The Review and Herald

415/1902

October 11, 1887

From Voh Winkel, Prussia, to Copenhagen Denmark

EGW

We left Voh Winkel, Prussia, at 7 A. M., for Gladbach. We found this to be a large city. We were met at the depot by Bro. Doerner, and took a hack which brought us to the home of Sr. Doerner, Bro. Doerner's mother. Her two daughters live with her, and all are in the faith. Breakfast was ready and waiting for our arrival, but I could not eat, and was relieved to find a place to lie down and rest; for I had scarcely strength to sit up. By invitation, we visited Bro. Doerner's family. On the way, the hack was strongly jerked about, and to all appearance there was a breakdown. We hastily got out, and found the fills had separated from the hack. These sudden movements caused us some little alarm at first, until we understood that nothing had broken, but that in preparing the hack for service, while the fills had been put in place, the linchpins had not been put in position to hold the fills firmly to the body of the hack. This neglect might have caused a serious accident. As it was, we only had some reflections. RH October 11, 1887, par. 1

How many in temporal things leave some little pin loose in machinery, or in conveyances, and the result is loss of life! For the little pins and screws keep the whole machinery together, so that all parts work harmoniously. What a wonderful piece of machinery is the human mind! Should it be loose and careless, doing things after a hap-hazard manner, how much suffering would be the result! how much mortality would ensue! How dependent mortals are upon God every moment, for thoughts at the right time to do the right things, in this busy world of ours! What could we do without the wisdom of our all-wise God in the every-day occurrences of life? I felt to thank God with my whole heart for his great love and care exercised continually for the children of men, and to regret that so few recognize the hand of God in their life. RH October 11, 1887, par. 2

This accident may apply to spiritual life. How many are making mistakes in the religious life because they fail to do their work at all points with carefulness! And by the movements of the church, it is evident there are screws left out that ought to be in use. The result is, there are many mishaps and disasters constantly disturbing the tranquillity of the church,—many jerky movements, because some one did not think, and did not exercise wisdom and godliness and faith; and there is a separation from God, the source of all wisdom; when, if each one had acted his part with fidelity, done his work as unto the Lord, faithfully discharging his duty, the church would be a bright and shining light in the world. But these screws left out from where they should be in church discipline and church training, to keep things harmoniously adjusted, the placing of them in their proper position is not by many felt to be their individual work; and the first thing, like our conveyance, everything is separating and working apart. RH October 11, 1887, par. 3

Everything being united again by those two little screws, we went along smoothly. Sr. Doerner met us at the gate, with a welcome expressed in her kindly face, and her words full of happy welcome, which were interpreted to us by Eld. Conradi. We greeted the little ones, and thought of the words of Christ—“Of such is the kingdom of God” Pure and guileless, they were the treasures of the household. My heart offered a silent prayer to God, that they might be trained for him, kept pure and spotless from the corruptions of the world, and shine at last in the courts of the Lord above. That mother has a responsibility to mold and fashion these young minds, that they shall be the jewels of the household always, and finally be God's jewels, to shine in the paradise of God. The father and mother will have work to do, earnest, continuous work, to give line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little and there a little. If they do their part in faith, God will not fail to do his part fully. RH October 11, 1887, par. 4

Sister Doerner is the daughter of Bro. Lindermann, who has kept the Sabbath for twenty-five or thirty years. He is now living, and is eighty-three years of age. It is through his influence that the Doerner family received the Sabbath. There are three brothers who at the present time are observing the Sabbath. They are united owners of a large manufacturing establishment, in which cotton goods and cotton and woolen goods are made. RH October 11, 1887, par. 5

Connected with the dwelling of Bro. Doerner are well-kept grounds, ornamented with a variety of trees, shrubs, and flowers. We are to see and enjoy the works of God in the beauties of nature, and in them read the love of God to man, which should ever call forth from our hearts a response of gratitude and love to our Creator. As we look upon the things of natural loveliness, they have ever a softening, subduing influence upon the mind and character; and these things of nature are the expression of the love of God to man; for the Lord is a lover of the beautiful. The shrubs and flowers, with their varied tints, are God's ministers, carrying the mind up from nature to nature's God. Christ, the world's Redeemer, made these flowers of natural loveliness, to delight the senses, and to teach to the inhabitants of earth lessons of God's love, and care, and continual working for the happiness and benefit of his children—to teach them that God loves the beautiful. Jesus said: “Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: and yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.” RH October 11, 1887, par. 6

If our minds are open to the impressions of the Spirit of God, we may learn lessons from the simple and beautiful things of nature. I feel oppressed in the crowded cities, where there is naught for the eyes to look upon but houses. The flowers are to us constant teachers. The shrubs and flowers gather to themselves the properties of earth and air which they appropriate to perfect the beautiful buds and blossoming flowers, for our happiness; but they are God's preachers, and we are to consider the lessons which they teach us. RH October 11, 1887, par. 7

Just so has God given us the precious promises throughout his word. The Scriptures are open to us as the garden of God, and their promises are as fragrant flowers blooming all over that garden. God especially calls our attention to the very ones that are appropriate for us. In these promises we may discern the character of God, and read his love to us. They are the ground upon which our faith rests, the support and strength of our faith and hope; and through these we are to delight our souls in God, and breathe in the fragrance of heaven. Through the precious promises he withdraws the veil from the future, and gives us glimpses of the things which he has prepared for those who love him. And yet “eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.” RH October 11, 1887, par. 8

All these promises, all these assurances in the garden of God's word, are to us an expression of the love of God to man, and we should not regard them with carelessness or indifference; but as we would examine the precious flowers in our brother's garden, and inhale their fragrance, delighting our senses with their loveliness and fragrance, just so we should take the promises of God, one by one, and examine them closely on every side—take in their richness, and be soothed, comforted, encouraged, and strengthened by them. God has provided for all the comforts the soul needs. They are suited to the friendless, the poverty stricken, the wealthy, the sick, the bereaved,—all may have their appropriate help if they will see and take hold upon these by faith. God scatters blessings all along our path, to brighten the rugged way of life; and we want to be receiving all the comfort and tokens of God's love with grateful hearts. RH October 11, 1887, par. 9

But here in this beautiful spot were thoughts of the woes of mortality. We were sad to learn that the threefold cord that had united these brothers in faith and in their temporal interests, was soon to be severed. The eldest of the three was suffering under great affliction, and to all human appearances could never be well again in this life. But how precious to those who are losing their loved of this world are their faith and hope in the promises of God, which open before them the future immortal life! Their hopes may fasten upon unseen realities of the future world. Christ has risen from the dead the first-fruits. Hope and faith strengthen the soul to pass through the dark shadows of the tomb, in full faith of coming forth to immortal life in the morning of the resurrection. The paradise of God, the home of the blessed! There all tears shall be wiped from off all faces! When Christ shall come the second time, to be “admired in all them that believe,” death shall be swallowed up in victory, and there shall be no more sickness, no more sorrow, no more death! A rich promise is given to us: “Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.” Is not this promise rich and comforting to those who love God? And the promise is found in the garden of God's word: “To them who by patient continuance in well-doing seek for glory and honor and immortality, eternal life.” Paul declares: “Our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.” RH October 11, 1887, par. 10

May [30] was a holy day, the second day of Pentecost. No work in the factories was done on that day, colors were flying from many buildings, and the people in crowds were making their way to the churches. A great account is made throughout Europe of the holy days, and they have many of them. RH October 11, 1887, par. 11

At 5 P. M., I spoke to those assembled, from St. John 15:1-3. Bro. Conradi interpreted in German. The truth was to me a reality, and I felt that God indeed gave me special strength and imparted to me of his Holy Spirit while speaking. I saw before me an intelligent company, who had had but few privileges and little labor from the ministering brethren. We hope and pray that this meeting may prove a blessing to those who were present. Bro. Conradi mentioned a request that had been made for the afflicted brother, for the prayers in his behalf of those assembled who had faith. We sent up our humble petitions for the sick and afflicted one, who was losing his hold on this life. As we presented this case before the Lord, we felt the assurance of the love of God even in this affliction. We felt that God loved him, and that he would do that which would be for the best good of the suffering one and his afflicted family, and for his own name's glory. We could only leave the case in the hands of God; for he loves his suffering children, and apportions his grace to every trial. RH October 11, 1887, par. 12

Tuesday, May 31, about eleven o'clock, we were seated in the cars for Hamburg, on our way to Copenhagen, Denmark, where we were to hold several meetings. At Dusseldorf we changed cars, and were obliged to wait two hours in the depot. Here we had an opportunity to study human nature. The ladies came in, changed their outer wraps, and then surveyed themselves on every side, to see that their dress was faultless. Then extra touches of powder must be put upon their faces. Long they lingered before the mirror, in order to arrange their outward apparel to their satisfaction, for the purpose of appearing their best when looked upon by human eyes. I thought of the law of God, the great moral looking-glass into which the sinner is to look to discover the defects of his character. If all would study the law of God—the moral standard of character—as diligently and critically as many do their outward appearance by means of the looking-glass, with a purpose to correct and reform every defect of character, what transformations would most assuredly take place in them: “For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: for he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was. But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.” RH October 11, 1887, par. 13

There are many who view themselves as defective in character when they look into God's moral mirror, his law; but they have heard so much of “All you have to do is to believe, only believe that Jesus has done it all, and you have nothing to do in the matter,” that after venturing to look into the mirror they straightway go from it retaining all their defects, with the words on their lips, “Jesus has done it all.” These are represented by the figure that James has marked out—the man beholding himself and going away and forgetting what manner of man he was. “Be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.” James has told what is to be done: “Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls.” Faith and works are the two oars that must be used to urge the bark against the current of worldliness, pride, and vanity; and if these are not used, the boat will drift with the current downward to perdition. God help us to take care of the inward adorning; to set the heart in order as carefully as we arrange the outward apparel. RH October 11, 1887, par. 14

We were glad when we could get away from the confusion, and be seated quietly in our compartment of the car which was to take us on our route to Copenhagen, to make no change of cars until we arrived at Altona, one half hour's ride beyond Hamburg. We saw, as we neared Hamburg, that there was a great fire, the flames seemingly reaching to the sky above us, lighting up everything around. It was a grand scene. We learned that the ships and warehouse were in flames from petroleum which had exploded. RH October 11, 1887, par. 15

The last change of cars was made at Altona, and we were not again disturbed until after three o'clock A. M., when we changed again for another car, which took us to the boat. We remained thirty minutes on the boat, and again took the cars. We rode on the island two hours, then changed for a boat again. We had a very smooth passage for about two hours, then made another change for the cars, when we were favored with a compartment to ourselves, and had no further changes to make. RH October 11, 1887, par. 16

The crown prince of Denmark was on the train, with his escort, in a special car. When we arrived at Copenhagen there were men dressed in special uniform of scarlet as attendants, to receive the prince, and the coachmen were dressed in scarlet throughout. The brilliantly trimmed regimentals, with flashing gold and silver and heavily plumed hats, made them conspicuous everywhere. A Brussels carpet was laid down from the car to the depot, where the prince passed through an arched door to the hack. When he passed, many hacks were waiting to escort him to the palace. RH October 11, 1887, par. 17

I do not remember once of reading of Jesus, the Majesty of heaven, receiving any such special honors when he was in our world. He was the Lord of glory, and yet he traveled from place to place on foot, weary and dusty and travel-stained, unrecognized and unhonored except by a little handful of loyal disciples. But he is coming again, the second time, with power and with great glory. RH October 11, 1887, par. 18