Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 18 (1903)


Lt 258, 1903

Hall, L. M.

“Elmshaven,” St. Helena, California

November 23, 1903

Portions of this letter are published in RY 60.

Dear Sister Hall,—

I meant to have written to you long before this. The one hundred dollars that you sent was gratefully received, but I cannot consent to accept it as a gift. You made me a present of a nice velvet sacque. I did not feel as if I ought to take this, but I knew that it was freely given, and I appreciated the gift. But the money has been entered on my books as a loan from you, at five per cent interest. I am hoping that I shall soon have more means. I have recently completed the settlement of an old debt of six thousand dollars at the Review and Herald office. 18LtMs, Lt 258, 1903, par. 1

The publication of Desire of Ages was a heavy expense, and enough copies of the book have not yet been sold to settle the debt thus incurred. But this debt is gradually being lessened. I paid for plates of this book to send to Australia, that the Echo office might publish an edition. The money that I paid out for these plates will slowly come back to me as the office there disposes of the books. 18LtMs, Lt 258, 1903, par. 2

Every year thousands of dollars from the royalty on my books goes into new books for this country, and to Europe to help in the translation of books into different languages, and to advance other lines of work. I feel a great satisfaction in this investment. 18LtMs, Lt 258, 1903, par. 3

I gave Stephen Belden several hundred dollars. I could not let him and his wife suffer for food and clothing. I paid their expenses to and from Norfolk Island. 18LtMs, Lt 258, 1903, par. 4

I gave one thousand dollars to the Avondale school, to help in the purchase of the estate, and at another time I gave fourteen hundred dollars to the work in Australia. The money was used in the erection of the Cooranbong Retreat, in building meeting houses, and in helping to purchase a large tent in which to hold meetings. While I was in Australia, I was a bank for the workers there. 18LtMs, Lt 258, 1903, par. 5

I tell you this that you may know that I have not incurred debt needlessly. My debt is a large one, but I am not worried in regard to it. I have no fears but that it will soon be settled. Not long ago, Brethren Magan, Hall, and C. H. Jones laid plans to settle this debt by our people selling Education in something the same way that Object Lessons was sold. I wrote to Elder Daniells that I could not accept one dollar raised in this way; that other enterprises needed the liberalities of our people. 18LtMs, Lt 258, 1903, par. 6

As for taking money from you, I can assure you, my dear sister, that I will not accept a penny. I have been, and am in a strait place financially, but I am hoping and praying that the Lord will send me means. I have recently borrowed five hundred dollars from the St. Helena Bank, at eight per cent interest. 18LtMs, Lt 258, 1903, par. 7

But this does not worry me. The only thing that disturbs my mind is the present disjointed condition of the cause of God. It pains me to think that we stand before the world on a low level, when every provision has been made for us to stand before unbelievers on the elevated platform of eternal truth, possessing the advantages that God designed us to possess. Does not Christ say, “Whatsoever ye shall ask in My name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son”? [John 14:13.] 18LtMs, Lt 258, 1903, par. 8

Sometimes, when I am praying for Dr. Kellogg, my heart is bowed down as a cart beneath sheaves. I can scarcely pray for weeping. Sometimes I pray for hours while lying in my bed. Last night I slept for only three hours. My heart was drawn out in earnest prayer to God to help His people to be wise unto salvation. I am assured that a grave responsibility now rests upon Dr. Kellogg. Will he humble his heart before God? Will he make straight paths for his feet? Through his lack of judgment and sound religious faith, he has placed us as a people in a most unenviable position; and I am sore at heart. It seems sometimes as if I could not carry the terrible load for another hour. Must the cause of God be brought into disrepute by those whom He has greatly blessed and honored? 18LtMs, Lt 258, 1903, par. 9

I am trying to lay the burden at the feet of Jesus, but I must put certain matters into print, that, should I be suddenly removed by death, and should a similar crisis come, our people would know what course to pursue. 18LtMs, Lt 258, 1903, par. 10

Dr. Kellogg has written me two very humble letters, but this can not heal the wound that the cause of God has received. Dr. Kellogg urges me to come to Battle Creek and bear my testimony there, but I shall not go without clear instruction from the Lord that this is my duty. I do not wish to leave my work here. We have several books in process of preparation. Marian is at work on the temperance book. The manuscript for this book will soon be ready for the printer, I hope. I have decided to give the proceeds from the sale of this book to our sanitarium work. But we have not yet decided definitely what plans to follow in handling the book. 18LtMs, Lt 258, 1903, par. 11

Can you tell me when you are coming home? Your presence would be a great comfort to me, but I do not want you to come till your work in the East is finished. I want you to be where you know the Lord wants you. Do what seems to you to be right, and I will raise no objections. You are very precious to me, but the Lord may have a work for you to do in Battle Creek. If He has, do it, and I will pray for you. Just such ones as you are needed in Battle Creek now, yet I had hoped that you could be released. 18LtMs, Lt 258, 1903, par. 12

We are living in the midst of the peril of the last days, and the Lord calls upon us to look to Him for guidance. We need not take one step in the dark. “He that followeth Me,” Christ says, “shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.” [John 8:12.] 18LtMs, Lt 258, 1903, par. 13

I know that you have many trials to bear, and yet I feel that you have an experience that enables you to bear them without murmuring. I know that you seek to comfort every one that you can. If you feel that in this time of peril you can help the workers in Battle Creek, your efforts to do this will have my hearty approval. 18LtMs, Lt 258, 1903, par. 14