The Review and Herald

590/1902

August 11, 1891

Care of the Mites

EGW

I wish I could impress on every mind the grievous sinfulness of wasting the Lord's money on fancied wants. The expenditure of sums that look small, may start a train of circumstances that will reach into eternity. When the Judgment shall sit, and the books are opened, the losing side will be presented to your view—the good that you might have done with the accumulated mites and the larger sums that were used for wholly selfish purposes. And what will it reveal?—Just that deficiency in the bank of heaven,—robbery toward God, some destitute bodies not clothed, some poor souls praying for light and knowledge robbed of the bread of life. Your money went to gratify perverted appetite, or to indulge vanity. O, what shame and grief will come to your souls as you see how much you have lost! Look about you, and see if there is not a work which the Lord has given you. The Isaiah 58:1 presents before you a work that has been neglected. RH August 11, 1891, par. 1

There are many professors of religion in our world, but few who follow Jesus with pure and holy purposes. The Bible means just what it says. The blessings are distinctly apportioned to those who are Christ-like, whose hearts are touched with human woe, and who realize that they are trading with their Lord's money. Such will not feel at liberty to use the money in their hands for purchasing unnecessary articles to please their vanity, to gratify pride and love of display; but they will look at it as the Lord's. There is a place for every penny that you do not actually need for comfortable food and clothing. The empty treasury in different States calls out against every needless expenditure. If you have money, do not spend it for extra ribbons or trimmings or articles of adornment, but let the rivulets flow into the treasury of God, to be registered to your account in the books of heaven. To fashion the garments after the world's standard, requires much more means than to make them after the divine directions given in the word of God. RH August 11, 1891, par. 2

The unfallen universe looks with amazement upon the church-members who are not lively stones in the spiritual building. They see the covetousness which leads men to use God's intrusted means for their own gratification and enjoyment. They see the Lord's goods diverted from the true channel to please fancy, to gratify selfishness, because it is in the user's power to do it. If professed Christians lived by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God, they would study the living oracles diligently, to know what is the will of God, to be doers of that will, irrespective of the world's standard. I am pained as I go into the homes of church-members, and see a multitude of pictures of themselves and their friends. How must the holy angels look upon these pictures adorning tables and mantel-pieces—pictures, pictures, everywhere? All these things cost money, sums taken from the treasury of God, from the capital which the Lord has given us to be used for his glory. But many have used it to please themselves. That money which they expended, whether it was a trifle or a large sum, was the Lord's money; for they themselves are Christ's purchased possession, and hence all they have belongs to him. All the means they have which is not necessary for their own comfort, should be put into the treasury of God, where it may be used to help the needy, to clothe the naked, and to assist in the various departments of the cause. RH August 11, 1891, par. 3

Many church-members are idle, thus losing precious opportunities for doing good. In this they are grievously sinning against God, who gave his only begotten Son to a life of humiliation, self-denial, and self-sacrifice, and a shameful death, that they might not perish, but have everlasting life. There is need that every one should do what he can. The Master calleth for you. You are his servant, to do his will. Pray much in your closet, that you may have divine enlightenment, clear spiritual eye-sight, to discern the work the Lord has left for you to do; for he has given to every man his work. All who have faith in Jesus will put on Christ, and work after his example, improving not only their time, but feeling the worth of the pence, the shillings, and the dollars that come into their hands. RH August 11, 1891, par. 4

To every one are committed talents to improve. Even if you have but one talent, God expects you to put that one to use, to improve it, and thus gain other talents. There is abundance of work for each and all, according to their ability. Begin by giving yourselves to Jesus, and then ever bear in mind that you do not live to please self; for Christ, the world's Redeemer, pleased not himself. He was quick to catch the first intimation that help was needed by poor, depressed souls. You must individually be laborers together with God. You cannot do this, and close the door of the heart to human woe and human necessities. RH August 11, 1891, par. 5

The God of heaven has revealed his self-denying, self-sacrificing love in giving “his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” We are to be representatives of Jesus, in the family, in the workshop, in our place of business, in social gatherings,—everywhere on every occasion. How shall we do this?—By ever keeping the way of the Lord, by subordinating our will, our mind, our soul, our body, our intrusted capital, to him. He has purchased us with his own blood, and we are required to co-operate with him in the working out of the great plan of redemption. Said Christ, “Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.” Jesus does not require of man any real sacrifice; for whatever we are asked to surrender is only that which we are better off without. We are only letting go the lesser, the more worthless, for the greater, the more valuable. Every earthly, temporal consideration must be subordinate to the higher. But abundant blessings are promised to sincere faith and obedience. “Every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my name's sake, shall receive a hundred-fold, and shall inherit everlasting life.” RH August 11, 1891, par. 6

Young men, do not think that because you are not preachers you have nothing to do in saving the souls for whom Christ has given his own precious life. Whatever may be your business, whatever your ability, however high your station, the words of Christ are addressed to you: “Without me ye can do nothing.” When you feel no burden to win souls to Christ, you are not co-operating with him in doing the work which he requires of you. You are not connected with Jesus. Solemn thought! The day of trust is now, in this life. There is not a member of the church but has some trust committed to him for which he is responsible. God's whole family are either workers or idlers in his vineyard. If one cannot trade upon pounds, he can upon pence. To every man is given his work, and God will excuse none. He requires returns corresponding to the gifts bestowed, and the fidelity of every soul is tested by the way he uses his Lord's goods. RH August 11, 1891, par. 7

Let young women also see the many places which it is perfectly proper and consistent for them to fill, where they may do good. Let them stand no longer idle, when the Master's vineyard is in need of workers. My young sisters, you may be wholly unconscious of your power, because you do not believe you have ability to do great service; but lay hold of the duties lying directly in your pathway, trade on the talents already intrusted to you, and you will be doing the work God wants you to do. Do not fold your one talent in a napkin and bury it, and think you should be commended for your humility; for the Lord will surely require of you its improvement. In putting out to the exchangers that one talent, you may weave into your work modesty, caution, and delicacy of feeling; in your great need you may lay hold upon the efficiency that is in Jesus, to help you to do your work with fidelity and thoroughness. RH August 11, 1891, par. 8

When will the members of our churches take up the work left for them to do? Where is the self-denial? Where is the self-sacrifice? Does not the plea of unfitness, whereby many are shirking responsibilities, stand registered against many as a great sin? It may well be said to such, If you are unfit now, with all your opportunities for becoming what God would have you be, you must be dwarfs in religious life, you cannot be growing up unto the full stature of men and women in Christ. The flimsy excuses you are making for your do-nothing position, you will be ashamed to make before the Judge of all the earth. RH August 11, 1891, par. 9

In the parable of the man who buried his one talent in the earth, the Lord has faithfully pointed out your duty. It shows to every one, high or low, rich or poor, educated or uneducated, that he has a personal responsibility. You must arouse from your lethargy, your carnal security, and go to work to make use of every talent, every power, given you by God. You may reason that because your talent is small, it is no matter whether you use it or not; but it matters just as much to you as it did to that man in the parable. Your life is bound up with the lives of others. If you feel no care to be a blessing to others, if you are not laboring together with God here, right here in this life, you will have no place in the mansions above. You do not know how successfully God can use you if you will put your whole heart, your whole mind and soul and might, into his service. RH August 11, 1891, par. 10