An Appeal to the Youth
Brookfield, N. Y., October, 30, 1859
My Dear Henry and Edson,
I will write you a few lines. You remember, Henry, in my last letter to you I made a suggestion of what I thought to be a good plan. I do not enforce this; I merely suggest it. I would not bind anything upon you that is tedious or burdensome. But I thought such a plan as I suggested, if you could see the help it would be to you in having a principle, and in forming a good character, you would readily adopt it. AY 53.1
We do not wish to drive you, dear boys, but help you to do right. We love you. No others can love you as we do. None can feel the interest in you that we do. We feel very anxious that you should be kept from sinful ways and evil habits. Satan has great control over the minds of the young, generally, because they do not go to the true source for strength to resist his temptations, and to overcome. God loves to have children put their trust in him, and ask him to help them. The promise is, my dear boys, “Ask, and ye shall receive.” Believe ye receive the things ye ask for, and ye shall have them. Now in the first place you have the promise that if you ask you shall receive. Then think what you most need to overcome. Acquaint yourselves with your failings, and then as you feel you cannot overcome in your own strength, ask God to help you. By doing this you acknowledge your own weakness, and throw yourselves upon God's arm. He will sustain you in your efforts to do right. But be careful and do not rely too much on your own strength and efforts. Ever realize that Satan is continually trying to lead your young, inexperienced minds to do wrong. In order to resist his temptations, you must rely upon a power stronger than your own. “Believe ye receive the things ye ask for, and ye shall have them.” Do not merely come to God and ask; but believe that he will do just as he has said he would. As you ask, believe he answers, and believe you do receive strength from him. AY 54.1
My dear boys, learn to trust in God. Learn to go to him who is mighty to save. He knows what you need before you ask him; but he has made this your duty, and the duty of every one of us, to come to him and ask him in confidence for what we need. We must comply with the conditions laid down in his word, namely, “ASK.” Tell the dear Saviour just what you need. He that said, “Suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not,” will not reject your prayer. But he will send his angels to guard you and protect you from the evil angels, and will make it easy for you to do right. Then it will be much easier than if you should try in your own strength. You may ever feel like this, I have asked God to help me, and he will do it. I will do right in his strength. I will not grieve the dear angels that God has appointed to watch over me. I will never take a course to drive them from me; for if they should leave me I should then have evil angels around me to control my actions, and lead me to do wickedly, and grieve my parents. But we do not believe that good angels will leave you; because we believe you will do right, and encourage their watchful care. AY 55.1
You are none too young to be good Christians, and have children's experience in the Christian life, and know that your sins are washed away in the blood of your Redeemer. Time is short, dear children, and we want you to love God, and be prepared to dwell with pure and good angels in the city of God. Nothing but goodness and purity, honesty and holiness, can enter heaven. The Lord knows you are young, and he will help you to do right, and give you grace to overcome every wrong, every evil. You may not obtain the entire victory at once; but persevere, keep trying. Say, I will do right, I will resist evil, and the Lord will help me. AY 56.1
Your affectionate Mother.