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Testimonies, Vol. 6

The Lord will surely bless all who seek to bless others. The school is to be so conducted that teachers and students will be continually gaining in power through the faithful use of the talents given them. By putting to a practical use that which they have learned, they will constantly increase in wisdom and knowledge. We are to learn from the Book of books the principles upon which we are to live and labour. By consecrating all our God-given abilities to Him who has the first right to them, we may make precious advances in everything that is worthy of our attention.

When entered upon with this spirit, the missionary work becomes elevating and uplifting both to the labourer and to the person helped. Let everyone who claims to be a child of the heavenly King seek constantly to represent the principles of the kingdom of God. Let each remember that in spirit, in word, and in works he is to be loyal and true to all the precepts and commandments

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of the Lord. We are to be faithful, trustworthy subjects of the kingdom of Christ, that those who are worldly-wise may have a true representation of the riches, the goodness, the mercy, the tenderness, and the courtesy of the citizens of the kingdom of God.

The students who will get the most good out of life are those who will live the word of God in their connections and dealings with their fellow men. Those who receive to give will feel the greatest satisfaction in this life. Those members of the human family who live for themselves are always in want, for they are never satisfied. There is no Christianity in shutting up our sympathies to our own selfish hearts. The Lord has ordained channels through which He lets flow His goodness, mercy, and truth; and we are to be co-workers with Christ in communicating to others practical wisdom and benevolence. We are to bring brightness and blessing into their lives, thus doing a good and holy work.

If the Avondale school ever becomes what the Lord is seeking to make it, the missionary effort of teachers and students will bear fruit. Both in the school and outside, willing subjects will be brought to allegiance to God. The rebellion which took place in heaven under the power of a lie, and the deception which led Adam and Eve to disobey the law of God, opened the floodgates of woe upon our world; but all who believe in Christ may become sons and daughters of God. Through the power of the truth they may be restored, and fallen man may become loyal to his Maker. The truth, peculiar in its working power, is adapted to the minds and hearts of wandering sinners. Through its influence the lost sheep may be brought back to the fold.

Whatever may be the position or possessions of any individual who has a knowledge of the truth, the word

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of God teaches him that all he has is held by him in trust. It is lent him to test his character. His worldly business, his talents, his income, his opportunities, are all to be accounted for to Him to whom by creation and redemption he belongs. When he uses every precious talent in carrying forward God's great work of education, when he strives to obtain the very best knowledge of how to be useful, how to labour for the salvation of souls ready to perish, God's blessing will surely attend his efforts. God bestows His gifts upon us that we may minister to others, and thus become like Him. Those who receive His gifts that they may impart to others, become like Christ. It is in helping and uplifting others that we be come ennobled and purified. This is the work that causes glory to flow back to God. We must become intelligent upon these points. Our souls must be purified from all selfishness; for God desires to use His people as representatives of the heavenly kingdom.

Our schools must be conducted under the supervision of God. There is a work to be done for young men and women that is not yet accomplished. There are much larger numbers of young people who need to have the advantages of our training schools. They need the manual training course, that will teach them how to lead an active, energetic life. All kinds of labour must be connected with our schools. Under wise, judicious, God-fearing directors the students are to be taught. Every branch of the work is to be conducted in the most thorough and systematic ways that long experience and wisdom can enable us to plan and execute.

Let the teachers wake up to the importance of this subject and teach agriculture and other industries that it is essential for the students to understand. Seek in every department of labour to reach the very best results.

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Let the science of the word of God be brought into the work, that the students may understand correct principles and may reach the highest possible standard. Exert your God-given abilities, and bring all your energies into the development of the Lord's farm. Study and labour, that the best results and the greatest returns may come from the seed sowing, that there may be an abundant supply of food, both temporal and spiritual, for the increased number of students that shall be gathered in to be trained as Christian workers.

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We have seen the giant trees felled and uprooted; we have seen the ploughshare pressed into the earth, turning deep furrows for the planting of trees and the sowing of seed. The students are learning what ploughing means and that the hoe and the shovel, the rake and the harrow, are all implements of honourable and profitable industry. Mistakes will often be made, but every error lies close beside the truth. Wisdom will be learned by failures, and the energy that will make a beginning gives hope of success in the end. Hesitation will keep things back, precipitancy will alike retard; but all will serve as lessons if the human agent will have it so.

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The impression that work is degrading has laid thousands in the grave. Those who perform only manual labour frequently work to excess, while brain workers suffer for want of the healthful vigour physical labour gives. If the intellectual would share the burden of the labouring class to such a degree that the muscles would be strengthened, the labourers might devote a portion of their time to mental and moral culture. Those of sedentary and literary habits should take physical exercise. Health should be a sufficient inducement to lead them to unite physical with their mental labour.

 

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