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Manuscript Releases, vol. 21 [Nos. 1501-1598]

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    MR No. 1573—Counsel Together and Lean Wholly on God

    (Written September 1, 1897, from “Sunnyside,” Cooranbong, N.S.W., to Brethren Daniells, Colcord, Faulkhead, Palmer, and Salisbury.)

    I have just finished writing a letter to Brother Miller and his wife, which I wish you to see. I could not sleep after half past twelve o'clock tonight. I was conversing with you, and the Spirit of the Lord came upon me as I presented some things before you. I was telling you that the Lord had shown me that the minds and spirits and characters of His workers needed to be molded and fashioned before He could work in and through them.21MR 336.1

    There needs to be a deeper work of grace in the heart. Less of self and more of Jesus Christ must be seen. Tests close and sharp are coming to all. The religion of the Bible must be interwoven with all that we do and say. All business transactions are to become a fragrance as from God, because of the presence of God which is to be mingled with every action.21MR 336.2

    Do you individually realize that you are in the presence of the unseen Watcher? Your individual ways and temperaments need to be fashioned after the divine similitude. Constantly you need to cultivate and cherish the thought, I am in the presence of One whom I love and fear and reverence. But He is seen only by the eye of faith. I must think no thought and do no action in my own spirit or after my own inclination. Unless I have the mind and the Spirit of God I cannot safely be trusted with sacred responsibilities. My mind, my judgment must not rule. The mind and judgment of the great I AM must rule.21MR 336.3

    We must plough deep if we would obtain an all-around experience. We need to cultivate faith in the word of God. “Thus saith the Lord” is to be the Alpha and the Omega of our experience. As brethren located where you must be more or less connected you must draw closer together in your councils, in your association, in spirit, and in all your works. One man among you is not to be made the counsellor for all.21MR 336.4

    Each one is to stand in his lot and in his place, doing his work. Every individual among you must before God do a work for these last days that is great and sacred and grand. Every one must bear his weight of responsibility. The Lord is preparing each one to do his appointed work, and each one is to be respected and honored as a brother chosen of God and precious in His sight. One man is not to be selected to whom all plans and methods shall be confided while the others are left out. If this is done, errors will be made, wrong moves will be taken. Harm rather than good will be done. No one of you needs to be afraid of the other lest the other shall have the highest place. Without partiality and without hypocrisy each is to be treated.21MR 336.5

    The same line of work is not to be given to each worker, and for this reason you need to counsel together in that freedom and confidence that should exist among the Lord's workmen. All need to have less confidence in self and far greater confidence in the One who is mighty in counsel, who knoweth the end from the beginning.21MR 337.1

    When you respect each other, you will respect Jesus Christ. You are to show no preferences, for the Lord does not show preferences to His chosen ones. He says, “I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of My Father I have made known unto you” [John 15:15]. This is the confidence that the Lord would have you cherish in each other. Unless you do this more than you have done in your past experience, you will not walk and work under the dictates of the Spirit of God.21MR 337.2

    God would have you united in pleasant cords of companionship. As the Lord's workmen, you are to open your plans one to another. These plans must be carefully and prayerfully considered, for the Lord will leave those who do not do this to stumble in their own supposed wisdom and superior greatness. [John 15:16, 17, quoted.]21MR 337.3

    One person must not suppose that his wisdom is beyond making any mistake. God would have the greatest cherish that humility that will lead him to be the servant of all if duty thus orders it.21MR 337.4

    But while you are to love as brethren, and think soul to soul, heart to heart, life to life, you are individually to lean your whole weight on God. He will be in your support. He is not pleased when you depend on each other for light and wisdom and direction. The Lord must be our wisdom. Individually we must know that He is our sanctification and our redemption. To Him we may look, in Him we may trust. He will be to us a present help in every time of need.21MR 337.5

    Whatever our duties in the various lines of work may be, remember that God is the general over all. You must not withdraw from Him to make flesh your arm. You have been too much inclined to measure yourselves among yourselves and compare yourselves one with another, estimating the importance of your work. Will you remember that your comparisons may fall wide of the mark?21MR 337.6

    It is not position or rank by which the Lord estimates. He looks to see how much of the spirit of the Master you cherish and how much of the likeness of Christ your work reveals. He who listens most earnestly and intently for the voice of God loves the Lord the most, and as he loves most he is most beloved by the Father. “Learn of Me,” says the greatest Teacher the world ever knew, “for I am meek and lowly in heart, and ye shall find rest unto your souls.”21MR 337.7

    There has been need for this prayer to be offered: “Oh, my best friend, my Maker, my Lord, shape me and mold me into Thy divine likeness. Make me entirely like Thyself. Refine, purify, quicken me, that I may represent the character of God.” Religion and business are not two separate things, but one. All that trust in the Lord implicitly will be tested and tried. Then the superscription of God will be placed upon them.21MR 338.1

    Important work is before us and we must prepare the way for this work by preparing our own hearts. Heaven must be cherished in our hearts, and the rubbish of selfishness excluded, that Christ may change us into His image. And this work goes on by beholding Christ. We are changed from glory to glory and from character to character. His strength is made perfect in our weakness.21MR 338.2

    Take up the stones, remove the rubbish from your hearts. Behold the Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world. People will be tested and proved as in the case of Brother Davis and in the case of Sister Miller. God's servants need constantly to lay hold of souls ready to perish, with one hand, while with the hand of faith they lay hold of the throne of God.21MR 338.3

    Souls possessed of evil spirits will present themselves before us. We must cultivate the spirit of earnest prayer mingled with genuine faith to save them from ruin. And all the relief gained will confirm our faith.21MR 338.4

    The Lord will work through every soul that will give himself up to be worked, not only to preach but to minister to the despairing, and to inspire hope in the minds of the hopeless. We are to act our part in relieving and softening the hardships and mysteries of this life. The miseries of this life are as dark and cloudy as they were thousands of years ago. We have something to do: “Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee” [Isaiah 60:1].21MR 338.5

    The needy are close by us, the suffering are in our very borders. We must try to help them. By the grace of Christ, the sealed fountains of earnest Christlike work are to be unsealed. In the strength of Him who has all strength we are to work as never before. The time of need and necessity shows our sure need of a present, all-powerful Lord Jehovah, in whom is everlasting strength, in whose power we may work. “We are laborers together with God: ye are God's husbandry, ye are God's building” [1 Corinthians 3:9].21MR 338.6

    The secret of success is not in our learning, not in our position, for “all ye are brethren,” not in our numbers or entrusted talents, not in the will of man. All the Lord's workers, feeling their inefficiency, must contemplate Christ, and through Him who is the strength of all strength, the thought of all thought, the willing and obedient will gain victory after victory. The Lord God of Israel is our strength.21MR 339.1

    We must humble self today, tomorrow, and constantly. With a willing, sanctified heart we must co-operate with God. We are living in the time when Satan has come down in great power. He is walking about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. But the Lord is ready to take away the sin that hinders us from yoking up with Christ. If we wear the yoke of Christ, He will be our Emmanuel, “God with us,” supplying every weakness with His strength, every inefficiency with His power of success. But if we take glory to ourselves He removes His excellency from us, and we no longer ride prosperously.21MR 339.2

    God designs that the sick, the unfortunate, those possessed of evil spirits, shall hear His voice through us. Through His human agencies He desires to be a Comforter such as the world has never before seen. His words are to be voiced, “Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. Ye believe in God, believe also in Me.” The Lord has not given us the work of reasoning out the things that we do not comprehend until we are satisfied. We must take the Word as it reads.21MR 339.3

    We are not to institute schools of scholastic philosophy or for the so-called “higher education.” We are to understand that our greatness consists in honoring God by simple, practical experience in the humble, everyday life. We need to walk with God, to bring Him into our homes. Grasp the hand of Christ and say, I will not let Thee go except Thou bless me. He will respond, Keep near to Me; I will hold your hand. My grasp shall never relax. Possess your soul in patience, in humbleness, in meekness, and yet say, “Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee” [Isaiah 60:1].21MR 339.4

    God must be with us day by day, preparing us to learn of Him, that He may teach us the lessons of perfect obedience, that we may be ever with Him.—Letter 49, 1897.21MR 339.5

    Ellen G. White Estate

    Silver Spring, Maryland,

    April 18, 1991.

    Entire Letter.

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