Lt 38, 1875

Lt 38, 1875

White, J. E.

Oakland, California

December 30, 1875

Previously unpublished.

My Dear Son Edson:

I placed in your hands testimony for you and Emma. What are you going to do with the light contained in the writing placed in your hands? I feel every day burdened in regard to you, for I know that you are not feeling right. When you are humble and feel your weakness and your past failures and try in the strength of God to control your own spirit, then the Spirit of the Lord helps you. But when you lose sight of your own past errors and half the matter, excusing your wrongs, you gather blindness to your own soul. Your ideas are perverted. You get an irritable spirit and misjudge statements and view things in a wrong light generally. I think you are now there. God is bringing you over the ground where you have so often failed. 2LtMs, Lt 38, 1875, par. 1

I knew you were being tested and proved, and before I left for Woodland, I gave you the testimony to guard you, to cause you to reflect, and to bring you to feel that it was important for you to look to yourself and cease looking to others’ errors and doings. Keep strict guard over Edson White, lest he give place to the devil. You do not know yourself. You do not sense your weakness. You are yielding to the temptations of the enemy, and it will only make you weaker in moral power, destroy your confidence in God and reflect back on you again. You must ever treat your father with respect, under every circumstance and upon every occasion. You may harmonize with Willie, if you will, also with your father. You have an opportunity to overcome the defects in your character now if you will set about the work. 2LtMs, Lt 38, 1875, par. 2

You are now being tested. How will you bear the test? You do not feel right; you are unhappy; you are unnecessarily making yourself miserable and placing yourself where less and less confidence can be reposed in you. Loughborough will think, after all, he did not misjudge you so very much. When you feel right, we shall all know it. I shall, I know. You have a work to do to overcome your selfishness. Emma has the same work upon her. Your father has done well in regard to your case and tried to help you to make it easy for you, but you do not feel any gratitude, I fear, for these things. I have seen so many times your failure in a crisis that I know just where to look for you at these trying points. You will come out all right if you humbly trust in God and cease looking out so sharply for yourself. When tempted of the enemy, you make statements that are not correct. It may seem to you that all is correct. But you have things perverted in your mind. This will end in the enemy’s driving to take a course which will separate your interest from us. 2LtMs, Lt 38, 1875, par. 3

If you do not feel inclined to accept your father’s propositions, at least you can feel that he wants to help you if he can. Your course is reviving in your father’s mind past matters where he has suffered on your account. You have been thoroughly warned. If you now choose to take your own course, remember it will be at your own loss. There is not the least sense in your feeling irritable and touchy. I hope you will not allow Emma to help you to feel wrong against father and Will. I tried to save this state of things in the beginning by warnings and instruction, but all my efforts were useless. And now all I ask is to humble your hearts before God, both of you, and get right before God. Soften your spirit and repent before God. You have a work to do. Do it, my son, do it at once, lest darkness come upon you. 2LtMs, Lt 38, 1875, par. 4

Your Mother. 2LtMs, Lt 38, 1875, par. 5

You are not justified in one wrong word or action because you imagine someone about you does not treat you all right. Set your soul in order. As your mother, I entreat of you to search carefully your own heart, lest you be self-deceived. 2LtMs, Lt 38, 1875, par. 6

In love. 2LtMs, Lt 38, 1875, par. 7