Sermons and Talks, vol. 1


A Dream About Value of Teamwork

While at Healdsburg I dreamed [of] seeing several span of horses harnessed to machinery which they were to draw. My husband stood looking on to see if the harness was of sufficient strength to hold in making the required effort. The horses started drawing the load. 1SAT 1.1

Two horses from the number rushed out of their places and began to tug at the load, but could not start it one inch because they did not work in unison with the other horses. These looked back and seemed to think that the moving of the load depended upon them. They went first [to] one side and then [to] another, and became nervous and broke loose from the other horses and jumped in ahead of them all. In the act they were, they thought, taking the load when they were not stirring it. If these horses had kept their places they might have drawn their part of the load and been of important service, but when they rushed in ahead of the leading horses they were not drawing the load and were in the way, hindering the other horses from working. 1SAT 1.2

I thought my husband struck these horses sharply with the whip. One turned to him, and said, “Don't strike so hard; you cut deep. We had zeal to start this load and we thought no one could start it but us. We see we have not moved it, but hindered its moving, but a check was all we needed, not to be cut on like balky horses. We will fall back on our traces and draw with the rest.” 1SAT 1.3

I awoke, and fell asleep the same night, and dreamed that my husband was trying to right matters in the church at Battle Creek. There was difficulty. There were two or three that thought they had wisdom to bring the church into good working order. They wished to rearrange the church, and then they said it would be free. These men and women had a machine of their own to work, but the machine of each was united with a larger machine. Every one must keep his or her hand employed on his or her own machine, and then the larger machinery worked beautifully and every revolution of the great wheel was exact and harmonious. If any neglected this machine which was connected with the great machinery, every revolution of the large wheel made a disagreeable noise which disturbed not only the building it was in, but the building across the road jarred and shook. 1SAT 1.4

I saw two in particular leave their machines and [they] were watching the large wheel in the great machinery and were seeking to correct the great wheel, to have it more harmoniously and regularly. Instead of helping the difficulty, the machinery made a more disagreeable noise. I thought if all would stand by their own machines and diligently and faithfully do their own work correctly, there would be no trouble with the large machinery. But the noise of the large machine called the attention of several from their work. This difficulty was now to be settled. All wanted to know why the large machine ran so heavily, the wheel groaning at every revolution. 1SAT 2.1

My husband spoke very decidedly and sharply. Said he, “You who left your own machine to correct the large wheel were out of your place. Had you kept by your own machines and worked them correctly, the large machine would have been all right.” I thought my husband spoke very earnestly and reproved those who left their own work to attend to that which was not their work. Those that had been the most to blame said, “Do not be so severe. We thought we were carrying out your express directions in doing as we have done. But all we needed was a word and we would see our error. We thought everything was going to pieces, therefore left the very work we should have done, to save such a calamity, and sought to correct the large machinery, and so we made things very much worse.—Ms. 1, 1873. (MR 900.14). 1SAT 2.2