Ellen G. White Writings

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Christ Triumphant, Page 95

Circumstances Need Not Control Us, March 29

The Lord blessed the Egyptian's house for Joseph's sake.... Joseph was a goodly person, and well favoured. Genesis 39:5, 6.

Many blame their circumstances and plead, as an excuse for their condition, that they are unfavorably situated, being thrown into the society of the irreligious and self-indulgent and intemperate. But do not let yourself be deceived. You can shape your surroundings in the place of bending and being molded in character by circumstances. Godliness will stand the test, because it has a living root to sustain it, a wellspring from which it draws its nourishment.

The corruption of the human heart is that which leads it to love the society of the careless and unholy. The true secret of all true followers of Jesus, and their continued, unsullied integrity, is that they love truth, they love righteousness. Their moral taste is not depraved, and although they are surrounded by evil the deep work of the truth wrought in their hearts keeps them true and steadfast to God even in very bad circumstances. This is the fruit that grows on the Christian tree, the faith that realizes the presence and help of God at all times. There is a constant dread of incurring the displeasure of God, whom they reverence and whom they love. It was this principle that preserved Joseph amid temptation. You must cultivate real faith in God, in His gracious goodness, faith in His presence. You must pray as you have never prayed before.

Albert [a friend] is no help to you and you are no help to him, because you do not exercise the power of influence for good. Your influence is to strengthen the temptations of Satan, to lead each other away from truth, purity, and holiness. Angels blush over your words and your actions. You have become tempters to one another. You both need to greatly humble your souls at the foot of the cross and learn meekness and lowliness of heart. It is genuine godliness woven into the character that will make young men a light in the world....

Fearing God—how little of it there is! ... There are those who will be like the men and women who helped to build the ark. They hear the truth; they have every advantage to become people of moral worth, yet they will not choose the good society, but the corrupt. If there is an influence that is not heavenly, they will gather to their side and unite with them, and although they act a part in the preparation of the truth that is to fit a people to stand in the day of the Lord, they will perish in the general ruin like Noah's carpenters who helped to build the ark. God help you that you may not be of that class.—Letter 36, 1887 (Manuscript Releases 18:260-262).

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