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Cheer Up! Speak Words of Courage, October 19

Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God. Psalm 42:11.

Are you standing on the side of the world, or on the side of Christ? Of what value would the whole world be to me, with all the gold and the silver that could be heaped together? Of what value would it be to you? My span of life is nearly ended. Many, many of my early associates are now in the grave. All that remains of our once large family is one of my sisters—and she is feeble. God has given me strength. He is the health of my countenance. Every morning I rejoice in Him. I know I have committed the keeping of my soul to Him, as unto a faithful Creator; and I know He has never failed me. If you place your trust in Him, the Lord will also give to every one of you His strength, His grace, His salvation.

When someone asks you how you are feeling, do not complain and murmur and try to think of something mournful to tell them to gain their sympathy; but grasp them by the hand, saying, “Praise God! God is the Lord, and greatly to be praised! I love Him, because He first loved me.” Let your conversation be cheerful and hopeful. Do not talk discouragingly, telling your lack of faith and your sorrows and sufferings, for the devil delights to hear such words. When talking on gloomy subjects, you are glorifying the enemy. Talk faith and hope and courage, thus glorifying God.

Instead of gossiping, thus creating mischief, let us tell of the matchless power of Christ, and speak of His glory, thus magnifying and lifting up the Lord God of hosts and training ourselves to sing the song of victory in the kingdom of glory. By beginning to sing songs of triumph and thanksgiving now, we may prepare ourselves to sing the song of Moses and the Lamb when we meet on the sea of glass.

The Lord will be with us during this life, if we allow ourselves to be led by His Spirit and do not neglect to glorify His name. We should bring as much of heaven as possible into this life. The light of heaven shining into the heart will be imparted in words of pleasantness, in deeds of kindness, to those who are near us. Having acquainted ourselves with God, when He comes we will be able to say, “Lo, this is our God; we have waited for him, and he will save us” (Isaiah 25:9).—Manuscript 111, October 19, 1901, a sermon preached in the St. Helena Sanitarium chapel.

From The Upward Look – Page 306

Christ, Our Example in Labor for Others, October 18

I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work. John 9:4.

The years are rapidly passing, bearing away their record for eternity. Wherever you see work to be done, do your very best, after the order of Christ. Place yourselves under the discipline of God. He who professes to be a Christian and yet acts out the spirit of a worldling, bears testimony that he is a false disciple…. Heaven is to be reflected in the character of the Christian. In the way Christ worked, he is to work. Our cause should be years in advance of what it is. It was God’s plan that those in darkness should see great light…. Christ’s work was one of constant progress. In His life He has left us an example of how we are to labor. Constantly He went about doing good….

I am charged with a message to all upon whom the light of truth has shone. They are to labor patiently and perseveringly for the thousands perishing in their sins, scattered in all lands like wrecks on a desert shore. All who share in Christ’s glory must share in His ministry, helping the poor, the weak, the homeless. We must be intensely in earnest, using every capability in the Lord’s service. Precious results will surely follow unselfish efforts. From the Great Teacher, the workers will receive the highest of all education.

We talk of higher education. This is the highest education—to make the life of Christ our constant lesson book. Let every soul whose name is on the church books put away all pride, all frivolity, all desire to follow the fashions of the world. We are to receive from Christ the highest education possible, in order that we may not lead souls into paths that God forbids. There is to be no limit to the perfection of the example that we are to set unbelievers. No loose, shiftless work is to come into our religious experience and training.

Human beings have no right to think that there is a limit to the efforts they are to make in the work of soul saving. Those who are truly converted will understand that they will never see the Lord in His glory unless they form characters that will harmonize with the character of Christ. Those who are indifferent in regard to bringing thoughts and words and actions into harmony with Christ will never enter the gates of the City of God. Precious results will follow the efforts made out of sincere love for Christ. The Lord calls upon His people to take up the work to which He has been calling them from the first.—Letter 104, October 18, 1910. to Brother and Sister S. N. Haskell.

From The Upward Look – Page 305

Have You Accepted the Invitation? October 17

The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son. Matthew 22:2.

The Lord God has provided a banquet for the whole human race. It is represented in the parable as a great supper where there is provided a festival for every soul. All connected with this supper may enjoy the heavenly feast, which is the gospel. This feast is open to all who will receive it. All are invited and urged to come….

All who are partakers of the wedding feast, the gospel feast, by this act say that they have accepted Christ as their personal Saviour. They wear His distinguishing dress. They have accepted the truth as it is in Jesus, which is the robe of Christ’s righteousness. Only those do honor to Christ who accept the invitation, “Come, for all things are now ready; come to the marriage supper of the Lamb.” These put on the white linen, the clean, pure character, showing that they no longer live their old citizen life that they lived in their ignorance. Their speech is changed. Their conversation is in altogether another line….

All who have the light of the Word presented to them are highly favored. That Word is the bread of life to those who eat of it. “In that hour Jesus rejoiced in spirit, and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes.” (Luke 10:21).

The priests and scribes and rulers were so self-sufficient that they would not heed the words of Christ. They were convicted, their understanding was convinced, but they would not receive the Sent of God. They had been privileged with every temporal and spiritual advantage, but Christ looked upon them as rejecters of all the mercy and compassion and tenderness and love that He had come to the world to bring them. They turned away from the light and evidence that Christ had given them, and scorned His mercy. He looked upon them with yearning desire, and said, “Even so, Father; for so it seemed good in thy sight” (verse 21). He was grieved that the people most favored upon the face of the earth should be the very ones to deny Him and refuse His offer of everlasting life.

There is to be a constant advancement on our part. The revelation of the Father to the human agent will be such a revelation that the mind can take hold of and comprehend. All who follow on steadfastly to know the truth as it is in Jesus will know that there is still more to be learned. Expansion, development, an increase of faith and holiness, will give us an experience in the religious life, and this is the law of the Christian life.—Manuscript 143, October 17, 1898, “The Parable of the Wedding Feast.”

From The Upward Look – Page 304

Abide in Christ, October 16

Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. John 15:4.

Christ suffers trial to come upon His followers that they may be led to seek the Lord more earnestly. Then when trials come, do not think that the Lord is your enemy. He purges for a reason. He does not want you to be discouraged; but He would prove you, to see if you will be true to Him and will conduct yourselves circumspectly under every circumstance. He does not want to drive you away, but to drive you nearer to the Lord. In God is the Christian’s only hope in time of perplexity.

Do not talk to others about your trials, for they have enough of their own to bear, and our human friends cannot always understand. It is your privilege to go to One who will always understand, because His life on earth was one of constant trial and perplexity, borne without failure and sin….

It is not enough that now and then you offer a prayer, and now and then deal righteously. You are to have the attributes of an abiding Christ working out in your life constantly. How many of us have this experience? Yet we may have it, and having it, we will be the happiest people on the face of the earth. With Christ’s Word abiding in us, we shall give evidence that we have wholly received Him who in His humanity lived a sinless life. In the strength of divinity we shall overcome every tendency to evil….

The difference between the character of Christ and the character of other men of His day was everywhere apparent; and because of this difference the world hated Him. It hated Him for His goodness and His strict integrity. And Christ declared that those who manifest the same attributes would be likewise hated. As we near the end of time this hatred for the followers of Christ will be more and more manifest.

Christ took humanity and bore the hatred of the world that He might show men and women that they could live without sin, that their words, their actions, their spirit, might be sanctified to God. We can be perfect Christians if we will manifest this power in our lives. When the light of heaven rests upon us continually, we shall represent Christ. It was the righteousness revealed in His life that distinguished Him from the world and called forth its hatred….

The words of Christ are spoken for His people in all ages—for us, upon whom the ends of the world are come.—Manuscript 97, October 16, 1909, “I Am the True Vine,” a sermon preached at San Jose, California.

From The Upward Look – Page 303

Children Are God’s Property, October 15

Lo, children are an heritage of the Lord: and the fruits of the womb is his reward. Psalm 127:3.

I have a special message to parents. I am charged to bring to parents the strict requirement of God in each family. Fathers and mothers need to be daily reconverted in the line of bringing light into their own families. Cultivate Christian politeness in your training of your children. Guard yourselves. Never allow your hand to strike a child in anger. Your children are the Lord’s property and they must be treated kindly, but not vindicated in their disrespect of righteousness and truth by your own careless irreverence. Give them righteousness. Christ is truth, the complete perfect sample of what every soul must be if he enters the heavenly courts. All the great facts are set forth. You can never cure an evil spirit by doing irreligious work….

Be kind in your speech to your children. No loud, tempestuous scolding will cure your children of any evil action. No taking your children in a passion and shaking them will convert them from the error of their ways to do God’s will. They are God’s property. As a people professing to be reformers the very best lesson that you can give your children in this age of corruption is not to indulge them to become fashionable after the worldly style. Sons and daughters are to be instructed as to what it means to be obedient to God’s requirements, what will fit you and them for a position in the heavenly kingdom.

Watch and pray, fathers and mothers, lest ye enter into temptation. Give your hearts and minds and souls to God’s service. You are not to be severe, but kneel before the Lord with your own hearts softened by the grace of God. Be converted that you may have the earnest of the Holy Spirit. What a comfort to know that the Lord will help you in every emergency, for you are laborers together with God….

Fathers and mothers, you take the responsibility of bringing children into the world. Will you consider it is not for you to work in vain? “We then, as workers together with him, beseech you also that ye receive not the grace of God in vain.” … Now this takes in Christian experience. Here is large encouragement. Here are the graces we are to receive, if we comply with the conditions. Fathers, mothers, if you are not converted, will you measure your advantages if you will comply with the conditions? … Your children are the Lord’s property with which you have been entrusted, to bring up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.—Manuscript 61, October 15, 1911, “Individual Responsibility of Fathers and Mothers.”

From The Upward Look – Page 302