Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 23 (1908)


Lt 50, 1908

White, J. E.

St. Helena, California

February 5, 1908

Portions of this letter are published in CD 491-493; 1MR 241; 7MR 329; 6Bio 165. +Note

Elder J. E. White
Edgefield, Tennessee

My dear Son:

I have received letters both from you and from Elder Washburn, dealing with the same matters. I have written to him and will now write a few lines to you. I hope that you and Brother Washburn may counsel together about the work. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 1

I would say, Seek the Lord in earnest prayer. It is often the case that erroneous opinions have been transcribed on the mind, and these tend to lead to an unwise course of action. Every worker should have his mind drawn out after God, with humble heart, surrendering his individual will to the Lord’s will. We must live in hourly communion with God, that we may be enabled to walk in His ways. The principles of truth and righteousness must be firmly implanted in the mind and heart. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 2

You need rest and quietness. If you will seek for these, you will be a great gainer. You will be calm in mind, and passing annoyances will not irritate you. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 3

My son, may the Lord God of Israel be your counselor. Satan has come down in great power, knowing that he has but a short time to work. He is working with all deceivableness of unrighteousness to draw men away from Christ. But by looking unto Jesus, and committing your soul unto Him, you may rest in His love. Allow nothing to disturb your peace of mind. In the name of the Lord, I tell you that it is your privilege to claim from the source of all spiritual efficiency the keeping power of God. Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation. The Lord will sustain you, if you will act faithfully your part. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 4

As you seek the Lord for sympathy and co-operation, you obtain the intelligence and peace that you desire. Keep your soul in the love of God. Guard carefully all your words; for by your speech you are to represent the spirit of Christ. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 5

While selfishness abounds in the world, see that you keep your own soul free from every taint of selfishness. Let not one thread be drawn into the web of your experience. “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength; and thy neighbor as thyself.” [Luke 10:27.] 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 6

Just before His departure, Jesus said to His disciples, “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are My disciples, if ye have love one for another.” [John 13:34, 35.] Here is the mark to which we are to endeavor to attain. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 7

The work of the Lord must advance rapidly. We have not time to notice the objectionable words or actions of others. Let us not risk our soul’s healthfulness by speaking impatient words, whatever may be the attitude of others. “Let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath.” [James 1:19.] 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 8

Every branch of God’s work is needed. The medical missionary work is to the message as is the right hand to the body. But it would not be sensible or right that all the strength of the body should go into a hand. Neither would it be right for all the strength of the working agencies in the cause of the Lord to be used in the medical missionary work. The ministry of the Word must be sustained, and there must be unity in the movements of the whole body, all parts united in carrying out God’s plan for the advancement of His work. All the members of the body are to be the Lord’s working agencies, every part joined harmoniously with every other part. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 9

I would be pleased to see you, but I dare not go to the South where you are; for I have but little strength. I am writing almost continuously. I know that the Lord is my Guide, and whether I live or die, I am the Lord’s. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 10

I am thankful that, notwithstanding my arduous labors during my recent visit to Southern California, I still retain my clearness of mind. I was fearful that my voice might be weakened; but for one hour at the sanitarium last Sabbath, I was able to speak as clearly and distinctly as usual. The Lord gave me plain, clear light to give to His people. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 11

Brother Metcalfe Hare and Elder Haskell and his wife have, for a few days, been members of my family. Brother Hare has been engaged in the health food work in Australia, and he is desirous of entering some place where he can divide his labors between the ministry and some other line of work. I think that, in many ways, he would be a good helper in the South. He has had an experience in Avondale from the very beginning of our work there. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 12

The managers of the Avondale school have endeavored to walk in all the light that the Lord has given. His rich blessing has been with the institution, and it is an object lesson of the success that will follow those who respect and obey the light from heaven. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 13

It is reported by some that I have not lived up to the principles of health reform as I have advocated them with my pen. But I can say that so far as my knowledge goes, I have not departed from those principles. Those who have eaten at my table know that I have not placed flesh meats before them. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 14

When through overwork, care, and anxiety your father became very feeble in health, one and another said to me, “Give him some meat.” Wearied with their importunities, I finally bought a piece of what was supposed to be a young lamb, cooked some of it, and gave him a little of the broth. Afterward, as I was cutting up the remainder of this meat, I found in the tissues a disgusting-looking tumor. I can assure you that I had nothing more to do with that piece of meat, but burned it up. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 15

There was in our family at one time a cook who sometimes ate meat, though she was told not to provide meat for our table. One day she bought some liver. I asked her if she had examined it carefully. She replied that she had not, but thought it was all right. However I insisted on examining it;, and when we looked at it carefully, we found that it was a rotten mass. Then I said to her, “Jenny, do you not see that you are poisoning your blood by the use of the flesh of dead animals?” This incident seemed to impress her at the time. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 16

It is many years since I have had meat on my table at home. We never use tea or coffee. Occasionally I have used red clover blossom tea for a warm drink, but few of my family drink any fluid at our meals. <The table is provided with> cream instead of butter, even though we have company present. I have not used butter for many years. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 17

Yet we do not have an impoverished diet. We have an abundance of dried and canned fruit. If our own fruit crop is short, we buy some in the market. Sister Gray sends me the seedless grapes, and these stewed make a very appetizing dish. We raise our own loganberries and use them freely. Strawberries do not grow well in this locality, but from our neighbors we purchase blackberries, raspberries, apples, and pears. We have also an abundance of tomatoes. We also raise a fine variety of sweet corn and dry a large amount for use during the winter months. Near by us is a food factory, where we can supply ourselves with the grain preparations. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 18

We endeavor to use good judgment in determining what combinations of food best agree with us. It is our duty to act wisely in regard to our habits of eating, to be temperate, and to learn to reason from cause to effect. If we will do our part, then the Lord will do His part in preserving our brain/nerve power. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 19

For more than forty years I have eaten but two meals a day. And if I have a specially important work to do, I limit the quantity of food that I take. I regard it as my duty to refuse to place in my stomach any food that I have reason to believe will create disorder. My mind must be sanctified to God, and I must guard carefully against any habit that would tend to lessen my powers of intellect. I am now in my eighty-first year, and I can bear testimony that we do not, as a family, hunger for the flesh pots of Egypt. I have known something of the benefits to be received by living up to the principles of health reform. I consider it a privilege as well as a duty to be a health reformer. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 20

Yet I am sorry that there are many of our people who do not strictly follow the light on health reform. Those who in their habits transgress the principles of health, and do not heed the light that the Lord has given, will surely suffer the consequences. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 21

I write you these details, that you may know how to answer any who may question my manner of eating. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 22

I labor hard and long in my writing. I can seldom sleep later than four o’clock, and many days I am up earlier than this. For the past few weeks I have had but little sleep; for I have felt a great burden to write out the truths that the Lord has presented before me. I know not how long the Lord may continue to spare my life; but I am still committing to paper the things that the Lord has given me. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 23

When I awake early in the morning, I arise, build a fire in the fireplace, often putting on large chunks of wood that are as heavy as I can lift. Then I take as comfortable a position as possible and begin my writing. This morning I began writing at four o’clock. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 24

During my last journey to Southern California, I bore a straight testimony in various places. When I stood on my feet before a congregation, the Lord took away all sense of weariness and gave me a clear, distinct voice to communicate the words of light and truth. The Word of God is very precious to me. I am thankful that I can present its truths in clear lines in speech and in writing. My mind is clear on Bible subjects, the subjects that the people need at this time. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 25

I thank the Lord with heart and soul and voice that I have never lost the use of my right arm. Ever since the Lord strengthened me to write, I have always been able to hold my pen with a firm hand. I consider this one of the special blessings of God to me. And I consider that one reason why I have been able to do so much work, both in speaking and in writing, is because I am strictly temperate in my eating. If several varieties of food are placed before me, I endeavor to choose only those that I know will agree. Thus I am enabled to preserve clear mental faculties. I refuse to place in my stomach knowingly anything that will set up fermentation. This is the duty of all health reformers. We must reason from cause to effect. It is our duty to be temperate in all things. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 26

I must now leave these words with you. Let the Lord Jesus be your instructor. The words that fell from the lips of the Son of God are exceedingly precious. Let no man interpose himself between you and your Redeemer. Take the words of Christ, and be exceedingly glad that you can obtain counsel from lips that never err, and from a heart that will respond to every sincere desire of His children. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 27

There must be no contention as to who shall be the greatest. Let no man succeed in discouraging you; for you are bought with the price of Christ’s precious blood. Cling to the Mighty One. Be true to Him who paid the ransom price for your soul, that you might have eternal life. Have faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Be uplifted by the words that He speaks to you in the Scriptures. Be of good courage in the Lord. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 28

With much love. 23LtMs, Lt 50, 1908, par. 29