Christian Attitude and Ambitions
Christian Attitude and Ambitions, June 30
I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one. Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 1 John 2:14, 15.
My spirit is stirred within me as I see and sense the short time in which we have to work. Never have there seemed so great results depending upon us as a people. Never was there a time when youth of every age and country were needed to do earnestly the work to be done, as now.
Society has claims upon the youth of today. The men who have stood in the forefront of the battle, bearing the burden and heat of the day, will pass off the stage of active life. Where are the young men to fill their places when these wise instructors and counselors can carry their burdens no more? Upon the young these duties must fall. How important that the youth be educating themselves, for upon them these duties will devolve.
Prepare, my son [William C.], to discharge your duties with uncorrupted fidelity. I wish I could impress upon young men what they might be and what they might do if they will sense the claims that God has upon them. He has given them capabilities, not to stagnate in indolence, but to strengthen and elevate by noble action.
Willie, my greatest anxiety is not that you should become a great man after the world’s standard, but a good man, every day making some progress in meeting God’s standard of right....
Character must be made. It is the work of a lifetime. It is a work requiring meditation and thought. Judgment must be well exercised, industry and perseverance established.... You may be encouraged by others in your work, but they can never do your work of overcoming temptation. You cannot be honest and truthful, industrious and virtuous for them, neither can they become thus for you. In one sense you must stand alone, fighting your own battles. Yet not alone, for you have Jesus and the angels of God to help you. But few reach what they might in excellence of character, because they do not make their aim high. Prosperity and happiness will never grow of their own accord. They are the acquisition of labor, the fruit of long cultivation.—Letter 22, June 30, 1875, to W. C. White, her 20-year-old son.