Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 11 (1896)

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Lt 141, 1896

White, J. E.; White, Emma

Avondale, Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia

January 30, 1896

Portions of this letter are published in UL 44; 1MCP 358; 6MR 262-263.

Dear Children Edson and Emma White:

We have just come from looking over our orchard. Mr. Mosely, who lives twenty miles from here, a nurseryman and fruit raiser, came to show us how to set our trees last September. He gave us good instruction. We did what we could. We set out about three acres of land in peach, apricot, plum, apple, lemon, lime, and orange trees. We had but two or three slight showers from January until December, but we have a creek of fresh water near our orchard and we have hired a man to tend the trees—to keep off all bugs and [to] water them from the creek. We find peach trees doing finely, also apricots, plums, and apples, though not as stocky as we could wish. Orange trees doing well; some died out. Some lemons doing well; some died out. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 1

We heard this morning [that] Mr. Mosely has come to Cooranbong to visit us and examine our trees. May White and I drove our horses, Kit and Nellie, before [the] platform wagon toward the school building to find Mr. Mosely, and when we had gone only one mile we met Brother Hughes coming with his wife and Mr. Mosely to our place to see the trees and garden. We have been listening to his instruction for one hour and a half—he instructing us how to plant and how to cultivate the trees. He says he will come to see our trees and crop any time I will let him know. We have something to do to make the wilderness blossom like the rose, but we mean to have fruit and vegetables and not be dependent on the markets. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 2

I have eighty acres of land, and we are giving object lessons to those who have cultivated the soil. It can be done and God will spread a table for us in the wilderness. We have a very nice location. The school needed the money, and I thought as I had given them one thousand dollars that was my share. Then I would invest not over one thousand dollars in land so they could have the money which I had to loan them and could see no way to get principal or interest. But this is a missionary work. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 3

If I could only see you and talk with you I should be glad. The Vancouver Mail had left Sydney last Wednesday. We sent the mail by Sara McEnterfer. The ship left the harbor but something was wrong with her and she had to put back to be repaired. I have an opportunity of dropping a few lines now and will take it. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 4

I wrote in regard to your coming to me. My son, do not feel you must come, but take the matter to the Lord. You are His property, body, soul, and spirit, and since the Lord has taken you near to Himself as co-worker with Him, I am so grateful to my heavenly Father. I feel that I would not sway you one way or the other, but I would say, let the Lord direct. My dear son, there is need to be very particular in bookmaking. No slipshod work will do. We must take much pains and make haste slowly, but everything which is to represent things that are sacred should be carefully and thoroughly worked. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 5

I wish you, my son, to seek the Lord most earnestly and then you will, in reading the Word, become more and more intelligent in the Scriptures. Oh Edson, what precious hidden jewels of truth we find by digging for them! The Lord has made me rejoice that He has accepted your labors. And we read that the Lord will rejoice with singing over the rescued souls tempted and sorely tried. Yes, there is rejoicing in the heavenly courts over the sinful souls returning unto God, and shall not we rejoice, who are the subjects of such gladness in heaven? 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 6

Edson and Emma, I thank the Lord for a kind daughter. She is very tender of me. The children and grandmother, and Edith Ward—whom I have taken to care for—love each other. All these three children are so attentive to my wants. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 7

Edson, temptations will come to me and to you. I have been struggling with the tempter for some time but I will not give the enemy the victory. It is my privilege to have perfect faith and confidence in God. Jesus of Nazareth was above all others the Son of man. Christ stands as the ideal of humanity. Christ is the pattern of what the Lord would have us become. We must be like Christ in character. If the human race will become like Jesus, then He will work most earnestly. We are privileged to become sons of God. I am so pleased that Jesus is leading you, and He will lead all of us who will be led. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 8

I must stop. It is nearly dark and I have been up ever since half-past two o’clock. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 9

I have been tempted, sorely tempted, as I see how little many who profess to love God are really loving Him. Our obedience to His commandments testifies whether we are indeed children of God. We are inclined to worry at the outlook of things transpiring in our world. All the forces of the powers of darkness are working against the human race to restrict religious liberty and to compel service and the worshiping of an idol sabbath. God knows all about the outcome. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 10

I am so glad the Father understands every phase of the difficulties we shall have to meet. Believing Him and knowing Him to be God, we know that He sees with a larger vision than is possible for us. His ideals are higher than any of our conceptions. He can read every purpose of hearts that are leaguing against God and co-operating with the evil angels to overthrow the righteous. All the forces of evil angels combined with evil men will be in action to suppress truth, and liberty to believe truth. We will not fail now in our work; we will not be discouraged. Every question is open as the day to the Heart Searcher. He sees the effort made to influence a child in the wrong direction. The high and lofty One who inhabiteth eternity will not overlook the one who would work counter to His will in tainting and corrupting human minds. We must consider that God knows, God understands. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 11

Keep in view the high standard. We are as God’s chosen, working out His plans, accomplishing His purposes. Self is under control to God. We must keep looking unto Jesus, trusting in Him, and not disappoint the hope and expectation of God. We must want to do and want to be just what God would have us to be. And the lesson we have to learn daily is to be meek and lowly of heart. Then can we raise the standard higher and still higher. My children, every day hide in the cleft of the Rock where you may not be seen but where you can see, and where you can hear the proclamation of God’s character. This is worth everything to us. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 12

Children, I know you are in a hard field and many things will need to be done that financially appear impossible, but the Lord will not lay on you the great responsibility of moving yourself under a load which will crush you. “For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the hearts of the contrite ones.” Isaiah 57:15. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 13

Children, do not limit the Holy One of Israel in your individual cases. You can be connected with God. Grow in faith and trust and unshaken confidence in God. The Lord hath done much for you, my children, and your own selves given to the Lord without reserve will make you channels of light. As you seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, all things else shall be added unto you. Godliness hath promise of the life that now is as well as that which is to come. As you receive the rich grace of God, you will diffuse it. The faithful discharge of today’s duties will be the best preparation for tomorrow’s trials. We will not gather together all tomorrow’s liabilities and cares to add unto the burdens of today. Sufficient for the day is the evil thereof. God gives us strength for each day. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 14

I am looking to and trusting in God, but I do not feel that I can go to Africa, although it will be a sore disappointment if I do not go. But God has a work for me to do in connection with the school that shall be established here and with the churches in the colonies. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 15

I am pleased to know that the duty on goods coming into Sydney has been removed, and now there will be a much more pleasant state of things. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 16

I am seeking to bring out many things on education in the schools. I may have to bear my testimony in America, but I leave myself wholly in the hands of God. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 17

My great burden now is to discharge my duties here daily. I am seeking first to know God. I want to know more and still more of God and of my Redeemer, the Sent of God; and as I know more and still more of God, I shall communicate the same to others by pen and voice. I have liberty in writing, and I am in need of help; [but] the Lord knows all about it, and I will trust in Him. I will force nothing. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 18

I see [that] a great sentiment [?] must be worked to, and out, under the divine direction in our schools. The one great lesson the students must first learn is to seek with all their heart, mind, and strength to know God and obey His Word implicitly. The science of the salvation of the human soul is the first business of life. No line of literature or education in book knowledge is to become supreme. But first to know God and Jesus Christ whom He hath sent, this is life eternal. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 19

Let the students take the love and fear of God with them into their school life. This is wisdom more precious than words can express. Connected with God it can be said of them as of Daniel, God gave him wisdom and knowledge in all mysteries. Learning is good, the wisdom of Solomon is desirable; but the wisdom of a greater than Solomon is far more desirable and essential. We cannot go to Christ through learning in our schools, but we can, through Christ reach the highest round of the ladder in science, for the Word of inspiration says, “Ye are complete in him.” [Colossians 2:10.] The very first business is to see and acknowledge God, and then He will direct your path. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 20

We would not, with pen or voice, discourage the acquisition of knowledge in literature and in the trades and arts, but first secure the knowledge of God and His will concerning your own individual selves. Then there will be acquirements in perfection of character that will make every study an acquisition for the glory of God. There will be a constant enlarging of the mind, an expanding, a broadening in sentiment. The knowledge of God is everything. Connected with God, eternal and imperishable influences are going forth from the receiver to enrich others and glorify God. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 21

Daniel understood that he himself was to be first attended to. His diet must be regulated by the knowledge God had given to his instructors for his benefit. He was temperate in eating. He governed his appetite, not following impulse but sound reasoning from the standpoint of Christian temperance. He had proffered to him wine and meat and luxuries from the king’s table. The explanation Daniel gave was, the mind must not be clogged with these articles, which would be difficult of digestion, and even in articles of healthful food there must be a restriction of the quantity. The food placed in the stomach he had under his own control. He could co-operate with God in keeping his stomach in a healthful condition by not surfeiting himself with overeating or the use of wine or flesh meats, which are not healthful or necessary for physical strength. Proper regard for the articles of food eaten would keep a healthful current of blood flowing through his veins. His mind and body would be in a condition for hard, stern labor, for mind and body were not oppressed with a variety of flesh meats, or meat of any kind. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 22

As Daniel and his companions acted their part, the Lord co-operated with them and they were prepared in soul and body to stand in the courts of Babylon untainted by the moral corruption existing there. The laws of nature, if respected, will enable us to do good work. But there is something deeper and higher than even tracing the results of a course of action to regard physical, mental, and moral power under the will of the worker. Daniel and his fellows gave God all the glory for the physical, mental, and moral superiority that was revealed in them. The laws of nature are the laws of God, and consistency of action in refusing that which would weaken their physical and mental powers was working in harmony with God. The Lord can impress the mind because it is in a healthful condition and the human agent and God are in copartnership. The created human agent and the Creator are working to make man in every sense complete in Jesus Christ. There is no war instituted by the human agent by practices against the laws of his being. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 23

Daniel prospered in his abstemious habits of non-use of wine and discarding flesh meats. The blessing of the Lord attended in a special manner the youth who would, through love and fear of God, discard everything they deemed detrimental to their advancement in physical, mental, and moral perfection. “As for these four children, God gave them knowledge and skill in all learning and wisdom, and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams.” [Daniel 1:17.] Daniel 1:19, 20. God will honor those who will honor Him. The very first duty we have to discharge individually is with our soul. We owe a debt of gratitude to God in giving us Jesus, His only begotten Son, to redeem us. 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 24

Mother.

(Scratched off this in a big hurry.) 11LtMs, Lt 141, 1896, par. 25