Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 4

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Lt 78, 1886

Ings, Brother and Sister

Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland

May 26, 1886

This letter is published in entirety in 21MR 312-314.

Dear Brother and Sister Ings:

We have been traveling among the churches with my own team. Left Basel May 20 and journeyed two days to Tramelan. Oh, what scenery! No one can tell what Switzerland is unless they have traveled over the road by horse and carriage. I spoke three times in Tramelan. There is a goodly number there. Eleven came from this place, and we had a good meeting. Brother John Vuilleumier was my interpreter. 4LtMs, Lt 78, 1886, par. 1

Monday we drove to Bienne in company with Mary Roth and her brother Oscar and Sarah McEnterfer. We rode fifteen miles over the most beautiful road and viewed the most majestic scenery my eye ever looked upon. But this letter is not to describe scenery, but to state a few things. 4LtMs, Lt 78, 1886, par. 2

I spoke at Bienne in the missionary meeting, then W. C. White spoke. Mary Roth was our interpreter. Today we have come thirty miles, and the scenery was such as to delight the senses all the way. For miles we were steadily climbing until we could view the landscape from the elevated point where we now are. I am glad we have a good, strong horse and a good, easy, convenient carriage. I am being much benefited by my journey. 4LtMs, Lt 78, 1886, par. 3

I started in this letter to say that as yet we have spent but a very little time in England. We design to start in two weeks for Sweden and Norway and then shall go to England. The plan now is that our European conference will be in England. We shall stay some time and labor in England. Then if you come, Brother and Sister Ings, we purpose to have a family together and unite our interests and will have a comfortable home, convenient food, and try to help one another. I must spend considerable of my remaining stay in England if I can endure the climate. If I cannot, shall go where I can, but I am desirous to work in England. I long to speak without a translator. And if I spend much time in England shall take my horse and my carriage with me. 4LtMs, Lt 78, 1886, par. 4

But I will say, do just that which the Lord directs. Do not move upon anyone’s light, but study duty. You are on the ground, and you can know the situation. Ask God for light, and then do your duty with an eye single to His glory. 4LtMs, Lt 78, 1886, par. 5

E. G. White.

We would not urge your coming, but we do feel that it would be in the order of God for you both to visit Europe at this time. We cannot advise Brother Ings to come without his wife shall accompany him. He needs her, and we will try to make up a family, for I cannot see any better way to do than to be independent of all families, cook as we please. We have had a good girl to cook for us and do all housework. We will have a good girl in England, and you will be free to ride with me, walk with me, and help me in many ways. Then when your husband is not well, or when he shall rest, he can have a home to come to. If we do not stay in England long, still we will have a home where our interests will be connected. 4LtMs, Lt 78, 1886, par. 6

When we go to America I want to have Sister Ings in my family, and I shall locate myself somewhere or in some place where there is land to pasture a cow without so much trouble. 4LtMs, Lt 78, 1886, par. 7

Now my dear brother and sister, I have not lost my interest in either of you, and I want we should be one family. I think you had both better come at once to England, and by the time you arrive we will be making our way from Norway to England. There we will meet, there we will talk over our plans. There are good locations we can obtain in England. We shall secure the most healthy place we can to make a home, and we want you to connect with us. 4LtMs, Lt 78, 1886, par. 8

Mary K. White does not find time even to ride with me or travel with me. Sarah is either taking dictation or writing on the Calligraph, and Marian—you know how she begs off. You can help me and I can help you and you can go with me to different churches. Now come, both of you, and remain as long as it shall please the Lord. When we leave England we want you to go in company with us. 4LtMs, Lt 78, 1886, par. 9

In my dreams I am with Sister Ings. She fell on my neck and said, “O Sister White, I never wanted to leave you. You made me leave you and I want to be with you. The Lord blesses me when I am with you.” I said, “Sister Ings, from this time our interest shall never be divorced. We will stand shoulder to shoulder to the close of time.” 4LtMs, Lt 78, 1886, par. 10

I want when you shall come that you will bring all the matter in regard to mothers’ influence, all letters from my children. You can help me much in some of these matters. I would not bring but a limited supply of clothing, as you can obtain it here better than there, but you need not I should inform you in regard to this. 4LtMs, Lt 78, 1886, par. 11

You have filled a good place in the institution, and now it is well that there should be a change. Therefore come, Sister Ings, with your husband. We will be more than glad to see you. I can say no more in regard to this matter. The Lord help you to decide aright, is my prayer. 4LtMs, Lt 78, 1886, par. 12

No one would be more happy to see you than every one of our family; but after saying this I can say more, all would receive you most heartily. I do not know what the duty of Sister Ings is. I believe that it was in the order of God that she took her position at the Health Retreat. I believe she has been the right one in the right place, and I think her to be qualified for the position and that she will be a blessing to the institution. I look forward to the time when I will see my old home again and Sister Ings be with me if she can be cut loose from the Health Retreat. But my pleasure, my wishes, shall not come in to be a controlling power. 4LtMs, Lt 78, 1886, par. 13

In regard to you both, I have the same tender interest in you both, and nothing would give me more keen sorrow than to find you in any place where you would not be happy or where you would be sufferers healthwise. If Brother Ings should come to England, we shall feel the same interest in his welfare we have felt in America. 4LtMs, Lt 78, 1886, par. 14

Our interest must be bound up together. If Brother Ings has the blessing of God, he may do a good work in England; and I wish he could spend some time there. It would please us much. If the Lord wills he should come, we will be glad; and if it is found that rheumatism affects him, he could spend some time in Basel or other sections of the country where it would be more favorable. You are not to come with the idea that you are to be fixed in England. It is only for a time to do a specified work and then return again to California as soon as we will return to America. 4LtMs, Lt 78, 1886, par. 15

Now we do not feel that it is our province to make duties for either of you or to do anything further than to suggest. If Brother Ings feels it his duty to remain in California, then let him follow his convictions. I believe the Lord will lead those whom He entrusts with His work. But it seems to us, as we survey the field, that he should come. 4LtMs, Lt 78, 1886, par. 16

We are pleasantly situated in Basel, but shall be prepared to leave in one year. I look home to California often, but not in the same way Lot’s wife looked back to Sodom. But I have left home and all its comfort and all its attraction. I consider the cause of God and its workings of greater consequence to me than anything that I possess. I will not worry about home; but just as soon as my work is done, I shall go back willingly. You will see by this letter that I want you both to move understandingly and with a consciousness that the Lord is leading and guiding. I cannot tell either of you your duty or where you shall go or what you will do. Let the Lord lead and guide you. I believe He will. With much love, I remain, 4LtMs, Lt 78, 1886, par. 17

Your true friend. 4LtMs, Lt 78, 1886, par. 18