Ellen G. White Writings

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Fundamentals of Christian Education, Page 50

Chapter 3—An Appeal for Our Students

We have had many fears that students who attend Battle Creek College will fail to receive all the benefit they might, in the way of religious culture, from the families that furnish them rooms. Some families do not enjoy the sweet influences of the religion of Christ, although they are professed Christians. The influence which this class of persons exert over the students is more objectionable than that of those who make no pretensions to godliness. These irreligious, irresponsible formalists may stand forth before the world in pretentious leaves, while, like the barren fig-tree they are wholly destitute of that which alone our Saviour values,—fruit to His glory. The work wrought on the heart by the grace of God, they know nothing about. These persons exert an influence which is detrimental to all with whom they associate. There should be committees, to see that the homes provided for the students are not with mere formalists, who have no burden for the souls of the dear youth.

Very much may be done for those who are deprived of the softening, subduing influences of the home circle. The spirit manifested by many shows that the language of the heart is, “‘Am I my brother's keeper?’ I have no burden or responsibility aside from my own family. I have no special burden or interest for the students who occupy rooms in my house.” I would ask these persons if they have burdens and feel responsibilities for their own children. I am sorry to see so little anxiety on the part of some parents that all the influences surrounding their children should be favorable to the formation of Christian character; but those who do have soul-burdens for their own loved ones should not selfishly confine their interest to their own family. Jesus is our example in all things; but He has given us no example of such selfishness as we see manifested by many who profess to be His followers.

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