Life Sketches of Ellen G. White


Centers of Influence and of Training

With the rapid development of missionary operations in many lands during the nineties, there had arisen perplexing administrative problems regarding the distribution of workers and of means. Some advocated one policy, some another. There were those who urged the immediate occupation of the strongholds of heathenism by large forces of workers, while others held to the policy of carrying on a vigorous campaign in unoccupied regions of the home land, as, for example, the Southern States of America, and in those countries where the efforts of the workers were rewarded with encouraging and substantial results. These advocated that difficult heathen lands be entered only as the providence of God might plainly open the way. LS 379.3

For several years Mrs. White had been writing concerning the advantages to be gained by establishing centers of influence and of training in England and in some of the Continental countries of Europe, and in such fields as Australasia, where the prospects were good for raising up and educating many workers to enter the less favored regions beyond. She had also been counseling the brethren to carry forward an aggressive campaign in the Southern States, and had often pleaded that this portion of the field be dealt with liberally. LS 380.1

“It is the very essence of all right faith,” she wrote, “to do the right thing at the right time. God is the great Master Worker, and by His providence He prepares the way for His work to be accomplished. He provides opportunities, opens up lines of influence and channels of working. If His people are watching the indications of His providence, and stand ready to cooperate with Him, they will see a great work accomplished. Their efforts, rightly directed, will produce a hundredfold greater results than can be accomplished with the same means and facilities in another channel where God is not so manifestly working.... LS 380.2

“Certain countries have advantages that mark them as centers of education and influence. In the English-speaking nations and the Protestant nations of Europe it is comparatively easy to find access to the people, and there are many advantages for establishing institutions and carrying forward our work. In some other lands, such as India and China, the workers must go through a long course of education before the people can understand them, or they the people. And at every step there are great difficulties to be encountered in the work. In America, Australia, England, and some other European countries, many of these impediments do not exist.” Testimonies for the Church 6:24, 25 (published in 1901). LS 381.1