Ellen G. White Writings

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The Review and Herald

December 10, 1914

Women as Missionaries

Mrs. E. G. White

In the various branches of the work of God's cause, there is a wide field in which our sisters may do good service for the Master. Many lines of missionary work are neglected. In the different churches, much work which is often left undone or done imperfectly, could be well accomplished by the help that our sisters, if properly instructed, can give. Through various lines of home missionary effort they can reach a class that is not reached by our ministers. Among the noble women who have had the moral courage to decide in favor of the truth for this time are many who have tact, perception, and good ability, and who may make successful workers. The labors of such Christian women are needed.

Our sisters can serve by writing missionary letters, not only to friends at a distance, but to strangers. Through such correspondence, important truths may be brought to the attention of the people. The writers should not seek for self-exaltation, but to present the truth in its simplicity.

Many of our sisters who bear the burden of home responsibilities have been willing to excuse themselves from undertaking any missionary work that requires thought and close application of mind; yet often this is the very discipline they need to enable them to perfect Christian experience. They may become workers for God by distributing to their neighbors tracts and papers that correctly represent our faith, and by sending these silent messengers through the mails to those who are willing to read and investigate. As they thus do what they can for others, they will gain many precious experiences.

My sisters, do not become weary in the distribution of our literature. This is a work you may all engage in successfully, if you are but connected with God. Before approaching your friends and neighbors, or writing letters of inquiry, lift the heart to God in prayer. All who with humble heart take part in this work, will be educating themselves as acceptable workers in the vineyard of the Lord.

In the various lines of home missionary work, the modest, intelligent woman may use her powers to the very highest account. Who can have so deep a love for the souls of men and women for whom Christ has died as those who are partakers of his grace? Who can represent the truth and the example of Christ better than Christian women who themselves are practicing the truth? Who are better adapted to be teachers in the Sabbath school? The true mother is fitted to be an efficient teacher of children. With a heart imbued with the love of Christ, teaching the children of her class, praying with them and for them, she may see souls converted.

By their self-denial and sacrifice, and by their willingness to work to the best of their ability for others, our sisters can show that they believe the truth, and are sanctified through it. They need to labor for others in order to develop the powers they possess. The minds of our sisters may thus be expanded and cultivated. If, however, they are devoted to selfish interests, the soul will be left dwarfed. Emptiness and unrest will be the result.

Many occupy their time in needless stitching and trimming and ruffling of their own and their children's clothing, and thus lose golden moments which they might spend in service. The money that is expended for needless trimmings and useless ornaments, should be used in the purchase of papers and tracts to send to those who are in the darkness of error. The souls saved by this personal effort will be of more value to them than fashionable dress. The white robes and, the jeweled crowns given them by Christ, as their reward for unselfish effort, will a thousand times repay them for the self-denial and self-sacrifice they have shown in his cause.

Our sisters may manage to keep their fingers constantly employed in manufacturing dainty little articles to beautify their homes, or to present to their friends. Great quantities of this kind of material may be laid upon the foundation stone: but will Jesus look upon all this dainty work as a sacrifice to himself? Will he pronounce the commendation upon the workers, “I know thy works, and thy labor, and thy patience, and how thou ... hast borne, and hast patience, and for my name's sake hast labored, and hast not fainted”?

All work of this kind is wood, hay, and stubble, which the fires of the last day will consume. But where are your offerings to God? Where is the patient labor, the earnest zeal, that brings you into connection with Christ, to bear his yoke, and lift his burdens? Where are the gold, the silver, the precious stones which you have laid upon the foundation stone, which the fires of the last day cannot consume, because they are imperishable?

Let our sisters inquire, How shall I meet in the judgment these souls with whom I have or should have become acquainted? Have I studied their cases? Have I acquainted myself with my Bible so that I could open the Scriptures to them? Have I sought the Lord by earnest prayer in faith, that he would give me wisdom to present the truth to these dear souls? Am I giving them, not only by precept, but by an example of piety and fidelity to God, an assurance that the service of Christ is full of peace and joy?

We should never forget that, as Christians, our time, our strength, and our ability have been purchased with an infinite price. We are not our own, to use our moments in gratifying our fancy and our pride. As children of the light, we are to diffuse light to others. It should be our study how we may best glorify God, how we may work most effectually to save and bless the souls for whom Christ died. In working thus to benefit others we shall be gathering strength and courage to our own souls, and shall win the approval of God.

If all would realize the necessity of doing to the utmost of their ability in the work of God, having a deep love for souls, we should see hundreds engaged as active workers who have been hitherto dull and uninterested, accomplishing nothing. Many have felt that there was little of importance in the tract and missionary work, nothing worthy of their especial interest. Yet it is a fact that the circulation of our literature is doing even a greater work than the living preacher can do. Many have failed to become thoroughly acquainted with the work because they have felt that it did not concern them. Though some can do more than others, yet all can, by individual effort, do something. All should become intelligent as to how they can work most successfully and methodically in spreading the light of truth by scattering our publications.

We meet with young and old who profess to be children of God, yet who are not growing spiritually. With many, the rubbish of the world has clogged the channels of the soul. Selfishness has controlled the mind and warped the character. Were the life hid with Christ in God, his service would be no drudgery. If the whole heart were consecrated to God, all would find something to do, and would covet a part in the work. They would sow beside all waters, praying and believing that the fruit would appear.

Women of firm principle and decided character are needed as active workers in the cause of present truth,—women who believe that we are indeed living in the last days, and that we have the last solemn message of warning to be given to the world. They should feel that they are called to engage in diffusing the rays of light which Heaven has shed upon them. Nothing should discourage them from engaging in this work.

Let every sister who claims to be a child of God, feel a responsibility to help all within her reach. The noblest of all attainments may be gained through practical self-denial and benevolence for others’ good. Sisters, God calls you to work in the harvest field, and to help gather in the sheaves.

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