Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 11

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Lt 152, 1896

White, J. E.; White, Emma

Sunnyside, Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia

July 5, 1896

Portions of this letter are published in TMK 328; 4Bio 255, 268.

Dear Children, Edson and Emma White:

Are you sick, children? What has been the reason that no mail has come to me for two months? Why not write me just a few words, if you cannot write more, to let me know that you are in the land of the living? 11LtMs, Lt 152, 1896, par. 1

I can only write you a few lines. W. C. White goes to Sydney tonight. Brother and Sister Rousseau leave on the Monday steamer for America. We all have been suffering with epidemic influenza. I spoke to eighty people assembled in the new mill four weeks since, took cold, and suffered considerably. We are now in midwinter. Have had several frosts, and two nights there has been ice a quarter of an inch thick. 11LtMs, Lt 152, 1896, par. 2

One week ago yesterday I spoke in the upper room of the mill, partially enclosed, to eighty assembled, mostly our own people. Poor families come to the meeting who will, we think, embrace he truth. They keep Saturday and Sunday. We are so far away from where the people live it is difficult for them to come to the meeting, but they do come. It is rather a rustic place in which to meet, but when the sun shines in this country no other heating apparatus is needed. I spoke again yesterday. We had a good meeting. We shall be glad to get a meetinghouse and a school building. We are praying for means. We cannot advance until means shall come in from some source. 11LtMs, Lt 152, 1896, par. 3

Our orchards are doing well—the school orchard and my own orchard. It is true; false witness has been borne in regard to this land. We can raise every kind of fruit and vegetable, but oranges, lemons, peaches, apricots, nectarines, quinces, plums, persimmons [do especially well]. We have blackberry rods just set out on our place, strawberries, ground prepared for grapes. We now have a few acres cleared. I have Harry Hawkins and Minnie Hawkins working for me. Harry and Brother Woodem are making an outside chimney, for a stovepipe. I do not want a fireplace in the room, for I have no need of fire except between three o’clock and eight in the morning, and one hour before eight at night. The room gets the sun all day and is as warm as I need, even in midwinter. I have my door wide open from the time the sun shines until seven o’clock p.m. We have four fireplaces and we have fire in them only in early morning. I choose my room to have only [a] stove, just to take off the chilly feeling in midwinter, and keep doors and windows wide open. 11LtMs, Lt 152, 1896, par. 4

I wish you could have had a look at us last night as May White entered my room with one of her twin boys, a sweet-faced little lad. She could not bring both. Tomorrow the twins will be three months old. They have not had a sick day; sleep much of the time. One, the last born and the least in size, Sister Lacey declares looks like their grandfather, Elder James White. The forehead is like his—full and high—but we cannot tell how they will develop. Both have nice, pretty faces and intellectual looking heads. All think a great deal of the twin boys. 11LtMs, Lt 152, 1896, par. 5

We are now just sending off in this mail the first twenty chapters to Pacific Press. I cannot conscientiously have my book go through the press at Battle Creek. There has been so little dealing upon straight lines of principle, I can put but little reliance in anything they may say. If the devil tempts them to make it hard and trying for me, they will not see, they will not discern the evil. Judging from the past, therefore, I shall not place Life of Christ in their hands. I am sorry, so sorry. I wish you could, Edson, have the oversight of the book, but I will not make any call upon you. I am more than rejoiced to see you doing service to the Master, and I hope you will put your trust in God decidedly and surrender yourself to Him and make the Lord your dependence and your strong tower. 11LtMs, Lt 152, 1896, par. 6

I learned after the mail had gone that there was not one copy sent to you, my son, of the writings I sent to Battle Creek. They had used all the copies before I had any knowledge of it. But I sent the same to Battle Creek and to Professor Prescott. He must have everything, as he will be at the General Conference. Willie cannot leave the work here, but he must be with me and help me some, which he has not had time to do. He has much responsibilities to carry now. I am sorry for him, but God can help him. We do hunger, we thirst, after righteousness. 11LtMs, Lt 152, 1896, par. 7

I dare not think my own thoughts, for indignation comes upon me at times when I think how men in Battle Creek have supposed they could take the place of God and order and dictate and lord it over men’s minds and talents—an endowment given them in trust from God to improve every day, trade upon, and if these talents cannot be placed to the control of men, to be in service to do their will, then they make those men have a difficult path to travel. They act just as though they were in God’s place, to deal with their fellow men as if they were machines. I cannot respect their wisdom nor have faith in their Christianity, for the life is a misrepresentation of the life of Christ. 11LtMs, Lt 152, 1896, par. 8

You have felt all this, but now what must we do? Believe in God for your individual self, trust in Him in whom there is no variableness nor shadow of turning. You must exercise faith in God through evil report as well as good. You must cultivate the thought that you are not alone. All your steps are watched by the Lord. You are encompassed with vigilant angels. Then banish every depressing, gloomy feeling. Love God, fear His holy name, for He is high and exalted and the train of His glory fills the temple. Oh, trust Him, my dear children. Let not your faith fail, neither be discouraged. The Holy Spirit is at work to make your life trustful, pure, clean, and holy. The Lord is nigh, active in your behalf. Always believe that there are ministering angels by your side, directed to bear you up in their hands lest you fail and become discouraged. As the angels ministered unto Jacob, so certainly will they minister unto all of the Lord’s humble, contrite ones, for He will revive the heart of the humble; He will revive the contrite ones. 11LtMs, Lt 152, 1896, par. 9

Reach up, my children, higher and still higher, taking hold of one line of faith after another. Walk and work in love to God and the poor oppressed ones, and the Lord will be your helper. “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Hereafter ye shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man.” [John 1:51.] Jesus the precious Saviour, the Son of the living God, is the ladder uniting the celestial world with the terrestrial. His divinity lays hold of the throne of God. His humanity touches the earth. His human arm encircles the entire human race. Through Jesus Christ the angelic ministrations in love, in comfort, in reproof, in light, reach us. Oh thank the Lord, for He is good, and His mercies endure forever. 11LtMs, Lt 152, 1896, par. 10

The Lord has given you both talents to use, and in using these talents as He intended they should be used, you will have increased aptitude and wisdom and clear, spiritual eyesight to understand His work. Your mind and eyes must watch for His appearing, your ears [must be] open to hear the faintest whisperings of His voice. Your knees He has made; use them in kneeling in prayer. He is your strength. By faith take hold of the Unseen. Let your feet be shod with the preparation of the gospel for running obediently in the way of His commandments. Your tongue and voice are a talent given you of God to tell the story of His life, of His lessons, of His death, or His resurrection, of His ascension. Your bodily strength is to be devoted to the Master in fighting the good fight of faith on the battlefield, overcoming His enemies with “It is written.” Your sympathies and energies belong to God. Use them to glorify your Redeemer. God help you, my children. 11LtMs, Lt 152, 1896, par. 11

We are now very much crippled for resources. Here we are without money. We have our drafts sent on [the] Echo office, and they have no money in the treasury; and we have a number of families of poor folk on our list. We had a cow we gave, with the exception of one pound [in payment], to a poor family who needed milk. Our family number from thirteen to sixteen. Thirteen is the standing number—poor workers, depending on their wages. We are educating Maggie Hare and Minnie Hawkins to do my editing. Shall not send for Mary Clough. Seems to me I have had enough of that kind of help. 11LtMs, Lt 152, 1896, par. 12

Well, I expect Willie, every moment, to go take the mail down to Sydney. Next week another mail goes, and I will then send you additional copies. I shall send this to Battle Creek, for I expect you must be there, but I wish I could understand what this silence means. But I say to you, my son, let not a thought of how you have been treated enter your mind. I care only for my Lord Jesus Christ. I am ashamed for my Saviour to have His precious character misrepresented, but Edson, I have no directions to give you, only to have your heart a home for Jesus. Then you will have no envy, no revenge, but only His tenderness and His sympathy and His love, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price. It is a blessed thing to “be still and know that I am God.” [Psalm 46:10.] Silence, when you are charged unjustly, is eloquent. To answer back will not avail anything. Let the peace of God rule in your heart, and be ye thankful. Oh, I am so glad that the Lord Jesus did reach down His arm to save you, to bless you, uphold you, because you put your entire trust in Him, and are obedient. 11LtMs, Lt 152, 1896, par. 13

I must close this letter. I only thought it possible for me to write one page. I send no other letters than this to America, for my workers are copying matters for the mail for W. C. White. I am pleased to say we are all enjoying good health. I am surprised at the amount of work I have done in writing letters in answer to Wessels from South Africa, who is in some trouble, and letters to Professor Prescott and Elder Haskell, and letters to London to Elder Waggoner. 11LtMs, Lt 152, 1896, par. 14

The carriage has come. It is nearly dark. God bless you, my dear children. You fill a large place in my heart and in my prayers. I seem to think you are in Battle Creek. 11LtMs, Lt 152, 1896, par. 15

Mother.

I send you this copy. Please to copy and give a copy to Brother Tenney and Henry Kellogg. I think Brother Olsen has this; also Brother Henry. But you may need all these things to refer to. Not one syllable had come to me from J. E. White in complaint of A. R. Henry. Others have had something to say, but the Lord has presented to me his dangers. I expect nothing else but he will say, as he has always done, “Somebody has been telling Sister White.” This shows that he has no faith in my mission or testimony, and yet Brother Olsen has made him his right hand man. May God pity our poor, deluded, deceived people is my prayer. 11LtMs, Lt 152, 1896, par. 16