Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 10 (1895)


Lt 42, 1895

Kellogg, J. H.

Avondale, Cooranbong, Australia

August 28, 1895

Portions of this letter are published in 8MR 92-94. +Note

Dr. J. H. Kellogg
Battle Creek, Michigan, U. S. A

Dear Brother:

I am seated on the bed writing at half past three a.m. Have not slept since half past one o’clock. Ella May White and I are the sole occupants of a large, comfortable family tent. Close by is another good-sized tent, used as a dining room. We have a rude shanty for a kitchen, and a small five-by-five storeroom. Next is another tent, which accommodates three of my workers. Next is a room enclosed by not finished, for wash-house and workshop. This is now used as a bedroom by two men, Brother Shannon, my master builder, and Brother Caldwell. These five men we board. Several others are at work on the land who board themselves. Fannie Bolton occupies another tent, well-fitted up with her organ and furniture. You see we have quite a village of tents. 10LtMs, Lt 42, 1895, par. 1

I drive my own two horse team, visit the lumber mills and order lumber <the workmen require,> to save the time of the workmen; and go out in search of <our> cows. I have purchased two good cows—that is, good for this locality. Almost everywhere in the colonies they have a strange custom of confining the cow at milking time. They put her head in a fixture called a bail, then tie up one of her legs to a stake. It is a barbarous practice. I told those of whom I bought my cows that I should do no such thing, but leave the creatures free, and teach them to stand still. The owner looked at me in astonishment, “You cannot do this, Mrs. White,” he said; “they will not stand. No one thinks of doing any other way.” “Well,” I answered, “I shall give you an example of what can be done.” I have not had a rope on the cow’s leg, or had her head put into a bail. One of my cows has run on the mountains till she was three years old, and was never milked before. 10LtMs, Lt 42, 1895, par. 2

The people have not the slightest idea that they can depart from former practices and train the dumb animals to better habits by painstaking effort. We have treated our cows gently, and they are perfectly docile. These cows had never had a mess of bran or any other prepared food. They get their living by grazing on the mountains, and the calf runs with the cow. Such miserable customs! We are trying to teach better practices. 10LtMs, Lt 42, 1895, par. 3

Large tracts of beautiful land lie uncleared, unworked. The timber business has brought the settlers a meager pittance, and <almost> every day we see a drove of bullocks used to draw one, or sometimes two or three, <large> logs. We count six, seven, or eight span, moving slowly along with their burden. Six span of bullocks were used to plough our land for cultivation. They are under discipline and will move at a word and a crack of a whip, which makes a sharp report but does not touch them. They wheel into line when it seems that they must get tangled up, but the creatures understand their business and they plod patiently with the immense plough used to break up the unworked soil. 10LtMs, Lt 42, 1895, par. 4

The people about here have raised no vegetables, and <but little> fruit, except a few oranges and lemons that are not cultivated, and I have seen a few peach trees. Land is profitless, but in the land boom it cost 8 pounds an acre, some of which now sells for 4 pounds. Thousands of acres lie untouched, for no one attempts to work the land. They think it will yield nothing, but we know it will yield if properly cultivated. 10LtMs, Lt 42, 1895, par. 5

The school land, fifteen hundred acres, was purchased for $5,500. The school has twelve acres put into orchard; I have two acres in fruit trees. We shall experiment on this land, and if we make a success, others will follow our example. Notwithstanding oranges and lemons have yielded year after year, not a new tree is planted by the settlers. Their indolence and laziness causes false witness to be borne against the land. When right methods of cultivation are adopted, there will be far less poverty than now exists. I did not expect to write you in this way, but these particulars we want you to have, that you may understand what we are doing. We intend to give the people practical lessons upon the improvement of the land, and thus induce them to cultivate their land, now lying idle. If we accomplish this, we shall have done good missionary work. 10LtMs, Lt 42, 1895, par. 6

Today Mr. Moseley comes to bring oranges and lemon trees for us to set out. As soon as this work is done, we shall begin to plant vegetables. We have to get our groceries from Sydney, nearly a hundred miles away, or from Newcastle, twenty-two miles. But we hope soon to raise our own fruit and vegetables <through the cultivation of the land.> Willie cannot be here, so I am here in his place, where I can oversee matters and plan and consult with the workmen. I am called out from my routine of writing, yet I arise at half past one, at two, and three o’clock, and for a week have done considerable writing. 10LtMs, Lt 42, 1895, par. 7

You make inquiry in reference to building a chapel for the sanitarium to accommodate those who wish to attend religious services. The reasons you give in favor of building a chapel are sound. Years ago I was shown that such a building would be a great help. Your patrons are mostly those not of our faith, and if anything can be done to interest them in religious things, it will be well. 10LtMs, Lt 42, 1895, par. 8

While there have been altogether too many buildings piled up at Battle Creek, which has meant simply robbery of other localities, yet I would not discourage the building of a chapel. A sanitarium, where people come from all parts of the world, is a missionary field in the highest sense, and a place of worship would be the means of drawing in some souls. I cannot see why the erection of such a building would not be to the honor of God, even though years have passed when it should have been done. 10LtMs, Lt 42, 1895, par. 9

True, there is the tabernacle, which is crowded every Sabbath. Why, some will say, will not that answer for all purposes? Why not let the people come out and hear at the place of meeting? I answer that many would not go there at all, and those who might attend occasionally would not hear the things most appropriate for persons who are not of our faith; they do not understand the doctrines presented. If you have a place of meeting connected with the sanitarium, many will step in to while away the time, and discourses should be given appropriate for those who have not a knowledge of the truth. I have been surprised that such a building was not erected long ago. It is really a missionary enterprise. The chapel connected with the sanitarium at St. Helena, California has been a great blessing. 10LtMs, Lt 42, 1895, par. 10

But I thought as I read in your letter that such a building would cost only three thousand dollars, O, if we could get such a house in some of our cities that have nothing, how glad we would be. But the patronage of the sanitarium would, it appears to me, justify the investment of means in a house for God’s worship where invalids would be accommodated without having to leave the buildings. They would realize much greater good from the services in such a place. I hope that none will consider these words as contradictory of the former testimonies I have borne, and feel at liberty to disregard the light that God has given. This counsel is in harmony with that light. 10LtMs, Lt 42, 1895, par. 11

Those who visit the sanitarium will see that it is a place where God is honored and worshipped, and many souls may hear the Word of life, the precious truth of God, that otherwise might never hear the truth. The sick and suffering ones should have every advantage possible in religious facilities to win them away from the attractions of Satan, to Jesus Christ. In the chapel, let the words of truth be spoken, and the Scriptures be opened to the people in simplicity. Reach the people with the gospel where they are. Jesus will be with you to impress minds and hearts. Nothing should be left undone that can be done to relieve these afflicted souls and win them to Jesus. 10LtMs, Lt 42, 1895, par. 12

I dare not say otherwise than the words that I have written, because this investment of means will, I am sure, bring its return in the salvation of many souls, and will return to the treasury all that was expended. Even if the outlay were never repaid, still it would be our duty to bring the truth before as many as possible. Always and everywhere we are to lift up Jesus. While Satan’s kingdom is embracing the world and the churches, let the Lord be magnified as supreme. While everything is being done for those who know and believe the truth, it will be well to make every effort in your power to reach the people with whom you come in contact. For among them are hearts deceived, heads confused, bodies sick, and souls sick. They need to hear the voice of faithful shepherds saying, “Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.” [John 1:29.] 10LtMs, Lt 42, 1895, par. 13

God has work for every true believer who labors in the sanitarium. Every nurse of the sick should be a channel of light, receiving light from a divine source, and letting it shine forth to others. The workers are not to ape the customs or fashionable display brought into the sanitarium, but to consecrate themselves to God, to be humble, meek, and lowly in heart, pure and elevated in character. Let the atmosphere that surrounds the soul be a savor of life unto life. With some there is too great a desire to be exalted. In seeking self-exaltation they abase themselves. Let self be hid in Christ, and they will be exalted in due time. 10LtMs, Lt 42, 1895, par. 14

All who are engaged in the work in the sanitarium can be a blessing to others by revealing in their own character what a knowledge of the truth has done for them. Let everyone feel that precious souls for whom Christ has died are perishing in ignorance and transgression of God’s holy law. Let every unbeliever see that you are in God’s service, that your faith in the truth does something for you. Thus you will reveal the grace of God in your own character. 10LtMs, Lt 42, 1895, par. 15

You need to feel that in your ministry to the sick you are representing Jesus. “Ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.” [1 Peter 2:9.] Bear in mind that God is your Guide, your Comforter. What a vineyard you have in which to work! What a field for action! The Lord guides and cheers the humble, meek, and lowly worker as He cheered Moses in his work. In the commonest duties of life we may ask God for wisdom, for the work to be done. If the worker receives his commission as from God, he will be strengthened and blessed. 10LtMs, Lt 42, 1895, par. 16

Dangerous temptations will assail you on every side, but ask of God, as did Moses, for His presence and guidance. The Lord said to Moses, “Certainly I will be with thee.” [Exodus 3:12.] The same assurance is given to every humble, consecrated worker. Let every student, every helper, bear in mind that he is to be daily a living epistle of truth and righteousness. Remember that you are not your own, but are bought with a price, even the precious blood of the Son of God. To all with whom you come in contact you are to reveal that you are the trophies of the grace of Christ, His living instruments to glorify His name. 10LtMs, Lt 42, 1895, par. 17