Ellen G. White Writings

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Special Testimonies On Education, Page 197

Chapter 23—Our Youth and Children Demand Our Care

There has been altogether too little attention paid to our children and youth, and they have failed to develop as they should in the Christian life because the church-members have not looked upon them with tenderness and sympathy, desiring that they might be advanced in the divine life. In our large churches very much might be done for the youth; and shall they have less special labor? Shall less inducements be held out to them to become full-grown Christians—men and women in Christ Jesus—than was afforded them in the denominations which they have left for the truth's sake? Shall they be left to drift hither and thither, to become discouraged, and to fall into temptations that are lurking everywhere to catch their unwary feet? If they err and fall from the steadfastness of their integrity, do the members of the church who have neglected to care for the lambs, censure and blame them, and magnify their failures? Are their shortcomings talked of and exposed to others, and are they left in discouragement and despair?

The work that lies next to our church-members is to become interested in our youth; for they need kindness, patience, tenderness, line upon line, precept upon precept. O, where are the fathers and mothers in Israel? We ought to have a large number of them who would be stewards of the grace of Christ, who would feel not merely a casual interest, but a special interest, in the young. We ought to have those whose hearts are touched by the pitiable situation in which our

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