Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 19 (1904)

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Lt 167, 1904

Santee, Brother; Owen, Brother

“Carroll Avenue,” Takoma Park, Maryland

April 27, 1904

Portions of this letter are published in SpTB #3a 14-15; 7MR 138.

Dear Brethren Santee and Owen,—

I have received a letter from Brother Bowles, in which he expresses a desire to sell his place and to give himself wholly to the Lord’s work. He writes to ask my counsel. He says that your advice to him is to sell his orange orchard and use the money in lifting the debt of the Fernando school. 19LtMs, Lt 167, 1904, par. 1

If Brother Bowles could sell his orange orchard, he could lend his money to different lines of the work of God. But it would not be wisdom for him to invest all his means in one enterprise. 19LtMs, Lt 167, 1904, par. 2

Diligent efforts should be made to lessen the debt resting on the school, but these efforts should be made by all. I have supposed that Christ’s Object Lessons, handled discreetly, would do much toward relieving our schools from debt, and I believe that this book will yet be the means of doing much to help the Fernando school. 19LtMs, Lt 167, 1904, par. 3

I do not see the wisdom of the school depending on the second tithe to meet so much of its expenses. I fear that if the brethren rely so much upon this, difficulties will arise. You should labor patiently to develop those industries by which students can partly work their way through school. 19LtMs, Lt 167, 1904, par. 4

Let each family try to pay the expense of the students that it sends to school. Some families, in which there are several children attending school, will be hard pressed. Would it not be wisdom to create a fund by the sale of Christ’s Object Lessons for the assistance of such ones? There are many young people who desire to be in school, and who ought to be, but who have no means. These young people can be helped through school if our people will do their duty in handling Object Lessons. 19LtMs, Lt 167, 1904, par. 5

The purchase of the school buildings at Fernando was in the order of God. Valuable property was obtained at a price far below its original cost. The brethren did right to buy it, and the school can be sustained if the families of believers in Southern California will do their best to make it a success. The young men and women who expect to attend school should do all in their power, before entering the school, to earn money to meet their expenses. 19LtMs, Lt 167, 1904, par. 6

A Special Work

There is a special work to be done just now. A sanitarium should be established near Los Angeles. My brethren, will you not remember that it is the expressed will of God that this shall be done? Why this work should be delayed from year to year is a great mystery. This is a matter that has long been kept before you, my brethren. Again and again sanitarium work has been pointed out as an important means of reaching the people with the truth. Had the light given by God been followed, this institution might now be in running order, exerting a strong influence for good. Arrangements could have been made to utilize for sanitarium work buildings already erected. 19LtMs, Lt 167, 1904, par. 7

In order for successful work to be done in the field or in our institutions, workers with harmonious elements of character are needed. The work can be carried forward only by patience and harmony of action. It has been a lack of harmony, a lack of determination on the part of the workers to lift with one purpose in view, that has delayed the establishment of a sanitarium in Southern California. There has been so much variance that means which should have been invested in a sanitarium have been turned into other channels. 19LtMs, Lt 167, 1904, par. 8

The idea that a sanitarium should not be established unless it could be started free from debt has put the brake upon the wheels of progress. In building meetinghouses, I have had to borrow money in order that something might be done at once. I have been obliged to do this in order to fulfil the directions of God. For the last twenty years I have been borrowing money and paying interest on it to establish schools and sanitariums and to build meeting houses. The institutions thus established and the churches built have been the means of winning many to the truth. Thus the tithe has been increased, and workers have been added to the Lord’s forces. 19LtMs, Lt 167, 1904, par. 9

Will my brethren consider this, and work in accordance with the light God has given us? Let that which should be done be done without delay. Do your best to remedy the neglect of the past. The word has come once more that a sanitarium is to be set in working order near Los Angeles. If this sanitarium is conducted in harmony with the will of God, it will be a means of great blessing, a means in the Lord’s hands of leading souls to the truth. 19LtMs, Lt 167, 1904, par. 10

If Brother Bowles can sell his farm, would it not be well for him to invest a part of his means in the establishment of this institution? He would then have the satisfaction of knowing that his money is helping to advance a most important line of work. 19LtMs, Lt 167, 1904, par. 11

Christ’s Object Lessons

I wish to say a few words more about the circulation of Christ’s Object Lessons. My brethren, show our people what they can do in handling this book. As tourists from all parts of the world flock into Los Angeles and other parts of Southern California, let there be those who can call their attention to this book. It is full of precious truth, and as it is presented to unbelievers, angels of God will impress many to buy it. Let those who do this work keep in mind the words, “As unto the Lord.” [Colossians 3:23.] The purpose for which it is done will invest this work with a dignity that will improve the habits, the manners, and the address of the workers. By this effort the poorest, humblest worker is linked with the great Master Worker. 19LtMs, Lt 167, 1904, par. 12

In order to be ready to receive the impressions of the Holy Spirit, in order to advance in harmony with the will of the Lord, we need consecrated minds and hearts. Let not human beings seek to put their own plans and preferences in the place of God’s plans. Those who do this will hinder the Lord’s work. Let no one say or do anything that will discourage Christlike effort. To each one God has given his work. If every one would be zealous to do that which will increase his ability to labor, how much would be accomplished. 19LtMs, Lt 167, 1904, par. 13

The Lord wants you, my brethren, to arouse to action the minds of those who do not realize that God is calling them to active service. Tell them that their obedient love, in willing effort, is to flow forth as streams in the desert. Day by day what they accomplish is to give evidence that they are laborers together with God. The work that the Lord places before them may be dreaded, but they will gain courage as they advance. 19LtMs, Lt 167, 1904, par. 14

Let all do something. All can do much more than they have done. Let parents and children help. The consciousness that they are co-workers with Christ will give the workers a joy and assurance that they could gain in no other way. And not only will relief be brought to the schools, but the light of truth will be widely diffused. 19LtMs, Lt 167, 1904, par. 15

The experience gained by the youth who engage in this work will be of great value to them, teaching them to improve every God-given opportunity to labor with diligence and fidelity, and with perseverance under disappointment. The Lord makes a way for all who employ the means He has provided for the accomplishment of certain objects. 19LtMs, Lt 167, 1904, par. 16

My brethren and sisters in Southern California, educate yourselves to work for the Master. Remember that in helping to circulate Object Lessons, you are placing before others truths which cannot fail of being a blessing to them. Each one of God’s people has a part to act in the work of the Redeemer. Those who receive Christ are to prove the sincerity of their love for Him by earnest, self-sacrificing efforts in His service. No opportunity for helping to advance the Lord’s cause is to be allowed to pass by. In meekness and lowliness, yet with an earnest determination to accomplish something for the blessing of others, God’s children are to take hold of His work. 19LtMs, Lt 167, 1904, par. 17

Only a small part of that which may be accomplished has yet been done in circulating Christ’s Object Lessons. Let not our people think that their duty is done, their work finished. This book is still to be taken out by God’s people and is to find its place in many more homes. Let the same territory be gone over again and again. In this there will be a blessing for the one who sells the book and for those who buy it. 19LtMs, Lt 167, 1904, par. 18

Let us take hold of the work with renewed courage. Let God’s people consecrate to His service the time and tact that He has given them. O what a wonderful blessing many will obtain from the consciousness that they are working for God. This thought will help them to do their work intelligently. 19LtMs, Lt 167, 1904, par. 19

My brethren and sisters, by earnest prayer brace yourselves for duty, and then expect the help of the Lord. Prove yourselves to be laborers together with God. As you go forth to sell Object Lessons, repeat again and again the words, “Not slothful in business, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord.” [Romans 12:11.] With this as your motto, press on with the work. 19LtMs, Lt 167, 1904, par. 20

With humble hearts begin afresh, and by your words and example encourage those who have never tried to sell the book to make an effort. Let all that you do be done gracefully and cheerfully and well. Learn to ask the Lord to help you, and believe that He surely will. The work that is undertaken in the name of the Lord, and for the purpose of placing the light before the people, will be blessed by Him. What is needed is workers who are humble and contrite. He who lives near the Saviour will reveal in his life that he has held communion with Him. 19LtMs, Lt 167, 1904, par. 21