Testimonies, Vol. 7

A fund should be raised for such workers as are no longer able to labour. We cannot be clear before God unless we make every reasonable effort in this matter, and that without delay. There are some among us who will not see the necessity of this move, but their opposition should have no influence with us. Those who purpose in their hearts to be right and to do right should move steadily forward for the accomplishment of a good work, a work that God requires to be done. There are many who are at their ease, who have postponed the work of doing good with their substance; but shall it be so longer? Shall we love money so well that we will bury it in the earth?

God calls for the cooperation of all in this enterprise. The affluent should give of the abundance; but if they give grudgingly, longing to have every dollar to invest

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in some worldly enterprise, they will receive no reward.

The humble gift from the poorer class is not, in the sight of God, inferior to the larger offerings of the more wealthy. The Lord will add His blessing to the gift, making its errand of love fruitful in accordance with the wholehearted cheerfulness with which it is bestowed. The mites from every source should be carefully cherished.

The ardour of the youth is now needed. They should put away vanity and restrict their wants. I would urge upon them and upon all our people that the money usually invested in unnecessary things be put to a higher, holier use. Do what you can toward creating a fund for the aged ministers, worn out with constant labour and care. Consecrate all that you have to the Lord. Do not use your money to gratify self. Put it into the Lord's treasury. Do not allow means to pass out of your hands merely to gratify the wishes of yourselves or others. In your expenditure consider that it is the Lord's money which you are handling and that you must render to Him an account of its use.

To the aged, who are losing their hold on this life, I appeal to make a right disposition of your Lord's goods before you fall asleep in Jesus. Remember that you are God's stewards. Give back to the Lord His own while you live. Do not fail of attending to this while you have your reason. As age comes upon us, it is our duty to make a disposition of our means to the instrumentalities that God has established. Satan is using every device to divert from the Lord's cause the means so much needed. Many are binding up their talent of means in worldly enterprises, when the cause of God needs every dollar to advance His truth and glorify His name. I ask: Shall we not lay up for ourselves treasure in heaven, in bags that wax not old? I would

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especially urge the aged who are soon to make a disposal of their means to remember those who have ministered faithfully in word and doctrine. Place your means where, should health and life fail, they can be invested in the cause of God. Thus they will be put out to the exchangers and be constantly accumulating.

I call upon the church as a whole, and upon its members individually, to render to God His own entrusted capital with interest. Thus you will have treasure in heaven. Let your hearts be true to Jesus. Although you may feel that you are the least of all saints, yet you are members of Christ's body, and through Him you are identified with all His human agencies and with the excellence and power of the heavenly intelligences. None of us liveth to himself. To each is assigned a post of duty, not for his own narrow, selfish interests, but that the influence of each may be a strength to all. If we really believed that we were individually a spectacle to the world, to angels, and to men, would we not as a church manifest a very different spirit from that which we now manifest? Would we not be a living, working church?

The small and the larger streams of beneficence should ever be kept flowing. God's providence is far ahead of us, moving onward much faster than our liberalities. The way for the advancement and upbuilding of the cause of God is blocked by selfishness, pride, covetousness, extravagance, and love of display. The whole church is charged with a solemn responsibility to lift in every branch of the work. If its members follow Christ, they will deny the inclination for display, the love of dress, the love of elegant houses and costly furniture. There must be far greater humility, a much greater distinction from the world, among Seventh-day Adventists, else God will not accept us,

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whatever our position or the character of the work in which we are engaged. Economy and self-denial will furnish many in moderate circumstances with means for benevolence. It is the duty of all to learn of Christ, to walk humbly in the self-denying path in which the Majesty of heaven trod. The whole Christian life should be one of self-denial, that, when calls for help are made, we may be ready to respond.

As long as Satan works with unremitting energy to destroy souls, as long as there is a call for labourers in any part of the wide harvest field, so long will there be a call to give for the support of the work of God in some one of its many lines. We relieve one need only to make way to relieve another of like character. The self-denial required to obtain means to invest in that which God values most highly will develop habits and a character which will win for us the approbation, "Well done," and make us fit to dwell forever in the presence of Him who for our sake became poor, that we through His poverty might inherit eternal riches.

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Men in positions of responsibility are in danger of becoming crushed under the many burdens that they bear, but the Lord does not press on anyone burdens too heavy to be borne. He estimates every weight before He allows it to rest upon the hearts of those who are labourers together with Him. To every one of His workers our loving heavenly Father says: "Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and He shall sustain thee." Psalm 55:22. Let the burden bearers believe that He will carry every load, great or small.

Jesus consents to bear our burdens only when we trust Him. He is saying: "Come unto Me, all ye weary and heavy-laden; give Me your load; trust Me to do the

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work that it is impossible for the human agent to do." Let us trust Him. Worry is blind and cannot discern the future. But Jesus sees the end from the beginning, and in every difficulty He has His way prepared to bring relief. Abiding in Christ, we can do all things through Him who strengthens us.

Because of unconsecrated workers, things will sometimes go wrong. You may weep over the result of the wrong course of others, but do not worry. The work is under the supervision of the blessed Master. All He asks is that the workers shall come to Him for their orders, and obey His directions. All parts of the work --our churches, missions, Sabbath schools, institutions --are carried upon His heart. Why worry? The intense longing to see the church imbued with life must be tempered with entire trust in God; for "without Me," said the great Burden Bearer, "ye can do nothing." "Follow Me." He leads the way; we are to follow.

Let no one overtax his God-given powers in an effort to advance the Lord's work more rapidly. The power of man cannot hasten the work; with this must be united the power of heavenly intelligences. Only thus can the work of God be brought to perfection. Man cannot do God's part of the work. A Paul may plant, and an Apollos water, but God gives the increase. In simplicity and meekness man is to cooperate with divine agencies, at all times doing his best, yet ever realising that God is the great Master Workman. He is not to feel self-confident, for thus he will exhaust his reserve force and destroy his mental and physical powers. Though all the workmen now bearing the heaviest burdens should be laid aside, God's work would be carried forward. Then let our zeal in labour be tempered with reason; let us cease our efforts to do that which the Lord alone can accomplish.