The Youth’s Instructor


May 17, 1894

Words to Students

Part 3


It is a solemn thing to die, but it is a far more solemn thing to live, and to form a character that will qualify us to enter the school in the heavenly courts above. We are living in an enemy's land, and we may expect difficulty and conflict. The youth will have to be able to endure hardness as good soldiers of Jesus Christ. It is not best that their path should be made perfectly smooth and easy, that they should be supplied with money, and not taught to feel the necessity of practising self-denial and economy. YI May 17, 1894, par. 1

When a youth is making up his mind that he wants to obtain an education, he should carefully consider what is his motive in going to school? He should ask himself, How shall I best employ my time so as to reap all the benefit possible from my opportunities and privileges? Shall I put on the whole armor of God which has been provided for me by the gift of the only begotten Son of God? Shall I open my heart to the Holy Spirit, that every faculty and energy may be aroused, which God has given me in trust? I am Christ's property, and am employed in his service. I am a steward of his grace. YI May 17, 1894, par. 2

Although, to your human judgment, some who profess Christianity do not meet your measurement of Christian character, you should not grieve the heart of Christ by living an inconsistent life; for others are in danger of being influenced by your wrong course of action. You are fighting for the crown of life, and should not rest satisfied in meeting a low standard. YI May 17, 1894, par. 3

The Lord accepts no half-way work; there must be on your part no blundering in the sacred work of God. Do not trust yourself, but surrender your will and ideas and ways to God, and do his will alone. Live to please him who thought you of such value that he gave Jesus, his only begotten Son, to save you from your sins. Through his merit, you may be accepted. In your school life ever keep before you the thought that what is worth doing at all, is worth doing well. Depend upon God for wisdom, that you may not discourage one soul in right doing. Work with Christ in drawing souls to him. But it will not do for you, while condemning half-hearted work in others, while pointing out their errors, to fail to do as well as they do, because you will not place yourself on the side of right and loyalty. Even though the rules and regulations seem needlessly exacting, be obedient to them; for you may err in your inexperience. Do your very best in everything you undertake. Jesus is your Saviour, and rely upon him to help you day by day, that you may not sow tares, but the good seed of the kingdom. YI May 17, 1894, par. 4

“The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light. But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness.” As a student, you must learn to see with your brain as well as your eyes. You must educate your judgment so that it shall not be feeble and inefficient. You must pray for guidance, and commit your way unto the Lord. You must close your heart against all foolishness and sin, and open it to every heavenly influence. You must make the most of your time and opportunities, in order to develop a symmetrical character. Fun and folly and indolence cannot be entertained as your guests, if you copy the pattern, Christ Jesus, and become daily more intelligent as to what you shall do to be saved. YI May 17, 1894, par. 5

Youthful students, your life cannot be governed by impulse without proving an entire failure. You cannot follow your natural inclinations without meeting with a great loss. If you would move securely, you must keep the way of the Lord. Your understanding must be refined and purified; you must work according to God's plan, or fail to make a success. You must ever be growing and advancing in grace and knowledge. You will be able to do nothing acceptably in your school life without practising habits of system and order. Haphazard work will bring certain failure. YI May 17, 1894, par. 6

You need to study carefully the question of amusements. Ask yourself, What is the influence of amusements on mind and character, and on the work which I have come to do? Ask yourself, What bearing has the question of amusements on my religious life, on my character as a Christian? Do the games in which you participate, fit you to engage in prayer and in the service of God? Do they aid you to bring as much zeal and earnestness into the Lord's work as you put into the games you play? Have not these amusements in which you have engaged, absorbed your interest so that you have not been able to put as much fervor into the learning of your lessons as you should have done? Which is to have the supremacy,—the service of God, or the service of self? Let every student closely examine the ground on which he is standing. YI May 17, 1894, par. 7

Dear youth, you are now deciding your own eternal destiny. You must put persistent effort into your Christian life if you would perfect a right character. It will be to your eternal loss if you have a dwarfed, weakly, babyish religious experience. We are to be “complete in him.” “As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him.” This means that you are to study the life of Christ. You are to study it with as much more earnestness than you study secular lines of knowledge, as eternal interests are more important than temporal, earthly pursuits. If you appreciate the value and sacredness of eternal things, you will bring your sharpest thoughts, your best energies, to the solving of the problem that involves your eternal well-being; for every other interest sinks into nothingness in comparison with that. YI May 17, 1894, par. 8

You have the pattern, Christ Jesus; walk in his footsteps, and you will be qualified to fill any and every position that you may be called upon to occupy. You will be “rooted and built up in him, and established in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving.” You are not to feel that you are a bond slave, but a son of God; that you are highly favored in that you have been regarded of so great value that God has made you his by paying an infinite ransom for your freedom. Jesus says, “I call you not servants, ... but I have called you friends.” When you appreciate his wondrous love, love and gratitude will be in your heart as a wellspring of joy. YI May 17, 1894, par. 9

Mrs. E. G. White