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Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 14 (1899) - Contents
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    Lt 102b, 1899

    White, J. E.; White, Emma

    “Sunnyside,” Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia

    June 16, 1899

    See also Lt 102a, 1899. This letter is published in entirety in PC 112-116.

    Dear Children, Edson and Emma White:

    I have been writing out some matters in reference to the South. I have read your letters to Brother Irwin and myself. Prior to this I had written in my diary in regard to yourself and Emma. The light that I have is that you should have a change. W. C. White and I have been consulting together, and from the light given me this burden resting upon you cannot be borne with the want of co-operation evidenced. There is a spirit cherished among men at Battle Creek, those not standing in the position where they can be worked by the Holy Spirit, that they will think they see something to criticize in you, and then this is made an excuse why they do not feel a burden to do what they would otherwise do in the work in which you are engaged.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 1

    And when you are straining every nerve and muscle to make the work a success, you are yourself led to be sharp in the use of the pen, and it hurts your influence to do the same work they are doing in criticizing. And as this work has been hurting them, and as the enemy sees he can hurt you, weaken your hands and discourage your heart, he is pleased. You are wearing out too fast, and the Lord does not require that you and Emma should, under the existing state of things, carry the load without the co-operation of those in responsible places. Some would encourage you if there were not such an influence to meet in doing so. Therefore you are sacrificing life and health under a great disadvantage and must have a respite. Your own spirit is becoming soured and you tempted. Now the Lord would have you come apart and rest awhile, and let the Southern Field be worked by men whom they may choose to put into it, and let the responsibility rest upon them, and they carry it.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 2

    There is a great work to be done in this [Australian] field, and there are souls just as precious in the sight of God as those for whom you are laboring. They will never have a more devoted worker, or one better adapted to the work than you have been, or who will, under the same circumstances, show better results. The lord has been your helper.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 3

    How much I have needed you connected with my work no one knows or ever will know. I can support you in this field myself, but this will not be necessary. While you work for me I expect to do this. But there is an extensive field you can take, in the islands of the sea. You can visit these islands and see what can be done to help them to do the very work you are doing in the South. The experience you have had will be of value with our American workers.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 4

    Willie proposes that you come by the way of England, stopping at different islands and places on the route. He thinks it would be a great help, but in talking with Brother Irwin, he thinks the very best route for you to take is the same as he took, by Vancouver. It is the best and cheapest route for you and Emma to take. You can spend two or three years here and see if you cannot avoid a complete breakdown in health. W. C. White, yourself, and Emma are subject to malaria, and the Southern Field is most taxing on your strength and vitality, and the poison of malaria will obtain a strong hold upon you. This climate where we are located, among the blue gum trees, seems to be a healthful climate. I wish you could see Willie’s children. They are rugged and solid in bone and muscle. All our family are in good health except Marian, who is not strong, but not down sick.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 5

    I will in this letter send you an order on Review and Herald for your passage money. The trying season will have fully opened upon you in the South before this reaches you, and it is important that you should make a change. I therefore invite you to come direct to this place, as we need you. I expect we shall have a printing press shipped from Pacific Press if they will make us a donation of such an article. We must now have a press of our own so that we can issue small books and use these books to help us in carrying forward the work here.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 6

    We are much pleased with your little paper, [Gospel Herald]. The editing of it is excellent.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 7

    I shall not write you a long letter, but I am going to send copies of letters written. You will see I have had important matters to handle. We are doing all we can, and we desire your help to start our press and set it in operation. We do not propose to confine you to the preparation of books, but you can help us in this. If after two years’ trial in this country you recover your health, you can then return, if it is your desire, and take up the work in any line you see fit. If you choose to remain here in this country and it seems to be the will of the Lord, and if your talent can accomplish more good here than in America, then you follow your own convictions.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 8

    I have not been willing to call you from the Southern Field, knowing your unwillingness to leave that field. But the Lord has been giving me special light for different men who have been working in different fields, that their lives would be shortened by continuing to remain, although they themselves were reluctant to leave, but the health must be preserved. If the work is too taxing in one locality, or the atmosphere unfavorable, they must try other localities. As there is no dearth of work to be done and there are places that are in need of workers, no one need, in this country, to be confined to an unhealthful location. We have, therefore, changed the location of the workers with the best results. New Zealand has a bracing climate. Tasmania is excellent, more like Colorado. Adelaide has a mild and healthful climate. I am not disposed to recommend Melbourne. But we have the opportunity to select most any climate easy of access.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 9

    Here we have plenty of fruit in its season. In August will be our crop of oranges. Our own trees are loaded with oranges and lemons. The sight is beautiful. We can begin to use them in July, but I want all who shall come to our conference to behold the show. The little trees bear five or six large oranges in a cluster on little branches. The mandarin trees are loaded with fruit of the largest size, and the frosts are not so severe as to cut them or to do them any damage. Come, children, and see them. If you could only come so as to be here at conference time, how glad I should be; but I have not hope that you will be here then. At this conference you would see the men who have been laboring in the islands of the sea.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 10

    I must now leave the matter with you, for you must consider for yourself; but you could be a great help to me. The Lord would strengthen you in making a change now. I see that W. C. White is fully in harmony with what I have written to you. He thinks that after you have been here two years you will then be settled [as to] what is best for you to do. My health is good when I do not have to stand on my feet to speak so often; but I am getting old. What I have to do I wish to do quickly and solidly. I wish now to take the Old Testament history from Solomon to the last chapter of Malachi, and the New Testament from the ascension of Christ to the Revelation; but how can I do it? Brother Colcord is helping me. W. C. White is necessarily called to advise and to attend frequent councils, for with the buildings being erected we need constant help from the Lord to teach us His way and His will.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 11

    I now leave the matter with you. Write me at once. I have good help in the three lady workers, Maggie Hare, Minnie Hawkins, and Sarah Peck. But there must be those who have been with me from my earliest experience, who understand the workings of the cause and our history from earlier dates. My memory is good. Trusting in the Lord, my writing ability continues; but how long this will be I know not. But I now have to leave this with you and Emma. Certainly if you continue as you have been doing, your health will not endure the strain of the Southern climate, and my need of you is now very great.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 12

    If I can get out my books I can then have something to pay you and keep all my workers. You have no need to fear in that matter. There is to be a holding of the four winds a little longer, and when they are let loose there will be no peace any longer upon the earth. The truth is now our only shield and buckler. It is our front guard and rearward. May the Lord work for His people is my prayer. I am now writing to our people on important subjects. But I must close this letter. I am up at half past two o’clock in the morning.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 13

    June 21, 1899

    The mail leaves today. Brother Irwin goes to Sydney today to spend the Sabbath, and from there to Melbourne and Adelaide and will then return to the conference here at Cooranbong. He will then return by direct route to America, spend one Sabbath in California, and then pass on to the center of the work at Battle Creek.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 14

    Brother Ballenger has sent me a letter in regard to his plans for the South, but Edson, I cannot encourage such plans. He will calculate to have all things move smoothly. A community to settle in the South, in accordance with the plans he has thought would prove a success, would prove a failure. What is the prospect for feeding and clothing this community? Where is the money to be pledged for building homes and for families? There would be a gathering of good and bad, there would be the need of men of clear conception, baptized with the Holy Spirit of God, to run such an enterprise. I might present many things to make it objectionable. There cannot be any colonizing without Satan’s stirring up the Southern element to look with suspicion on the Northern people, and the least provocation would awaken the Southern whites to produce a state of things they do not now imagine.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 15

    There must be laborers in the South who possess caution. They must be wise as serpents and harmless as doves. All who engage in this work should be men who have their pen and tongues dipped in the holy oil of Zechariah 4:11-14. An unadvised word will stir the most violent passions of the human heart and set in operation a state of things that will close the way for the truth to find access to the fields now in such great need of workers.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 16

    It is not ministers that can preach that are needed so much as men and women who understand how to teach the truth to poor, ignorant, needy, and oppressed people. And as to making it appear that there is not need of caution, it is because those who say such things do not know what they are talking about. It needs men and women who will not be sent to the Southern Field by our people, but who will feel the burden to go into this neglected portion of the vineyard of the Lord—men who, while their hearts burn with indignation as they see the attitude of the white people toward the black, will learn of the Master, Jesus Christ, that silence in expression regarding these things is eloquence. They all need the intelligence that they may learn of Jesus Christ and the simplicity of how to work.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 17

    The cultivation of the soil is an excellent arrangement, but it is not by Northern people grouping together in a community that will accomplish the work they imagine will be a success. Hot tempered men better remain in the North. Men and women who possess the true Christlike spirit of ministry may do excellent work among the Southern colored people. Make no masterly efforts to break down the prejudices of the Southern people, but just live and talk the love of Jesus Christ. There cannot be any greater harm done to the Southern colored people than to dilate on the harm and wrong done them by the white Southerners. Just keep the lips closed, although there cannot but be the burning indignation that longs to express itself.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 18

    There is need of level-headed men and women who love the Lord Jesus, and who will love the blacks for Christ’s sake, who have the deepest pity for them. But the methods of Sister S. are not the methods that will be wise to practice. They cannot be petted and treated just as if they were on a level with the whites without ruining them for all missionary work in the Southern Field. There is a difference among the blacks as there is among the whites. Some possess keen and superior talents, that if the possessor is not made too much of, and is treated from a Bible standpoint as humble men to do a Christlike missionary work, not exalting them, but teaching them religious love and Christlike love for the souls of their own colored race, and keeping before them that they are not called into the field to labor for the whites but to learn how to labor in the love of God to restore the moral image of God in those of their own race, then a good work can be done.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 19

    There is a work to be done in opening schools to teach the colored people alone, unmixed with whites, and there will be a successful work done in this way. The Lord will work through the whites to reach the black race—many of them through white teachers—but it needs the man and his wife to stand together in the work. More than one family of white teachers should locate in a place. Two or three families should locate near each other, not huddle together but at a little distance apart, where they can consult together, and unite in worship of God together, and work to strengthen each other’s hands to raise up colored laborers to work in the South.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 20

    There is a mistake often made by those who labor in Southern fields, expecting [that] their brethren in the Northern fields of labor can advise them what to do. Those who have had no experience in the Southern Field are not prepared to give reliable advice. It is those who are engaged in the work that must understand that when emergencies arise they must not depend upon men who have not any experience to advise them. They will often obtain advise that, if followed, would be ruinous to the work. Therefore it is not good policy for one family alone to settle in a locality. Men and women who have not children are best qualified for the Southern Field, and if the Southern Field is too taxing or debilitating, one family from the two or three who have settled in a locality can be spared. But let none feel that it is their bounden duty to remain in the Southern Field after their health has testified that they cannot do this safely. Some persons can endure the climate and do well. But let our brethren in the more favorable climate consider all these things and provide every facility possible to make the conditions of workers in these unfavorable locations as pleasant as possible.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 21

    In places where money has been expended on buildings, and a start has been made, it is the duty of the men in responsible positions to give attention to that locality, so that the workers shall be sustained in accomplishing the work designed when the plant was made. There is to be a work done in the South, and it needs men and women who will not need to be preachers so much as teachers—humble men who are not afraid to work as farmers to educate the Southerners how to till the soil, for whites and blacks need to be educated in this line. But when perplexities arise in the South, spread out your wants to the Master of the vineyard. And those who know nothing of the Southern Field, let them be sparing and cautious what advice they give. But sympathy, kind words, and encouragement are always in place.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 22

    Your Mother.14LtMs, Lt 102b, 1899, par. 23

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