Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 15 (1900)

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Ms 61, 1900

Testimony for Ellen G. White’s Workers

St. Helena, California

October 11, 1900

Portions of this manuscript are published in UL 298; ML 152, 178.

I have been passing through an experience which I must place upon paper. I have not sufficient strength to write it all out now, but I will write some things. The Lord has spoken to me in a way that I shall not forget. The word spoken to me was that the Lord had placed us in a good and pleasant place, that His name may be glorified, and we must guard against any influence coming in to cause the instruction of the Lord to be forgotten. This is thy strength, to deal justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God. If you at all forget God and lose a sense of His attributes, if you do not grasp the high privileges He has given you by sending you light and a knowledge of His way, if you do not, as His representatives, keep the way of the Lord, His Holy Spirit will not strive with you, for you would not use His blessings in such a way as to bless others. 15LtMs, Ms 61, 1900, par. 1

When any appropriate selfishly the advantages granted them, God is robbed of the service He requires, which should be proportionate to the blessings received. God’s workers are not to rob their fellow workers by failing to give them correct religious guidance and an unselfish example. The inhabitants of the world are following out every imagination of their hereditary and cultivated tendencies to evil. Ministers of the gospel manifest selfishness. Some of them have been making sacred things a farce, saying, The temple of the Lord, The temple of the Lord are we, while at the same time they were in word and action misrepresenting the character of God and dishonoring His name. 15LtMs, Ms 61, 1900, par. 2

The Lord has give you the husbandry of His vineyard. Let not the imagination and spirit of anyone make you untrue to your trust. While the teachers and leaders are not all faithful instructors of the people by precept and example, you are not in any instance to be drawn away from straight, pure, unselfish principles. Follow the light God has graciously given. Keep before you the sacred principles the Lord has presented in His goodness and mercy, His compassionate, forgiving, forbearing spirit, His long-suffering. Christ came not to be ministered unto, but to minister. His claims are a rebuke to every phase of selfishness, every shade of oppression. 15LtMs, Ms 61, 1900, par. 3

The guilt of a departure on your part from mercy and true courtesy would not be like an ordinary doing of this. The Lord has placed you under a most solemn obligation to carry out His principles and represent His character. You are to bring mercy, patience, and forbearance into the practical life. Let not the influence of those connected with you lead you to pervert the way of the Lord. Do not cease to do justice and judgment, to exercise true forbearance and compassion. Suffer no wrongdoing in those connected with you which you can prevent. Thus saith the Lord, “I am the owner of souls. I have compassion and kindness and great forbearance, because of the sacrifice made in behalf of the human race.” Lay no heavy burdens on others. You are handling God’s property. In no case rob Him of the glory that is His due. Honor Him by a well-ordered life and a pure, holy conversation. He is glorified by words which lift up, not by words which cast down. 15LtMs, Ms 61, 1900, par. 4

The Lord said, “Those who are connected with you in the service I have given you must perform the work of the sacred office, not according to their own judgment and impulses but according to the high and holy principles of God, as though they realized that they were handling His property. And if there is one connected with you who has infirmities, let those of a different cast of mind help that one.” 15LtMs, Ms 61, 1900, par. 5

God has been dishonored by conversations held concerning one of your number. Several have talked together, dwelling upon jots and tittles, enlarging small things to exaggerated proportions, until nothing is seen as it is, and the character of God and the laws of His kingdom are misrepresented. Words are spoken and deeds done of which they would be ashamed could they see them in a true light. 15LtMs, Ms 61, 1900, par. 6

God will test the character on every point. He has a father’s heart, and He bears long with His children. In His dealing with the children of Israel He pleaded with them in mercy and love. Patiently He set their sins before them, and in forbearance waited for them to see and acknowledge their wrongs. When they repented and confessed their sins, He forgave them; and though the offense was oft-repeated, there were no taunting words spoken, no resentment expressed. 15LtMs, Ms 61, 1900, par. 7

Christ plainly stated that though one sins again and again, he is to be forgiven if he repents, even should he sin till seventy times seven. There is to be a close investigation of individual words and actions. The Lord is not pleased with the spirit which has been manifested. An entire change is needed in the treatment of the most trying ones. Notice has been taken of little grievances, of things that should have received no attention. The idea of treating one as the only offender is not correct. Occasions for reproof have been given, but the circumstances were often disproportionate to the things which actually occurred. There has been surmising and evil speaking instead of tenderness for one who was in need of pity and compassion and that restraint which does not provoke to wrath. There needs to be a change of heart. If this word is not heeded, the blessings of God will be withdrawn. 15LtMs, Ms 61, 1900, par. 8

The light given me is that there must be a transformation in the minds of those associated with me. Two or three are not to be linked together because they are pleased with one another’s ways, while they neglect one of their number who needs help the most because that one shows objectionable features of character. The true missionary spirit is greatly wanting. The impression this makes on a sensitive mind Satan uses with great success. When there is such dependence upon the talent one has gained through long experience in the work until this talent is a necessity in the work, let not those in the several departments of the work accept the service which is a necessity, and yet despise the actor, who should be regarded in an altogether different way. 15LtMs, Ms 61, 1900, par. 9

God has given to each talents to use. Physical disease of every type may be upon some soul. The life is a constant battlefield. Whatever may be the cause of this, the life surcharged with the love of Christ Jesus would pity in the place of contending and blaming and discouraging by apparent neglect, as though this one were the only one who was out of the way. Those who comment on and talk of these defects strengthen one another to look at the mistakes made, and pass over the value of the work and the intensity of the burden borne. 15LtMs, Ms 61, 1900, par. 10

The most intellectual, those who are fighting the battle of life at great odds, may be refreshed and strengthened and encouraged by little attentions, which cost nothing. Kindly words simply spoken, little attentions simply bestowed, will sweep away the clouds of temptation which gather over the horizon of the soul. The true, honest expression of a sister or brother or friend, given in genuine simplicity, has power to open the door of hearts which need the fragrance of Christlike words and the simple, delicate touch of the Spirit of Christ’s love. This is true missionary work. 15LtMs, Ms 61, 1900, par. 11

Let the workers put away all evil surmising, remembering that they may make great mistakes in judging those connected with them in the sacred work of God. In their association together they should be unselfish, tender, pitiful, courteous, helping one another. Let them bear in mind that God has made every provision that they shall not labor in their own finite strength. Each worker has an individuality of his own, a character to discipline, a tongue to bridle. 15LtMs, Ms 61, 1900, par. 12

Words are a talent in trust, and God will multiply every investment that is made in His love and in His fear. He will lift up and sustain the very ones who need sustaining. Let the workers put their whole trust in God, praying in faith for wisdom to enable them to deal justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with God. Let there be less speaking together of the mistakes and errors of one of the number. Remember that silence is eloquence. To expatiate as has been the custom separates the soul from God, and brings condemnation. 15LtMs, Ms 61, 1900, par. 13

There is need of an individual experience in wrestling with God in most earnest supplication that the hearts and minds of the workers may be controlled by the Holy Spirit, that they may have faith to speak words which will save, not destroy. Let the workers obtain an individual experience for themselves, for they will be tested and tried and proved. Let there be much praying and less talking of the mistakes of others. By much prayer let self be wholly consecrated to God. Then work with all the facilities and powers God has given to help one another to reach a higher standard. Minister in concert with the ministering angels, and an experience will be gained that will be of the highest value. 15LtMs, Ms 61, 1900, par. 14

The converting power of God needs to be seen upon the tongue, restraining the words that should not be spoken. Then the Holy Spirit will be revealed, binding together, not separating. God is not pleased with the linking together of two or three or several, to the neglect of others. 15LtMs, Ms 61, 1900, par. 15

All who desire to be among the number who will stand before God without fault must begin without delay the practical work of overcoming. The Lord permits trials to come in order that we may be cleansed from earthliness, from selfishness, from harsh unchristlikeness of character. He desires to create in every heart a deep and earnest longing to be cleansed from every stain of sin, that we may come forth purer, holier, and happier from every trial which He permits. Our souls become darkened by selfishness, but if we can only see Jesus, there will be a dying to self. Changes will be made in word and action. If we are patient under the crucial test, we shall come forth reflecting the image of the Master. “He shall bring forth thy righteousness as the light and thy judgment as the noonday.” [Psalm 37:6.] “Righteousness and judgment are the habitation of his throne.” [Psalm 97:2.] 15LtMs, Ms 61, 1900, par. 16

All who compose our family of workers are to bear in life and character the testimony that the truths which they handle have an influence which corrects harsh judgment. They are to feel a deep and tender interest in the young, and are to seek to benefit them by wise counsel. They are not to bruise the soul by harsh words or by speaking in a harsh tone. They can do no good by charging their errors upon them. Let them persuade and educate kindly, carefully leading the mind upward to perfection of character. 15LtMs, Ms 61, 1900, par. 17

“For yet a little while and he that shall come will come and will not tarry.” [Hebrews 10:37.] Our work must not be done in any slothful manner. “Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain. Be ye therefore patient, stablish your hearts; for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh.” [James 5:7, 8.] 15LtMs, Ms 61, 1900, par. 18

There is to be no such thing as strengthening one another in anything that will weaken someone else. God calls upon the workers to become missionaries in every sense of the word, to help the weak and erring to reform. There is to be no harsh faultfinding. The family of workers are to blend together to help one another, not to draw apart and criticize, strengthening the work of the enemy. There is need of daily conversion, that our family of workers may be a symbol of the family of heaven. It has not been thus, and God has not been glorified. Our example may be a power for good. When this is impossible, changes should be made, until the Lord can be pleased to use every worker to do His service. There must be no discord, no harsh words, no exhibition of an unruly, uncontrollable spirit. 15LtMs, Ms 61, 1900, par. 19

The last great crisis is at hand. The time is near when God will say, “Come, my people, enter thou into thy chambers and shut thy doors; hide thyself as it were for a little moment, until the indignation be overpast. For, behold, the Lord cometh out of his place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity; the earth also shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain.” [Isaiah 26:20, 21.] God calls upon us to make straight paths for our feet, lest the lame be turned out of the way. 15LtMs, Ms 61, 1900, par. 20

I have not written in this all the instruction that was given me. I awoke at twelve o’clock, and could not feel safe till I had secured this matter. 15LtMs, Ms 61, 1900, par. 21