Life Sketches Manuscript


The Sin of Unfaithfulness

I did not realize that I was unfaithful in thus questioning and doubting, and did not see the danger and sin of such a course, until in vision I was taken into the presence of Jesus. He looked upon me with a frown, and turned His face from me. It is not possible to describe the terror and agony I felt. I fell upon my face before him, but had no power to utter a word. Oh, how I longed to be covered and hid from that dreadful frown! Then could I realize, in some degree, what the feelings of the lost will be when they cry, “Mountains and rocks, fall on us, and hide us from the face of Him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the lamb.” LSMS 139.2

Presently an angel bade me rise, and the sight that met my eyes can hardly be described. Before me was a small company whose hair and garments were torn, and whose countenances were the very picture of despair and horror. They came close to me, and rubbed their garments upon mine. As I looked at my garments, I saw that they were stained with blood. Again I fell like one dead, at the feet of my accompanying angel. I could not plead one excuse, and longed to be away from that holy place. LSMS 140.1

The angel raised me to my feet, and said, “This is not your case now, but this scene has passed before you to let you know what the situation must be if you neglect to declare to others what the Lord has revealed to you. But if you are faithful to the end, you shall eat of the tree of life, and drink of the river of the water of life. You will have to suffer much, but the grace of God is sufficient.” LSMS 140.2

I then felt willing to do all that the Lord might require of me to do, that I might have His approbation, and not feel His dreadful frown. LSMS 140.3

In later years additional instruction was given me regarding faithfulness in presenting to the people the messages that have been given to me for them. LSMS 140.4

During the night of December 5, 1868, I had a most impressive dream. A person brought to me a web of white cloth, and bade me to cut it into garments for persons of all sizes, of all descriptions of character, and in all circumstances in life. I was told to cut them out, and hang them up all ready to be made when called for. I had the impression that many for whom I was required to cut out garments were unworthy. LSMS 140.5

I inquired if that was the last piece of cloth I should have to cut, and was told that it was not; that as soon as I had finished this one, there were others for me to take hold of. I felt discouraged at the amount of work before me, and stated that I had been engaged in cutting garments for others for more than twenty-years, and my labors had not been appreciated, neither did I see that my work had accomplished much good. LSMS 141.1

I spoke to the person who brought the cloth to me, of one woman in particular, for whom he had told me to cut out a garment. I stated that she would not prize the garment, and that it would be a loss of time and material to present it to her. She was very poor, of inferior intellect, and untidy in her habits, and would soon soil it. LSMS 141.2

The person replied, “Cut out the garments. This is your duty. The loss is not yours, but Mine. God sees not as a man sees. He lays out the work that He would have done, and you do not know which will prosper, this or that. It will be found that many such poor souls will go into the kingdom, while others, who are favored with all the blessings of life, having good intellects and pleasant surroundings, giving them all the advantages of improvement, will be left out. It will be seen that these poor souls have lived up to the feeble light they had, and having improved by the limited means within their reach, lived much more acceptably than others who have enjoyed full light, and ample means for improvement.” LSMS 141.3

I then held up my hands, calloused as they were with long use of shears, and stated that I could but shrink at the thought of pursuing this kind of labor longer. The person then repeated, “Cut out the garments. Your release has not yet come.” LSMS 141.4

With feelings of great weariness, I arose to engage in the work. Before me lay new, polished shears, which I commenced using. At once my feelings of weariness and discouragement left me, the shears seemed to cut with hardly an effort on my part, and I cut out garment after garment with comparative ease. LSMS 142.1