the soul in darkness in the religious life. Our brethren are learning the simple art of believing as well as of confessing their sins. We have had some refreshing seasons as one after another fell upon the Rock and were broken. Many say they have an experience they never had before. Testimonies borne are well wet down with tears. This is the best conference ever held among our people. There is a spirit of sweet amity and love among our ministering brethren. Business meetings move off harmoniously. 4LtMs, Lt 15a, 1883, par. 5

“What a Friend we have in Jesus, All our woes and griefs to bear; What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer.” Like a child who has full confidence in his parents and who will trust them with simplicity, so should we trust in our heavenly Father who has promised He will not withhold any good thing from those who love Him. 4LtMs, Lt 15a, 1883, par. 6

I can say I walk by faith, not by sight. I have taken hold of work when it seemed presumptuous, but the Lord has been my helper. Yesterday I spoke an hour and a half to more than a thousand people in the Tabernacle in reference to the future events of the Judgment; attended meeting in the evening. This morning [I] labored in the five o’clock meeting, then attended meeting in the chapel and spoke to the workers there thirty minutes, then walked down to my breakfast. I could not have done this in California. The Lord gives me strength as I need it to be a help to others. 4LtMs, Lt 15a, 1883, par. 7

I tried to set before the workers in the office that in the formation of character, it is of vital importance to cultivate a steady, uniform, unyielding energy. But the only way they can gain this desirable acquisition is in making God their trust. If they connect with the God of wisdom, the intellect and affections will be brought into the healthiest state of action. “My grace is sufficient for thee.” [2 Corinthians 12:9.] Thus divine power works with human effort, and the man in the might of his soul can stand forth as a son of God. 4LtMs, Lt 15a, 1883, par. 8

It is not alone in religious things that fidelity and energy are required, but the Word of God demands the [faculties] of the mind and earnest energy to be put into all the duties of life. “Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might.” [Ecclesiastes 9:10.] This “Whatsoever” means whether it is to set type, to tend the engine, to work in any department. Do your work with exactitude; there will be growth and greatness. The Word teaches that by the exercise of energy in little things we are to acquire power to be successful and triumph in greater things. What we find to be done we are to do—not to shirk it because it is difficult. Thus by degrees the soul is trained to put forth a force proportionate to the task required to be done. 4LtMs, Lt 15a, 1883, par. 9

But I will not weary you with more of this matter. You say you have pleasant weather. We have not had that here. We have had a snowstorm, almost a blizzard—wind and snow and clouds. Nearly all the time it is clouds and snow and blow. We shall be glad to set our face Westward again, but we have nearly two weeks in South Lancaster and five days later in Pennsylvania before we will set our face toward the Pacific Coast. 4LtMs, Lt 15a, 1883, par. 10

May the Lord bless you and your wife and your children with health and His grace is my prayer. 4LtMs, Lt 15a, 1883, par. 11