Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 12 (1897)


Lt 57, 1897

Hare, Brother and Sister

“Sunnyside,” Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia

January 20, 1897

Portions of this letter are published in ML 184; 2BC 1023; 4Bio 288.

Dear Brother and Sister Hare:

I was much pleased to read your letter. I feel that it is right for you to be in Western Australia at this time. You will have trials there; you will be tempted and tried; but only believe, only trust in God. Trust not in yourself, but in One who is mighty to save to the uttermost all who trust in Him. 12LtMs, Lt 57, 1897, par. 1

We are so anxious, all of us, for happiness, but many rarely find it because of their faulty methods of seeking, in the place of striving. We must strive most earnestly, and mingle all our desires with faith. Then happiness steals in upon us almost unsought; it may be amid aggressive warfare, truth against error. We believe in a general way, but we lose much because we do not trust fully and entirely in God our Maker. When we can, notwithstanding disagreeable circumstances, rest confidingly in His love, and shut ourselves in with Him, resting peacefully in His love, the sense of His presence will inspire a deep, tranquil joy. This experience gains for us a faith that enables us not to fret, not to worry, but to depend upon a Power that is infinite. 12LtMs, Lt 57, 1897, par. 2

A divine voice speaks to you, “Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek, and lowly of heart, and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” [Matthew 11:28-30.] Receive Christ as an abiding guest, and your hearts will be drawn upward in songs of praise and thanksgiving. “O Lord how manifold are thy works! in wisdom hast thou made them all.” [Psalm 104:24.] “Thou visitest the earth, and waterest it; thou greatly enrichest it with the river of God, which is full of water; thou preparest them corn, when thou hast so provided for it. Thou waterest the ridges thereof abundantly; thou settlest the furrows thereof; thou makest it soft with showers; thou blessest the springing thereof. Thou crownest the year with thy goodness; and thy paths drop fatness.” [Psalm 65:9-11.] 12LtMs, Lt 57, 1897, par. 3

These are all representations of the spiritual blessings of God. The Lord employs the symbols of the natural world to inculcate divine truth. When we go into the fields with Christ in our hearts, a holy influence surrounds us; we open our hearts to God’s great spiritual teaching, and as the things of nature take up the parables of Christ, and minister to us, His counsels appeal to us. Through the varied lessons in nature our Teacher speaks to us of spiritual, invisible things. We hold communion with nature’s God, and rest our souls in His love. 12LtMs, Lt 57, 1897, par. 4

“Commit thy ways unto the Lord, and thy thoughts shall be established.” [Proverbs 16:3.] Even our thoughts are to be brought into captivity to Jesus Christ. 12LtMs, Lt 57, 1897, par. 5

We have been passing through a severe crisis here. Trials have come through Brethren Lawrence and Shannon, and their talkative wives. When the work was started here, it was not carried forward in all wisdom. Brother Rousseau is not a manager. He fancied we should need many horses. These have been a heavy expense, and no one could use quite a number of them. Then there are things connected with the mill that have been expensive. The purchase of some of the facilities has not proved to be the best wisdom. Other facilities have had to be purchased. 12LtMs, Lt 57, 1897, par. 6

The result has been that men who have not been favored and employed have criticized. Because they could not receive the highest wages, notwithstanding the means in the treasury were so low, they would not work. For three months Brother Lawrence sat on the devil’s idle stool, tempting the devil to tempt him. 12LtMs, Lt 57, 1897, par. 7

These brethren have found enough, as they supposed, to criticize; and they have been learning in the school of Satan how to do this work with wonderful acuteness. You would think they had been in the school of the critics, learning how to make the most of the enemy’s suggestions. 12LtMs, Lt 57, 1897, par. 8

We met this spirit in Melbourne; and we meet it here at high tide. We have had to carry a heavy load. Some who have come here have had that kind of a missionary spirit that has led them to make every move [to] advantage themselves, apparently without caring for the school interest. The root of selfishness has taken root, and is springing up into a flourishing, poisonous tree, bearing fruit to defile others. 12LtMs, Lt 57, 1897, par. 9

After much labor, Brother Lawrence has begun to see “men as trees walking.” [Mark 8:24.] The Holy Spirit has been moving upon his heart. Brother Shannon is in Africa. His wife is here in Cooranbong. I think there has been a carnival in the synagogue of Satan, but the Lord is working for us. How it will all terminate, I know not. These people who criticize every little mistake made by others are not fond of having the Lord pass judgment upon them. But enough of this. 12LtMs, Lt 57, 1897, par. 10

I learn from Brother Daniells that Brethren Miller and Woods are desirous of coming back to the Echo office. They are coming to that place where they should be. They see that it is a sin to establish a rival institution, to take the means that should go to the Echo office. I am now relieved of a great burden in regard to the Echo office. It needed just the ability, sanctified by the Spirit of God, that those men have. 12LtMs, Lt 57, 1897, par. 11

The Lord has been blessing them largely in North Fitzroy. He has given Elder Daniells precious victories, and freedom in speaking the Word of God. We are hoping and praying that the Lord will work still more. We must have faith. The devil will take advantage of every mind that he can use. 12LtMs, Lt 57, 1897, par. 12

The Lord has given me a very sharp testimony for those who have had no respect for the men who were carrying the load. They would not help to bear this load, but they committed the grievous sin of criticizing and making misstatements, talking at the same time of their great wisdom. This evil comes of self-worship, of making self the center, of admiring and exalting one’s own capabilities. When people allow their minds to become soured, the influence they exert is just that which a soured man might be expected to exert. Could they see their works as others see them, pretense, boasting, and self-sufficiency would be swept away. In the day of judgment none will be more surprised than those who respond to their condemnatory sentence by saying, “Lord, when saw we thee an hungered, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee?” [Matthew 25:44.] They did not know that they were under the enemy’s generalship, learning of him to do harm, but supposed that they were doing good. 12LtMs, Lt 57, 1897, par. 13

The prophet Nathan’s parable of the ewe lamb, given to King David, may be studied by all. The light was flashed sharply upon the king, while he was in utter darkness as to what was thought of his actions in regard to Uriah. While he was following his course of self-indulgence and commandment-breaking, the parable of a rich man who took from a poor man his own ewe lamb, was presented before him. But the king was so completely wrapped in his garments of sin, that he did not see that he was the sinner. He fell into the trap, and with great indignation, he passed his sentence upon another man, as he supposed, condemning him to death. When the application was made, and the facts brought home to him, when Nathan said, “Thou art the man; unknowingly thou hast condemned thyself,” David was overwhelmed. [2 Samuel 12:7.] He had not one word to say in defense of his course of action. 12LtMs, Lt 57, 1897, par. 14

This experience was most painful to David, but it was most beneficial. But for the mirror which Nathan held up before him, in which he so clearly recognized his own likeness, he would have gone on unconvicted of his heinous sin, and would have been ruined. The conviction of his guilt was the saving of his soul. He saw himself in another light, as the Lord saw him, and as long as he lived he repented of his sin. 12LtMs, Lt 57, 1897, par. 15

I have been compelled to hold up the mirror of the Word of God, and speak to certain ones, saying, “Thou art the man.” [Verse 7.] It has cut deep, but we hope to see the work go much deeper, else these people for whom Christ has died will never see His face; His name will never be in their foreheads. The work has begun well, but we greatly fear that some have formed habits that are so strong that [they] will never see their character in its true bearing. 12LtMs, Lt 57, 1897, par. 16

I think you should see Brother Collins, and faithfully do your duty to him. This you can do, whether it does him any good or not; and you will have done your duty. The Lord will direct you. We see that Satan is making every possible effort to overthrow souls who have not become rooted and grounded in the truth. But God will not leave these, nor forsake those who put their trust in Him. Truth will triumph. God grant that we may triumph with the truth. 12LtMs, Lt 57, 1897, par. 17

We are all quite well healthwise. May and her twin boys are well, also Ella and Mabel. The boys are the best children I ever saw. They are so quiet. They seldom ever cry, and are easily amused. They never seem to be jealous one of the other, and are sturdy, happy, good-natured children. We all miss Willie. I wish I could see you, and talk with you. 12LtMs, Lt 57, 1897, par. 18

In much love. 12LtMs, Lt 57, 1897, par. 19