Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 16 (1901)


Lt 104, 1901

Braman, Brother and Sister [C. K.]

St. Helena, California

August 4, 1901

This letter is published in entirety in 21MR 134-137.

My afflicted brother and sister,—

Your letter has just been placed in my hand. I am very sorry to hear that you are so afflicted, but you need not despair. 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 1

My brother, you are a sick man. You need different employment. You are engaged in a business that is exceedingly trying to the nervous system. If you could take up some work less trying, if you could get a piece of ground and for a year work out of doors, away from all the perplexities of business, it might save your brain and your soul. It is not wise, merely because you can make money readily, to continue in the work of tuning pianos, if this affects your nervous system. 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 2

In many cases I have advised out-of-door work for piano tuners, telling them that unless they changed their business, they would have to deal with insanity. 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 3

We are made up of nerves and senses, as well as of conscience and affections. All parts of the living machinery are to be wisely cared for and considerately treated. The Lord has respect for the body as well as the soul. 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 4

The canvassing work is a good work, but it may not be the best work for you, if while engaged in it you are obliged to eat irregularly and cannot get healthful food. 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 5

My sister, you and your mother should do all in your power to please your husband. Remember that he is a nervous dyspeptic. I hope you may never know what a nervous dyspeptic has to endure. Do everything you can to restore your husband to health. In no case withhold your sympathy, but encourage him in every way possible. Give up your own ideas and your own wishes, if by so doing you can help him. Thus you will be blessed. Do not persist in having your own way when you know that this afflicts him. 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 6

I know what it is to be nervous. For weeks together I have had to have my meals brought to my room, because I could not endure the clattering of dishes. 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 7

Your husband would better not remain in the business of piano tuner. If he can, he should get a place in the country where he can keep chickens or raise vegetables. Any out-of-door work would be better for him than tuning pianos. 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 8

Your mother should defer to your husband’s expressed wishes. We would charge all not to wash their dishes on the Sabbath if this can possibly be avoided. God is dishonored by any unnecessary work done on His holy day. It is not inconsistent, but proper, that the dishes should be left unwashed till the close of the Sabbath, if this can be managed. 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 9

I cannot see but that you are trying your best to live out the principles of health reform. Study economy in everything, but do not withhold from the diet the food which the system needs. With regard to the nut foods, there are many who cannot eat them. If your husband enjoys dairy butter, let him eat it until he is convinced that this is not best for his health. 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 10

My sister, you and your mother need the sweet influence of the Spirit of God that you may reveal the love of Christ. If you all try to understand the blessed mystery of abiding in Christ, fewer words will be spoken to chafe and irritate. Silence for God is often more eloquent than words. Let the soul be hushed in silent awe, that the unseen Presence may be appreciated and the still, small voice of the Spirit be heard. 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 11

Read and study the sixty-second Psalm. We are now to prepare for the mansions Christ is preparing for us. God help us to abide in the Saviour. 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 12

I am glad that you have a little child in the family. The home should be a heaven upon earth. Nothing should be allowed to enter to mar the happiness of the members. The little things in the home should be so adjusted that no one will be irritated. Our work in this world is to be pleasant, kind, and thoughtful. My sister, let there be no contention in your home. You must act as the peacemaker. Be careful to do nothing to irritate your husband. Let the peace of God rule in your house. 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 13

We all need to study the life of Christ and the lessons He gave, that we may know how to conduct ourselves in our relation with one another. Cherish the soothing influence of the Spirit of God. Remember that speech is a talent of great value if used aright, and that out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. Remember also that by thy words thou shalt be justified and by thy words thou shalt be condemned. Unadvised words often create difficulties which otherwise would not exist. 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 14

We are placed in this world to be children of God and to prepare for the future immortal life. Speak no unkind, thoughtless words. As you associate in family relationship, be careful to speak kind, tender words which will comfort and encourage. Do not forget the little acts of kindness which do so much to help the member of the family who is struggling with infirmities which no one but himself can understand. 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 15

It does not pay to persist in having one’s own way, to be unwilling to yield in the little things which are of small consequence, thus bringing bitterness and wrath into the home. Life is too short, too full of sorrow. We have no time to spare for the bruising of any sore, tempted heart. 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 16

Let each one be kind and considerate of the other. Never let the sun go down upon your wrath. Never close your eyes in sleep without making right the little, pettish difficulties which hurt and bruise the soul. Confess your weakness, and lift the weight from your husband. Let nothing come in to hurt and destroy your peace of mind. We are Christ’s property, and every afflicted soul should be helped, not hindered. 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 17

The Lord does not want any one to be unhappy. My brother, your case is not hopeless. With regard to the colporteur wagon, cannot you go to the church officers and get them to buy it from you? Then with this money you can pay your debts and for a year, if need be, work out of doors not touching a piano. Leave the business which makes you nervous and restless. When you have done all you can, trust in God. Get out of debt, and never again get into debt. Live so economically that you will not have to feel the galling burden of debt. 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 18

When you are tempted to think or speak unwisely, kneel wherever you are, and pray till you find rest in Jesus. I am sure that He will not leave you or forsake you. You may scorn yourself because of your passionate utterances, but remember that Jesus pities you, and that He will heal you, body and soul, if you will do His bidding. Here is His word to you, “Let him take hold of my strength that he may make peace with me, and he shall make peace with me.” [Isaiah 27:5.] 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 19

Jesus desires to make celestial harmony in your soul. Read His words, not with discouragement, [but] with confidence and hope. Listen to the blessed words which God speaks to you. Walking with Christ means to believe that, though unseen, Christ is walking with you. 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 20

The soothing voice of God comes to you, saying, “Commit the keeping of your soul to me and I will preserve you and sanctify and bless you. Search the Scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life, and they are they which testify of me.” 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 21

The Lord never leaves the one who is physically and spiritually afflicted. Look to Jesus, the author and the finisher of your faith. Believe in the One who so loves you that He gave His life that you should not perish, but have everlasting life. The Captain of our salvation is with us. He will lead us onward and upward to certain victory. 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 22

When you are tempted to speak rashly, remember that harsh, hasty words will dishonor your divine Companion. The Lord Jesus asked you to put your trust in Him. It is the privilege of all, ministers and people, to put their trust in the Saviour. Let your conversation be heavenly. Reveal by your words that Christ is abiding in the soul. When tempted to speak words that will grieve the Holy Spirit, lift the heart to God in prayer. He will help you to speak right words. Hope thou in God. Be a humble, trusting child of faith. I know that the Lord will not forsake you if you will put your trust in Him. 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 23

Have you not brethren in the faith who can help you by their counsel? If so, go to them, tell them just how you are situated, and ask them to pray that the Lord will bless and encourage you. Then you must co-operate with God. “Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.” [Philippians 2:12, 13.] 16LtMs, Lt 104, 1901, par. 24