Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 9 (1894)


Ms 76, 1894

Diary, June 1894

Granville, New South Wales, Australia

June 14-23, 1894

Portions of this manuscript are published in 2MR 154.

June 14, 1894

Granville, New South Wales

We are anticipating changes. We have just returned from visiting a beautiful residence—a two-story building—standing upon a hill where we can have a fine view. The sun shines into the large windows all day. There is an upper veranda on the front of the house and extending along the west side of the house. Everything is convenient. There are ten rooms and a most beautiful garden. The front yard is laid out in flower beds, and the walk extends on either side of the garden, close by the outer edge of the large center, directly in front of the house. There is a large variety of flowers and shrubs and trees in front. A very fine entrance gate leads to the back entrance of the house, and to the barn, which is just finished, for horses and carriage house. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 1

We pass through another gate at the left and then we see a fine garden on a small scale. There are a few carrots and cabbages about one finger high, a limited strawberry bed, and fifteen trees bearing fruit—one lemon tree with lemons, an apricot tree, a nectarine tree and several fruit trees of different kinds. We see everything nice, clean, and comfortable. We shall not have to pay quite as much rent as we now are paying for the house we have, which is low, the windows low, and the sun does not come in much into the windows. If our offer of one pound per week is received we shall be thankful. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 2

Friday, June 15, 1894


I could not sleep past twelve o’clock. I arose and attempted to write and relieve my mind of its pressure and heaviness and distress. I wrote many pages and about five o’clock a.m. lost myself one half hour in sleep. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 3

Sabbath, June 16, 1894


I thank the Lord that I can sleep at all, but I should have more strength if I could sleep until five o’clock; my mind has been so burdened of late I cannot sleep as I wish. I feel that I am pressed as a cart beneath sheaves, and decide to remain at home and rest all day, for I am troubled with heart difficulty. It is hard for me to breathe and my head is congested. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 4

Willie proposed that we go to Kellyville and attend the Sabbath meeting. I decided to go. It is eleven miles to Kellyville. The day was beautiful. The singing of the birds was pleasant to hear for they were offering up their thank offering to God. The merry songsters were doing their best. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 5

We had an excellent meeting. The little church was full. Brother Whiteman and Brother Radcliff, from Castle Hill—ten miles from Kellyville—were there with all their families. They had not attended church for some time until Brother and Sister Starr, Brother McCullagh, and I visited them a few weeks before. Brother Whiteman had been tempted. His financial pressure was great. He contracted a debt in building his house, and now his whole property will be swept away and himself and consumptive wife and children be left destitute. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 6

We had a most precious season. I spoke upon the talents entrusted of God to be earnestly improved and [to] be doubled by putting them to use—which meant service to God. The Lord gave me strength to speak to His name’s glory. Then I presented before them that the Christian life is a continual service to Jesus Christ, and when they come to meeting on the Sabbath they are under service to the Master, Jesus Christ, to do His work, act their part, and exercise their God-given abilities in bearing testimony for Jesus Christ. “Ye are my witnesses, saith the Lord.” [Isaiah 43:10.] 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 7

We had a good social meeting. Fifteen testimonies were borne. The two Firth brothers bore their testimony in the little church for the first time. This was a victory gained. Brother Whiteman bore a good, earnest testimony. Some are yet too timid to say a word. Religious work is new and strange to quite a number. After the meeting we rode home and ate our lunch while riding homeward. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 8

Sunday, June 17, 1894


I was unable to sleep past two o’clock. When will these burdens leave my soul? I have such a weight resting upon me. I am worried and grieved in spirit much of the time. Oh, I do look to God for help and strength and light. He can roll back the cloud and let peace and rest come to my soul. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 9

I spoke in Masonic Hall at three p.m. on temperance. We had a very good congregation. I had freedom in speaking. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 10

Monday, June 18, 1894


I arose at three o’clock. Today is mail day, for American mail to be sent. It is the most taxing burden I have to bear to get all the letters off that I should, and after all I think too late of some things that I wish I had sent and did not. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 11

Tuesday, June 19, 1894


Slept until half past two o’clock, then arose and wrote important matters. My health is improving. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 12

We are searching for a house to rent. We went to Mrs. _____ to ascertain if the large house upon the hill can be rented on reasonable terms. We fear the house being low, I shall have the rheumatism. This house Willie looked at and it was his choice before he decided to take this house; but the rent was eighty pounds per year. We could not consent to pay so high rent, and decided to take the one-story cottage at sixty-five pounds per year. Here we have lived three months. But Elder Corliss, in searching for a house, made an offer of sixty pounds per year for the two-story house upon the hill and informed me that we could get the house; a new stable had been built for horses and carriage. There is not much more house room than in the house we now occupy, but the rooms are more sunny and the chambers will be better for me than the lower rooms. We were much pleased to receive the use of the house for twenty-three dollars per month—two dollars less per month than the cottage we now occupy. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 13

We see some articles of furniture we would need, and there are some articles of furniture we would be inclined to purchase, but we have not money to invest. There is a hat rack for the hall—a very handy thing, but not wanted enough to invest fifteen dollars (three pounds) for it. Then I have been tempted to invest in some things that seem needful but which we can do without. We must give twenty pounds to build a little church at Seven Hills. This they must have. Brother McKenzie’s family must be looked after. He is away trying to canvass and Sister McKenzie has been quite destitute of food at times. I have helped them some and must help them more. Every dollar I have is the Lord’s, to be used to His glory. I explained to the parties who own the house that we were pilgrims and strangers and we were seeking a better country, even an heavenly, and God hath builded for us a city. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 14

Wednesday, June 20, 1894


I was able to sleep until half past two o’clock. Rose and dressed at three, and in my usual morning supplications I felt more than usual the need of guidance from heaven. I want light from above. In every purchase I shall make, I want to move to the glory of God. He is good and He is precious to my soul, and I want ever to keep a single eye to His glory in every move I make. I must use the means entrusted to me of my heavenly Father to help the needy, to help build meetinghouses, to send youth to our college, and to lift up and relieve the oppressed. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 15

We believe the Lord has opened the way before us to secure a good house upon a hill at reasonable terms. Rents are very high in Parramatta, Granville and localities in even country places and suburban towns. Land is held very high and houses rent very high. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 16

Had some very important conversation with Willie in regard to his children coming to this country. He has been absent from them two years and a half, and they are very sorrowful at times because they cannot see their dear father. We want to move as God would have us. We do not want to make any mistake in our decisions. We ask wisdom of God and we believe we shall have it, for has He not promised? Have we not faith that we shall receive wisdom when we ask, when we have His pledged word? We do believe. We do trust in God, and He will be our Counselor. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 17

Yesterday Elder Corliss and Willie and his mother rode out in our phaeton to find a brother who had solicited that Willie should visit him, give him counsel, and teach him the best methods of canvassing. We rode out about two miles and inquired the way to Brother Buland’s house. We were directed and went through a woods and found a clearing. A little bit of a cottage was built on the grounds of an allotment. This little bit of a farm was well cultivated. Grapes and trees were set out and the whole arrangement was very tidy and showed industry. While some men will do but little, this man had made the most of the little he possessed. He had several children. God bless him! We left Willie to visit and do his duty in the line of instruction. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 18

Thursday, June 21, 1894


I have, through the blessing of God, slept well during the night until quarter to three. I am thankful to my heavenly Father for this blessing of sleep. I have neglected my diary and must now try to be more faithful. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 19

Last night Elder Corliss was contemplating what he should do to find a place for his family over the Sabbath. They would arrive on the boat that comes to Sydney tonight. I invited them all to make my house their home, until the house they have engaged near Sydney is prepared for their moving into it. This will, of course, necessitate some crowding, but if they will be content with the best we can render them we will be only too glad to help a little in their emergency. Elder Corliss was relieved at once, and we were thankful to act some little part in making it as favorable for them as possible. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 20

Brother Hickox has presented the subject of a meetinghouse being built at Seven Hills. All are poor and have nothing to depend on to support their families but what little they can earn with their hands in turning off a little produce, fruit, etc. Brother Pond has recently been converted to the truth. He has a very few acres set out to orange trees and mandarins. He sent them to Sydney to the market and could not get one shilling a case. The outlook is that he will have to pay the commissions and will be left in debt. How he can pay anything I cannot see. The poor man’s faith is being tested and tried. I first pledged five pounds, and when I saw how little the poor people could do at Seven Hills I doubled my gift to ten pounds, and now I have made it twenty pounds, and I fear it will have to be increased still. Oh, I am so anxious for the little flock to have a small house of worship! But money matters are fearful, the pressure terrible. The banks have speculated on the money entrusted to them by the people and are ruined, shut down, or facing failure as the result, and this has brought distress on the rich and on the poor. We scarcely can get money to use in new fields. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 21

Friday, June 22, 1894

Burnett Cottage, Granville

I could not sleep later than half past two. I left my bed and prepared for writing. I have need of much grace, and I seek for this most earnestly. I cannot keep myself, and as I am now trying to write on the life of Christ, the enemy will work to hinder me in every way possible. The Lord alone can keep me. Shall I become discouraged? Shall I fail of doing all that I possibly can do? Oh, what can we do, my Lord? The work must go forward, but we are hedged about for want of means. We have never done enough so long as there remains anything to be done. God has a work for all—the aged, the youth, the afflicted, the poor, the rich. The Saviour is our dependence. One who was a man of sorrow and acquainted with grief, One who for our sake became poor that we through His poverty might be made rich, was the greatest Teacher the world ever knew. There is so much poverty among our people. There is a meetinghouse to be built at Seven Hills. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 22

Sabbath, June 23, 1894

Burnett Cottage, Granville

I could not sleep after one o’clock a.m. I felt that I must pray. My heart yearned after the peace of Christ and for the Holy Spirit to abide upon me, that I should not make any mistake in any decision or in any plans. The Lord has promised wisdom to all that ask Him, and ask in faith. I want to be an efficient co-worker with God. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 23

It is the holy Sabbath, the Sabbath of the fourth commandment, instituted in Eden when the morning stars sang together and all the sons of God shouted for joy. This very morning I am in need of the blessing from God which He has given to His holy day, and sanctified it. I long to receive from God His blessing. My prayer is, Lord increase our faith. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 24

I spoke to the meeting at Parramatta in the afternoon. It was cloudy and misting, but there was no downpour of rain. There were sixty present besides the children. Willie took up some little time speaking on the same subject—the necessity of the church being faithful to make the social meetings interesting, doing service to God. Each member of the church should have something to say on Sabbath in relating his experience and in testifying to the goodness and love of God. This will encourage and help all. 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 25

I tried to present before them that to be a Christian means service, earnest work for the Master. There must be no idlers in His vineyard. The church must be co-laborers with Jesus Christ. Then the church will be a living church. Their light will be well borne and will shine. Everyone must bear his share of responsibility. They have heard much preaching, and when there shall be no minister they need not feel that they must have someone preach. They may select one of their number to preach. Let everyone have something to say for Jesus Christ and have in mind the words in (Malachi 3:16, 17), “Then they that feared the Lord spake often one to another: and the Lord hearkened, and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before him for them that feared the Lord, and that thought upon his name. And they shall be mine, saith the Lord of hosts, in that day when I make up my jewels; and I will spare them, as a man spareth his own son that serveth him.” 9LtMs, Ms 76, 1894, par. 26