Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 15 (1900)


Ms 96, 1900

Diary, August - September 1900


August 29 - September 29, 1900

Includes portions of Ms 82, 1900. Portions of this manuscript are published in TMK 219, 296; 3MR 379; 13MR 33; 5Bio 16, 18, 21, 29, 32-33.

August 29, 1900

Steamer Moana

We are on our way to America, after an absence of nine years. As we left the sanitarium at Wahroonga, to take passage on the Moana, I felt very much affected. I am troubled in regard to the future of the work. For so many years my interest has been bound up with this work that to separate from it seems like tearing me in pieces. I have confidence in those left in charge of the work at Avondale. If they will trust implicitly in God, the Sun of Righteousness will go before them, and the glory of God will be their rearward. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 1

We who are on our way to another country need the presence of God, and those whom we have left behind also need to inquire constantly at the throne of grace, “Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?” [Acts 9:6.] Those who live in close fellowship with Christ will be promoted by Him to positions of trust. The servant who does the best he can for his Master, is admitted to familiar intercourse with the One whose commands he loves to obey. In the faithful discharge of duty we may become one with Christ, for those who are obeying God’s commands may speak to Him freely. The one who talks most familiarly with his divine Leader has the most exalted conception of His greatness, and is the most obedient to His commands. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 2

“If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples. As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love. If ye keep my commandments ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love. These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full. This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you. Greater love hath no man than this, That a man lay down his life for his friends. Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you. Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth; but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you.” [John 15:7-15.] 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 3

“Trust in the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not to thine own understanding.” [Proverbs 3:5.] “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea, driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord.” [James 1:5-7.] 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 4

The character of the one who comes to God in faith will bear witness that the Saviour has entered into his life, directing all, pervading all. Such a one is continually asking, “Is this Thy will and way, O my Saviour?” Constantly he looks to Jesus, the Author and Finisher of his faith. He consults the will of his divine Friend in reference to all his actions; for he knows that in this confidence is his strength. He has made it a habit to lift up the heart to God in every perplexity, every uncertainty. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 5

He who accepts God as his Sovereign must take the oath of allegiance to Him. He must put on the Christian uniform, and bear aloft the banner that shows to whose army he belongs. He must make an open avowal of his allegiance to Christ. Concealment is impossible. Christ’s impress must appear in the life in sanctified works. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 6

“I am the Lord your God, which have separated you from other people. ... Ye shall be holy unto me; for I the Lord am holy, and have severed you from other people, that ye should be mine.” [Leviticus 20:24, 26.] “The very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.” [1 Thessalonians 5:23.] “This people have I formed for myself; they shall show forth my praise.” [Isaiah 43:21.] “Ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.” [1 Peter 2:9.] 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 7


On steamer for America. I have excellent quarters. I go on first-class ticket. The room I occupy is called the Bridal Stateroom. I have a wide bed, as I have at home. Sara has her berth opposite mine. It is rather narrow. I have bureau, wardrobe, and every convenience. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 8

September 1, 1900

S. S. Moana

We have had pleasant weather until today, which has been dark and cloudy. I have kept closely to my room all day. This is our first Sabbath on board. It does not seem like a peaceful day of rest, for overhead, on the upper deck, there is a great noise. Men are amusing themselves by pitching quoits, and the noise is loud and confusing. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 9

I have been trying to write out some important instruction given me in reference to the responsibilities resting on the medical missionary worker. Complete subjection through Christ to the will of God is our only safety. The selfish thoughts and impulses that sweep through the soul, producing discordant notes, can be separated from the life only as the whole being is under the control of Christ. The Saviour’s word to all unruly elements is, “Peace, be still.” [Mark 4:39.] Christ welcomed all who accept Him as their Saviour, and rules over them as their King. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 10

Monday, September 3, 1900

S. S. Moana

Last night the noise of loading coal was louder than thunder and continued all night. Mabel, who had been sick before coming on the boat, was almost distracted. Willie obtained permission for her to lie in our stateroom. She was relieved and slept, but soon the thundering noise was commenced close by our stateroom, but the child did not seem to mind it. She slept through it all and is better today. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 11

September 5, 1900

This morning the sky is cloudy, but the sea is calm. We have had no sunshine for a day or two, and today promises to be cloudy and wet. I am up on deck writing, and enjoying the fresh air. But I miss the health-giving rays of sunshine. The sun is a God-given physician. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 12

This morning my soul is filled with praise and thanksgiving to God, from whom come all our mercies and blessings. The Lord is good, and His mercies endure forever. I will praise Him who is the light of my countenance and my God. He is the source of all efficiency and power. Why do we not praise Him by speaking words of hope and comfort to others? Why are our lips so silent? Speech is a gift of heaven, and it should be used in sounding forth the praises of Him who hath called us out of darkness into His marvelous light. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 13

My soul is humbled as I see how little God is honored by the passengers on this boat. I am not surprised that so many boats go down into the deep. On this boat there is a fearful misuse and abuse of the talent of speech. Close beside me I hear the boisterous laugh, the coarse words, which dishonor the Lord of heaven. These men and women might be doing God’s service; but they seem to have forgotten their Maker. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 14

Oh how much good would be accomplished were God honored by all who profess to be Christians! Oh that the needed changes had been wrought in the hearts of human beings by the grace freely granted to all who ask for it! The light of the world is shining upon men in richest blessing. Every provision has been made for the supplying of our temporal and spiritual needs. Yet how little thanksgiving the Giver receives! 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 15

Well is it for us that God is full of pity and compassion. He has given command that the wheat and the tares are to grow together until the harvest. He sees that the roots of the wheat are entwined with the roots of the tares, and that if the tares were ruthlessly torn up, the wheat also would be disturbed; and He says, “Let both grow together until the harvest.” [Matthew 13:30.] The Lord alone can separate the wheat from the tares, and this He will do at the appointed time. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 16

“God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” [John 3:16.] It was because Christ alone could take away the sin of the world, that He left the heavenly courts and came to this earth to die on Calvary. Shall He have died for us in vain? 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 17

In receiving Christ as our Captain there must be a complete surrender of the human will to the divine will. The Lord can work out His will through those who have made this surrender, for they give prompt and cheerful obedience to His commands. God expects us to obey without questioning. We are to ask, “Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?” [Acts 9:6.] Then, though the command may be as stern and startling as that given to Abraham, we are to obey. Abraham’s soul was rent asunder by the command, “Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and offer him for a sacrifice on one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.” [Genesis 22:2.] But he did not hesitate to obey. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 18

All our activities, all our business arrangements, should be in perfect accord with the Lord’s commands. The laws of God’s kingdom must be obeyed by the subjects of that kingdom. Our zeal for the advancement of God’s kingdom is to mark us as faithful subjects of the cross of Christ. God can trust as His representatives those who implicitly obey Him. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 19

Monday, September 10, 1900

This morning, Monday, September 10, the sunrise was glorious. The whole sea was a river of yellow gold. We have on this journey a placid sea. I am now lying, or half sitting, in my steamboat chair on deck. I have eaten my simple breakfast and read my Bible and now am prepared to write. The Lord is merciful to us and is favoring us with excellent weather. We have had everything provided for us in the weather, in the clouds to veil the sun that the heat shall not strike us by day or reflect the sun’s bright rays upon the water and injure the eyes that look upon the sea. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 20

September 11, 1900

Providence is favoring us with a calm sea and good weather. The Lord is gracious and full of compassion. The whole of our journey has been marked with evidences of the protecting care and love of God. We know that many of our friends are praying for us. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 21

September 13, 1900

We shall reach Honolulu tomorrow morning. A cool breeze is blowing, and I am sitting on deck. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 22

My heart is much pained to see how strongly addicted to tobacco-using are the men passengers on this boat. Even some ministers of the gospel smoke almost constantly. When clergymen throw their influence and example on the side of this injurious habit, what hope is there for young men? We must raise the standard of temperance higher and still higher. We must bear a clear, decided testimony against the use of intoxicating drinks and the use of tobacco. In all our large gatherings we must bring the temperance question before our hearers in the strongest appeals and by the most convincing arguments. The Lord has given us the work of teaching Christian temperance from a Bible standpoint. The youth are to be taught the difference between right and wrong. All intemperance is a violation of the laws of the Creator. God gave man his faculties to be kept pure and holy, and used in accordance with the laws of His kingdom. All wrongdoing leaves the soul open to the assaults of Satan. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 23

Many of the passengers on this boat do not seem to know God or Christ. They act like indulged children, who do not know what it means to be under control. Never before have I seen the Scriptures so plainly illustrated: “The time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers having itching ears; and they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.” [2 Timothy 4:3, 4.] We are living amidst the perils of the last days, and we shall see many manifestations of Satan’s power. As faithful stewards of the grace of Christ, we are to show our colors, ever remembering the words, “Ye are a spectacle to the world, to angels, and to men.” [1 Corinthians 4:9.] 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 24

It was a severe test and trial to me to break up my home and leave Cooranbong. But it was impressed on my mind that this must be. While in Australia I labored earnestly in pioneer missionary work, often under most discouraging circumstances. We spared no effort to win souls to the truth. We did not study our own ease or convenience or inclination. The aggressive work that must be done was laid out before me, and from point to point the Lord gave me an understanding of how to advance. Constantly the word of the Lord came to me, Go forward. Annex new territory. Raise up companies of believers; build houses of worship, and place the new converts in the care of judicious, God-fearing men and women. Talk the truth earnestly. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 25

For nine years we have been doing this work. Now there are indications that there is a work for me to do in America. For months I have had a struggle to know what my duty is. I was not so sure as I desired to be that God wished me to return to the United States. Constantly my prayer ascended to heaven for light and for clear discernment. I loved the work in Australia. My heart seemed bound up in it, and I felt that I could not leave this work without a certain knowledge that the Lord would go before me. Light shone more and more clearly upon me, and I decided to sell my home if a buyer came. The buyer came, and decided to take the house and furniture just as it stood. I said, Amen. We must work intelligently. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 26

We have now almost crossed the broad Pacific. The Lord has made the waters smooth and the weather favorable. There has been much smoking and drinking among the passengers. Christian politeness and true gentlemanliness have been sacrificed at the shrine of gluttony and liquor-drinking. Even the ministers on board have given the sailors and passengers wrong example. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 27

I have been unable to get the rest I needed so much. But the Lord revealed Himself to me, declaring that He would defend me, and that in spite of the objectionable influences surrounding me, I should leave the boat unharmed. I will lift up for you a standard against the enemy, He said; and this He has done. [Isaiah 59:19.] 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 28

September 14, 1900

We are nearing Honolulu. Last night was very hot, and must have been oppressive for those who are not so favorably situated as we are. We have two portholes in our cabin, and we had these and the door wide open. Willie came in early this morning, saying that he had been up since four o’clock. I feel thankful that today there is a cool breeze. It is now about seven o’clock, and we are in sight of the Hawaiian Islands. We hope to reach the harbor in an hour. We do not leave again until six o’clock this evening, and we shall be glad to have a few hours on land. The captain tells us that we shall reach San Francisco at seven o’clock on Friday morning. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 29

Later: About eight o’clock this morning we steamed into the harbor. Elder Baxter Howe was at the wharf to meet us, and gave us a hearty welcome. He took us in a carriage to Sister Kerr’s, where we were most heartily welcomed, and where we sat down to a bountiful meal, which we all greatly enjoyed. Our hearts are full of gratitude. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 30

In the afternoon we visited the sanitarium, and were very much pleased with the location. Then we met with a large number of our people at the church, where I spoke for about forty minutes and Willie for about thirty minutes. It was a great privilege to meet with these brethren and sisters, and we wished that we could spend two or three weeks with them. But this would be impossible. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 31

At the close of the meeting we visited the Chinese school, which is in [the] charge of Brother Howell. He took us over the buildings, showing us the young men and boys engaged in their studies. Brother Howell gives an excellent report of the school. He finds the pupils obedient, kind, and manageable. We see a large field of work for this school, which should be more fully developed. Thus missionaries can be prepared to go to China and labor for their countrymen. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 32

Help will be needed by the workers in Honolulu. If sufficient money is provided, a much larger work can be done. Earnest prayer must be blended with devoted labor, so that a responsive influence will be seen and the inmost depths of mind and heart reached, the whole nature stirred to abandon every phase of idolatry, making the hearts of this ignorant people thrill with solemn awe and bound with exultation. And the souls of the teachers, under the inspiration and power of the Holy Spirit, will be filled with the determination never to give up the effort to conquer in the strength of the Lord Jesus. And the Sun of Righteousness shall rise upon them, and lead true converts to cooperate with the teachers with a degree of energy that will demonstrate the power of truth to influence hearts. The power of the cross of Christ, the power of an endless life, must take hold of these blood-bought souls. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 33

The Chinese people may be reached through men of God’s appointment. A great work may be done, and many may be able to say, as did David, “Thine, O Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the victory and the majesty; for all that is in the heavens and in the earth is thine. Thine is the kingdom, O Lord, and thou art exalted as head above all.” [1 Chronicles 29:11.] The God of Israel is ready to work for His people, His believing church; all that is needed is for them to be willing to work for Him. Mighty is the consecrated worker, strong in that living faith that works by love and purifies the soul. Men who are at home among eternal realities, men who bind themselves to the great principles of God’s Word, so that in the highest sense of the term their loins are girt about with truth—these are the ones that God needs as faithful laborers. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 34

September 1900

St. Helena Sanitarium, Crystal Springs

We left Oakland Thursday morning, [September 27,] and had a pleasant trip on cars and boat. There was no smoking on the deck. Every enclosed compartment upon El Capitan had its prohibition notice. What a privilege to be able to breathe freely, inhaling full inspirations of the pure, free air, unpoisoned! 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 35

The two-seated phaeton and the stage were waiting for us, and we were taken to Crystal Springs. We were welcomed by our friends—Sister Ings, Sister Mary Thorp, and several others. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 36

In conversation statements were made in reference to our unsuccessful attempts in hunting for a suitable house. After making search from place to place, we decided we could not find anything suitable. Rent for a comfortable house would be twenty-five or thirty dollars per month. This was a large sum. After devoting some hours for four days to searching, I said, “I shall not go out again house hunting.” 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 37

Word came that Edson White, my son, was coming to California, and that Elder Irwin, C. H. Jones, and several others could meet in counsel at St. Helena. There was also a camp meeting in Napa. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 38

Sabbath afternoon, [September 22,] the Lord gave me strength to speak in the chapel in Oakland. Thus was the word of the Lord fulfilled. We arrived late Friday in Oakland, and I spoke one hour to the many people that assembled. Thursday, [September 27,] we came to St. Helena. I spoke in the sanitarium chapel Thursday night and Friday night. The Lord strengthen me. I spoke Sabbath morning to the people assembled under the large tent, and I know that the Lord’s word was fulfilled, for His power and Spirit were upon me. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 39

We returned to St. Helena, and then the great goodness of the Lord was manifested in my behalf. There was in the valley below the hill at Crystal Springs a house well situated with land cultivated, having a variety of grapes and fruit, and the desire was expressed that I should make this place my home. Here was a house all furnished, and we could, as soon as the decision was made and terms accepted, go into this house, and find everything ready in excellent order to begin my home life without the perplexities of purchasing goods and furnishings for housekeeping. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 40

Here were horses, carriages, and nearly everything, superior far to that which I had left, and the same price for which my home was sold will bring this beautiful, healthful residence, in good order for us to possess; and as soon as the settlement is accomplished come into possession and begin our work. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 41

This manifestation in our behalf was so marked and the desirability of location so decided that I knew the Lord was granting me His rich blessing. I have felt my heart warm with gratitude and love to God that in His providence He has located me in an atmosphere far more favorable for purity and healthfulness. I felt my soul bowed down with the weight of the blessings and favors in thus preparing for me a home in every way desirable. I can oft meet with the congregation, ever new, and speak the words which the Lord shall give me. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 42

I have felt so thankful to the Lord for opening the way for me at this time that I wish to make a tangible gratitude offering to God as soon as I can do this. I never anticipated so much in a home that meets my taste and my desires so perfectly. Next week we shall live in our new home, and we will seek to make it a home after the symbol of heaven. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 43

There is a great work to be done in California and in this pleasant section of California. 15LtMs, Ms 96, 1900, par. 44