Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 15 (1900)

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Lt 104, 1900

Wessels, Sister; Anthony, Sister

“Sunnyside,” Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia

July 16, 1900

Portions of this letter are published in 8MR 192-193. +Note

Three o’clock a.m. 15LtMs, Lt 104, 1900, par. 1

Dear Sister Wessels and Sister Anthony:

We have been anxiously waiting to receive a letter from you stating when we should meet you at the station, but as no letter has come, I will now write to you. We want you to come here and rest before you take the boat. 15LtMs, Lt 104, 1900, par. 2

Since the Parramatta meeting, which was followed by the meeting at Maitland, I have not been able to speak once in public. I could not attend the meetings of the Week of Prayer. Some days I would feel better, then again I would feel worse. I would prepare to attend meeting, then the heart difficulty would come on so threateningly that I did not dare to visit Maitland or any other place. Last Friday I had an assurance that I would be sustained through the two day’s meeting here, which has just closed. For the first time for many weeks I spoke on Sabbath afternoon. I spoke on Sunday afternoon also to a full house. 15LtMs, Lt 104, 1900, par. 3

The meetings here have been excellent. The people from Maitland are, most of them, new converts. Some who have been convinced, but have been holding back because of their business, have taken their stand during this meeting. One of these is Mr. Lamotte, in whom I have had a deep interest. His wife went forward in baptism at the first baptismal service held in Maitland. Mr. Lamotte laid aside his tea and tobacco, but he could not seem to release himself from his important position in the waterworks, until they got someone in his place. 15LtMs, Lt 104, 1900, par. 4

He thinks now they make this an excuse to hold him. He has had the moral courage to bear testimony in meeting. He expressed his joy that he came to this meeting. He and his wife have stayed with us at “Sunnyside,” and we have made it as pleasant for them as possible. He now says that he will tell the men for whom he has been working that they must get along without him. 15LtMs, Lt 104, 1900, par. 5

Miss Baker, a young lady who has opposed her mother’s keeping the Sabbath, attended this meeting. She is, I think, about twenty years old. Her mother has taken her stand since the camp meeting, and is thoroughly established in the faith. Since the two days’ meeting in Hamilton, she has been making every effort to reach her daughter. She had held seasons of prayer with her alone. This has had a precious influence on the daughter. We think that she will return home from this meeting fully decided to observe the Sabbath. Mr. Baker has never opposed his wife, but his daughter has kept him back from keeping the Sabbath himself. There are three sons and one daughter in the family. We hope now that both the father and the daughter will take their stand. 15LtMs, Lt 104, 1900, par. 6

Two young men, who live somewhere near Brother Ryan, on the Hawkesbury River, walked twenty miles to attend the meeting at Parramatta. The eldest has been convicted for a long time, but has not taken his stand positively until during this meeting we have just held. The younger has been a Sabbathkeeper for some time. He is a resolute young man, a laborer together with God. He has been a diligent, faithful worker, but his parents, who are Wesleyans, are as bitter as gall against the truth. 15LtMs, Lt 104, 1900, par. 7

The two young men manage a large fruit farm belonging to their father. They live together, at a little distance from their parents. The eldest has been searching the Scriptures for some time, anxious, troubled, and convicted. He is afflicted with heart trouble, and came to the Health Retreat for treatment. He had overworked his brain, and his mind found no rest, no peace. He came to see me. Willie and I talked with him. He feared that he had resisted the truth, and that the Lord had given him up to his own way. We had a most solemn season of prayer with him. I felt drawn out to pray most earnestly for him. He prayed for himself. I was really afraid that unless he obtained relief, he would lose his mind. I laid my hands upon him, and in the name of the Lord rebuked the enemy. I felt it was a case where the Lord only could say, “Son, thy sins are forgiven thee.” God only could keep his mind balanced under the terrible strain that was upon him. I knew that the Lord heard our united prayers. 15LtMs, Lt 104, 1900, par. 8

Thank the Lord, this young man has had courage to take his position on the Sabbath. Now the two brothers can work together. And we hope that in some way the hearts of the parents will be touched. 15LtMs, Lt 104, 1900, par. 9

Well, the sheaves are being gathered in. When we were last in Maitland, Brother Scobie took his position. As a result of the temperance lectures given to large congregations in the tent, he gave up his tobacco. He told me with the greatest satisfaction that he was a happy man. He said, “Do you not think I look better than I did? I have gained fourteen pounds since giving up tobacco and tea. I am a happy man since I had decided to obey all the commandments of God.” I urged him, the last time I was there, to take his position firmly and decidedly. I told him that God would help him. He bore his testimony in meeting, and I felt that another soul was gained. 15LtMs, Lt 104, 1900, par. 10

All the members of this family, with the exception of a little lad, have now been baptized. The daughters first took their stand, and went forward at the second baptismal service. Then the mother took her stand, but she waited for her husband, believing that he would come. And about three weeks ago Brother Scobie and his wife were baptized. The whole family are now in the truth, and a very happy family they are. 15LtMs, Lt 104, 1900, par. 11

After our last meeting at Maitland, Brother Scobie went to his brother and told him what he had done. This brother is an infidel, and is in very feeble health. He was then sick in bed. Brother Scobie has been working for him in his fruit farm for twenty years. He asked him again, for he had made the same request several times, for the favor of keeping the Sabbath. The brother had always refused, because the delivery of fruit is made on the Sabbath. Again Brother Scobie asked him, saying that he would deliver the fruit on Friday, but he shook his head, saying that it would not do at all. “Well,” said Brother Scobie, “I shall observe the Sabbath. If we cannot, as you say, deliver the fruit on Friday, that must end the matter for me.” But before he reached his home, a messenger overtook him, saying that his brother had accepted his proposition. He was indeed a happy man when he heard this. 15LtMs, Lt 104, 1900, par. 12

One week before this I had urged him to halt no longer between two opinions, but bravely do the thing he knew to be right, regardless of consequences. On my return home I wrote him a letter of tender invitation to accept the truth for Christ’s sake. He opened the letter and read as far as he could. But it affected him so that he broke down and cried like a child. His wife tried to read it, but her heart was also touched, and she wept. They went into their bedroom, and cried and prayed together. Brother Scobie had never been a Christian, and this was a wonderful season for the anxious wife and daughters. Their hearts were full of joy, and their home was a Bethel. 15LtMs, Lt 104, 1900, par. 13

These are some of the experiences we have been having in Maitland. We are so glad that Brother Lamotte and his wife are united in the observance of the Sabbath. A young unmarried man who has been searching the Scriptures has united with the Sabbathkeepers in Maitland. He resembles Brother Ellet Waggoner in looks, has just such a forehead and a similar expression, but is somewhat taller. He is a building contractor, and is a promising young man. He is a great help to the believers in seeing what to do and doing it with expedition and heartiness. 15LtMs, Lt 104, 1900, par. 14

One after another are uniting with the Seventh-day Adventists, both at Newcastle and Maitland. We see no abatement in the zeal of the workers. Sister Wilson and Sister Robertson are extending their circuit. With their horse and carriage they drive six and eight miles to give Bible readings. 15LtMs, Lt 104, 1900, par. 15

My heart is glad in the Lord. Every few weeks a baptismal service is held in Maitland. Souls are being added to the church of such as should be saved. I praise the Lord with heart and soul and voice. 15LtMs, Lt 104, 1900, par. 16

Sara has just looked into my room to say that it is five o’clock. Brother and Sister Lamotte thought of returning home yesterday. Sara told them that if they would stay till this morning, she would get them off by six o’clock. She is now getting their breakfast for them. We will give them a good lunch to take with them, and they will go on their way rejoicing. They think Cooranbong is a beautiful place, and would be glad to locate here. They are looking for land. 15LtMs, Lt 104, 1900, par. 17

I write this letter to tell you that we want you to make us a visit as soon as you possibly can. We will be glad to have Bessie with us to help Sister Laurisen and to look after Glen. Tell us when you can come, and we shall meet you. If you cannot come, I shall go to see you as soon as this mail is off. I have not dared to say this before, for I have not been well enough to leave home. But I am improved in health, and I want to see you very much. I thought that if you were all broken up where you are, you could rest better here than there. I want you to understand that I do not want you to do any sewing for me. I want you to have a complete rest. I have much to say to you. Let me know without delay whether you can come up. I would like to have talked with you when you were up before, but my health was such that it was impossible. 15LtMs, Lt 104, 1900, par. 18

We shall be glad to have your mother stay with us till we go. It is certain that we shall go the last of November. I hope you can do what I want you to, and come to us. 15LtMs, Lt 104, 1900, par. 19