Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 17 (1902)


Lt 100, 1902

Prescott, Brother and Sister [W. W.]

“Elmshaven,” St. Helena, California

July 7, 1902

Portions of this letter are published in The Southern Watchman, 08/14/1902; WM 175-176; 10MR 352-353. +Note

Dear Brother and Sister Prescott,—

I wish to write to you in regard to your work. Let the Berrien Springs School be carried on by those who are now connected with it; for the Lord has been giving these men a fresh experience. He has been leading them. They are working on right lines. We have need of the men who are learning how to carry these responsibilities. Brother Prescott, your place is not in any school as a manager or a teacher. Your testimony is greatly needed in our large gatherings and important meetings. 17LtMs, Lt 100, 1902, par. 1

We are nearing the close of this earth’s history. There are men who will be taken from the plough, from the vineyard, from various other branches of work, and sent forth by the Lord to give the message to the world. Men will be called to work for the Master in all parts of the earth. 17LtMs, Lt 100, 1902, par. 2

The world is out of joint. As we look at the picture, the outlook seems discouraging. But Christ greets with hopeful assurance the very men and women who cause us discouragement. He sees qualifications in them not altogether unsuited to enable them to take a place in His vineyard. If they will continually be learners, through His providence He will make them men and women fitted to do a work that is not beyond their capabilities; for He will give them tongue and utterance through the impartation of His Holy Spirit. 17LtMs, Lt 100, 1902, par. 3

Many of the barren, unworked fields must be entered by beginners. The brightness of the Saviour’s view of the world will inspire confidence in many souls, who, if they begin in humility and put their hearts into the work, will be found to be the right men for the time and the place. Christ sees all the misery and the despair of the world—the sight of which would bow down some of our ministers of larger capabilities with a weight of discouragement so great that they would not know how to begin the work of leading men and women to the first round of the ladder. Their precise methods are of little value. They would stand above the lower rounds of the ladder, saying, “Come up where we are.” But the poor souls do not know where to put their feet. 17LtMs, Lt 100, 1902, par. 4

Christ’s heart is cheered by the sight of those who are poor in every sense of the term; cheered by His view of the ill-used ones who are meek, and of those bowed down with the sorrows of bereavement; cheered by the seemingly unsatisfied hungering after righteousness; by the inability of many to begin. He welcomes, as it were, the very condition of things that would discourage many ministers. He sees an opportunity to help those who are so much in need of help, by meeting them where they are. 17LtMs, Lt 100, 1902, par. 5

The Lord Jesus corrects our erring piety, giving the burden of this work for the poor and needy in the rough places to men and women of adaptability who have hearts that can feel for the ignorant and for those who are out of the way. The Lord teaches them how to meet these cases. These workers will be encouraged as they see doors opening for them to enter places where they can do medical missionary work. Having little self-confidence, they give God all the glory, taking none of it to themselves. The Saviour is present to help to make a beginning through those whose hands are rough and unskilled, but whose hearts are susceptible to pity and awakened to do something to relieve the woes so abundant. He works through those who can discern mercy in misery, gain in the loss of all things. When the Light of the world passeth by, privileges appear in all hardships, right order in confusion, the success and wisdom of God in that which has seemed to be failure in human experience. 17LtMs, Lt 100, 1902, par. 6

Your work, my brother, is to encourage many others to enter into this kind of work, the work of uplifting those who are cast down, and of teaching the first principles of the message. In your ministry, come close to the people. In your discourses, treat of calamities as disguised blessings, of woes as mercies. Preach in a way that will cause hope to spring up in the place of despair. 17LtMs, Lt 100, 1902, par. 7

Christ pronounces His blessing upon those who hunger and thirst after righteousness. In Luke we read, “Blessed be ye poor.” [Luke 6:20.] The poor have not a hundredth part of the delusive temptations of the rich. In Matthew we read, “Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” [Matthew 5:3.] Poverty of spirit signifies wealth to be supplied by the riches of the grace of God. 17LtMs, Lt 100, 1902, par. 8

We must have workers. We must arouse the people. The common people are to take their places as workers. Sharing the sorrows of their fellow men as the Saviour shared the sorrows of humanity, they will by faith see Him working with them. 17LtMs, Lt 100, 1902, par. 9

Brother and Sister Prescott, there is a work for both of you to do. Learn what it is. Brother Prescott, the Lord has a message for you to give to His people in regard to the preparation that must be made for the coming of the Lord. In the fourth chapter of Hosea the state of the inhabitants of the land is set forth. “The great day of the Lord is near, it is near, and hasteneth greatly.” [Zephaniah 1:14.] God has given you a message to bear in our camp-meetings and in other assemblies. Your work is not in the schoolroom, but before the gatherings of God’s people. 17LtMs, Lt 100, 1902, par. 10

I have felt glad that you were in the office at Battle Creek. But you also have a message to bear to the people in the field; and your wife has a work to do in connection with you. She is to be an interested worker, susceptible to the influences of the Holy Spirit. God will help both of you to act a part in His great work. Go forth in humble faith, and the Lord will go with you. But watch unto prayer. The power is of God. Work in all dependence upon Him, bearing in mind that you are laborers together with Him. He is your helper. Your strength is from Him. He will be your wisdom, your sanctification, your righteousness, your redemption. You can wear the yoke of Christ, daily learning of Him His meekness and lowliness of heart. He will be your Comfort, your Rest. 17LtMs, Lt 100, 1902, par. 11