As a teenager, Ellen Harmon (White) was worried that she was not ready for Jesus to come. William Miller and others preached enthusiastically about Jesus’ soon return (Second Advent), and although young Ellen was excited by the thought of His coming, she was concerned that Jesus had not forgiven her sins.
For three weeks Ellen could hardly eat or sleep, and her depression deepened. One night during this state of despair, Ellen had a dream in which she met Jesus. He was so kind and loving that she wanted to stay in His presence forever! Ellen then understood that she could reach out to Jesus anytime and that He would hear her prayers and accept her. Ellen had never been so happy!
At the next meeting with other Advent believers, Ellen stood up and gave her testimony about the peace that Jesus had given her. Many were amazed that Ellen, who had previously been shy and quiet, could speak so openly of her love for Jesus and her belief in Christ’s soon coming.
Back at her old church, though, most people were not happy about Ellen’s testimony. When she spoke about Jesus’ coming, some people coughed on purpose so that others wouldn’t hear her, and a few even scooted their chairs around so that their backs were to Ellen!
Even the church elders urged Ellen and her family to quit talking about Jesus’ second coming. But Ellen determined not to abandon her faith. She loved Jesus with all her young heart, and she longed for Him to come and take her to heaven. Her depression was gone, and her spiritual life had completely been changed.
Not long after this, the minister came to visit the Harmon family. He told them sternly that if they did not stop speaking of Jesus’ second coming, they could not be members any longer of that church. When the Harmon family said that their beliefs were in the Bible and that they would not abandon them, the church called a trial. The following Sunday the church elder read off the names of all of the Harmon family and announced that they were no longer members.
The family found a text that seemed to be written just for them, and they continued to witness joyfully about Christ’s second coming. You can find their special text in Isaiah 66:5.
—Information for this article from: Life Sketches of Ellen G. White, chapters 4 and 5, and Spiritual Gifts, Volume 2, pages 21-25.
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