The Signs of the Times


January 28, 1886

Home Missionaries


Many professed Christians are laying upon the foundation-stone, wood, hay, and stubble, which the fires of the last day will consume. They engage in work that wearies, work that occupies golden hours; but it is not work that need be done. Their time is occupied, their energies exhausted, in that which will bring no precious returns either in this life or in the future, immortal life. What a difference will be seen when spiritual work engages the mind, when the talents are employed in the service of Jesus! The light that he has given us will then shine forth in direct, concentrated rays to others. All that we do for Jesus will enable us to enjoy this life better. Oh that all could see, as I have seen, the joy of those who have labored to the best of their ability, in humility and meekness, to help souls to come to Jesus! Oh, the joy that will be realized by the workers when the souls saved through their instrumentality express their gratitude in the mansions above! While Christ will be glorified as the only Redeemer, there will be an overflowing of gratitude from the saved for the human instrumentalities employed in their salvation. Their gratitude to those who rescued them will find expression in words like these: “I was pursuing a course that was a dishonor and an offense to my Redeemer; you manifested a love for my soul; you opened to me the word of God. I was on the brink of ruin; your prayers, your tearful entreaties, your earnest interest, arrested my attention. I thought that you must have the truth or you would not be so earnest for the salvation of others. I read the word of God for myself, and found that what you had told me was the truth. I am saved, and I will praise my Redeemer for his matchless mercy and pardoning love.” ST January 28, 1886, par. 1

Those who think they can do but little, should improve every opportunity to do that little. It may be the smallest link in the longest chain. Separated from other influences, it may appear of little worth; but in God's great chain of circumstances it may be the link which connects a soul to Heaven. All can do something if they will; but too often selfishness prevents them from doing what they might, until the souls whom they might have saved, are beyond the reach of human effort. Dear brethren and sisters, you need divine enlightenment. When you have such a close connection with the world's Redeemer as you should have, you will be led to make prompt, determined, personal efforts to save your fellow-men. ST January 28, 1886, par. 2

The future of God's people lies in the present. He has given us a time of probation in which our fidelity to him is to be tested. It is now that the test is being applied. Time, strength, means, light, and mental abilities are intrusted to us. What use are we making of these gifts? How are we standing the test? Do we realize that our eternal welfare is determined by our present course of action? If we fail to honor God here by making a right use of our trusts, we would not honor him if taken to Heaven. If we prove unfaithful to the lesser responsibilities, how can God put upon us those weightier, eternal responsibilities which every inhabitant of Heaven must bear? In those who are cleansed and renewed, the fruits will appear, not only in their confession of sins, but in their conduct toward others. If any man have not the spirit of Christ, he is none of his. Christ gave himself a sacrifice to save perishing sinners. He consented to poverty because he could thus best reach the poor and the oppressed; he could thus best understand their privations and sorrows. It was his great love for our souls that led him to renounce the enjoyments of Heaven, and even the comforts of this life; and if we have his spirit in our hearts, it will be manifested in a similar earnestness to save perishing souls. The measure of Christ's love that we possess, will be evidenced by the course we pursue. God is testing us to see whether we have chosen Christ or mammon as our master. His word plainly declares that we cannot serve both. ST January 28, 1886, par. 3

Mrs. E. G. White