Little Secrets to a Rich Academic Career

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Little Secrets to a Rich Academic Career

Proper Education Needed

Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

Those who are seeking to obtain an education should labor as though they could see heavenly intelligences looking upon them with the deepest interest. Let the youth seek to acquire knowledge in one line after another, that they may serve the cause of God with as great perfection as possible; that they may become workmen who need not to be ashamed. Many who are endeavoring to qualify themselves for some department of the work, cannot devote years to the acquisition of knowledge. Let every student acquire the habit of applying the mind to that which he has in hand, and cherish this habit of application after school life is over.

Those who are determined to become workmen that need not to be ashamed, will find spare moments in which they can pursue their education. While engaged in the ministry, or in other lines of work, if they wisely improve their time, having an eye single to the glory of God, the Holy Spirit will bring to their remembrance the truths which they have studied. If all those who are engaged in the work of God would gather up the moments that many fritter away in common, frivolous conversation, they might be able to do a great deal that is now left undone. These moments are golden, and should be used in hoarding up a valuable revenue.

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Improper Food Affects the Mind

The mind does not wear out nor break down so often on account of diligent employment and hard study, as on account of eating improper food at improper times, and of careless inattention to the laws of health. The diet question deserves careful study, and students can do more for themselves than teachers can do for them by prescribing strict rules and regulations. Let students preserve a conscience void of offense toward God and man.

What! know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.

 

Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed.

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It is essential that the physical powers be taxed as well as the mental powers. Students should exercise their muscles with useful employment, that they may reach the highest standard of physical vigor. Learn in everything what is the best method by which you may become wise. The men who now stand in responsible positions have more ability than they keep in training. They have not learned to put all their faculties to use; they have not educated every power of body and mind according to their time and opportunity.

If laborers who are now in the field had intelligently used their physical and mental powers, according to the laws of hygiene, they would not only have been able to become proficient in common branches of education, but would have been versed in different languages, and thus would have been qualified to become missionaries in foreign countries. But many have failed even to think that it was essential to advance as far and as fast as possible. Many have had no ambition to educate themselves, and so they have not aspired to reach an elevated standard of knowledge, to gain physical soundness, and to attain to a good experience in the things of God.

Students Should be Given Manual Labor

Managers and teachers in schools and literary institutions should procure facilities by which students may have opportunities for practical labor, and thus have the privilege of exercise in connection with their studies. If the laws of health were observed, their literary success would be more assured. Students are neglecting an important branch of their education, if they are not becoming intelligent concerning dietetic laws adapted for the preservation of the health of both body and mind.

They should not go forth from our institutions of learning as ignorant of their own bodies and how to care for them, as when they entered school. The managers of our schools should place upon the tables such food as will be of the best advantage to their pupils, in order that they may send forth those who are able to be useful in teaching others the laws of life. Students may recommend the school by their healthful appearance, making it manifest that they have walked in obedience to the law that God planted in their system. They can reveal the fact that appetite and passion were kept under the control of the higher powers.

At best, those who are called upon to labor in the cause of God, will have to sustain severe drafts upon the nervous system. They will be required to exert themselves to their utmost, and yet not sacrifice health and life. Therefore every one should give particular study to the health question, because their example in this line involves a great deal. They should be qualified to instruct others by precept and example, and, garrisoning their souls and bodies by the highest resolutions, they should observe temperance in all things, and make the most of their God-given ability.

Whether therefore ye eat or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.

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A Proper Diet Necessary

Man has fallen by sin; but there is no need of his continually repeating the transgression of Adam and Eve. There is no necessity for pleasing and gratifying the appetite by indulging in forbidden things. All should understand that by indulging perverted appetite, they violate the laws of health and life. Many have misinterpreted health-reform, and have received perverted ideas of what constitutes right living.

Some honestly think that a proper dietary consists chiefly of porridge. To eat largely of porridge would not insure health to the digestive organs; for it is too much like liquid. Encourage the eating of fruit and vegetables and bread. A meat diet is not the most wholesome of diets, and yet I would take the position that meat should not be discarded by every one. Those who have feeble digestive organs can often use meat, when they cannot eat vegetables, fruit, or porridge. If we would preserve the best health, we should avoid eating vegetables and fruit at the same meal. If the stomach is feeble, there will be distress, the brain will be confused, and unable to put forth mental effort. Have fruit at one meal and vegetables at the next. We are in suffering need of men and women who possess sound reasoning faculties,—who can trace from cause to effect. We need persons who will educate themselves to cook healthfully.

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Many know how to cook meats and vegetables in different forms, who yet do not understand how to prepare simple and appetizing dishes. Many understand how to make different kinds of cakes, but cake is not the best food to be placed upon the table. Sweet cakes, sweet puddings, and custards will disorder the digestive organs; and why should we tempt those who surround the table by placing such articles before them?

The more largely flesh composes the diet of teachers and pupils, the less susceptible will be the mind to comprehend spiritual things. The animal propensities are strengthened, and the fine sensibilities of the mind are blunted. Diligent study is not the principal cause of the breaking down of the mental powers. The main cause is improper diet, irregular meals, and a lack of physical exercise. Irregular hours for eating and sleeping sap the brain forces.

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The apostle Paul declares that he who would be successful in reaching a high standard of godliness must be temperate in all things. Eating, drinking, and dressing all have a direct bearing upon our spiritual advancement. We are all called upon to lay aside every weight and the sin that doth so easily beset us, that we may be able to run the Christian race without embarrassment, and obtain the crown of immortal glory.

Mrs. E. G. White

Editorial Note: This article was adapted from The Youth’s Instructor May 31, 1894.

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About the author

Ellen G. White

Ellen G. White (1827-1915), a cofounder of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, wrote more than 5,000 periodical articles and 40 books during her lifetime. She was more than a gifted writer; she was appointed by God as a special messenger to draw the world's attention to the Scriptures and help prepare people for Christ's second advent. Read her writings at ellenwhite.org.