Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 19 (1904)


Lt 13, 1904

Butler, G. I.

“Elmshaven,” St. Helena, California

January 12, 1904

Portions of this letter are published in ML 185. +Note

Elder G. I. Butler

My dear and much-respected Brother,—

I am sending you a long letter that I have written to those assembled at Nashville. I hope that the instruction contained in this letter may be of some help to the brethren there. 19LtMs, Lt 13, 1904, par. 1

Healthwise, I am doing very well. For a long time I have not had a serious cold. I am sleeping better than I did. I had some rheumatic pains in my left arm and lower limbs, but my limbs are now free from pain, and my arm and shoulder are better. I worked early and late just the same, though suffering a good deal of pain. I kept praying and am now very much better. 19LtMs, Lt 13, 1904, par. 2

One night Sara and Maggie, when preparing for bed, heard me praying earnestly for the presence of the Holy Spirit. The suggestion was made that Sara should waken me, but she said no; for I used frequently to pray aloud in my sleep. 19LtMs, Lt 13, 1904, par. 3

Since then a marked change for the better has taken place in me physically. I am so grateful to my heavenly Father for this. 19LtMs, Lt 13, 1904, par. 4

In regard to attending the meeting at Nashville, I should certainly go, my brother, if I had light from the Lord that this was my duty. But I have very important work here, and I must tell you that I dare not leave this work. We are pressing things as fast as possible in an effort to get Testimony Vol. 8 ready for publication. The matter that will be contained in this book is certainly needed in the field just now. And we are also trying to finish up the manuscript for Ministry of Healing. I am very anxious to see this book in circulation. 19LtMs, Lt 13, 1904, par. 5

Were it not for the work to be done on these two books, which I know should be in the field, I might be inclined to attend the Nashville meeting and run the risk that I should have to run by traveling at this season of the year. But my duty is too evident for me to question. Should I go, W. C. White would have to go with me, and this would mean a complete break-up of our work. I should very much like to be with you, but I dare not leave my work here. I will try to help you all I can by sending you letters and articles. 19LtMs, Lt 13, 1904, par. 6

I must tell you that I do not favor the plan of holding important meetings at this season of the year. The weather is damp and windy and very disagreeable. It would be well for our brethren to give thoughtful consideration to the advantages to be gained by holding important general meetings at a time when the weather is likely to be pleasant. If things should go hard—across the grain—during such meetings, the sunshine without would lessen the effect of the unpleasantness within. With some, it makes every difference whether the sun is shining or not. Blessed sunshine! It sometimes seems that those who meet to worship God are more susceptible to the influence of the Spirit of God when the sun is shining. The smile of God seems to rest upon His people, and praise and thanksgiving flow from their hearts to Him. 19LtMs, Lt 13, 1904, par. 7

When the camp-meeting season comes, I shall be pleased to attend some general meetings. I thank you and the other brethren in the South for wanting me to be at your meeting. Could I go, I should try to do my best to help you. 19LtMs, Lt 13, 1904, par. 8

The Lord will be with you, I know. We pray for you night and morning, and we feel of good courage in your behalf. Many prayers are ascending to heaven for you. Do not look on the dark side; for by beholding we become changed. Think of the mercy, the goodness, the unfailing compassion and love of our God, and of the blessings that He has bestowed on us. “Hope thou in God;” “wait patiently for Him;” “and He shall bring it to pass.” [Psalm 42:5; 37:7, 5.] 19LtMs, Lt 13, 1904, par. 9

When trials come, remember that they are sent for your good. “All things work together for good to them that love God.” [Romans 8:28.] When trials and tribulations come to you, know that they are sent in order that you may receive from the Lord of glory renewed strength, and increased humility, so that He may safely bless and support and uphold you. In faith and with the hope that “maketh not ashamed,” lay hold of the promises of God. [Romans 5:5.] 19LtMs, Lt 13, 1904, par. 10

O how good the Lord is to us all and how safely we may trust Him. He calls us His little children. Then let us come to Him as to a loving Father. It is His desire that the bright beams of His righteousness shall shine forth from our faces and in our words and deeds. If we will love one another as Christ has loved us, the barriers that separate us from God and from one another will be broken down, and many obstacles that hinder the Holy Spirit’s flowing from heart to heart will be removed. We shall praise the Lord more when we have the faith that works by love and purifies the soul. 19LtMs, Lt 13, 1904, par. 11

I shall not cease to pray for you. I am glad that Brother and Sister Haskell are with you. Keep firm hold of God. If He is your helper, no mistakes <need> be <made>. He stands ready to help every one. Look to Him alone. Trust Him with all your heart. He will carry you and your burdens. 19LtMs, Lt 13, 1904, par. 12

As I read your words of invitation, I long to be with you in your meeting. In the night season I am talking with you, ever encouraging you to lay hold of the unfailing power of the One who said, “Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” [Matthew 28:20.] 19LtMs, Lt 13, 1904, par. 13

I want to see Edson and Emma very, very much. I pray often for them. I am continually cautioning and encouraging them, urging them to be of good courage and to walk humbly yet trustingly before God, leaning upon the mighty One, refusing to fail or become discouraged. 19LtMs, Lt 13, 1904, par. 14

We shall visit you in the South when we make our trip to the East. We expect to leave here in about three months, after the two books that we now have on hand are completed. 19LtMs, Lt 13, 1904, par. 15

I thank the Lord, Brother Butler, that you can bear so good a report regarding your health. Do not give long discourses. Then you will be able to speak oftener. You must be careful on this point, or you will wear yourself out before your time; because when you speak, you are carried away by an intensity of feeling and forget the strain that you are bringing on yourself. 19LtMs, Lt 13, 1904, par. 16

I send this admonition, also, to your fellow worker Elder Haskell. Neither of you must exhaust your vitality by giving long discourses. Keep yourselves where you will always be ready to speak words in season. Have faith in God, and hold fast to the power that never fails. 19LtMs, Lt 13, 1904, par. 17

During the meeting I shall be with you in prayer and in faith and in love and in courage, and will lift with you as much as possible by earnest intercession with God. My heart is with you, and may the Lord abundantly bless and sanctify you. May He strengthen your faith and perfect your love for Him, that the heavens may be opened to you and by faith you may be able to endure the seeing of Him who is invisible. 19LtMs, Lt 13, 1904, par. 18