Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 15

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Lt 11, 1900

White, J. E.; White, Emma

“Sunnyside,” Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia

January 23, 1900

Portions of this letter are published in WM 258; 1MR 225; 4Bio 432.

Dear Children Edson and Emma:

I have been up writing by candlelight. The days are long, but I find that no one endures the taxation of writing as well as your mother. I am often up at two o’clock. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 1

I cannot tell whether I sent you a letter by last mail or not. I have not asked my copyists in reference to the matter. I had a letter written to you, but supposed I had till Wednesday morning. Afterward I learned that it was the San Francisco mail, which leaves on Tuesday. The Vancouver mail leaves on Wednesday. If at any time you do not receive a letter, it will be because I have been unable to send one. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 2

Lately I have been feeling—I hardly know how. I tried to write, but I could not do justice to anything. I felt so tired and weak that I did not want to think. I decided that I must have a change, and Sara and I made up our minds to go to the sanitarium farm. We sent some steamer chairs and wire mattresses to the house on the farm, intending to stay three or four weeks. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 3

The farm is about three miles from Thornleigh station. The road is rough and rocky; some parts of it are like the road from Healdsburg to St. Helena. The fruit in the orchard is now ripe. The family living on the farm before we took possession of it told us that they usually sold about three hundred pounds’ worth of fruit a year. We hope by the sale of the fruit this year to pay the interest on twenty-seven thousand dollars. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 4

We have two men working in the orchard. One man, who has a large family living about fourteen miles from the farm, has been working in the brick kiln at the school. The other man, Woodward by name, is from Melbourne. He and wife are excellent people. He was a Roman Catholic before accepting the truth. When he began to keep the Sabbath, he was unable to get work, and on account of this, they are now quite poor. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 5

We wish that our sanitarium was erected. Time is passing, and we are distressed that so little has been done in establishing a substantial, convenient sanitarium, where all who come may have opportunity to learn the truth. Several wealthy people who have come to our sanitarium in Sydney have embraced the truth, among them a man who has donated five hundred pounds to our sanitarium. He is an invalid. He and his wife have taken their stand fully. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 6

We need a sanitarium very much. The ground is secured. The piece we have purchased contains eighty-one acres. You may ask, Why did you buy so much? Because those connected with the sanitarium must have homes near the institution. Brother John Wessels will need a house and land there, and so also will Brother Sharp, the accountant. I shall have a small place there myself, a little distance from the sanitarium. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 7

When we reached the sanitarium farm, we found that the house would not be ready for us to occupy for some time, so we went on to Strathfield, and stayed one night at the home of Brother John Wessels. The next day we went on to Summer Hill, and called at the Tract Society. Brother Daniells was in New Zealand, so I was given his office, a pleasant room, in which there was a good lounge. I took my meals with Brother and Sister Hindson. Sister Hindson used to be Anna Ingels. I slept in Miss Graham’s room. She was away in Melbourne. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 8

It was a week before the house on the sanitarium farm was fit for us to occupy, for it was overrun with vermin. The rooms had been papered three times, each time over the old coat. All this had to be torn off and new paper put on. Sara had to oversee this work, as well as work with all her powers. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 9

On Sabbath we drove to the Stanmore church in the sanitarium buggy. I was surprised to meet Brother Colcord there. I spoke with freedom to a goodly number. The rain was falling, but that did not hinder my speaking. The social meeting that followed was good. The precious Spirit of the Lord was with us. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 10

During the time I stayed in Summer Hill I felt far from well. Had not I had good, retired quarters, I could not have accomplished anything. As it was, it was a continual fight against exhaustion. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 11

On Sunday I spent some time in counsel with Brother Salisbury, W. C. White, and Brother Sharp in regard to the work, and the way in which it should be carried on, especially the medical missionary work in America, which is consuming means, but is not producing anything to replace the constant consumption. Some good results are seen. Heavy indebtedness is coming in. The medical missionary work must be conducted in a different way. New and promising fields are opening, and these fields call for the time and money which is too largely devoted to a non-producing work. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 12

These matters have been opened up before me quite fully. We have seen to our sorrow the result of cutting off means from fields which are ripe for the harvest. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 13

In response to an invitation, I spoke in the evening in the sanitarium parlor, which was well filled with patients and helpers. I had great freedom in speaking encouraging words to the afflicted ones. I pointed them to the One who is willing to heal the maladies of soul and body. I told them of Christ, the great Healer, whose they are by creation and by redemption. They were all much pleased. I learned afterward that they wished me to speak again. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 14

On Monday I was again in council meeting. I felt that I must speak plainly in regard to some things which must be guarded. We should not enter into the work of maintaining homes for abandoned women or for infants. This responsibility might better be borne by families, who should care for those who need help in these lines, thus lifting the burden from an institution which as yet has not been able to erect a building for the care of suffering humanity. The work to be done by our sanitarium is to labor for the salvation of the men and women who come for treatment. Let everything possible be done to point them to Jesus the Restorer. He not only forgives sins; He heals all manner of diseases. There is a special work to be done in our world. To as many as possible we are to give the light of present truth, saying by word and example, Follow me as I follow Christ. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 15

The Good Shepherd goeth before His flock and leadeth them. He will lead those who will accept Him into green pastures. Our work is to seek to make plain to men and women the restoration that God requires shall take place in them. We are to teach others how to engage in the work of reform. We are to secure the help of the very best talent, that the truth may be fitly represented, and that memorials to the Lord may be erected in all parts of the world. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 16

The Lord is bringing in and guiding men and women who can be depended on as co-workers with Christ. To bring men and women to a belief of the truth is the work which is to be done by all our institutions. If this cannot be done in our sanitariums, why should we be at the expense of erecting them? I have been instructed that Seventh-day Adventists should have buildings for the care of the sick to which all classes, high and low, may come, and in which they will be attracted to Christ. Thus solid missionary work may be done for suffering humanity. Thus may be carried forward the great and solemn work of preparing a people to stand in the day of the Lord. Those converted will bear the message to others. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 17

Under the disguise of an angel of light, Satan has been insinuating himself among us, to absorb our means and our workers where the labor done will not give a proper representation of the truth, which is high and holy and sacred, and which is to make its impression on the world as a witness to all nations. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 18

In all things we are to follow the example of the divine Worker. We are to seek in every way to elevate and restore. But all the talent and all the money is not to be used in hopeless lines, when the ripening fields are ready for the harvest. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 19

This does not by any means refer to the work to be done for the Southern states. The leaven of truth must be more decidedly introduced into that country. There are many colored people who have had talents entrusted to them. These would make good workers if they were given a chance to develop their talents. God will work through His faithful ministers, showing them how to discern talent, and how to encourage young colored men and young colored women to fit themselves for the work in the South. This calls for money, and a fund should be raised for this purpose. Then when there are found young colored people who are deemed worthy of a trial, give them the opportunity to learn the truth. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 20

Carefully selected workers must be sent to the South. And care must be taken that our northern men do not lose strength and even life itself by staying too long in the south, for the atmosphere there is malarious. Some can stand this climate better than others. Special care should be taken to caution and guard the workers. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 21

How important it is that there be a holy ministry in the Southern field. The injunction is, “Be ye clean that bear the vessels of the Lord.” [Isaiah 52:11.] The message must be carried forward in straight lines. The souls for whom labor is put forth will seldom take a higher stand in the service of God than that which is given them in the example of the minister who labors in their behalf. In proportion as a minister is earnest and humble, learning the ways and will of God, can he lead his flock in the path cast up for the ransomed of the Lord. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 22

Well, our work in council meetings came to a close, and on Wednesday, one week from the time we left Cooranbong, we drove to the sanitarium farm, a distance of fourteen miles. The house on the farm is very small, and we occupied only part of it. Our sleeping rooms were only twelve by fourteen feet. We used the piazza as diningroom and parlor. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 23

Quite a number of visitors came to see us while we were at the farm. One day we were surprised by a visit from Brother and Sister Robinson and their little girl and Brother Wessels and his little boy. In the afternoon Dr. Caro came out with a young man from New Zealand, the principal of a school there, who is taking treatment at the sanitarium. These all walked over the farm, and were pleased with it. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 24

The next day Brother and Sister Hughes came from Cooranbong. We met them at the train. They spent the afternoon looking over the farm, and stayed with us that night. The next day Brother and Sister John Wessels, her mother, and their little boy and hired girl came out from Strathfield. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 25

We decided to go to Parramatta on Friday, but during the night season I was strongly impressed that we should go to Maitland. At four o’clock on Friday morning I woke Sara, and told her that we must change our plans and go home instead of going to Parramatta. At half past five our goods were ready to take to the station. We reached Dora Creek Station at about twelve o’clock. Willie met us there with my horse and surrey, and on the way home I told him that I must go to Maitland that afternoon. We decided to drive over. One of the horses had to be shod. This delayed us, so that it was nearly four o’clock before we started on our journey of twenty-seven miles. For the first eight miles the road is rough and mountainous; the rest of the road is very good, We reached Maitland at about half past ten p.m. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 26

Next morning we found that the workers there were very much pleased that we had come, for a baptismal service had been appointed for Sunday afternoon. On Sabbath I spoke to the people from the third chapter of First John. All seemed to be intensely interested. One or two who were present were keeping their first Sabbath. I spent Sunday morning writing. In the afternoon we drove to a beautiful paddock, in which the baptism was to take place. W. C. White offered prayer. Brother Colcord then spoke for a short time, and I followed, dwelling upon the love of God and the importance of knowing on whose side we are standing, the side of the adversary or the side of Him who declared, “I have kept my Father’s commandments.” [John 15:10.] I had freedom in speaking, and those who had been laboring for the people were very much pleased with the impression made. Seven candidates then went forward for baptism. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 27

I carry the burden of the work in Maitland day and night. As I speak to the people I think of the time when we shall meet round the throne of God, when the great, grand review will be held. Shall anything I might have said be left unsaid? What will be the record of my work? 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 28

I am so interested in the work in Maitland that I departed from my usual custom and spoke in the evening. After the baptism I drove with W. C. White and Sara to Greta, a small mining town about six miles from Maitland. There I spoke to a small company of miners who had assembled in a private house. Several in this place have decided to keep the Sabbath. All listened with the deepest interest. I had great liberty in presenting the love of God in giving His Son to die for the world. My mind was led out into a new channel and fresh ideas were given me. All seemed impressed with the word spoken. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 29

It was half past ten when we reached the mission. The tent meeting was still in progress. The attendance was good. The meeting showed that the baptism had made a deep impression. All the workers were greatly encouraged by the attendance at this meeting. The Lord gave Brother Colcord special power in speaking to the people. 15LtMs, Lt 11, 1900, par. 30

Mother.