Manuscript Releases, vol. 5 [Nos. 260-346]


MR No. 326—Sacrificing for the Cause

We know best how this cause started. We have studied, in every way, ways and means in order that we might have something to carry us from place to place in the cause of truth. To reach the very first conference that we ever had in the State of Connecticut, my husband worked at cutting cordwood at twenty-five cents a cord. He was not used to work, and the rheumatism came in his wrists so that night after night he was unable to sleep because of the pain. Our prayers ascended night after night that God would relieve him from pain.... He would say, “Wife, we must be sure to keep $5.00 by us, and if we come short of means we will not use that five dollars.” 5MR 308.1

I have fainted on the floor with a sick child in my arms more than twice for the want of food to eat. Then the word came, “Cannot you come and hold a meeting with us in Connecticut?” When my husband settled with his employer he had ten dollars, and with that we made our way to that conference. 5MR 308.2

It was there that the work began to branch out, and here is where he began to do his first publishing. He was a lame man, caused by cutting the ankle bone in his youth, but he walked nine miles to the printing office to carry his paper. At another time he took his scythe and went into the field to mow grass in order to get means to carry him to the conference in New York. And so the truth of God began to spread in New York, and this is a little sample of the way that we first introduced the truth into different places. 5MR 308.3

For months my husband worked, handling stone until the skin was worn off his fingers and the blood dripped from the ends of his fingers. This was in the very places where he had spoken in the desk before thousands. Even then he did not obtain the money for his hard work. Do you know, the remembrance of this is the very best part of my experience? He went through the streets of Brunswick, Maine, with a bag upon his shoulders containing a little rice and meal and beans to keep us from starving, and when he came into the house singing, I said, “Have we come to this, husband? Has the Lord forsaken us and our work?” 5MR 308.4

He lifted up his hand and said, “Hush, hush, the Lord has not forsaken us...” 5MR 309.1

This is the way that we commenced this work.... 5MR 309.2

This is the way the Lord has taught us to trust in Him. This is the way the truth has entered many places. And for years we worked constantly day and night in order to carry forward this work. I might stand here and relate instances such as I have given you till tomorrow morning, but I will present only these few. I want to tell you now that we have been working to the utmost of our ability to establish missions in different places. 5MR 309.3

At the time when the mission was first started here, I had received a present of a nice silk dress. It cost forty-five dollars. I looked at that dress and thought of our friends over here. Brother Andrews had just sent in a letter stating that there was a certain work that they wanted to do but they had not the means. 5MR 309.4

Now, I thought, these friends, out of the kindness of their hearts, have made me this present; now it is my privilege to use that gift in such a way that they might lay up treasure in heaven. 5MR 309.5

I went to one of our merchants, a Sabbathkeeper, and said, “Sell that dress for all you can get for it.” He sold it for fifty dollars. Then I sent that money on here to the mission. The very act of my doing that brought in at that very time means from other individuals, and Brother Andrews wrote back to us that the very sum he wanted came at that time. 5MR 310.1

We are establishing missions and building meetinghouses in America. I have had some property I could not sell, and as I could not sell, I hired money and tried to invest it where it was most needed in the cause. Already we have placed thirty thousand dollars in the treasury of heaven. Our treasury now is, I might say, about empty. In many places we have had very close financial pressure. A night or two ago I dreamed that I was pleading with God. I awoke myself pleading with Him to send means to advance His own cause and work. I propose, brethren and sisters, that we present our empty treasury to God in living faith and ask Him to supply our needs. 5MR 310.2

In California we wanted so much to build a boarding house for our students.... All we could do was to send up our earnest petitions to God for that object. With many tears we did it. Then I went into my room and commenced writing. I heard a knock at the door and opened it to Sister Scott. She said, “I have some money that I want to put into the cause. Do you know where it is needed most?” 5MR 310.3

“Yes,” said I, “we have just been pleading with God to send us some means.” “Well,” said she, “I can let you have $5,000 and help you to find more. I have felt such a burden that I feel it a relief to get rid of it.” The tears ran down her face. 5MR 310.4

She was thankful that she could discharge this burden. And so we had money to start our boarding house. 5MR 311.1

Why cannot we come to God with these matters? I think we depend too much upon others. Now let us have living faith in God. I have lain awake night after night until I have gotten into an almost sleepless condition since I have been here.... I can see no other way but that we must pray. The Lord has gold and silver, and the cattle upon a thousand hills are His. And while we rely upon Him and do the very best we can, He will send help to advance His cause.—Manuscript 14, 1885, 1-4. (“Before the European Council,” September 20, 1885.) 5MR 311.2

I have thought that if every Seventh-day Adventist family would, during the year 1900, cut off every needless indulgence, and place the money thus saved in the Lord's treasury, there would be “meat in His house.” A rich blessing would rest upon those thus practicing self-denial. The Lord would give them more to give.... Oh, how my soul has thirsted for the pennies and shillings and pounds which have slipped through the fingers of those who do not realize how much they have spent for self and pride. Christ is hungering and thirsting for the money that men and women and children are thoughtlessly spending for self-gratification. 5MR 311.3

If they denied their inclinations, this money might be used to do a most precious work for Christ. 5MR 311.4

God desires every one to bear his part in saving money for the many calls that come in for help to carry forward the work of God. This work is never to cease.—Letter 24, 1900, pp. 3, 4. (To Sister Wessels, February 15, 1900.) 5MR 311.5

Released May, 1973.