Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 19 (1904)


Lt 337, 1904

Nicola, B. E.


December 25, 1904 [typed]

This letter is published in entirety in PCO 103-104.

Dear Brother Nicola,—

I am sorry that you were successful in retaining your position at the Huntsville school one year longer than some thought you ought. Whatever your qualifications may be, you are not the man to carry the Huntsville school forward successfully. By remaining at the school during the past year, you have put the institution back a year. I cannot see why this was permitted. The Lord is grieved when men of experience refuse to be true to their God-given work. 19LtMs, Lt 337, 1904, par. 1

The Lord calls for men of a different stamp of character in some respects to connect with the Huntsville school, men who are not only capable teachers, but who can see the needs of the school and meet the situation wisely. In such a school as Huntsville, there is needed keenness of discernment and a knowledge of how to build up the work. Unless those in charge have clear discernment, unless they can see what needs to be done, the school will make an unworthy representation. 19LtMs, Lt 337, 1904, par. 2

The instruction given me is that if the influence of your shortcomings were confined to your own family, it would not be so bad. But in the position that you have occupied, your defects have been an injury to many. You fail to see the importance of order and harmony and of allowing nothing to go to waste. You do not understand how to cure the evils that exist. This is your defect, and because of it many things about the school are neglected. 19LtMs, Lt 337, 1904, par. 3

The world is watching Seventh-day Adventists, because it knows something of their peculiar beliefs and of the high standard they have;and when it sees those who do not live up to their profession, it points at them with scorn. The unbelievers living near the Huntsville school will see the neglect perpetuated there and will read beneath the surface. 19LtMs, Lt 337, 1904, par. 4

Worldlings are glad to see defects in the lives of professing Christians; for they use these defects as justifying their own unchristlike course, as excusing their disregard of the requirements of God. When they see lax practices in the management of such a place as the Huntsville school, they build themselves up, and accusing conscience is quieted. 19LtMs, Lt 337, 1904, par. 5

There must be no pretense in the lives of those who have so sacred and solemn a message as we have been given to bear. Every transaction connected with the Huntsville school should be an object lesson, revealing the perfection that God requires in the work of His children. 19LtMs, Lt 337, 1904, par. 6

The Huntsville school farm is a most beautiful place, and with the three hundred acres of land, much should be accomplished in industrial training and in the raising of crops. The teachers in our schools should remember that they are not only to give the students lessons from books. They are to teach them how to earn their own living by honest work. 19LtMs, Lt 337, 1904, par. 7

Let us remember what is due to our Christian profession, and let us be careful not to place stumbling blocks in the way of sinners. Let not our teachers neglect those things that should have a prominent place in the training of all students. The ability to see and remedy defects in the fixtures of the home or the farm is necessary to a complete education. Teach the students to watch for repairs that need to be made and to keep things up in proper shape. 19LtMs, Lt 337, 1904, par. 8

A careless neglect in the things of this life means neglect in the things of the spiritual life. The progress of missionaries in foreign lands is often impeded by a failure to attend to little things. Those who perform faithfully the smaller duties will show no lack in performing larger duties. Let students be taught that a neglect of little things means a failure in larger responsibilities. 19LtMs, Lt 337, 1904, par. 9

Our Lord and Saviour would have the mind thoroughly cultivated. Forbid no aspirations or enterprises that pure religion sanctions. Let not those who take the name of Christian forget that they are to honor this name. Let them obey the instruction given in the first chapter of Second Peter. Those who do this will be richly blessed. 19LtMs, Lt 337, 1904, par. 10