Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 14 (1899)


Lt 79, 1899

Hyatt, Brother

“Sunnyside,” Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia

May 3, 1899

Portions of this letter are published in Ev 426-427; 3MR 293-294; 4MR 395.

Dear Brother Hyatt:

There are many things I would be pleased to write to you, but I have not the strength I desire. We have been most earnestly engaged in aggressive work. We are now holding meetings in the open air. I have spoken twice recently to ninety people at Dora Creek, a place three miles from Cooranbong, and two weeks ago last Sunday at Martinsville, in a grassy paddock to sixty souls. Planks had been arranged in a half circle for seats. Some were seated on rugs on the grass; others were in carriages just outside the fence. 14LtMs, Lt 79, 1899, par. 1

There is no other way to reach these people but by holding open air meetings. There seemed to be a deep interest manifested by some. Two or three are now on the point of deciding, and the ripening fields are all ready for the harvest. Unless we make decided efforts to go outside our own immediate circle to meet the people where they are, we shall miss the saving of many souls. There is not the least chance of getting into the little rough churches in the bush. We have been refused all chance to speak to the people in this way. But in the Lord’s great temple, the open air, the heavens our dome and the earth our floor, we can obtain hearers who otherwise would not hear. 14LtMs, Lt 79, 1899, par. 2

We feel intensely over the matter of lifting the standard of truth in these places. The people have no shepherd. The State church in Cooranbong stands locked week after week, and the people hear no preaching. We see that there is a great work to be done in out-of-way places in the open air. I have an appointment for such a meeting next Sunday afternoon at Dora Creek. We have now two places where these meetings are held. 14LtMs, Lt 79, 1899, par. 3

The meetings at Hamilton, Newcastle, are to be continued. One week ago last Sunday the work was opened at Wallsend, ten miles from Hamilton. This is a thickly settled suburb. About sixty people met in the large hall, and the blessing of the Lord seemed to be in our midst. The people seemed deeply interested. Elder Haskell has just come from Brisbane, Queensland, to help in the work in Newcastle and the surrounding places. We know the providence of God is opening our way, and now we need men and women and means to advance the work. 14LtMs, Lt 79, 1899, par. 4

Maitland is only twenty miles from Newcastle, and many people come from this place to the meetings. The whole community is interested. I cannot tell you how anxious we are to see the work advance. I pray the Lord to imbue His people with the Holy Spirit. You need it in Capetown, Africa, and other places. Launch out into the deep, and let down your nets. We need to do this in all the highways and byways. 14LtMs, Lt 79, 1899, par. 5

It is not for us to stay in a place with the people who know the truth. Do not rest until you can see souls convicted and enlightened. Go where the people know nothing of the truth, and lift the standard, proclaim the message. We have felt an earnest interest that the Wessels family shall be differently situated. They will do far better if they go away from Capetown with its godless influence, and commence work with different surroundings. A spell like a death stupor is upon many members of this family. A malarious atmosphere is putting them in a dangerous position spiritually. John Wessels might better, far better, have left for Australia at our first call. You may bind men and women up in that place, but unless there is an individual, personal humiliation before God, unless God is sought most earnestly, souls will sleep the sleep of spiritual indolence and death. 14LtMs, Lt 79, 1899, par. 6

Those extra buildings in Capetown might far better have been plants in other localities. The erection of building after building in Battle Creek has not been after the order of God. Plants should have been made in regions beyond. The same mistake has been made in Africa as in Battle Creek. We ask you to keep your eyes open, and see if there are not ways to reach the souls who are not of our faith. Do something in this line. 14LtMs, Lt 79, 1899, par. 7

Again I say, Do not hedge up the way of Brother John Wessels coming straight from Africa. After he has worked in aggressive warfare here for a while, he can return, if he feels that God would have him there. If Brother Harmon Lindsay would come also, it would be well, for in the work here he may recover from his present state of inaction. There are offices he can fill to good advantage if he will work in Christ’s lines. 14LtMs, Lt 79, 1899, par. 8