Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 7

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Ms 45, 1891

Diary, December 1891

Melbourne, Australia

December 25-31, 1891

See also Ms 20, 1891. Portions of this manuscript are published in 8MR 358; 4Bio 23-26.

December 25, 1891

North Fitzroy, Melbourne, N. S. W.

I hear nothing is to be done in the line of collecting offerings and gifts on this day, the day that is to celebrate the supposed birth of Christ. 7LtMs, Ms 45, 1891, par. 1

December 25, 1891

North Fitzroy, Melbourne, Victoria

Christmas. I addressed the people in Melbourne in the chapel. A large congregation was present. My text was John 3:16, 17. I spoke upon the first advent of Christ to our world, and the Lord gave me great freedom in speaking of the birth of Christ. The discourse was reported. This was a day of showers, and it was quite cool and windy. Elder Starr spoke in the afternoon. 7LtMs, Ms 45, 1891, par. 2

December 26, 1891

I spoke in a hall hired for the purpose. It is larger than the chapel, for this was not able to hold the people. When they understand I am to speak, they have large numbers present. The Lord moves upon the people. The Lord’s presence was in the meeting, and many hearts were touched as I dwelt upon the self-denial and self-sacrifice of Jesus Christ in our behalf, His trial in the judgment hall, His denial by Peter, His betrayal by Judas, His scourging, His crucifixion. Many hearts were deeply moved. This was reported. 7LtMs, Ms 45, 1891, par. 3

December 27, 1891

Sunday evening a large hall was secured and there were several hundred chairs. Nearly all were occupied. I had great freedom in presenting the plan of salvation and the wondrous love of God for fallen man. The congregation listened attentively to a discourse one hour and a half long and seemed to feel deeply. 7LtMs, Ms 45, 1891, par. 4

I was not well December 26 and December 27. I had strong symptoms of malaria. I could eat but little through the day and had quite a fever, but the Lord strengthened me when before the people. I committed myself to God and knew that if, He would have me bear the message to the people, He would strengthen me and would give ears to hear and hearts to feel. The word of the Lord would not return unto Him void, but accomplish the things whereunto it was sent. Those who would hear and receive the message would be blessed. To those who refused the light and warnings, it would be a savor unto death. I thank and praise the Lord that He did stand by me in speaking. The Lord is good. The congregation listened attentively. Appointment was given for me to speak the following Sunday evening. 7LtMs, Ms 45, 1891, par. 5

December 28, 1891

North Fitzroy, Melbourne, Victoria, N. S. W.,

At the seven o’clock meeting of the conference the subject of the need of establishing a school in the colonies was presented. W. C. White and Elder Tenney made appropriate remarks and were listened to with deep interest. 7LtMs, Ms 45, 1891, par. 6

At the nine o’clock meeting, I read important matter in regard to our schools and the work that should be done in them. Suddenly and unexpectedly to me the Spirit of the Lord came upon me, and I was moved to give a decided testimony concerning the spiritual condition of many who had taken their position upon the truth in the colonies. [See Ms 12, 1891 for this testimony.] 7LtMs, Ms 45, 1891, par. 7

After addressing the people, I returned to my temporary home and tried to write, but I was called off to see a sister who has been in the truth some years. We conversed for about two hours. 7LtMs, Ms 45, 1891, par. 8

Soon after she left, Brother Foster was introduced. He is an intelligent man, and I should judge, one who could do a good work if sanctified by the Spirit of God. I spent one hour in conversation with this brother, who was so very anxious to know whether it was his duty to preach. I could not tell him this. 7LtMs, Ms 45, 1891, par. 9

I laid down general principles and pointed him to Jesus who has said, “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea, driven with the wind and tossed.” Sometimes believing, then doubting, then grasping faith, then yielding to every discouragement—“Let not that man think that he shall receive anything of the Lord. A doubleminded man is unstable in all his ways.” James 1:5-8. 7LtMs, Ms 45, 1891, par. 10

This brother had become discouraged and was on the point of letting go of everything, but after our talk together he was like a new man. The straight testimony I bore did him great good. He was obliged to return home; but the next day he came back to remain as long as possible during the meetings. 7LtMs, Ms 45, 1891, par. 11

In the evening I attended a meeting for the ministers held in the Echo office. I talked for half an hour plainly and decidedly, calling them by name and telling them the Lord had shown me their dangers. This was a precious season. Brother Curtis made a heart-broken confession. He humbled himself as a little child. He wept aloud and confessed that he had not had the Spirit of the Lord with him in his preaching. He was discouraged and did not feel that he should receive credentials. Brother Hare also confessed that he could see no success attending his labors and that he had been envious and jealous of Brother Daniells. Brother Steed and Brother Tenney made humble confessions, and then we bowed before the Lord and had a precious season of prayer, and the Lord blessed us. The brethren confessed to one another and fell on one another’s necks, weeping and asking forgiveness. We were together for about three hours, while Brother Starr was speaking to the congregation in the room above. The Lord is at work and we praise His holy name. 7LtMs, Ms 45, 1891, par. 12

I have the same decided testimony to bear here in Australia that I had in America, and I see no more chance to slip off the burden here than there. I long to see this self-righteous spirit which prevails everywhere blown to the four winds. I know the Lord has been with us in this evening’s meeting. If I had not confidence that the Lord would work, I would not remain here in Australia longer than the sailing of the next boat. I want to be at work in America. When they say, Come, we want your help, I shall feel it duty to go. 7LtMs, Ms 45, 1891, par. 13

December 29, 1891

I attended morning meeting and bore my testimony in regard to faith, pleading with all present to believe the promises of God just as they read. “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: For every one that asketh receiveth, and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.” Matthew 7:7, 8. I presented before them (verses 9-11), dwelling especially on (verse 11): “If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things or the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?” 7LtMs, Ms 45, 1891, par. 14

These gifts are freely given to us by His own glory and virtue. Oh, how weak is our faith that we do not avail ourselves of the rich and glorious promises of God! The nature of God is to bestow upon us His rich gifts that He means every soul shall reveal to the world. All-wise and all-powerful, He will give liberally to all who ask in faith. The paternal character of God is revealed—that He is more merciful, more tender, more patient and loving than any earthly parent. He draws us to Himself by endearing language, that we may have courage and confidence. We are won to Him by the disclosures of the tenderest sympathy which flows from His heart of love. No human parent could plead as earnestly with an erring child as God pleads with us. He “so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” [John 3:16.] 7LtMs, Ms 45, 1891, par. 15

December 30, 1891

North Fitzroy, Melbourne

Again I bore a decided testimony in the early morning meeting and at nine a.m. Many are far behind in the Christian life. They do not walk in the light as Christ is in the light. [For remainder of entry see Ms 20, 1891.] 7LtMs, Ms 45, 1891, par. 16

December 31, 1891

North Fitzroy, Melbourne

I attended the early morning meeting and the meeting at nine o’clock. These are days of special work, and the place of worship is filled. A deep interest is manifested by those who have come in from abroad. We greatly desire to see the Spirit of the Lord poured out upon the ministers and their wives. [For remainder of entry see Ms 20, 1891.] 7LtMs, Ms 45, 1891, par. 17