Manuscript Releases, vol. 11 [Nos. 851-920]


MR No. 858—Ellen White and Domesticity

I learn that Flora Merriam is dead. She was out at the camp meeting, but she now sleeps in Jesus. Her probation is ended. W. P. sickened and died suddenly. He professed to be a follower of Christ, but the attractions of the world ensnared him. When smitten by disease he was too sick to exercise his mind in repenting, and died, we fear, without expressing hope. Had he lived up to the light of health reform, he might not have died. I might relate several cases who have sickened and died suddenly without any time to prepare for their last change. I know not the facts in regard to Flora Merriam. She was an excellent girl—grave, sedate and retiring—more so than many who are older than she.—Letter 51a, 1874, p. 1. (To J. E. White and wife, September 11, 1874.) 11MR 30.1

You are so fearful of incurring your husband's displeasure that you sin against God rather than to cross his will. You come far short of being a brave soldier for Jesus who gave His life for you. What greater love can be expressed for man than this? Jesus suffered for us. What are we willing to suffer for Him to save our souls from ruin? Your identity is submerged in your husband. His strong, imperious will, his overbearing and tyranny you stand in great dread of. You are aware he can make you very miserable and you dare not come into collision with him. 11MR 30.2

Great caution should be used by you that no strife shall be unnecessarily stirred up. And yet, when the question is raised between you in regard to the keeping of the Sabbath of the Lord, the turning point comes: Will you obey God or man? Whose authority and displeasure do you most fear? You are very much averse to discord and strife. You shrink from blame like the sensitive plant to the touch. You have allowed yourself to be placed in positions making it impossible to keep the Sabbath.—Letter 4a, 1880, p. 1. (To Sister Brigs, February 8, 1880.) 11MR 31.1

Ever be true, open, sincere and frank. All affectation despise. Keep yourself aloof from young men. Let them know that there is one girl who will not be crazy and bewildered at their first notice and attentions. I want you to be prepared to travel with me and help me, if I want you. 11MR 31.2

You see those who have married cease their improvement and settle down to a dwarfed life. Be not afraid to tell me your whole mind and to seek counsel, and I will give you all the help I can. But above everything else preserve self-control, and a self-possession and womanly ways without appearing to know everything. Do not claim to know too much. Be modest in conversation, for people will be disgusted if a young girl talks as if she knew a great deal. You may evidence your wisdom by works, but do not do this by words and self-praise. Be cautious, discreet and humble.—Letter 28, 1885, p. 2. (To Addie Walling, November 3, 1885.) 11MR 31.3

In the night season I am talking with _____ and once with Sister _____ cautioning her not to be too stiff, but to be sure and encourage tenderest sympathy and to bear in mind her own infirmities of body, and then put herself in the place where those who are doing the work in the kitchen day after day, drudge, drudge, drudge, and encourage them and give them periods of rest.... There must be no rigid persistency to require more when the workers feel that they have done all they can safely do and preserve their health and patience.—Letter 130, 1893, p. 1. (To W. C. White, June 7, 1893.) 11MR 32.1

White Estate

Washington, D. C.,

May 20, 1981.