Manuscript Releases, vol. 21 [Nos. 1501-1598]


MR No. 1569—Encouragement for S.N. Haskell and the Ings; Conditions at the Health Retreat

(Written February 13, 1888, from Healdsburg, California, to S.N. Haskell and Elder and Mrs. Ings.)

It may seem strange to you that we have not said more in regard to Elder Ings and his wife coming to America. We believe the Lord's hand was in their going to Europe. We were very fearful that they could not stand the climate, but the Lord in His providence has sustained them. They may even have had better health in the dismal climate of London than if they had been in California. We cannot say in regard to this matter. We would not limit the Holy One of Israel; He can do mercifully abundantly above all that we are able to think. And although we have pitied you and prayed for you and Elder Haskell much, I am convinced that we have had too little faith and too limited a vision of God's power to protect and save you in the dark and dismal fogs of London. 21MR 321.1

I have felt so great assurance when opening my mouth before God in behalf of you, being concerned particularly in that mission which we all know needs far more helpers than it already has, that I have felt forbidden to say, “Come to America.” The Lord will work by whom He will. Brother Ings may be annoyed by his old tormentor, rheumatism, but if he will only remember that he had had the same, perhaps fully as severe, here in California! It has seemed to me that no special, lasting harm would come to you. If you only have faith, living faith, only as a grain of mustard seed, then what wonderful things you might claim. 21MR 321.2

So I cannot say to you, “Come to America.” Under the circumstances, Elder Haskell is fully as much in need to change climate as you, my Brother and Sister Ings. I could not see that it would be consistent or merciful. How do you know but England is just the place for you? Has He released you? Then come any moment. I write you this as explaining why we have not at the General Conference lifted up our voices and called you to come from London. It is not because there is no room for you to work in this good field of California, and it is not because we do not love you and desire your labors. It is because we feared we should meddle with God's arrangements, even as Uzzah tried to put his hand on the ark, fearing the jostling might hurt it. 21MR 321.3

God will take care of you both, and He is blessing you and He wants you to be hid as in the secret of His pavilion, to lean on Jesus and look alone to Jesus. There are blessings for you all, and the Lord sees every peril that threatens you, every disagreeable duty that you have to meet. But He who tempers the wind to the shorn lamb will not leave any one of you who have given yourselves up to do His gracious will. Cling to the Arm that is mighty to save. Let His name be magnified. Come near to Jesus every morning. 21MR 321.4

Nearly every night we supplicate the Lord in your behalf, calling you by name in our family devotions, and I have felt assurance that He who pleads in the courts of heaven in your behalf calls you by name in His work as your Advocate. I know the Lord is nigh; you only believe, and you will see the salvation of God. We have so little faith that I wonder how the Lord can be pleased with us or do much for us. I have been somewhat worn since I returned from Europe, but I am full of love to Jesus and of gratitude for His great goodness to me. 21MR 322.1

Elder Haskell, will you look away from your own merits? Will you trust the merits and righteousness of Christ? Will you look to Him and trust in Him as a loving and mighty Saviour? Will you believe just now? Will you fall all broken upon Jesus and say, “He saveth me; I am wholly without reserve the Lord's”? O,! look and live! The Lord has blessings for you. He will help you. “A bruised reed shall He not break, and the smoking flax shall He not quench: He shall bring forth judgment unto truth” [Isaiah 42:3]. 21MR 322.2

My heart yearns to see you stand in the strength of the Mighty One. Will you, oh, will you take God at His word? Will you believe He means just what He says? I pray that your whole spirit and soul and body may be sanctified. Lie low at His feet, at the foot of the cross, subdued, broken, but taking hold of His strength, that is all that you need. I tell you, we must work in greater faith, we must fight the good fight of faith, we must break the force of Satan's suggestions, by living, actual faith. God has said it, and it will be done. His word is pledged, that He will be to you a present help in every time of need. Be strong in the Lord, yea, be strong. 21MR 322.3

We have not had the most pleasant labor altogether since coming to California. It has been a kind of labor that tried the soul and that naturally brings discouragement. It has been most trying to my soul. My heart has been grieved within me to have to labor on every hand against this freedom, married men with women and girls. Oh! it has caused me intense pain. I have tried to labor to correct these evils, and have seen the depths of Satan's working, but I try to be faithful. I get but little encouragement. 21MR 322.4

Elder Rice left the Rural Health Retreat because we urged him to resign. Not because of his imprudence with this too great commonness with a married woman, but because of his being so inefficient as a business manager. He has cost the institution thousands of dollars that might, with wise management, have been saved. But now he has worked upon his mother's and sister's sympathy until they charge his separation from the Health Retreat to me rather than to his course of action. 21MR 322.5

Dr. Maxson and wife left, and all three are, I think, in harmony. Where the devil will break out next at the Health Retreat, I cannot tell. But they seem to be doing well now; patients are coming in, and within a few days they have had twenty-two ladies to give treatments to. If the golden wedge and the Babylonish garment can only be searched out and rebuked, and put out of the camp, we believe that the Lord will do something for the Retreat. We think that as soon as the vacation of the school comes, Dr. Caldwell will go to St. Helena and take hold with Dr. Gibbs. We are having some tokens for good. 21MR 323.1

At the commencement of the Sabbath A. T. Jones was with us. We had a refreshing from the presence of the Lord. Our hearts were melted into tenderness, and the subduing Spirit of the Lord was in our midst. Sabbath, I spoke to the people, and I had much liberty in speaking from 2 Chronicles 3. I was deeply moved as I addressed the people in regard to the position of God's people at the present time. The dear Saviour seemed to be very near and exceedingly precious. I asked those who wished to give themselves wholly to the Lord to come forward, and we had quite an army of children, those of all ages. Many of them spoke with much feeling. Oh, the Lord is good. My soul was just hungry for the blessing of the Lord, and He did bless me. I can say I know that “my Redeemer liveth.” 21MR 323.2

We are pressing with all our might the Volume 4 to its completion. The printers are driving us fast, and I believe we shall have hard work to keep up with them. I have next the Volume 1 to get out, then to revise Volumes 2 and 3. If the dear Lord will help me, I shall be able to do this work. Marian has a heavy load upon her. She seems to stand it well as yet, but at times the pressure comes quite severe on her, poor child. She works real hard. I think Cecilie will plant her feet upon the Rock. I think she is improving. Fannie Bolton is a treasure to me. We are all harmonious, all working unitedly and in love. 21MR 323.3

May Walling came home to me last Friday morning from Nevada. She looks strong and I think her stay there has not done her any harm. I am glad to have her here. Sister Lockwood and May do the work together. I tell May I will give her two dollars per week with which she can get her clothing, or a portion of it. Brother Lockwood, Sister Lockwood, and I will go over to St. Helena tomorrow, or Wednesday. Willie is at Oakland. He left Healdsburg this morning in answer to a call to attend an important business meeting in Oakland. W. C. W. has also received an earnest invitation to go to Battle Creek and act as vice-president of the publishing house there, and see if they cannot set things in order, but what move he will make we cannot yet tell. He has no desire to go, but what does the Lord want is the question. 21MR 323.4

Brother A. T. Jones speaks every Sunday night on the signs of the times and the lawmaking powers who are trying to exalt Sunday. 21MR 324.1

The school here seems to be moving smoothly. Brother Butcher has sold out, and we intend to go to Vacaville if the roads are not too bad. I have two powerful horses that can take me across the country. We have had much rain, and it has made the roads bad in some places. The last I heard of Elder Whitney was that he was some better, and yet they entertained little hope of his recovery. I now must close my letter. I have written this after having written much today, so if you see mistakes, as I know you must, excuse me. Love to you all in Jesus Christ. 21MR 324.2

Ellen G. White Estate

Silver Spring, Maryland,

April 18, 1991.

Entire Letter.