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Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 24 (1909) - Contents
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    Ms 57, 1909

    Talk/Words of Counsel to the Workers in the Madison Sanitarium

    Madison, Wisconsin

    August 16, 1909

    Portions of this manuscript are published in MM 173-174, 201-202, 212; RH 12/30/1909; 2MR 42.

    Talk given by Mrs. E. G. White to the helpers in the Madison, Wisconsin, Sanitarium, August 16, 1909.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 1

    I cannot feel free to leave this sanitarium without speaking to you of the necessity of earnestly seeking the Lord. This must be done by the workers in all our institutions. A position in a sanitarium is a place of great responsibility. You are not to go on in carelessness and indifference, thinking that because this is the Lord’s institution, therefore He will work for you in any case. Let each one seek for a daily, living experience in service to God. Unless you have such an experience, patients that come in unconverted will ask why those professing to believe in the binding obligations of God’s law do not walk in obedience to His commandments.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 2

    Now is your time to say, Let us seek the Lord with all our hearts, that we may find Him. Let us humble ourselves before Him, that He may teach us. He cannot teach you His way unless you have humble hearts and are daily converted to His will.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 3

    I have thought a great deal about the experiences of the children of Israel. The Lord took them from Egyptian bondage, and for forty years He led them in the wilderness, separate from the idolatrous nations. Consider the lessons which He taught them at the mount, when He proclaimed to them His law! He desired them to be a peculiar people, separate from the wicked nations around them. He desired them to gain an experience that would fit them, not only to possess the land He had promised them, but also to carry out His purposes in their individual experiences. During all these forty years, they were led by Jesus Christ, enshrouded in the pillar of cloud. When the Lord wished them to tarry in any place, there the pillar of cloud would settle. There they would pitch their tents until the cloud lifted and again moved forward.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 4

    Over and over again, when they were brought into difficulties and trials, the Lord worked marvelously in their behalf. But notwithstanding all these things, and even while the Lord was keeping them separate from the nations that might have an evil influence over them, the children of Israel became lax in their observance of God’s commandments—those commandments which, if obeyed, would be their life. Not only did they disregard the Sabbath, but they broke also other commandments. God was greatly displeased with that generation and permitted punishment to come upon them.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 5

    In our institutions, we should take pains to make everything harmonize with the principles that the Lord has outlined before us in His Word. The work should be educational, preparing the workers for the transfer to the high courts above. This education is highly essential. Our sanitariums, which are established at large expense, are to be places where character is molded. In them should be laboring a class of people who have especially consecrated themselves to the service of God, and who seek Him daily for guidance.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 6

    There is not among us that simplicity that there should be. We should come to the Lord just as we are, humbling ourselves before Him, and wrestling earnestly until we receive the Holy Spirit. Why should we not do as the disciples did just before the day of Pentecost? They sought the Lord earnestly, and when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were “all of one accord.” [Acts 2:1.] Notwithstanding the opposition of the powers of darkness was so great that persecution arose, some even being put to death, the disciples witnessed for Christ, and large numbers were converted.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 7

    The Lord revealed Himself unto Saul, one of the foremost in persecution, and his was a case of genuine conversion. The Lord led him to be a mighty apostle. At other times the Lord worked to preserve His people and to open the way before His disciples. Do not these experiences clearly indicate that there is in heaven an observer of all that we are doing?24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 8

    As we draw nearer to the close of this earth’s history, we shall pass through experiences different from any we have yet seen. But we may know one thing—that we have a living God. We know that He has sent His Son into the world, and that Christ still lives. He is the same today as when He worked in power with the apostles.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 9

    We should be careful that we connect with all our sanitariums those who will give a right mold to the work. Characters are to be formed here after the divine similitude. It is not the expensive dress that will give us influence, but it is by true Christian humility that we exalt our Saviour. Our only hope for success in doing good to the people of the world, who come to our sanitariums as guests, is for the workers, each and every one, to maintain a living connection with God. Our dress is to be modest and neat, but this is not so important as is our deportment. That which is of greatest consequence is that the truth be lived out in our lives, that our words be in harmony with the faith we profess to hold. If the workers in our sanitariums will surrender to God, and take a high position as believers in His truth, the Lord will recognize this, and we shall see a great work done in these institutions.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 10

    It is not the wisest course to connect with our sanitariums too many who are inexperienced, who come as learners, while there is a lack of experienced, efficient workers. We need more matronly women, and men who are sound and solid in principle—substantial men who fear God, and who can carry responsibilities wisely. Some may come and offer to work for smaller wages, because they enjoy being at a sanitarium, or because they wish to learn; but it is not true economy to supply an institution largely with inexperienced helpers.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 11

    If the right persons are connected with our sanitariums, and if all will humble their hearts before God, although there may now be a heavy debt upon the institution, the Lord will work in such a way that the debt will be lessened, and souls will be converted to the truth, because they see that the workers are following in the way of the Lord and keeping His commandments. This is the only hope for the prosperity of the Madison Sanitarium. It is useless to think of any other way. We cannot expect the blessing of God to rest upon us if we serve God at will and let Him alone at pleasure.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 12

    It is not necessary that we should cater to the world’s demands for pleasure. There are other places in the world where people may find amusement. We need here substantial men and women; we need those who will reveal the simplicity of true godliness. We need men and women who are solid Christians, who will not feel that if they have had some experience, they must therefore be highly honored. You may have a rich and living experience here; but the Lord cannot be honored by you while you think that it does not matter whether or not you are subdued in spirit, or whether you are really converted. If the work here is to be sustained, we must have those who will carry responsibilities in the fear of God. A preparation for the kingdom of God is no haphazard work. You cannot be religious at times, and at other times irreligious. We must be workers who will follow on to know the Lord.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 13

    When the sick come to our institutions, they should be made to realize that there is a divine power at work, that angels of God are present. I wish to emphasize one point: Do not wear a sour countenance or a desponding look. There is danger of getting a sour spirit and of speaking harshly. Remember that you are dealing with invalids, and invalids watch the countenances of those who are about them. They watch to see if they are going to be spoken to encouragingly or discouragingly.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 14

    Your work is not to be confined to this institution. There are surrounding places where your influence should reach. If this sanitarium is conducted as it should be, its influence will grow. Similar institutions should be established in other places. This is why the Lord is laying upon His people the burden of establishing sanitariums, that His name may be glorified.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 15

    Patients should be encouraged to be out of doors as much as is consistent. There is health in the fresh air and in the sunshine. And it is an excellent thing, wherever it is possible, to have the sick engage in the cultivation of the land. This is well for both men and women.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 16

    What we need above everything else is to be converted. It is not safe for us to remain unconverted. We need the Spirit of Christ. You may profess religion, but this alone is not conversion. If you are converted, you will reveal it. As a true missionary for Christ you will employ every capability in an endeavor to make this institution a success. When you are in right relation with God, the very expression of the countenance will testify to the fact. There will be unity among all the workers. The workers here and in every institution need the molding, refining influence of the Holy Spirit upon the features and upon the whole character. When you are once thoroughly converted, your experience will be such that you will never again want to go back to a half-hearted condition. You will then bear the impress of the heavenly and the divine.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 17

    Will you not all put on Christ, not to lay Him off again, but to let His Spirit stamp your mind and character. When all in this institution are truly converted, there will be just as surely a wonderful work done as when on the day of Pentecost the disciples received the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. The Lord Himself will be with you, to teach and to lead and to guide. You will see of the salvation of God. You may be disheartened at times. Discouragements will arise, but it is your privilege at all times to lay hold of the hope set before you in the gospel. Watch unto prayer. Believe that God will help you to speak words that will cheer and encourage and increase the faith of those with whom you associate.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 18

    Everything connected with a sanitarium should be neat and orderly. Neatness and order will often have more influence than mere words. In the bathroom everything should be so arranged as to make a favorable impression upon those who visit the institution. All the baths and pails should be made of metal. Wooden vessels absorb the impurities and are liable to convey disease, for they cannot be properly cleansed. Every precaution should be taken to prevent the communication of disease and to promote cleanliness and health.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 19

    The Lord desires His institutions to maintain a high standard. Let all be determined that individually you will act your part, that you will not do or say anything that might offend those with whom you associate. Cultivate a respectful manner. Remember that those who visit the institution are taking your measure. From your manners, your appearance, by your words, and the spirit you reveal, they are receiving their impressions of the institution you represent. The workers in responsible positions should maintain a sacred dignity. All should labor under the guidance of the Holy Spirit or God cannot be glorified in them.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 20

    We have too little of the Spirit of God. We are too lifeless. Let us begin now to seek the Lord in earnest, as though we were determined to find Him. Let us offer up our petitions to God, and He will surely help every one of us to reveal the truth in our lives. He bids us bear living testimony to Him, honor Him by honoring the institution which is His instrument for the accomplishment of His work.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 21

    The sanitarium is beautifully located, but it is not the location alone that will give it the influence it should have. There must be among the workers a thorough conversion. The instruction given me regarding this institution was, “The workers are not all converted. They need conversion, and they need to receive the Holy Spirit.”24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 22

    When you are thoroughly converted, you will be missionaries. You cannot help but be missionaries wherever you are. You will labor to help souls who come here in ignorance of the truth. You will represent the truth in your own character. Then you will see this institution prosper, for God will work through you to see that it is sustained.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 23

    What I would say to you now is that the Lord will bring you light if you will press right on, seeking for the Spirit of God, and persevering unto you receive it. You need to be elevated and ennobled, not by outward dress, but by the heart dress. The heart needs to be softened and subdued and the character molded by the Holy Spirit. When this is accomplished, you will be able to speak the truth in such a way that souls will be converted. You will be instruments of righteousness.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 24

    I hope that you will realize that you have reached a point in your experience where there must be a clearing up, a cleansing of heart and mind, that you may receive the Spirit of God in your hearts individually and that the light of heaven may be seen to abide upon you. God grant that this may be so.24LtMs, Ms 57, 1909, par. 25

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