Ms 76, 1903



Ms 76, 1903

The Burning of the Sanitarium

“Elmshaven,” St. Helena, California

February 20, 1902

Portions of this manuscript are published in SpTB #6 5-10; 6BC 1074; 7BC 904; HP 10; 3MR 358.

Today we received the sad news of the burning of the Battle Creek Sanitarium. For many weeks I have had a heartache that has made my nights very restless. I would at this time speak words of wisdom, but what can I say? We are afflicted with those whose life interests are bound up in this institution. Let us pray that this calamity shall work together for good to those who must feel it very deeply. We can indeed weep with those who weep. Ms76-1903.1

Our heavenly Father does not willing afflict or grieve the children of men. He has His purpose in the whirlwind and the storm, in the fire and in the flood. The Lord permits calamities to come to His people to save them from greater dangers. He desires every one to examine his own heart closely and carefully and then draw near to God, that God may draw near to him. Our life is in the hands of God. He sees dangers threatening us that we cannot see. He is the Giver of all our blessings; the Provider of all our mercies; the Orderer of all our experiences. He sees the perils that we cannot see. He may permit to come upon His people that which fills their hearts with sadness, because He sees that they need to make straight paths for their feet, lest the lame be turned out of the way. He knows our frame and remembers that we are dust. Even the very hairs of our head are numbered. He works through natural causes to lead His people to remember that He has not forgotten them, but that He desires them to forsake the way which, if they were permitted to follow unchecked and unreproved, would lead them into great peril. Ms76-1903.2

Trials come to us all to lead us to investigate our hearts, to see if they are purified from all that defiles. Constantly the Lord is working for our present and eternal good. Things occur which seem inexplainable; but if we trust in the Lord, and wait patiently for Him, humbling our hearts before Him, He will not permit the enemy to triumph. Ms76-1903.3

The Lord will save His people in His own way, by such means and instrumentalities that the glory will be returned to Him. To Him alone belongs the praise. Let us beware how we give to human beings the credit for their success. It is the abundant grace of Christ that makes the feeble among His disciples strong and the strong mighty. It is from Him that we receive the endowments that enable us to offer Him acceptable service. If we are fully consecrated to Him, we shall return to God all the glory. We shall make Him our entire dependence. Ms76-1903.4

Every soul that is saved must be a partaker with Christ of His sufferings, that he may be a partaker with Him of His glory. How few understand why God subjects them to trial. It is by the trial of our faith that we gain spiritual strength. The Lord seeks to educate His people to lean wholly upon Him. He desires them, through the lessons that He teaches them, to become more and more spiritualized. If His Word is not followed in all humility and meekness, He brings to them experiences which, if rightly received, will help to prepare them for the work to be done in His name. God desires to reveal His power in a marked manner through the lives of His people. Ms76-1903.5

I am instructed to say, Let no one attempt to give a reason for the burning of the institution that we have so highly appreciated. Let no one attempt to say why this calamity was permitted to come. Let every one examine his own course of action. Let every one ask himself whether he is meeting the standard that God has placed before him. Can we say from the heart, “I lay aside my own will. I delight to do Thy will, O my God; yea Thy law is within my heart”? [See Psalm 40:8.] Do we ask daily, “Lord what is Thy will concerning me?” Ms76-1903.6

Let no one try to explain this mysterious providence. Let us thank God that there was not a great loss of life. In this we see God’s merciful hand. Ms76-1903.7