Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 23 (1908)


Ms 65, 1908

Labor to be Given to Lakeport and the Surrounding Settlements


June 9, 1908 [typed]

Portions of this manuscript are published in CG 76; Ev 46, 50-52; PC 8-9. +Note

While I was in Lakeport I was deeply impressed with the fact that here was a place where a faithful work should be done in giving the message of truth to the people. In this mountain region are many souls who need the truths of the third angel’s message. Under the influence of the Holy Spirit we are to proclaim the truth for this time among these settlements in the mountains and valleys. Its solemn warnings are to be echoed and re-echoed. And the message must come to the people quickly; it must be given line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little and there a little. Without delay, wise and intelligent men and women should engage in the work of sowing the gospel seed. 23LtMs, Ms 65, 1908, par. 1

The Lord is calling His people to go forth into the highways and byways and call men and women to come to the gospel feast. If His servants will put their hearts into the work of proclaiming the truth to those who know it not, they may be assured that angels who minister unto those who shall be heirs of salvation will give them grace and power and efficiency for their labors, and that the Spirit of God will go before them to impress hearts to respond to their efforts. The Lord will work through those who will open the Scriptures to the people who have made their homes in these retired places of the country. I appeal to my brethren and sisters to unite in doing this good work and carry it to completion. 23LtMs, Ms 65, 1908, par. 2

Lakeport and the settlements in the surrounding valleys and hills should sometime have the privileges of a camp-meeting. Here are people in need of the light of truth. They should have wise and patient labor put forth in their behalf. We could find a beautiful place to hold a camp-meeting amidst the restful scenes of nature to be found in these mountain regions, and this would be one of our best means of reaching the people settled there. Curiosity would call out many to the meetings. And the interest aroused by the camp-meeting should be followed by the distribution of our literature, by house-to-house visiting, and the giving of Bible readings in the homes. 23LtMs, Ms 65, 1908, par. 3

The people who live in the country place are often more easily reached than are those who dwell in the thickly populated cities. Here among the scenes of nature, Christian character is more easily formed than amid the wickedness of city life. When the truth takes hold of the hearts of the simple-hearted, and the Spirit of God works upon their minds, leading them to respond to the proclamation of the Word, there will be some raised up to help support the cause of God both by their means and their labors. 23LtMs, Ms 65, 1908, par. 4

There is urgent call for means to sustain the workers who are entering new fields in all parts of the world. Our church members should be instructed to cherish a spirit of self-sacrifice. In every home lessons of self-denial should be taught. Our children should be encouraged to keep their self-denial boxes always in sight. And where it is possible, the boys and girls should have a piece of land where they can raise something for market, and thus earn means that they can devote to missionary purposes. 23LtMs, Ms 65, 1908, par. 5

Christ was the King of glory, the honored of heavenly beings; yet He laid off His royal robe and crown and for our sakes became poor, that we through His poverty might be made rich in the possession of heavenly treasure. He taught that His disciples should follow out in their lives the principles of the gospel, being willing to deny self, willing to follow His example in truth and righteousness, willing to suffer for the truth’s sake, that they may be partakers in His glory when He comes in His kingdom. 23LtMs, Ms 65, 1908, par. 6

As a people we are called to reach a much higher standard of attainment. Our camp-meetings should be regarded as sacred, solemn seasons, when we may expect much from God. Every camp-meeting held should be an object lesson of order and neatness and economy. The food prepared for the campers should be wholesome and appetizing, and free from all flesh foods, and from tea and coffee and other harmful drinks. The family tents should be neat and orderly; and in all our movements we should show the results of good organization. The Lord demands also that cleanliness prevail throughout the camp. The Leader of Israel gave special instruction to Israel in this respect. The regulations observed in the Hebrew encampment are to be a lesson to us. 23LtMs, Ms 65, 1908, par. 7

Let the camp-ground be regarded as a sacred place. Let the people assembled remember that they have not come to visit and to chat about trifling interests, but to gain a better knowledge of how to serve and glorify God. Let all feel that they need not only to study the Word, but to practice it, that they may take the benefits of the meetings with them to their homes. It is time that we became more intelligent in regard to the Scriptures, and that we learn how to work wisely for others. We are soon to be severely tested and tried, and we need to learn to have trust and confidence in God. At the camp-meeting we have the privilege of devoting much time to the acquiring of spiritual strength for the duties that lie before us in the future. 23LtMs, Ms 65, 1908, par. 8

From the camp-meeting we may take with us a better understanding of our home duties. There are lessons to be learned here regarding the work the Lord would have our sisters do in their homes. They are to learn to cultivate politeness of speech when speaking to husband and children. They are to study how they may help to bring every member of the family under discipline to God. Let fathers and mothers realize that they are under obligation to make home pleasant and attractive, and that obedience is not to be obtained by scolding and threats. Many parents have yet to learn that no good is accomplished by outbursts of scolding. Many do not consider the need of speaking kindly to the children. They do not remember that these little ones are bought with a price, and are the purchased possession of the Lord Jesus. 23LtMs, Ms 65, 1908, par. 9

The Lord has given to the Marthas and the Marys their individual work. We all need to bear in mind that if we would do a good work for Christ, we must first learn the precious and all-important lesson of meekness. We must not only bear the name of Christ, but day by day we are to watch unto prayer. We are to walk even as Christ walked, and possess His spirit, purifying our lives daily from those things that would cause spiritual weakness to ourselves and that would bring dishonor to God. The life of every believer of truth is to bring honor to the cause of truth by a well-ordered life and a godly conversation. Then the power and grace of Christ will be revealed through His people. In our labors at the camp-meetings, more attention should be given to the work of teaching the principles of health and temperance reform; these questions are to take an important place in our efforts at this time. My message is: Educate, educate on the question of temperance. In our schools let only those teachers be employed who will exert a reformatory influence in matters of eating and drinking and dressing. Encourage the spirit of self-denial and self-sacrifice. In all our sanitarium and school work, let matters pertaining to health reform take a leading part. The Lord desires to make our sanitariums an educating force in every place. Whether they are large or small institutions, their responsibility remains the same. The Saviour’s commission to us is, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” [Matthew 5:16.] 23LtMs, Ms 65, 1908, par. 10

The reason why I call your attention to Lakeport and its surrounding settlements is that these places have not yet received a right impression regarding the truth for this time. It may be that among our people there are those who will consent to use their means for the opening of missionary fields. To such I would say, For the Master’s sake, do what you can to help. We have not yet investigated fully how large a field for labor lies here, but Lakeport is one of the places presented to me as in need of our attention. 23LtMs, Ms 65, 1908, par. 11

I have much to say in regard to these settlements in the mountains. There are like settlements near Washington, where a similar work should be done. Will not our people work more faithfully in the highways and hedges? Commercial enterprises have so long absorbed the interests and capabilities of so many Seventh-day Adventists, that they are largely unfitted to do the work of bringing the light of present truth before those who are ignorant of it. We should not be content to permit such a condition to continue. 23LtMs, Ms 65, 1908, par. 12

There are many of our people who, if they would go out of the cities, and begin the labor in these byways, <and also highways,> would recover physical health. I urge our brethren to go out as missionaries, two and two, to these country places. Go in humility. Christ has given an example, and the Lord will certainly bless the efforts of those who will move out in the fear of God, bearing the message the Saviour gave to the first disciples, “The kingdom of God is come nigh unto you.” [Luke 10:9.] 23LtMs, Ms 65, 1908, par. 13