Ellen G. White Writings

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Christian Leadership, Page 27

The Right Use of Authority—I wish to speak to my brethren who occupy positions of trust. As God's husbandry you are invested with the responsibility of acting in His stead, as His helping hand. Those who are placed in positions of trust must have the authority of action, but they are never to use this authority as a power to refuse help to the needy and helpless. It is never to be exercised to discourage or depress one struggling soul. Let those to whom have been given positions of influence ever remember that God desires them to carry out the mind of Christ, who, by creation and redemption, is the owner of all men.—Letter 7, 1901 (January 17, 1901 To Brethren Who Occupy Positions of Trust).

Dealing With Men Like Ourselves—Let us all remember that we are not dealing with ideal men, but with real men of God's appointment, men precisely like ourselves, men who fall into the same errors that we do, men of like ambitions and infirmities. No man has been made a master, to rule the mind and conscience of a fellow-being. Let us be very careful how we deal with God's blood-bought heritage.

To no man has been appointed the work of being a ruler over his fellow men. Every man is to bear his own burden. He may speak words of encouragement, faith, and hope to his fellow-workers; he may help them to bear their special burdens by suggesting to them improved methods of labor; but in no case is he to discourage and enfeeble them, lest the enemy shall obtain an advantage over their minds,—an advantage that in time would react upon himself.—Manuscript 29, 1907, pp. 9, 10 (Individual Responsibility & Christian Unity, January 1907).

Don't Censure or Condemn—You are not even to allow yourself to think unkindly of them, much less to climb upon the judgment seat and censure or condemn your brethren, when you may be yourself, in many respects, more deserving of censure than they. Your work is bearing the inspection of God.—Letter 21, 1888, pp. 10, 11 (October 14, 1888 to Bro. Butler).

The Spirit of Authority—In our several callings there is to be mutual dependence on one another for assistance. A spirit of authority is not to be exercised, even by the president of a Conference; for position does not change a man into a creature that cannot err. Every laborer entrusted with the management of a conference is to work as Christ worked, wearing His yoke and learning of Him, His meekness and lowliness.

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