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Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 16 (1901) - Contents
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    Lt 142, 1901

    Sutherland, E. A.

    St. Helena, California

    October 16, 1901

    Portions of this letter are published in 4MR 299-300, SpM 196-198.

    Dear brother Sutherland,—

    We are thankful to our heavenly Father that Brother Magan is being restored to health. I know that many are praying for him. We believe that the great Physician will heal our brother. We shall continue to plead with God to manifest His restoring grace and saving power in Brother Magan’s case.16LtMs, Lt 142, 1901, par. 1

    Now I must write a few words to you on another subject. To those interested in the work at Berrien Springs I would say, We do not blame you for being anxious to secure the very best help for the school. But there is a vast vineyard to be worked, and the number of workers in one place must not be disproportionate to the needs of that place in comparison with the needs of other places, where the work is just as essential, and where helpers and directors and watchmen and teachers are just as much needed.16LtMs, Lt 142, 1901, par. 2

    We ask you to remember that ever since Elder Haskell accepted the truth, he has worked earnestly for its advancement. Few have done as much as he has done. His life should now be specially guarded. He should have not only men, but means for the carrying forward of the work in New York. This is a most important field. There is a class of monied men there who, if they see the work carried forward sensibly, not extravagantly and self-indulgently, but with simplicity and self-denial, will help with their means.16LtMs, Lt 142, 1901, par. 3

    It is very important that at this stage of the work in New York, Elder Haskell have well-qualified helpers, men who have the true missionary spirit, who will take up the work in accordance with Christ’s example. Brother Brunson is needed in New York, and I am somewhat surprised to see that now, just as he is getting hold of the work there, plans are being made to call him away. I hope that the Lord will give Elder Brunson clear light in regard to his post of duty. It is a man’s privilege to know for himself whether he is in the right place, without depending on any other man’s preferences or decisions as to where he shall devote his energies.16LtMs, Lt 142, 1901, par. 4

    Everything is to be carefully considered. Brother Brunson should take the matter to the Lord, and then decide for himself what the Lord says to His servant. Because Brother Brunson can fill a place at Berrien Springs, this is no evidence that he is not needed more in some other place.16LtMs, Lt 142, 1901, par. 5

    The way that the Lord has presented the matter to me is that it is not the best thing for the school to have a long list of salaried instructors. It is to be as the schools of the prophets. It is to have a sufficient number of teachers, but not too many. An extra teacher at the school might be very much needed in some other place, where his special talent could be used to great advantage.16LtMs, Lt 142, 1901, par. 6

    It is not wise generalship for our brethren at Berrien Springs to reach out and draw men from work just as important as the work of the school, work where their talents are greatly needed. We need to offer most earnest prayer to God that the right men may be placed in the right places. Let the Lord’s will be done. Man may propose, but God must do the disposing.16LtMs, Lt 142, 1901, par. 7

    The work in New York has been laid open before me. The Lord has shown me that the circumstances connected with that work are of such a character as to make it necessary that no haphazard work be done in sending men there. Elder Haskell needs the very best helper that can be provided—a man who will not make friction, who will understand his duty and do it. In answer to prayer, such a man has appeared. To take him from the field just as he is getting acquainted with the work, and put him where there are already several members of talent and ability, is not in the order of the Lord. Let Brother Brunson remain where he is, and if you need someone else on the school faculty, ask the Lord to provide for your necessity.16LtMs, Lt 142, 1901, par. 8

    Principal and teachers should remember that they are under the tuition of a divine Teacher, the greatest Teacher the world has ever known. Receiving instruction from Him, they will constantly develop. They are to learn in the school of Christ His meekness and lowliness. “Learn of me,” He says; “for I am meek and lowly in heart, and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” [Matthew 11:29, 30.]16LtMs, Lt 142, 1901, par. 9

    The teacher is to feel entire dependence on Christ. As capable a teacher as can be secured should be provided to take charge of the Bible studies.16LtMs, Lt 142, 1901, par. 10

    There are those who are learners who are fully capable of taking some part in the work of instruction. If the teachers will employ the help thus provided, much care and labor will be spared them. There are students who can be asked to spend part of their time in teaching. Students are not to be like those represented in the Word of God as “ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.” [2 Timothy 3:7.] They are to receive to impart.16LtMs, Lt 142, 1901, par. 11

    The student should not think that because he is asked to conduct a class in reading or spelling or some other study, he is being deprived of any of the time he desires for instruction. He should not feel that he is losing time, because he is not. In imparting to others what he has received, he is preparing his mind to receive more. He may remember, as he strives to do his best, that the angels sent forth to minister to those who shall be heirs of salvation understand the situation and will lead his mind, quickening his understanding and bringing to him thoughts that shed light on the subject under consideration, making it plain and clear.16LtMs, Lt 142, 1901, par. 12

    The youthful teacher who fears God will be instructed while instructing. And as thoughts of real value flash into his mind, let him offer thanksgiving to God, praising Him as the One from whom all blessings flow, recognizing and acknowledging Him as the source of all true, noble thoughts.16LtMs, Lt 142, 1901, par. 13

    The psalmist says, “Nevertheless I am continually with thee; thou hast holden me by my right hand. Thou shalt guide me with thy counsel, and afterward receive me to glory. Whom have I in heaven but thee, and there is none upon earth that I desire beside thee. My flesh and my heart faileth; but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion forever. ... It is good for me to draw near to God; I have put all my trust in the Lord God, that I may declare all thy works.” [Psalm 73:23-26, 28.]16LtMs, Lt 142, 1901, par. 14

    My mind has been called to Christ’s prayer for His disciples: “I have manifested thy name unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world; thine they were, and thou gavest them me; and they have kept thy word. Now they have known that all things whatsoever thou hast given me are of thee. For I have given unto them the words which thou gavest me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came out from thee, and they have believed that thou didst send me. I pray for them; I pray not for the world, but for them which thou hast given me; for they are thine. And all mine are thine, and thine are mine; and I am glorified in them. And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are. While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled. And now come I to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves.” [John 17:6-13.]16LtMs, Lt 142, 1901, par. 15

    Here is shown the individual experience gained by the true, believing, trusting children of God. They are not novices, they are learners, plucking the leaves of the tree of life, which are for the healing of the nations.16LtMs, Lt 142, 1901, par. 16

    There is such a thing as leaning heavily on men and lightly on God. Those in charge of our schools should put into active service every talent possessed by the students that can be used for the help of the school. When this is done as it should be, it will be found that students will not hanker for football, tennis, and other amusements. What the students need to be taught is how to make themselves as useful as possible wherever they may be placed. They should learn how to adapt themselves to the work in hand. Christ says, “I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil.” [Verse 15.]16LtMs, Lt 142, 1901, par. 17

    Brother Sutherland, if Brother Magan does not recover sufficiently to act a part in the school, let him come to California or to some place where the climate is milder than in the East. I think that perhaps this winter it would be best for him to come apart and rest awhile.16LtMs, Lt 142, 1901, par. 18

    You know that I have a deep interest in the school at Berrien Springs. It is the Lord’s school, and I will send you His ideas to consider. May He help and strengthen and bless you. Look and live. He will prepare the way before you. Only have faith. God is our helper, our defense. Let us act in accordance with the Scriptures. We are exhorted to be found “praying always with all prayer and supplication.” [Ephesians 6:18.] Again we read, “Be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer.” [1 Peter 4:7.] We are to feel it our privilege to pray, to seek wisdom from God, looking to Him for encouragement and spiritual strength. If we were permitted to know one half of the dangers that surround us, we would pray more.16LtMs, Lt 142, 1901, par. 19

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