Life Sketches of Ellen G. White


Revival Meetings at Greenville

About this time we commenced labor for our brethren and friends near Greenville. As is the case in many places, our brethren needed help. There were some who kept the Sabbath, yet did not belong to the church, and also some who had given up the Sabbath. We felt disposed to help these poor souls, but the past course and present position of leading members of the church in relation to these persons, made it almost impossible for us to approach them. LS 186.1

In laboring with the erring, some of our brethren had been too rigid, too cutting in remarks. And when some were disposed to reject their counsel, and separate from them, they would say, “Well, if they want to go off, let them go.” While such a lack of the compassion and long-suffering and tenderness of Jesus was manifested by His professed followers, these poor, erring, inexperienced souls, buffeted by Satan, were certain to make shipwreck of faith. However great may be the wrongs and sins of the erring, our brethren must learn to manifest not only the tenderness of the Great Shepherd, but also His undying care and love for the poor, straying sheep. Our ministers toil and lecture week after week, and rejoice that a few souls embrace the truth; and yet brethren of a prompt, decided turn of mind may, in five minutes, destroy their work by indulging the feelings which prompt words like these: “Well, if they want to leave us, let them go.” LS 186.2

We found that we could do nothing for the scattered sheep near us until we had first corrected the wrongs in many of the members of the church. They had let these poor souls wander. They felt no burden for them. I wrote out pointed testimonies not only for those who had erred greatly and were out of the church, but for those members in the church who had erred greatly in not going in search of the lost sheep. LS 187.1