Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 8 (1893)


Lt 119, 1893


Napier, New Zealand

September 27, 1893

Portions of this letter are published in TMK 47, 80.

Dear Children:

I am sitting on the bed and tracing these lines. This is the most comfortable place I can be in. The lower part of the spine does not recover. I can walk now quite well a short distance. I have thought of Jessie. How I should appreciate such a horse! Having to be dependent on hiring is quite expensive for me. I have been paying for a two-seated buggy three dollars seventy-five cents per week, and the horse was loaned me for the keeping, which is not a small item here. I have a horse and phaeton in Melbourne which they use at the school free. 8LtMs, Lt 119, 1893, par. 1

You did not tell me who had Jessie. I am going to write to Byron Sperry to sell the horse for what he can get for it, for I need the money to use right along. Our expenses are not small, and yet I cannot see how we can leave this country until one or two years more, for the workers and the means have not come to us to do the things that need so much to be done, and the work has progressed very slowly. 8LtMs, Lt 119, 1893, par. 2

We have sent for Brethren Porter and Colcord and hope they may reach us to be at the Wellington meeting. Brother Olsen has telegraphed that he will be at New Zealand the 23rd of November. Then our meeting will hold three weeks in or near Wellington, and then we go to Australia by way of Sydney, stopping off a few days on our way to Melbourne to look after the work there and secure a place to locate our school. 8LtMs, Lt 119, 1893, par. 3

If I remain another year, I shall find the most healthful location possible and after these two camp meetings are ended in New Zealand and Australia, if the Lord will, shall settle down to earnest work on The Life of Christ. Every place I have visited required a considerable amount of labor to set things in a correct shape, giving the right mold to the work. And beside this personal labor there has been much, very much, writing to be done for America, especially for Battle Creek. Now my mind is fully made up to find a pleasant location, either in Sydney or Tasmania, which is reputed cool in summer, and healthful. 8LtMs, Lt 119, 1893, par. 4

I am looking to the Lord for His direction. The last years of my experience in America were so very taxing, and there are so many disagreeable remembrances that I look at the matter with great shrinking, having no particular desire to place myself where I shall be afflicted by the unconsecrated course and misapprehension of those who have had great light and have not walked in it. I had rather work among those who have not had the light and evidence so abundantly given, and resisted until their hearts were so hardened that the words God shall give me to speak to them are as water spilt upon the rock. Why is this? Because the love of Jesus is not in their hearts. I am waiting final decision as to what I shall do until Elder Olsen shall come to us. I had rather work among entire strangers than those who have known me and my life and seen the fruits of the tree and yet do not appreciate the work or the labor done. 8LtMs, Lt 119, 1893, par. 5

September 29

Elder Wilson Israel, Brother Simpson, and I met at Sister Reed’s away up on the mountain, where homes have been made. Napier Valley is of small dimensions for houses, and many have settled up about as high as they can build. We climb higher and higher on the winding road, passing many beautiful places high above the road. Stairs have been made in the mountain steep, ascending the very highest points and there are expensive residences surrounded with beautiful evergreens and geraniums in abundant bloom. The roads are perfect—hard as a floor and almost as even. These dwellings overlook the sea and present a beautiful scene. 8LtMs, Lt 119, 1893, par. 6

The house of Sister Reed is not on the highest eminence, yet is high enough, I should say, for all practical purposes. Here are cultivated flowers of choice varieties. There is a small fernery and quite a large space for [a] garden. Sitting on the back piazza, we overlook the bay, and the sun shining warm upon the broad piazza makes it to me an attractive place. At one end of the piazza is a lemon tree loaded with lemons—both green and ripe. Apple trees are in bloom, also quince and plum trees. I wish you could have looked upon the hedge of geraniums, scarlet bloomers—solid hedge the whole length of the long path leading to the cozy cottage. The place I am describing would be a favorable place for me to write, and if I were to remain in Napier I would seek to get a place high up on the mountain steeps. If furnished with a horse and carriage, I could get up and down very easily. 8LtMs, Lt 119, 1893, par. 7

We assembled here for a special purpose—to have a season of prayer for Brother Anderson. He has been greatly afflicted with rheumatism and is a very great sufferer. He can walk, but it is very painful for him. He was one of the sailors who sailed on the first voyage of the Pitcairn. Then he passed through much exposure and the smell in the hold or some part of the ship was fearful. He contracted rheumatism and malaria. We had a most precious season of prayer. The Lord came graciously near unto us and blessed us abundantly and we hoped and believed that the Lord would heal our afflicted brother, but although greatly blessed, he suffers still. 8LtMs, Lt 119, 1893, par. 8

Previous to this time we had decided to send Brother Anderson to America, and he was so thankful to go. Some mentioned they thought he would be healed and remain to work in this country. I was sorry to hear them say this, for our plans were all laid that he should go to America, to the Health Retreat, and work in a different climate and himself and wife secure a better understanding of how to work. His wife has been engaged as a Sabbath school worker and has done good and acceptable work but needs to be carried along still farther. This education she can get in America. Well, I think mentioning the matter stood before the mind of Brother Anderson, that he did not lay hold of perfect faith. He was looking to America for help. 8LtMs, Lt 119, 1893, par. 9

There had been a praying season for him months ago, but there was the Hot Springs kept constantly before him, and the wonderful cures wrought, and his mind was not in a prepared state, I think, to look to Jesus the Source of all power to be healed; then the Springs were before his mind. At great expense the New Zealand Conference undertook the case and sent him to the Springs near Auckland. He seemed to improve, but soon was as bad as ever. Left his money and left the Springs no better. We trust in God for our brother. America is so strong upon his imagination I fear it stood in his way of laying hold of faith for immediate restoration. We shall not, however, forget the precious season of prayer, the manifest Spirit of God in our midst. 8LtMs, Lt 119, 1893, par. 10

This Brother Anderson is, I think, a Norwegian. He met us on the Napier campground with tears in his eyes saying, “Sister White, it was your money that sent me to school and educated me in Healdsburg, that I might proclaim the message of truth. Oh, I have so wanted to thank you for your kindness to me in thus helping me.” 8LtMs, Lt 119, 1893, par. 11

I have not engaged in praying for the sick of late years, but I shall do more of this for the future if the Lord will bless me and strengthen me for the work. The Lord will certainly hear prayer for the sick and suffering, diseased in body as well as diseased in soul. Our faith can only strengthen by exercise, and we must have more faith. 8LtMs, Lt 119, 1893, par. 12

Jesus healed the sick and the suffering when He was upon the earth and we must pray and urge our petitions to the throne of grace in behalf of the afflicted one. Jesus, precious Saviour, never seemed to become weary of the importunities of the sin-sick souls and the sick with all kinds of diseases. “And Jesus, when he came out, saw much people, and was moved with compassion toward them.” Mark 6:34. This means a great deal to the suffering ones. He identified His interest with theirs. He shared their burdens. He felt their fears. He had yearning pity that was pain to the heart of Christ. 8LtMs, Lt 119, 1893, par. 13

Oh what love, what matchless love! He has become one with us that He might share with humanity in all their experience. He was tempted in all points like as we are, yet was without sin. Humanity is not to be demerited as a cheap and common thing. Christ clothed His divinity with humanity that humanity might be clothed with the righteousness of Christ. Man is the object of His solicitude and great love. 8LtMs, Lt 119, 1893, par. 14

Redemption—oh how much is comprehended in the word! All who will consent to be redeemed are uplifted and sanctified, redeemed through Jesus Christ from all commonness and earthliness, and enabled to co-operate with God in the great work of salvation. Jesus accepted humanity and revealed in His own life and character what man may be even when, in the providence of God, he is placed in the poorest circumstances of life. He had not even a penny wherewith to pay the tax money exacted, and wrought a miracle to obtain the little sum. 8LtMs, Lt 119, 1893, par. 15

Jesus, precious Saviour, was homeless and often hungry. He had not where to lay His head. He was wearied oft. Humanity is honored because Jesus assumed humanity to reveal to the world what humanity may become. He came to bring life and immortality to light, to fill the commonplace, homeliest pursuits of life with brightness. Jesus is bending over us, searching into our characters to see if His own character is reflected in us. “If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldst have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water.” John 4:10. 8LtMs, Lt 119, 1893, par. 16

Jesus, precious Jesus, “merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgressions and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty.” Exodus 34:6, 7. Oh, how privileged we are that we may come to Jesus just as we are and cast ourselves upon His love! We have no hope but in Jesus. He alone can reach us with His hand to lift us up out of the depths of discouragement and hopelessness and place our feet upon the Rock. Although the human soul may cling to Jesus with all the desperate sense of his great need, Jesus will cling to the souls bought by His own blood with a firmer grasp than the sinner clings to Him. 8LtMs, Lt 119, 1893, par. 17

I read this over and over again, for it is so full of assurance: “Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.” Hebrews 4:14-16. “Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; and being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him.” Hebrews 5:8, 9. 8LtMs, Lt 119, 1893, par. 18

What a Saviour we have—a risen Saviour, One who can save all who come unto Him! When you perseveringly seek the Lord, giving yourself wholly to the Lord and willing to be anything and do anything for the sake of Jesus Christ, taking up the work to do your best, in the humblest position under circumstances that are not so pleasing, then you will learn the lesson the Lord would have you to learn. When you feel you are not your own but only a trustee, a steward of all your capabilities, of every dollar of means, and to be held to a reckoning for the administration of this trust, then you will endure the test and proving of God. It is all the same whether we have one talent or five or ten, not a farthing is to be misapplied to please any notion of our own. The eye must be single to the glory of God. 8LtMs, Lt 119, 1893, par. 19

I hope you will see your way clearly. Much love. 8LtMs, Lt 119, 1893, par. 20