Enlisting the Willpower

     In journeying I have met many who were really sufferers through their imaginations. They lacked willpower to rise above and combat disease of body and mind, and therefore they were held in suffering bondage. A large share of this class of invalids is found among the youth.     

     I sometimes meet with young women lying in bed sick. They complain of headache. Their pulse may be firm, and they be full in flesh; yet their sallow skins indicate that they are bilious. My thoughts have been that, if I were in their condition, I should know at once what course to pursue to obtain relief. Although I might feel indisposed, I should not expect to recover while lying in bed. I should bring willpower to my aid, and should leave my bed and engage in active physical exercise. I should strictly observe regular habits of rising early. I should eat sparingly, thus relieving my system of unnecessary burden, and should encourage cheerfulness, and give myself the benefits of proper exercise in the open air. I should bathe frequently, and drink freely of pure, soft water. If this course should be followed perseveringly, resisting the inclination to do otherwise, it would work wonders in the recovery of health.    

       Deceptive Ailments

     I feel sad for those who are not only deceived themselves in thinking that they are sick, but who are kept deceived by their parents and friends, who pet their ailments and relieve them from labor. If these were so situated as to be compelled to labor, they would scarcely notice difficulties which, while indolent, keep them in bed. Physical exercise is a precious blessing for both mental and physical ailments. Exercise, with cheerfulness, would in many cases prove a most effective restorer to the complaining invalid. Useful employment would bring into exercise the enfeebled muscles, and would enliven the stagnant blood in the system, and would arouse the torpid liver to perform its work. The circulation of the blood would be equalized and the entire system invigorated to overcome bad conditions.    

     I frequently turn from the bedside of these self-made invalids, saying to myself, Dying by inches, dying of indolence, a disease which no one but themselves can cure. I sometimes see young men and women who might be a blessing to their parents, if they would share with them the cares and burdens of life. But they feel no disposition to do this, because it is not agreeable but is attended with some weariness. They devote much of their time in vain amusement, to the neglect of duties necessary for them to perform in order to obtain an experience which will be of great value to them in their future battles with the difficulties of real life. They live for the present only, and neglect the physical, mental, and moral qualifications which would fit them for the emergencies of life and give them self-reliance and self-respect in times of trial and of danger.  MM 106-107