Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 13 (1898)


Lt 36, 1898

White, J. E.; White, Emma

“Sunnyside,” Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia

January 11, 1898

Portions of this letter are published in 4Bio 342.

Dear children Edson and Emma:

We have been in counsel with the board in regard to the arrangement of our school. We pray for divine wisdom. We must have it at every step. We know that without the abiding presence of Christ we can do nothing. We were compelled to lay hold of these responsibilities, because it was presented before us that this was the will of God. We worked under great difficulties, but our first term of school was a success. The Lord signified that He had provided help for me, that I should not carry the burden of the school alone. He revealed to me that He had provided help in Brother and Sister Haskell. He would give them wisdom and judgment. He would give them understanding, and co-operate with them. The Lord said that He would be with Brother Haskell as His responsible and experienced servant, that He would be with his mouth, and enable him to present the truth in simplicity. 13LtMs, Lt 36, 1898, par. 1

The Lord showed me that every means must be tried to have all co-operate with God to make the school a success. We must press our petitions to the throne, and be faithful in the discharge of our duty. There are disorderly elements that require a firm, steady hand; there must be no lowering of the standard. These elements of character need to be controlled by the Holy Spirit. Those in responsible positions must work in right lines, making God their dependence. When the reproach of indolence is wiped away from the school and the church, the Lord will reveal Himself, giving the youth understanding hearts, as He did to the youthful captives of Babylon. We read of them, “As for these four children, God gave them knowledge and skill in all learning and wisdom.” [Daniel 1:17.] 13LtMs, Lt 36, 1898, par. 2

Most precious opportunities will be given for the Spirit of God to graciously bless the means employed, according to the instruction the Lord had given. The Lord will give light and knowledge if the teachers will work in accordance with the living oracles of God. A strong, firm influence, blended with kindness, is to be held over the students, else Satan will take them out of our hands, and make the school a failure. If the students will receive light, if they will consecrate themselves to God, he will forgive their sins and give them new hearts. 13LtMs, Lt 36, 1898, par. 3

The influence of the Holy Spirit will transform the characters of teachers and students. Those who have not been under discipline and restraint must be determined in themselves to be a law unto themselves, that they will not rebel at discipline. If they will draw nigh to God, seeking help from Him, He will help them. “Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean. ... I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes.” [Ezekiel 36:25, 27.] 13LtMs, Lt 36, 1898, par. 4

These were the counsels given. And the agency employed to carry into effect the gracious purposes of God was the Holy Spirit. Every student in the school needed the converting power of God. They were half and half religious; they did not set Christ, the Pattern, before them. They needed a spiritual transformation. All were not thoroughly converted, because they had not felt the need of the work of God upon heart and mind. If these students were to act a part in the work of saving souls, they must have a real sense of sin, else they would not seek for forgiveness for sin. The truth must come into the heart. They must have such a faith in Christ as their personal Saviour that they would not rest until their sins were forgiven. Well, God wrought in His own way, and a good work was accomplished. We did see the moving of the Spirit of God. 13LtMs, Lt 36, 1898, par. 5

In about six weeks the second term of school is to commence. I seem to shrink from the burden of being in any way connected with the school. Elder Haskell and his wife, Brother and Sister Wilson, and myself carried the load of responsibility during the last term. I wish to be counted out, and find some place where I can be away from the school, and give myself entirely to the work of getting out my books. But I will wait the opening of Providence. I will not choose for myself. I have asked this privilege of the Lord, and if He thinks best, He will make a way for me. I know not where to look or which way to turn, but I shall ask the Lord to help me. 13LtMs, Lt 36, 1898, par. 6

In a few weeks I go to Melbourne, how long to remain I cannot say. Brother Robinson urges me to come as soon as possible, for he thinks that my testimony is needed there. Forty-three have taken their stand with us on the truth in Melbourne. In Sydney twenty-seven have been baptized, and we think quite as many more will take their stand. In a few days ten more are to receive the ordinance of baptism. 13LtMs, Lt 36, 1898, par. 7

What is the test that these souls have the truth, that they love God and keep His commandments? They work to win souls to Christ. Those who are truly converted will subordinate themselves as living, working agencies with Jesus Christ to draw souls to Him. No one who is truly converted will stand as an idle looker-on. 13LtMs, Lt 36, 1898, par. 8

We are to use our God-given capabilities as entrusted talents in the work of proclaiming the truth to those who are in the darkness of error. We are to teach every individual that he must act a part in this great work of seeking to save those that are lost. There can be no inactivity without spiritual death. 13LtMs, Lt 36, 1898, par. 9

There are those who have fear of opposition and failure. This is because they look at the things that are seen and not at the things that are unseen. Who is willing to consecrate his service to God at this very time? Our warfare is aggressive. Stirring scenes are before us. We must catch the ardor of Christ. We must cherish his meekness and lowliness. Mark Christ’s words, “He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad.” [Matthew 12:30.] 13LtMs, Lt 36, 1898, par. 10

We are living during the days of preparation for the closing scenes of this earth’s history. He who commanded the light to shine out of darkness has shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of Jesus Christ. Let your light so shine before men that by seeing your good works they may glorify your Father which is in heaven. 13LtMs, Lt 36, 1898, par. 11