Manuscript Releases, vol. 2 [Nos. 97-161]


MR No. 150—A Visit to Tasmania

[Excerpts from the Ellen G. White letters and diaries relative to her first visit to Tasmania.]

Sister May Lacey and myself left Granville.... going by train to Melbourne on our way to Tasmania.... 2MR 257.1

We expected to leave for Tasmania on Thursday evening, but learned that the steamer was not going out until Friday afternoon, and would bring us into Launceston after the Sabbath had begun. I could not consent to go on this steamer when we should thus have to trespass on the Sabbath, if there was any way possible by which we could avoid it. We learned that a boat left Melbourne Tuesday afternoon, and we decided that it would be much better to go on this early boat than to travel on the Sabbath.... 2MR 257.2

We had a pleasant passage on the steamer, and were not at all sick. On Wednesday morning we drew near Launceston, but on account of the low tide we were obliged to anchor out ten miles from the city. While thus anchored a small ferry boat drew up alongside. We were pleased to see on board the ferry Brother and Sister Teasdale. They had been holding some meetings twenty miles from Launceston, and we met them providentially as we lay anchored. We had our baggage placed on the ferry, and boarded it ourselves, and arrived in Launceston about noon.... 2MR 257.3

About three o'clock we took the cars for Hobart. We had a first-class compartment to ourselves most of the way, and at about nine o'clock in the evening we arrived at Hobart, and were heartily greeted by Brother Lacey and several members of his family. We were conducted to the hospitable home of Brother and Sister Lacey. On the Sabbath we went to a small church in which were assembled a much larger number of Sabbathkeepers than I supposed would be found there. The Lord gave me freedom as I spoke to the people. On Sunday night I spoke in a large Temperance Hall where quite a goodly number were assembled. They have made an arrangement that no meeting can begin in the Temperance Hall until half past eight o'clock. The Wesleyan Chapel is close by, and our meeting in the Temperance Hall did not begin until their meeting was closed. It was not a favorable time to hold the people, yet all listened with deep attention. I spoke under the auspices of the Temperance Band of Hope Society. We were not charged anything for the hall. The first of the week W.C.W. arrived, visited Bismarck, which is about eight miles from Hobart, held a meeting, and made arrangements for holding other meetings during the week. 2MR 257.4

Brother and Sister Corliss went to Bismarck one evening and held a meeting, and the next day returned with a conveyance in which we all took passage for Bismarck. The whole party, excepting myself, walked up the high, graded road over the mountains. We hired a small, furnished cottage in Bismarck, and I spoke in the meetinghouse on Tuesday evening and Wednesday afternoon. The little church was filled with our brethren and sisters who seemed to come in to receive the bread of life. Brother Colcord spoke Wednesday evening. On Thursday we visited some of our brethren who live upon small farms among the hills or in the woods. Many of them cultivate fruit for a living. We saw that many of them had to travel several miles in order to attend the meetings, and return again to their homes. On Thursday evening I again spoke the message of truth to the people, especially dwelling upon the truth that is appropriate to these last days. Believers and unbelievers seemed greatly interested. There were those listening who were children of God, who were seeking to obey His commandments. They came from their humble homes, bringing their little children with them, but not one eyelid drooped in slumber. Every eye was directed toward the speaker, and they manifested whole-hearted interest. I addressed words to the children and youth that were especially adapted to them, and I believe that many of the little ones understood the invitation of Jesus. I spoke to them from the words that Jesus addressed to His disciples when the mothers brought their little ones to Him, and when they rebuked them for troubling Christ with the children. Christ had said, “Suffer the little children to come unto Me and forbid them not; for of such is the kingdom of heaven.” He took the little children in His arms and put His hands upon them and blessed them. 2MR 258.1

The Holy Spirit of God was in that little assembly. There were several outsiders in the meeting, among them the school teacher of the place, and a mother with a large family of boys. We hope that the seed sown may spring up and bear fruit to the glory of God. I presented the keeping of the commandments of God as an evidence of our love for Jesus Christ, for He plainly told His disciples that if they loved Him they would keep His commandments.—Letter 58, 1895, pp. 1-5. (To O. A. Olsen, May 7, 1895.) 2MR 259.1

[Diary records on the visit to Hobart and Bismarck, Tasmania.] 2MR 259.2

May Lacey accompanied me to this place. We make our home with the Lacey family. The Hawkins family and the Laceys are, you know, combined, making a large family. Brother Lacey has two daughters at home, besides the son in America. Sister Lacey has four daughters and two sons.... 2MR 259.3

Our convention commences next week.... Before we leave again for Melbourne, May Lacey will change her name to May White. I shall have a daughter, Brother Lacey a son. This is very pleasing all round. 2MR 259.4

Sabbath forenoon I spoke in Hobart, five miles from the home of Brother Lacey. The Lord gave me a message for the people. My text was Luke 14:16-24. The word seemed to make a deep impression upon minds and there is, we know, a work to be done in human hearts and a reformation to take place in human characters that will give this people a close connection with God.... 2MR 260.1

Bismarck, Tasmania, April 26 and May 1, 1895—Last Tuesday [April 23] Brother Lacey, May Lacey, Willie White and I came eight miles from Brother Lacey's home to this place, right in “the bush,” as it is called here. In America we call it the forest. This place is right up in the mountains. In appearance it is very much like Colorado, with its hills and mountains and valleys, and there are houses and small farms of cultivated lands right in the forests. The heavy timbers have been cut away and the underbrush cleared out and orchards have been planted. 2MR 260.2

Willie and May and Brother Lacey walked a large part of the way. It appeared to me that the horses had climbed these hills until they had begun to get short-winded, for their market carts were heavy and hard to draw. Brother Lacey had prepared a seat for me. We would have furnished quite a picture as we left Brother Lacey's house. Brother Lacey, Willie, and May were in the front seat. I was seated on my spring cushion in the end of the cart on the bottom of the trap, amidst the luggage. Pillows and bundles provided me a seat as easy as a rocking chair, but when the horse went downhill the movements of the two-wheeled vehicle kept us in a constant joggle.... 2MR 260.3

There is a church here, a nice house of worship built by our people of like precious faith, and when meetings are held the house is filled with intelligent-looking people. Many are Germans.—Manuscript 54, 1895, 1-3. (“Visit to Hobart and Bismarck, Tasmania,” circa April 20, 1895.) 2MR 260.4

We had appointments at Bismarck [Tasmania]. W. C. White visited them, walking eight miles, and spoke in the little church Sunday. He had the loan of horse and cart to return to [vicinity of Hobart] on Monday. Brother and Sister Corliss rode back to Bismarck. Brother Corliss spoke Monday night, and Brother and Sister Corliss came back Tuesday [April 23]. We rode back. 2MR 261.1

Bismarck is very much like Colorado in appearance. Homes and little spots of cleared land are dotted here and there among the hills. Wisely the farmers do not expend money and time and strength to make large clearings at once. They build their cottages in a cleared spot of land, and then clear the land gradually for their orchards and crops. If in the place of forests of bluegum trees there were the lofty evergreens—pine, spruce, and hemlock—we should consider it an excellent representation of Colorado. 2MR 261.2

We are fortunate to secure a neat, well-furnished cottage close by the little church. We found the small barn well stored with fine vegetables and apples for our use. We felt much pleased at the abundant supply from our thoughtful brethren. Every day milk and cream, all we could use, were brought to us, and plenty of wood was prepared for our use. This was a pleasure to our dear friends and it was a blessing to us. Several had come with us, walking, some of them, the eight miles to attend the meeting. 2MR 261.3

We longed for the privilege of remaining in this rural retreat several months and accomplishing the writing of the life of Christ, but then the work to be done in New South Wales overbalanced this desire and I knew that as soon as our work closed in Tasmania we must hasten back to bear our testimony to the people.... 2MR 261.4

I spoke Tuesday evening to an interested audience. There was a large number of children and youth present, and children from eight years old and upward sat with their eyes wide open, listening with apparent great interest to the words spoken. My heart went out in love to these dear children, and I could not forbear addressing words to them especially who need words of invitation and encouragement, to give their hearts to Jesus. Is it not children and youth who help compose our assemblies? God wants the children and youth to join the Lord's army. I told them I was pleased to see them in the meeting and they could become soldiers of the cross of Christ.... 2MR 261.5

Wednesday forenoon W. C. White conducted a meeting, giving lessons to canvassers. I spoke to them again in the afternoon. I was surprised to see so many present, for these believers are much scattered and some have a long distance to walk. The Lord gave me much freedom in speaking to interested hearers. I had the blessing of the Lord as I presented the truth in its simplicity. Many hearts were touched by the deep movings of the Spirit of God. 2MR 262.1

Thursday was their day for carrying their produce to the market. The roads are very hilly, and if this business were left for Friday the work would not be as readily bound off for the welcoming in of the Sabbath. 2MR 262.2

Thursday we were promised a horse and cart, and rode over the hills to call on some of our people. We found then that it was some miles they had to walk—fathers and mothers and children—to the meetings. Most preferred to walk rather than to drive their horses up and down the steep hills. We found cultivated lands surrounded with “bush,” as they called them. We should call them small cottages and a few acres of cleared land in the woods. The trees, which were very small, were loaded with nice apples. I have seldom seen such small trees bearing. Most of the people seemed comfortably situated, but poor in this world's goods. 2MR 262.3

In the evening I could better appreciate the congregation who had sufficient interest to come out through the woods so long a distance to meeting. When I saw the bright-faced children and youth interestedly listening to the truth, my heart was full of gratitude to God. Those parents bringing their children the long distance to attend evening meetings evidenced their interest and their love for the truth. 2MR 263.1

I spoke again to those assembled Thursday night. Quite a large number of those not of our faith were present. I had a very solemn testimony to bear them in regard to the third angel's message—the proclamation we are now to make to the world. This message combines the first and the second and binds it up with the third. This brings us into a large field where we are brought down to the closing scenes of this earth's history. The great and last warfare is between to two classes—those who keep the commandments of God and those who make void the law of God.... 2MR 263.2

We felt that the Holy Spirit of God was in the meeting that night, and that conviction was resting upon the hearts of many of the hearers.—Manuscript 55, 1895, 1-5. (“Labor in Bismarck, Tasmania,” circa April 26, 1895.) 2MR 263.3

W. C. White, May Lacey White, and myself, left the home of Brother Lacey in Glenarchy about 9:00 p.m. [May 9] to take the cars for Launceston [Tasmania]. My son and Miss May Lacey were married today by a clergyman who, though not of our faith, has favored our people, letting them have the use of his church without charge. The preparations for the marriage ceremony were carried out without one unpleasant feature. We would all have been much better pleased if one of our own ministers could have officiated at the marriage, but this could not be without incurring considerable expense, as we should have had to send for one of our brethren to come from New South Wales, where I think some are qualified to perform marriages. There was no minister in Tasmania who was authorized to act in this capacity. 2MR 263.4

Brother and Sister Lacey have a large family, and they greatly desired that May should be married at home, and, of course, this is as it should be. At the request of the family, I offered prayer after the marriage ceremony was over. Brother and Sister Lacey invited eight persons besides the family to celebrate the occasion. We took the cars, as I have stated, about nine o'clock that night.... 2MR 264.1

I was very glad when all the bustle was ended, and we were seated in the cars enroute for Launceston.... 2MR 264.2

We are glad that we held the convention when we did in Hobart. Willie gave one pound and I gave three pounds in order that food might be provided for those who should attend the convention, and who would have to come from Bismarck and other places. We did this in order to remove every obstacle and make it possible for the people to attend the convention. I would not have had the people deprived of the instruction that was given at that meeting if it had taken five times as many pounds as it did. The poor must have the gospel message preached to them. It is as necessary to them as to those who are in good circumstances.—Letter 59, 1895, pp. 1, 2, 8. (To Elder and Mrs. O. A. Olsen, May 12, 1895.) 2MR 264.3

I have presented general principles to the church in Hobart, as did our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ when He presented truth to the people. I hoped that as these general principles were presented, advancement would be made along the lines where advance was needed, but I see that a more definite prescription is required to remedy the evil that exists, which unless corrected will prove disastrous to the church. 2MR 264.4

There is one thing in this world which is the greatest object of Christ's solicitude. It is His church on earth; for its members should be representatives, in spirit and character, of Him. The world is to recognize in them the representatives of Christianity, the depository of sacred truths in which is stored the most precious jewels for the enrichment of others. Through the ages of moral darkness and error, through centuries of strife and persecution, the church of Christ has been as a city set on a hill. From age to age, through successive generations to the present time, the pure doctrines of the Bible have been unfolding within her borders. 2MR 265.1

But in order that the church on earth may be an educating power in the world, it must cooperate with the church in heaven. The hearts of those who are members of the church must be open to receive every ray of light that God shall choose to impart. God has light to impart to us according to our ability to receive, and as we receive the light, we shall be capable of receiving more and more of the rays of the Sun of Righteousness. 2MR 265.2

When the light has become dim in the church of God, when zeal has diminished, it is because the church of Jesus Christ has yielded to the outward influences that Satan has employed to make of none effect the truth. But if we follow on, not stand still, to know the Lord, we shall know that His going forth is prepared as the morning. We should study the revelation of Christ in His providences from creation to the present time, that we may be led on in the path of holiness, peace, and rest. 2MR 265.3

Every one of us is upon probation, in school, where we are required to be diligent students. It is enjoined upon us to walk in the light, as Christ is in the light. It is by walking in the light that we learn of God, and “This is life eternal, that they might know Thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom Thou hast sent” [John 17:3]. These are the words of Him who was with the Father before the world was, and He uttered these words while praying for all those who should believe in God through the words of His disciples. To know God in His works is true science. Let us follow on to know the Lord till we shall know that His goings forth are prepared as the morning. 2MR 265.4

God has His faithful witnesses, through whom He has given testimony to revive, to restore, to build up His people in the most holy faith. He has faithful sentinels who will warn the church against false theories and doctrines which would corrupt their faith, and would bring into the church distraction, discord, and strife. In every age the Lord has raised up watchmen to bear a faithful testimony to the generation in which they live. These faithful sentinels carried forward the work, and impressed upon others the necessity of consecrating all to God, and when they were called upon to lay off their armor and leave the work, there were other hands to carry it forward. Faithful souls have constituted the church of God on earth, and He has taken them into covenant relation with Himself, uniting His church on earth with His church in heaven. He has sent forth heavenly angels to minister to His church, and the gates of hell have not been able to prevail against His people. 2MR 266.1

Today, as in the past, all heaven is watching to see the church develop in the true science of salvation. The Lord Jesus is among men. His angels walk among us unrecognized and unacknowledged. We are saved from many snares and unseen dangers that through the machinations and hostility of our foe are placed in our path to destroy us. Oh, that our eyes might be open to discern the watchful solicitude and tender care of the messengers of light. If those who politely acknowledge the favors which they receive from earthly friends, would realize how much they owe to God, their hearts would respond in grateful thanks for precious favors that are now unnoticed and unacknowledged. 2MR 266.2

The light that has been imparted from heaven, that has lighted up our pathway, has been appreciated only by a few. The many have regarded heaven's benefits as though they came as a matter of course, and have not walked in the light, following the footsteps of their Leader. The piety of the church as a whole has not been what it should be. The members of the church have not increased in power, imparting and receiving grace. It is when human agents seek for ability to do the work of God as it should be done that they become successful, persevering agents in advancing His cause. They become aggressive, persistent, and manifest personal piety. Those who advocate truth must live in harmony with the profession they make. It is the truth appropriated that sanctifies the soul. It is the faith that works by love that purifies from every species of selfishness. When the members of the church have this manner of faith, they recognize their mutual obligation and dependence. 2MR 267.1

It is God's purpose that His children should not stand isolated from one another, but that they should relate themselves one to another to mutually influence each other. They should realize that it is their duty to promote the happiness one of another. If we will be learners, Christ will be our Teacher. He will train us to make manifest His goodness, mercy, and love. Every soul who will become consecrated to Him will be a channel through whom His love can flow, will be an agent cooperating with divine intelligences, and will find his own happiness increased as he seeks to impart happiness to others. Each one of us is to consider the fact that every uttered word exerts an influence, that every action involves a train of responsibility. Connected with God, it is in our power to transmit a current of vital influence. No one can live unto himself in this world, even if he would. Each one forms a part of the great world of humanity, and through our individual influence we are linked to the universe. 2MR 267.2

Christ has given us an example of the way in which we shall use our influence. He used His influence in drawing men unto Himself. He said that it was His meat and drink to do His Father's will. In how different a way many of the professed Christians of our time act. They consider their own will and their own way as supreme; but the test of human blessedness is a capacity to receive, appropriate, and impart the precious blessings of the wisdom and grace of Christ. 2MR 268.1

Every man and woman has strong tendencies towards evil, and peculiar traits of character that make him susceptible to temptation. Each one has to battle with his own passions. Each one may see his own perverse habits reproduced in others, and reacting upon his own character. Individually we have a work to do in the strength and grace of Christ. We are to strive most earnestly against our hereditary and cultivated traits of character. If our evil characteristics are not overcome, they will through exercise become stronger and stronger, and pollute mind and character. Unless overcomers, we shall not be fitted for a home with the saints in light. But let no one be discouraged. There is a refuge for every tempted soul. We may avail ourselves of the great privileges and blessings brought to us through the grace of Christ. But there are those whose names are on the church roll who do not know what it is to be resigned to the divine will. They do not realize that they may have perfect trust and repose in God. They have never gone through the struggle of submitting meekly and humbly to the will of God. It is true that it is hard for self to come to this point, for self ever seeks the supremacy. But the Lord says, “A new heart also will I give you” [Ezekiel 36:26]. He has promised to renew the mind and to make us new creatures in Christ Jesus. 2MR 268.2

But in order to have this experience, we must learn the meekness and lowliness of Christ, and take upon us the impression of His precepts, and follow the example He has given us. We should ask God for strength and grace, for “He that spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?” [Romans 8:32]. 2MR 269.1

The Lord encourages the trust of the most faulty and most perverse. He is able to restore His moral image to the soul, and is not slack concerning His promises. Christ went to the very depths of human extremities in order that He might meet men where they are and know how to befriend them in their need. He is our Friend, who has come to save us. Why are we not more diligent in learning of the great Teacher lessons of patience, kindness, forbearance? We may suppose that we have great provocation to feel injured, and to be angry with those with whom we associate, but we may be laborers together with God no matter what may be our circumstances. We may be sustained by faith, inspired by hope, that God in His goodness and mercy will deliver us from evil. 2MR 269.2

Many know very little of God's dealings with His people, but the most hopeless part of their experience is that they do not try to understand His dealings in these precious hours of probation. It is their privilege to know that His afflictions come for the object of purifying them from all evil. The Lord permits trials to come in order that we may look to Him as the source of our strength, and be cleansed from earthliness, from selfishness, from harshness, from sharp unchristlike traits of character. He suffers the deep waters of affliction to go over our souls in order that we may know Him and Jesus Christ whom He hath sent, in order that we may have deep heart-longings to be cleansed from defilement, and to come forth from the trial purer, holier, and happier. We enter the furnace of trial with our souls darkened with selfishness, and if patient under the crucial test, we shall come forth reflecting the divine character. The Lord is able to deliver the godly out of temptation. 2MR 269.3

When trials come, we are not to fret and complain, not to rebel, not to worry ourselves out of the arms of Christ, but humble the soul before God. Cry unto Him that He may give rest and peace. We should bear the yoke of Christ in time of trouble, and instead of allowing ourselves to be repulsed, we should hear the voice that invites us, saying, “Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” [Matthew 11:28]. 2MR 270.1

“Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled” [Matthew 5:6]. The word of Christ is eternal truth, and is the bread of life. If we eat of this bread, we must die to self; the narrow sphere of personal, selfish interests must be enlarged, for it is impossible for a Christian to live unto himself. Self must be hidden in Christ, and divine help has been pledged to the aid of all those who will surrender their whole heart to God. It is in order that we may die to self that we are called upon to endure trials. In our sorest distress, Christ comes to our refuge. When every professed follower of Christ will make a covenant with God by sacrifice, will be determined that he will not indulge in selfish gratification, in studying his own ease, but will diligently plan to do God's service, then all will find the Lord a present help in every time of emergency. 2MR 270.2

Those who are laborers together with God will have the mind and spirit of Christ, and will experience His joy in seeking to help souls who are benighted to find hope in Jesus Christ. The Lord has commissioned us to push forward His work in the earth, but Satan is determined to counteract the work of redemption. He seeks to destroy the moral image of God in man, and to unite the human race with himself and his sympathizers who swerved from their allegiance to God and were cast out of heaven. He has sought by every manner of deception to establish his kingdom in the earth, and to conform all men unto his own standing. He is constantly seeking to make men feel the same hatred toward God as he himself feels, but we are to put forth diligent efforts to unfurl the banner of the third angel's message upon which is written, “The commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.” 2MR 270.3

The people of God are to walk in the light, and to be united in the great work of making up the breach that has been made in the law of God by the man of sin. They are to raise up the foundations of many generations. Not one who really believes the truth will stand feebly by in this perilous time as mere spectators without interest or energy. The flame of love for God must be kindled in every heart and in every home. Pettishness and stubbornness must die. Let all the people offer prayer in simplicity and faith that the banner of truth may be carried into new territory, and that souls may be brought into subjection to the Lord God of heaven. 2MR 271.1

It is true that our foes will be vigilant in opposing the truth, but we shall learn lessons from these trials, and become more patient, devoted, and persevering, in working in Christ's lines. Our foes are watching to see what we will do next, and how they will meet and oppose every effort of advance. But of our Captain it is written, “He shall not fail nor be discouraged, till He have set judgment in the earth” [Isaiah 42:4]. We are to partake of His spirit. 2MR 271.2

A decided reformation must take place in the spirit that prevails in the church in Hobart. Brother must be turned to brother and sister to sister before God can work as He longs to work for His people. There must be practice of the prayer of Christ when He prayed that His disciples might be one as He was one with the Father. Earnest efforts must be put forth in order that we shall prevail against Satan and secure harmony among the believers. Who in the church is working in persevering faith for the oneness for which Christ prayed? There is need of earnest work to overcome the selfish, overbearing spirit that has been working in the church and has been deadening its influence. Some have had a spirit to bruise, to hurt the souls of others, and why have they done this? It is because those they have criticized have not met their ideas of what Christian life should be, and they have judged their neighbors, spoken harsh things, and have made manifest the fact that they themselves were severe, harsh, and denunciatory. 2MR 272.1

This practice of speaking critical words of others does not tend to soften the heart, but works to sever very friends, to discourage souls who are passing through trials and difficulties. Instead of discouraging them, they should have sought to have uplifted them with their sympathy, to have spoken goodly, encouraging words, and to have prayed with and for them that God would give them divine strength. God requires that we shall help to sustain the fainting, discouraged soul in the hour of temptation. Let everyone who professes to belong to Christ work along His lines and make straight paths for their feet, lest the lame be turned out of the way. 2MR 272.2

Right in your families there are poor souls who need your help, who need that you shall speak to them words of comfort and love from a heart softened and subdued by the love of Christ. You should speak to them out of an earnest, longing desire to uplift and restore them. How many have grieved the Holy Spirit and misrepresented Christ in manifesting a spirit to bruise, to break, and to tear down. Those who are imbued with the love of Christ will make it manifest. Their very countenance will speak pity, and will reveal to their brethren and sisters that they are filled with a spirit of compassion towards them. 2MR 272.3

Oh, that those who have not the milk of human kindness in them might see that their thoughts, their feelings, words, and actions must be decidedly changed in order that the prayer of Christ may be fulfilled in the church. Their harsh, denunciatory spirit, their judging and evil speaking must be separated from them, or else they will continually scatter away from Christ. They should be exercising a sanctified influence, gathering with Christ in drawing souls to Him by the tender cords of love. The converting power of God must come upon the church in Hobart. A reformation must take place in the character of those who professedly are its most zealous members, or else because of their want of love they will wound and bruise and leave to perish many poor souls. Let the prayer go forth from unfeigned lips that the anointing of the Holy Spirit may come upon the eyes of the blind, so that each one may discern what is the estimate that Christ places upon the human soul. Christ was the Majesty of heaven, yet He left us an example of goodness, sympathy, and compassion in dealing with suffering humanity. 2MR 273.1

The value of our work does not consist in making a loud noise in the world, in being zealous, eager, and active in our own strength. The value of our work is in proportion to the impartation of the Holy Spirit. The value of our work comes through trust in God which brings holier qualities of mind, so that in patience we may possess our souls. We should continually pray to God to increase our strength, to make us strong in his strength, to kindle in our hearts the flame of divine love. The cause of God is best advanced by those who are meek and lowly in heart. The poor in spirit are blessed because they feel their great need. Brethren, the meekness of the Spirit of Christ has not been brought into your work. You must die to self, or your life work will be a failure. 2MR 273.2

I beg of you not to call meddling in other people's household affairs missionary work. Fault-finding and oppression stirs up the worst elements of human nature. With proper labor, many souls might have been added to the church who are driven from the fold into the wilderness of unbelief. 2MR 274.1

Instead of speaking harsh words, of making unfeeling remarks concerning those who are struggling against temptations, and who are not favorably situated for the formation of a symmetrical character, speak words inspired by the Holy Spirit, that are so full of Christian sympathy that the hardest heart will be touched by their kindness. The most persuasive eloquence is the word that is spoken in love and sympathy. Such a word will bring light to confused minds, will bring hope to the discouraged, and will lighten the dark prospect before them. You will meet just such cases in the church and out of the church. Make a covenant with God that you no more will indulge in a carnal, selfish ambition, but that you will work to reveal the fact that you love and serve Christ in meekness and lowliness of heart. Make determined, urgent efforts to save the erring and the perishing. Reveal the holiness of the cause and work in which you are engaged, so that you may not manifest the spirit of the enemy. 2MR 274.2

There has been a spirit in the church at Hobart that is not in harmony with the Spirit of Christ, and those who cherish harshness, who have been free to condemn others, need to hear the voice of the Saviour, as He says, “Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear My voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with Me” [Revelation 3:20]. Will you open the door of your hearts, and let Jesus take possession? Will you suffer Jesus to cleanse the soul-temple of its rubbish? Will you permit the Holy Spirit to take possession of the human habitation? If you will do this, you will have humble thoughts of yourself. You will not exalt your ideas and opinions as supreme. 2MR 274.3

Those who are tempted and tried, whom you regard as so weak, may be nearer to the kingdom of God than yourself. The Lord requires that you should help those who need help most. Do not withdraw from them because they do not meet your ideas, or the consequence will be that you will indulge in a spirit of judging, and will manifest harsh dealing toward them. Whatever may be your profession, this kind of doing places you in the ranks of the enemy, where you execute his orders, and do his work. You may be entirely deceived in yourself, and in spirit say, “Come, friends, see my zeal for the Lord,” but the family in heaven do not take delight in any such exhibitions. 2MR 275.1

In every church the members are to be helpers, workers together with God. What was it that moved Christ to leave the heavenly courts and come to this world? Was it to save people who felt no need of salvation? Was it to confine His labors to those who, though they had been blessed with great light, had not improved their privileges? He says, “I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance” [Luke 5:32]. The mission of Christ was to seek and to save that which was lost. Those who feel strong in themselves, who would separate from those who do not meet their ideal, who stand aloof from them in cold-hearted indifference, do not manifest the spirit of Christ. Whatever may be their profession they are not bearing the yoke of Christ nor lifting His burden. They have not the mind of Christ, and would be a hindrance to the prosperity of any church with which they might come in contact. They cannot be laborers together with God unless they seek the meekness and live the humble life of Christ. 2MR 275.2

Our churches are in need of being purified from all selfishness. There is need of a deeper conviction and livelier faith. The love of God cannot be in the heart of anyone who does not cherish patience, kindness, and forbearance toward His brethren. The revelation of these attributes will be in Christ. Many who bustle about with great activity flatter themselves that they are Christians, but it is the manner of spirit that we manifest in the home and in the church that will tell the character of our work. 2MR 276.1

To everyone who is walking in the light, one who is not walking in the light will be an object of solicitude and most earnest prayer. But the Lord does not sanction anyone in presenting the attitude of a moral iceberg. It is not the spirit of Christ that leads men to wrap about themselves the garments of self-righteousness, and to say in spirit, “I am holier than thou.” Those who are free to denounce, to find fault, to judge and condemn others are not working upon Christlike principles. They should rather have travail of soul for those who need their help, to go forth and seek the wandering lost sheep. 2MR 276.2

Who is pleading with God that He may teach them what to do when souls are wounded and bruised, and struggling with temptation? Who is seeking to help them by kindly words? Who is arming himself with the armor of righteousness, studying ways and means to help these souls who are ready to perish? Are human agents cooperating with divine instrumentalities, increasing their moral efficiency by praying for faith, for wisdom and tact, whereby methods may be perfected that will reach the cases that appear most difficult? Who is passing these poor souls by on the other side? Who is making it evident that he loves these souls for whom Christ has given His life? Who is improving the light that God has given in order that he may impart light to others? Who is becoming thoroughly furnished with the word of God unto every good work? Who is becoming a living stone in the temple of God to emit light, and to shine amid the moral darkness of the world? 2MR 276.3

Christ has given His precious life to make it possible to establish a church that will be capable of caring for sorrowful, tempted, perishing souls. He has bought us with His own life, shed His own blood in order that He might wash away the stains of sin, and clothe us with the garments of salvation. The church must build on Christ by carrying out as His representative the mind and spirit of Christ. His people are to be links in the golden chain that binds souls one to another and to God. We are to put forth personal efforts for the saving of souls that are ready to perish. Christ said, “Ye are the light of the world” [Matthew 5:14]. 2MR 277.1

That which Christ has taught and done, His representatives are to teach and do in their mission of saving the souls of men. Cold austerity is to be melted away, harshness and evil speaking is to be purged from the character. The influence of Christ is to be cherished and diffused to those who are about us, by a well-ordered life and a godly conversation. The people of God are to shine as lights amid the moral darkness of the world. The time in which we live calls for vital, sanctified energy, for earnestness, zeal, tenderest sympathy, and love. The time calls for the speaking of words that will not create misery, not come from mere profession of righteousness, from a dead form, but from a living piety. Half a dozen persons whose light is clear and shining will be of far more value in Hobart than a thousand who have no vital piety. 2MR 277.2

The Lord is not pleased with the forbidding attitude that many have maintained toward the children in the Hobart church. They seem to have forgotten that children are the heritage of the Lord. They seem to have forgotten the words and the example of Christ, who took little children in His arms and blessed them. We should help and encourage those who are mothers of children by praying with and for them, for they are often in need of encouragement. 2MR 278.1

We should remember that God has honored the young. He chose Joseph in his youth to do a special work in behalf of His people. He accepted Samuel when his mother dedicated him to His service, and passed by the aged priest who had neglected to fulfill his solemn, sacred charge, and had failed to train his children in the right way. The Lord communicated a solemn message to the boy Samuel. The Lord has died for children, and He is ready to do a great work for them if parents will cooperate with Him in training and educating their children according to the instruction that He has given. The character in childhood of John the Baptist should be an encouragement to parents in the training of their children. 2MR 278.2

To bring up the children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord is the greatest missionary work that parents can perform. The mother is entrusted with a greater work than is the king upon his throne. She has a class of duty to perform in connection with her children that no other one can perform. If she daily learns in the school of Christ, she will discharge her duty in the fear of God, and care for the children as the Lord's beautiful flock. 2MR 278.3

Mothers should forbear from fretting and scolding. It is not safe to practice habits of fretting and scolding, for you will become unpleasant and harsh in your home, and will be likely to burst into a passion at anything that displeases you. This would greatly injure your soul, and injure the souls of your family. Be patient, be kind, be gentle. Gain the confidence and love of your children, and it will not be difficult to control them. Never fret, never threaten, never make a promise to your children that you cannot fulfill. Your lack of fulfilling your word will weaken the confidence of your children in you. 2MR 278.4

Children are exhorted to obey their parents in the Lord, but parents are also enjoined, “Provoke not your children to wrath, lest they be discouraged.” Do not treat them in such a way that they will think that there is no use trying to be good and to do right, for they are treated with injustice and in an unreasonable manner. Children born into the world in this age have many difficulties to encounter. Sin will lie at the door of parents unless they take themselves in hand and qualify themselves to become wise, safe, Christian teachers. 2MR 279.1

No doubt you will see faults and waywardness on the part of your children. Some parents will tell you that they talk to and punish their children, but they cannot see that it does them any real good. Let such parents try new methods. Let them mingle kindness and affection and love with their family government, and yet let them be as firm as a rock to right principles. Oftentimes the waywardness of children is due to the mismanagement of parents. 2MR 279.2

When children have done wrong, they themselves are convicted of their sin and feel humiliated and distressed. To scold them for their faults will often result in making them stubborn and secretive. Like unruly colts, they seem determined to make trouble, and scolding will do them no good. Parents should seek to divert their minds into some other channel. 2MR 279.3

But the trouble is, parents are not uniform in their management, but move more from impulse than from principle. They fly into a passion and do not set an example before their children that Christian parents should. One day they pass over the wrong-doings of their children, and the next day they manifest no patience or self-control. They do not keep the way of the Lord to do justice and judgment. They are often more guilty than are their children. 2MR 279.4

Some children will soon forget a wrong that is done to them by father and mother, but other children who are differently constituted cannot forget severe, unreasonable punishment which they did not deserve. Thus their souls are injured, and their minds bewildered. The mother loses her opportunities to instill right principles into the mind of the child, because she did not maintain self-control and manifest a well-balanced mind in her deportment and words. 2MR 280.1

Let fathers and mothers make a solemn promise to God whom they profess to love and obey, that by His grace they will not disagree between themselves, but will in their own life and temper manifest the spirit that they wish their children to cherish. The manifestation of anger on account of the misdeeds of your children will never help them to reform. Parents may manifest sorrow on account of the wrongs of their little ones, and at the same time show love for their children. Let parents set before their children their errors and wrongs not in a spirit of harshness, but in love. Let them seek to reach the tender heart of the erring one, that he may feel he has grieved Jesus who loves him more than his earthly parents can. But while it is the duty of parents to teach love to their children, they are not to indulge them in wrong habits, or in yielding to their evil inclinations. The manifestation of this kind of love is cruel. 2MR 280.2

The minister of God must be interested in the children and youth, if he would be a faithful pastor of the flock of God. He should make his discourses plain and simple, using language that will be easy to be understood. He should follow the lessons that have been given by the greatest Teacher the world can ever know, preaching in such a manner that the uneducated and the children may readily comprehend the theme of salvation. Children and youth have been strangely neglected. 2MR 280.3

Some who have not children of their own should educate themselves to love and care for the children of others. They may not be called to go to a foreign field of labor, but they may be called to work in the very locality in which they live. In place of giving so much attention to pets, lavishing affection upon dumb animals, let them exercise their talent upon human beings who have a heaven to win and a hell to shun. Let them give their attention to little children whose characters they may mold and fashion after the divine similitude. Place your love upon the homeless little ones that are around you. Instead of closing your heart to the members of the human family, see how many of these little homeless ones you can bring up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. There is an abundance of work for everyone who wants work to do. By engaging in this line of Christian endeavor, the church may be increased in members and enriched in spirit. The work of saving the homeless and the fatherless is everyone's business. 2MR 281.1

Instead of standing aloof, instead of complaining of the wickedness of children, and the trouble they cause, let your influence be used to aid in their redemption. Instead of criticizing the children, seek to aid the weary, careworn mothers. Seek to lighten their burdens. Here is a mission field at your door where you may exert an influence that will be a blessing to the church. What an army of workers might be added to the church if the children would give their fresh affections to the Lord, and work for other children and youth. There is a work to be done that may be as enduring as eternity. 2MR 281.2

Church members should become active, zealous workers, seeking to benefit the souls who are exposed to temptation, and who are being drawn away into perilous paths of disobedience to the commandments of God. Everyone who engages in this work in the love of Christ is cooperating with heavenly intelligences, who have long been waiting to aid them in the very class of missionary work that has been so long neglected. Those who engage in this class of work will have more than finite energy to work with them and through them. Let every Christian in the church seek to devise plans to interest and instruct the children, and be determined that he will not fail nor be discouraged in the work. If they work as they should, they will feel the need of divine guidance, for it is not possible to be successful in this matter without the help of God. Children are the property of God, the younger members of the Lord's family, and interest expressed for these children and for the mothers of these children is in perfect harmony with the laws of God's government. 2MR 282.1

“He that watereth shall be watered also himself” [Proverbs 11:25]. This is a guarantee that every worker shall receive grace for the grace imparted to others. Every laborer who labors for the good of children and youth, mothers and fathers, neighbors and associates, will find that God will fulfill His promise. He says, “Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke? Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? When thou seest the naked, that thou cover him; and that thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh? Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, and thine health shall spring forth speedily: and thy righteousness shall go before thee; the glory of the Lord shall be thy rereward. Then shalt thou call, and the Lord shall answer; thou shalt cry, and He shall say, Here I am. If thou take away from the midst of thee the yoke, the putting forth of the finger, and speaking vanity; and if thou draw out thy soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; then shall thy light rise in obscurity, and thy darkness be as the noonday: and the Lord shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones: and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of waters, whose waters fail not” [Isaiah 58:6-11]. 2MR 282.2

The church cannot grow in the knowledge of God and of Jesus Christ until its members enter into the spirit of the work. Let no one make the defection of another one an excuse for not engaging in the work. We have not a moment to lose in looking to others, but should be engaged in the service of Christ. Because some who name the name of Christ walk unworthy of their calling, it is all the more necessary that we seek to shun every evil habit, to put away everything that will weaken our influence and cause others to make us an excuse for not doing the work that God requires. In every duty, whether temporal or spiritual, we have a relation one to another. He who neglects the least duty in the Lord's moral vineyard will be registered as lacking in the books of heaven, weighed in the balances of the sanctuary, and found wanting. God has given to every man his work, and he who neglects his work inflicts injury on the cause of Christ. We are to be followers of that which is good, to show ourselves approved unto God, workmen that need not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. This is applicable, not only to ministers who preach the word, but to every soul who believes in Christ. 2MR 283.1

We should manifest genuine interest in humanity, doing the very work that Christ came to do in the world. He did not give to us the work of dissecting character. The church in Hobart is like many other churches, not so good or not so bad that there is no chance for improvement. Great changes may be wrought by well-directed, prayerful, earnest efforts, by each one trying to do his best in the sight of God. Individuals must make improvement, and cease educating themselves in critical ways and habits. Let each one consider that others may find just as objectionable traits in their characters as can be found in those who have been severely criticized and condemned. Let every human agent employ his ability in doing good to others, in bringing their lives in accordance with the principles of Christ. Let each one individually do that which his hands find to do, practice economy, bind about his wants, and save something from his meager store to sustain the work and cause of God. 2MR 283.2

Our faith should lay hold upon God, and we should expect success. The great multitude was fed with a very meager supply. Let our scattered supply be placed in missionary work, and God will multiply it as we shall impart to others, so that all may eat and be filled. We are not to stop our work and measure our advance in the work by the means at hand. To do this is to show a very limited faith. As God said to Moses, so He says to us, “Go forward.” We are to diffuse the gospel over the whole earth, and, be our means large or small, we are to plan and work in faith, realizing our responsibility as God's human agents to whom He has given this great work. Then stop fretting over the evils that you cannot help and do your work in sincerity and faith, that your characters may be formed after the divine pattern. 2MR 284.1

God is true. Christ says, “Behold, I come quickly; and My reward is with Me, to give every man according as his work shall be” [Revelation 22:12]. He “will render to every man according to his deeds: To them who by patient continuance in well doing seek for glory and honour and immortality.” He will render “eternal life: But unto them that are contentious, and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness,” He will render “indignation and wrath, tribulation and anguish, upon every soul of man that doeth evil, of the Jew first, and also of the Gentile; but glory, honor, and peace, to every man that worketh good, to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile: for there is no respect of persons with God” [Romans 2:6-11].—Manuscript 38, 1895, 1-22. (“To the Church in Hobart, May, 1895.) 2MR 284.2

Released May 16, 1963.