Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 17 (1902)


Lt 4, 1902

White, Ella May; White, Mabel

Nashville, Tennessee

January 1, 1902

Portions of this letter are published in PM 291; 3MR 424. +Note

Dear Granddaughters Ella May and Mabel White,—

I wish to say Happy New Year to you both. You are, I believe, the children of God, and I would not place any obstruction in your way in obtaining an experience in doing God service. That which I have said I will not retract, but not leave you bound by the restrictions if you think it your duty to canvass. I am sorry if my cautions have been stronger than I intended, for I did not intend a positive do nothing in the line in which you have been working. But I have felt great fears of having a girl at your age go alone into this work. Accidents are liable to occur, endangering life. Life is endangered by your wheel’s meeting a mischance. If another sensible person were with you, then one could be a safeguard to the other. If one should become injured, and no one at hand to help, what then? All these things are to be considered and guarded against. 17LtMs, Lt 4, 1902, par. 1

Another danger: there are tramps everywhere, and evil, dissolute characters, who will do wicked works, and run and kill, because they have given themselves to Satan’s power. I would therefore be very cautious how in any way you are unguarded. For Satan has come down in great power. He is represented as going about as a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. These things must be considered. You two girls have been the cause of many hours’ loss of sleep, for I felt very anxious. Now, my dear children, this is the reason I have written you as I have. I did not suppose I had written so forbidding as you have taken it. But if you feel that it is your work to canvass, and that you can do good in that line, I remove all my objections, but not my cautions that every precaution should be taken against exposing you to danger. This I insist upon. 17LtMs, Lt 4, 1902, par. 2

I feel a deep interest in Mabel, that there may be no careless lack of forethought by her, and she, brave girl as she is, and courageous, ready to do almost anything, shall not imperil her health in any wise. 17LtMs, Lt 4, 1902, par. 3

You are both my dear children, bought with a price. You are not your own, and you need to take special precautions that you may not be careless and reckless in the treatment of your bodies. Guard against taking cold, being in drafts of air when in perspiration, against wet feet. Keep your feet warm. These things are essential. The Lord would have you so care for your health that it shall be a religious duty on your part, that you shall care for the citadel of the soul’s best interest in caring for the body that is so fearfully and wonderfully made. As to thinking attentively in regard to these matters, it is a religious duty which belongs to you individually. Take excellent care of the body with its wonderful machinery, for this is essential in order to keep the whole religious experience, the spiritual character, healthy and strong. 17LtMs, Lt 4, 1902, par. 4

Christ and God have a work to do for you which you cannot do. But it is your work to take special pains to think and to bear in mind, I am fearfully and wonderfully made. An active conscience and correct judgment are essential on your part. A healthy body is necessary for a healthy mind. Do your part, which the Lord has assigned you, to preserve the laws of life and health. Christ is our life, just as in the body the life is in the blood. Christ abiding in the soul is the life blood of the soul. He is made unto us wisdom and righteousness and sanctification, as well as our redemption. There is no part of the spiritual being but [that] Christ is the living supply. Galatians 5:22. “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.” [Verses 22, 23.] “If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.” [Verse 25.] Ephesians 5:9. “For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth. Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord.” [Verses 9, 10.] Christ is to us all and in all. Is not Christ in us the hope of glory? Is not the abiding presence of Christ in the soul life, as the blood dwells and moves in the veins? <Christ is> the source and pledge of our joy and glory and hope? “As thou, Father, art in me and I in thee.” <He prays,> “That they also may be one in us: ... I in them and thou in me, ... that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them.” [John 17:21, 23, 26.] The blood is formed in the body from the food eaten. So Christ is formed in us from eating His flesh and drinking His blood. 17LtMs, Lt 4, 1902, par. 5

We need to understand these words of Christ, “The flesh profiteth nothing. The words that I speak unto you, they are spirit and they are life”—the Holy Word accepted and brought into the practical life. [John 6:63.] Spiritual life consists in Christ’s being the light and life of the soul temple, as the blood is the life of the body. All who study the Word are represented as eating the Word, feeding on Christ. Even as the bodily necessities must be supplied daily, so the Word of God must be daily studied—eaten and digested and practiced. This sustains the nourishment to keep the soul in health. The neglect of the Word means starvation to the soul. The Word describes the blessed man as one meditating day and night upon the truths of God’s Word. We all are to feast upon the Word of God. The relation of the Word to the believer is a vital matter. Appropriating the Word to our spiritual necessities is the eating of the leaves of the tree of life that are for the healing of the nations. Study the Word, and practice the Word, for it is your life. 17LtMs, Lt 4, 1902, par. 6