Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 9 (1894)


Lt 19, 1894

Daniells, Sister; Rousseau, Sister

George’s Terrace, St. Kilda Road, Melbourne, Australia

March 7, 1894

Previously unpublished.

My Dear Sisters,

At the very time when your minds should have been drawn away from self and selfishness, when you should have been seeking God with all the heart, in order that you might know by your individual experience what the words of the great Teacher mean when He says, “Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness” [Matthew 6:33], you were studying yourselves. You did not commit to God your souls or your bodies. Your ideas, your imaginings became perverted. You dwelt upon your weakness, your individual inconveniences and little trials, forgetting the example you had been given in the work and mission of Christ. You thought you were having a hard time when you were not. 9LtMs, Lt 19, 1894, par. 1

Your imagination was fruitful in your own behalf, and on your own account. But you did not understand fully what it means to give yourselves without reserve to Jesus, to suffer, not supposed inconvenience, but real genuine inconvenience for the truth’s sake. You were not willing to do this, your thoughts were altogether too much upon yourselves and you have not committed yourselves, soul, body, and spirit to God for Him to mold and fashion and purify and prune back your natural inclinations. In few words, you desire to please yourselves in many things, and therefore you do not surrender yourselves to God unreservedly. 9LtMs, Lt 19, 1894, par. 2

As followers of Jesus Christ we are to live in this world to His dear name’s glory. There are many objects that solicit our attention, and we may make idols of ourselves. We may allow the enemy to thrust an idol in between our souls and Jesus, and this idol may gather our thoughts, and hold them, so that we shall devote the service, the attention to earthly, selfish considerations, that belong alone to Jesus, and thus have the heart’s affections divided. 9LtMs, Lt 19, 1894, par. 3

Some things to which we may thus devote our energies concern the mind and some the body; but when it is done, time, precious time, and golden opportunities pass away; and the soul thus engaged is on the losing side. You have allowed your tendrils to find something earthly to entwine about, so that they are held back from God and do not entwine about Him. Satan prepares, ready to your hand, things of minor importance to so engage the mind that you do not obey the requirements of God. 9LtMs, Lt 19, 1894, par. 4

“And behold, a certain lawyer stood up, and tempted him, saying, Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” Christ in His wisdom returned the question to the questioner for an answer, saying to him, “What is written in the law? How readest thou?” Every scribe claimed to be wise in expounding the law, “and he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind: and thy neighbor as thyself. And he said unto him, Thou hast answered right: This do, and thou shalt live.” [Luke 10:25-28.] Here are presented before us the conditions upon which salvation will be given. 9LtMs, Lt 19, 1894, par. 5

God requires that in this life every son and daughter of Adam shall have supreme love for God and unselfish love for his fellow men. And any soul, or any object that shall come in to divide the affections, to engage the mind and be enthroned in the heart, takes the form of an idol. 9LtMs, Lt 19, 1894, par. 6

There is more worship of idols than we imagine there is; it is the idols we have set up that divert the mind, the strength, the affections from the service of God, and God obtains very little of the heart’s true worship. 9LtMs, Lt 19, 1894, par. 7

Self and selfishness form the god that many worship. They consult their own selfish pleasure, and permit inclination to rule their spirit, soul, and body. They give strength and time to unimportant matters, to anything and everything that diverts the mind from God. The Word of Christ has very little place in their experience, and they do not heed the command, “Seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you.” [Matthew 6:33.] 9LtMs, Lt 19, 1894, par. 8

Sister Daniells, you need to have the converting power of God upon your soul. You know very little of God and His righteousness, for self has not been surrendered to God. Although you do not realize it, you have made very hard work for yourself spiritually. You have taken, largely, the burden of both yourself and your husband in your own hands. But Brother Daniells needs a different mold from the one he has had, and God alone can give him this mold. My sister, when you sink self entirely in the will of God, then like Mary of old, you will feel that to learn of Jesus is the very best portion you can have in this life. The common and the sacred are too much upon a level in your mind, and eternal realities have not that solemn, sacred importance to your mind that it is essential they should have for your own eternal interest. 9LtMs, Lt 19, 1894, par. 9

According to your own measurement, you think that the evil things you do are small in comparison to your good actions, and that on the whole you have an average good record. But God does not measure the character according to a human standard. He weighs the thoughts, the motives, in the golden scales of the sanctuary. He that offends in one point in transgressing the law, He says, is guilty of all. [James 2:10.] The spirit and principle that causes him to be guilty in one particular would cause him to fail should temptation overtake him on any other precept. He would break the commandments of the law just as readily on the second instance as on the first. 9LtMs, Lt 19, 1894, par. 10

I have carried the burden of your case and the case of Sister Rousseau for a long time. I have not physical strength to carry it farther, and it appears to me that all I can do is to drop you into the hands of God. It seems longer than two weeks ago when we had that meeting, when the Lord was drawing nigh, but His blessing was ruled out by the lack of a full surrender to God, by the spirit that was entertained against light and knowledge. I care not to go through another such an ordeal, which was so little understood by you, and which meant so much to me. I dare not now engage in any interview, whatever might be the result. I know now that I must carry the load no longer; your spiritual discernment is so clouded in regard to yourself that I have little hope that anything I might say would do any good. My words would be misconstrued, misinterpreted, and perverted, so I want no conversation on these subjects, and I am glad that I shall leave for Sydney soon. 9LtMs, Lt 19, 1894, par. 11

I will write you that which I know will seem to you strange and severe. But I speak for your soul’s sake, for your husband’s sake, and for Christ’s sake. Your husband is much better able to comprehend the matters which have been presented to me, than you will be. I bear my messages, and leave the case with God. You have cherished these things so long that an atmosphere has been created about your soul which makes it difficult for you to comprehend the danger to yourself or to others. 9LtMs, Lt 19, 1894, par. 12

Your mind and heart need to be renewed before you can view these things which I have presented before you in any other way than from your own standpoint. You pride will be touched. You will compare your busy activities with the lives of others who seem to do so little, and you will be led to question why you should be found in need of reproof. I must have relief, and I can do no more. I can only warn you to make thorough work for eternity without delay. 9LtMs, Lt 19, 1894, par. 13

You spoke of going to America. It may be best, but I cannot tell the mind of God. It was new to me when you presented the matter before me. But if you expect relief and health in making this move, I fear you will be disappointed. You need to humble your heart before God, to fall on the Rock and to be broken. Then you will be better able to understand whether or not you should make the journey to America. Do not take one step in the dark. You will not be happy if you go in your present state of mind. You will carry your unhappy self with you. 9LtMs, Lt 19, 1894, par. 14

You need to plead with God for divine wisdom to cherish all that is true and lovely, and purge away the dross. You need now to be very distrustful of self and not view matters and things, as you have viewed them for years, from your own standpoint. You have been keenly alive to see and to magnify the supposed errors of others, but because your own selfish prejudices and feelings were uppermost, it has been impossible for you to render an impartial judgment in regard to the cases of others. But it is a dangerous matter to you that you do not see and correct your own imperfections of character. It is necessary to be a doer of the words of Christ, and not seek to take the mote out of your brother’s eye when there is a beam in your own. 9LtMs, Lt 19, 1894, par. 15

Will you cease to compare yourself with others? Will you look to Jesus in humble contrition of soul, and no longer have the quality of love for your husband that you have had? This idolatrous love, which is sickly sentimentalism, must be purged from your heart; you must love God supremely, and your husband with that love which bears the impress of the divine. The heart is the treasure house of good or evil, and its condition is made manifest by the words that are spoken. 9LtMs, Lt 19, 1894, par. 16

A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth good things, while an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bringeth forth evil things. The character of our words is declared by Christ to be the test of our spiritual condition. He says, “By thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.” [Matthew 12:37.] And still the Lord carries the matter farther, and says, “I say unto you, That for every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment.” [Verse 36.] 9LtMs, Lt 19, 1894, par. 17

The end is near. You have had great light, great opportunities, but you have not improved them in a way that has worked [for] your spiritual advancement. The unselfish love that dwelt in the bosom of Jesus Christ has not been the quality of the love which you have cherished. Love, pure and Christlike, is not a feeling, but a principle. You have not known what manner of spirit you were of. Love is a precious plant which we receive from Jesus. When we are quickened by His strong motive power, taught by His Holy Spirit, we shall love God supremely and our neighbors as ourselves. Will you weed out the vanities and grasp in your life the realities in order that there shall be no dead fly in the ointment? 9LtMs, Lt 19, 1894, par. 18

Oh, the end is near! I will pray for you, for I have a sincere love for your soul, and know that you may be a vessel unto honor, fit for the Master’s use. Be careful how you speak, for we may judge a person’s character with almost certain accuracy by the character of his conversation. Habits have been acquired that need to be changed decidedly. Words have been spoken that never should have been uttered. Hasty passion warps your judgment. By encouraging the utterance of words, we encourage and strengthen the feelings that prompted them, and a person comes under the influence of his own words. Thoughts produce words, and our words react upon our thoughts and control mind, soul, body, and will. 9LtMs, Lt 19, 1894, par. 19