Autobiographical Sketch of Ellen G. White
Note: Since criticisms about Ellen White's life are dealt with elsewhere on this site,
we here simply let her tell in her own words her life story.—WebMaster
Chapter 6: Advent Experience
Disappointed But Not Discouraged
Those who sincerely love Jesus can appreciate the feelings of those who watched with the most intense longing for the coming of their Saviour. The point of
expectation was nearing. The time when we hoped to meet Him was close at hand. We approached this hour with a calm solemnity. The true believers rested in
a sweet communion with God—an earnest of the peace that was to be theirs in the bright hereafter. None who experienced this hope and trust can ever forget
those precious hours of waiting.
|1843 Millerite Chart—Aurora University.|
Worldly business was for the most part laid aside for a few weeks. We carefully examined every thought and emotion of our hearts, as if upon our deathbeds
and in a few hours to close our eyes forever upon earthly scenes. There was no making of "ascension robes" for the great event; we felt the need of internal
evidence that we were prepared to meet Christ, and our white robes were purity of soul, character cleansed from sin by the atoning blood of our Saviour.
But the time of expectation passed. This was the first close test brought to bear upon those who believed and hoped that Jesus would come in the clouds of
heaven. The disappointment of God's waiting people was great. The scoffers were triumphant and won the weak and cowardly to their ranks. Some who had
appeared to possess true faith seemed to have been influenced only by fear; and now their courage returned with the passing of the time, and they boldly united
with the scoffers, declaring they had never been duped to really believe the doctrine of Miller, who was a mad fanatic. Others, naturally yielding or vacillating,
quietly deserted the cause. I thought, If Christ had surely come, what would have become of those weak and changing ones? They professed to love and long
for the coming of Jesus; but when He failed to appear, they seemed greatly relieved, and went back to a state of carelessness and disregard of true religion.
We were perplexed and disappointed, yet did not renounce our faith. Many still clung to the hope that Jesus would not long delay His coming; the word of the
Lord was sure, it could not fail. We felt that we had done our duty, we had lived up to our precious faith; we were disappointed, but not discouraged. The signs
of the times denoted that the end of all things was at hand; we must watch and hold ourselves in readiness for the coming of the Master at any time. We must
wait with hope and trust, not neglecting the assembling of ourselves together for instruction, encouragement, and comfort, that our light might shine forth into
the darkness of the world.
(Testimonies for the Church, vol. 1, pp. 51, 52)