The Review and Herald

248/1902

February 5, 1884

Notes of Travel

The Meeting at Wellsville, N. Y.

EGW

At the close of the meeting in South Lancaster, Mass., we went to Wellsville to meet with our brethren and sisters of the Pennsylvania Conference. On the way, we spent several days in the city of New York, at the home of Bro. and Sr. Boynton, who are engaged in missionary work there. It may seem that the work they are doing is a small beginning in so large a city, and that it cannot amount to much. It is indeed a small beginning; and when I see how great the work and how few the laborers, I am deeply pained. Dear brethren and sisters, when you become imbued with the missionary spirit, when you learn to love your neighbor as yourself, you will not be content to see souls perishing all around you without doing all you can to save them. RH February 5, 1884, par. 1

The prophet Isaiah, speaking by divine inspiration, exclaims, “Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and show my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins.” Want of faith in God and love for our fellow-men are the great sins of the present time. Selfishness, self-love, and love of display are withholding means from the Lord's treasury, and crippling the work that must be done. Satan is a sharp financier, and he manages with subtlety to keep in his service every dollar that he can; and money is invested in houses and lands and spent for selfish gratification that ought to be used in sending the light of truth to all parts of the world. Practical faith will lead to greater consecration. If a man believes present truth, his works will testify to the fact. The character of our work encourages the strongest faith; we have the treasury of Heaven to draw upon. Our large cities are to be entered by making beginnings, however small, and then working by faith. The Lord has committed to his followers the work of giving the message of warning, and those who have means should give financial aid. May the Lord move upon hearts to do this. RH February 5, 1884, par. 2

In New York City we now have a reading-room and a depository for our publications. Ships are visited, and the publications placed on board are carried to all parts of the world. Until the Judgment shall sit, it will not be known how much good has been done by this sowing of the gospel seed. Although for a time it may seem to have perished, if sown in faith and with earnest prayer, it will spring up and bear fruit. Brethren, you who are making a small beginning in the large cities, you are doing a good work, one which ought to have been entered upon years ago. Do not be discouraged if at first you see but little fruit of your labor. Continue to sow beside all waters, remembering the words of Christ, “Without me ye can do nothing.” “If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.” Will the people of God, who believe that we are living in the last days, wait for the light to be given to the world by some wonderful manifestation of divine power, while they themselves stand idle and irresponsible? Let us not, by our unbelief, stay the work of God and shut out his blessing. RH February 5, 1884, par. 3

A larger number of the brethren of the Pennsylvania Conference were at the Wellsville meeting than we had expected to see. The ministers who attended the General Conference had received a blessing, and its influence was felt here. The meetings had been in progress two days when we arrived, and the brethren were already entering into the spirit of the work. Many manifested a strong desire for a new conversion, an entire submission to the will of God. Confessions of impatience, of fretfulness, of love of the world, were made with deep feeling. I was very anxious that the work should be thorough. Through his prophet God promises, “Ye shall find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.” He demands the whole heart, or he will not accept the offering; many fail through being half-hearted. RH February 5, 1884, par. 4

As soon as we realize that we are not our own, but are bought with a price, even the precious blood of the Son of God, we shall work from an altogether higher standpoint. God despises a dead offering; he requires a living sacrifice, with intellect, sensibilities, and will fully enlisted in his service. Every distinctive faculty should be devoted to this work,—our feet swift to move at the call of duty, our hands ready to act when work is to be done, our lips prepared to speak the truth in love, and show forth the praise of Him who has called us out of darkness into his marvelous light. We should continue this consecration, not taking anything from the altar; for this is sacrilege. When his people thus consecrate themselves in sincerity and humility, they are accepted of God; and they become to him a sweet-smelling savor, diffusing a rich fragrance throughout all the earth. The mind is at rest, and the eyes are opened to behold wonderful things out of the law of God. That which was not understood when the mind was darkened and divided now becomes clear. Oh, amazing light for all who by faith and patient reliance upon Jesus claim the fullness of the promise of God! RH February 5, 1884, par. 5

I was enabled to walk a quarter of a mile to attend the meetings held at half past five in the morning. A very gratifying interest was manifested in these early meetings. Persevering labor was put forth, and was attended with good results. It is my earnest prayer that these dear brethren and sisters may daily learn precious lessons in the school of Christ. “Learn of me,” says the great Teacher; “for I am meek and lowly in heart; and ye shall find rest to your souls.” Would that every one of them would testify to the world the matchless power of God, and his wonderful love to the children of men! RH February 5, 1884, par. 6

There were two young men at the Wellsville meeting who attended Battle Creek College at the time when there was a state of things among teachers and students that confused the mind. The spirit then prevailing was not a right spirit; and while some gave them right counsel, others gave them advice that was not so good. These young men confessed that they did not take a right course themselves, and expressed great regret that they did not do differently. I was glad to listen to these confessions, and I am sure that quite a number will have to make similar ones before they can advance in the divine life. May the Lord give these youth that repentance that needeth not to be repented of. RH February 5, 1884, par. 7

At this meeting I knew that I had help from Jesus, the source of my strength. Without this divine aid, I could not have borne my testimony. Sunday I attended three meetings of our people, and at each one spoke about half an hour. In the afternoon I walked half a mile to the Baptist church, and for an hour and a half spoke to a full house on the subject of Temperance. There was the best of attention; and at the close of the service, several ladies came forward and expressed their grateful appreciation of the words spoken. RH February 5, 1884, par. 8

I was glad to see our brethren and sisters manifest a disposition to bring their offerings to the Lord. At this meeting about five thousand dollars was pledged to be used in enlarging the missionary work in the Pennsylvania Conference, and in establishing a depository of our publications. The means raised exceeded their expectations; but it would be no more than just and right for them to raise ten thousand dollars, and I believe they will do it. I believe they will present their willing offerings to God, and he will bless them. RH February 5, 1884, par. 9

We make progressive movements; but at every step prejudice and false ideas must be removed. This has been the case with every reformatory movement the world has ever seen. To some of small faith and selfish, money-loving disposition, each advance move has portended general disaster and an extravagant outlay of means. They have felt as did that poor man Judas when the ointment was poured upon the head of Jesus. Why this great waste? said he; this ought to have been sold, and the money given to the poor. Again and again, when some advance step has been taken, the selfish, cautious one have thought that everything was going to ruin; but when the battle has been fought against all odds, they have hailed the victory as a token that God was in the movement. When it has been so fully demonstrated that the work was of God that unbelief has had to yield, the men who led out, whose foresight was greater than that of others, who worked against all opposition, are hailed as men raised up for the time, and led by the Spirit of God. Do those men who blocked the way realize the work they have done? Do they see that the addition of their money, their strength, their faith, and courage, might have made the work stronger and more influential, and that their neglect to do what they could is sin? Many of these pioneers have become gray and enfeebled in making mighty efforts to advance the cause of God and the work of reform, while their brethren stood ready to wound them with their weapons of unbelief. There are graves in churchyards that would not now be there, had it not been for this very work of unbelief. Men of wisdom, mighty men of God, after having years added to their lives, and pressing through many obstacles, have failed, and gone to rest; and now we need their help. RH February 5, 1884, par. 10

Would that we lived so near the cross that we could see as God sees, and work as he would have us work. If our brethren would learn the value of souls in the light of what their salvation has cost Jesus, they would know that souls are of greater value than houses and lands, gold and precious stones, or high positions of honor. Jesus calls upon us to love one another as he has loved us. May the Lord enlarge our minds to comprehend eternal things; for when we do, selfishness will disappear, and we shall be doers of the word, and not idle hearers. RH February 5, 1884, par. 11

We left our brethren and sisters in Pennsylvania greatly encouraged, and at twelve o'clock at night took the cars for Hornellsville. We rode one hour, and were then obliged to wait in the depot till half past four in the morning. I spent this time in writing. RH February 5, 1884, par. 12

Monday evening, about eight o'clock, we arrived at Battle Creek, very weary, and with only a few days in which to prepare for our long journey across the plains. Friday night I spoke to the helpers at the Sanitarium, and on the Sabbath to a large congregation in the Tabernacle. These were my closing labors in the East on this journey, and I have to say to the praise of God, that he has sustained me at every step. I have prayed in the night season; and in the day, when traveling, I have been pleading with God for strength, for grace, for light from his presence; and I know in whom I have believed. I return to California with more strength and better courage than I had when I left Oakland the 12th of August. RH February 5, 1884, par. 13

I desire the love of Jesus as I never desired it before. I see reason to praise God for his goodness, his preserving care, and for the sweet peace, joy, and courage he gave me on this journey. I started out by faith, and not by sight; and I have seen the hand of God in every day's labor, and daily his praise has been in my heart and on my lips. His Spirit has helped my infirmities in so marked a manner that I cannot fear to commit myself to his keeping. I have the perfect assurance of his love. He has heard and answered my prayers, and I will praise his name. RH February 5, 1884, par. 14