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Manuscript Releases, vol. 13 [Nos. 1000-1080]

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    MR No. 1025—The Purpose of Our Sanitariums—to Heal Both Body and Soul; Counsel on the Cooranbong Food Factory

    I received your letter dated September 15, containing information in regard to the progress being made in finishing the Sanitarium, and telling us that November 1 is the time set to open the building for the reception of patients. I hope that you will not try to furnish all the rooms before you begin to receive patients, for this would unnecessarily add to your indebtedness.13MR 167.1

    You say that you have been obliged to buy material in very limited quantities, and to wait for it to season before using it, and that consequently you could employ but a few men. You further say that at one time only one man besides yourself was working on the structure. But, my brother, remember that some heartfelt prayers were ascending to God for the progress of the sanitarium work. The Lord was good to send us 1000 Pounds from America. And Brother Murphet helped us nobly. May the Lord bless Brother Murphet.13MR 167.2

    At times Brother Burden and I and others have been greatly distressed over the situation, but we have never doubted but that He who had bidden us “rise and build” would in His own time work for our deliverance. Our great anxiety has ever been so to relate ourselves to the work that we should always further it and not hinder it. We praise the Lord that the Sydney Sanitarium is approaching completion.13MR 167.3

    I think that a mistake has been made in erecting so large a building at first. You will remember that I pleaded with the brethren to begin work with a smaller building. It would have been much better to add other buildings as the patronage increased, instead of putting so much means into one large edifice at the beginning. I speak of this because I realize that the erection of so large a structure has been very trying to you, especially during the long time when no money was in sight with which to complete it.13MR 168.1

    You say, “It has been a long-drawn-out enterprise.” I was greatly relieved when it was decided to alter the proposed plan by leaving out one story. I am quite sure if we had lessened the size of the building still further, it would have been the right thing to do. But now that the large building is completed, we will be thankful, and censure no one, for we know that you have all made many sacrifices, and at times have been sorely tried. The Lord's blessing will rest upon the true-hearted, self-sacrificing workers who have stood by this enterprise so nobly.13MR 168.2

    What a blessing it has been to the work to have Brother and Sister Burden and her sisters associated with the other Sanitarium workers in Australia! They have done all they could to help you. The Lord has beheld the erection of the Sanitarium building. He has noticed every self-sacrificing act of the workers. He has had a special oversight over every stroke of work done. We hope that the ones whose hearts the Lord has moved to help in this good work by giving of their means, will take the greatest satisfaction in seeing the building occupied, and [the work] conducted in every department to the glory of God.13MR 168.3

    Every one of our sanitariums is established to be a missionary agency for the relief of suffering humanity. We are to minister to the needs not only of the bodies, but of the sin-sick souls, of those who come to our sanitariums, in order that they may receive a knowledge of the truth, and have the faith that works by love and purifies the soul. Our observance of the Sabbath will make its impression upon hearts, and questions will be asked that will need to be answered.13MR 169.1

    Our faith in eternal realities is weak, our sense of duty small, in view of the opportunities that we have to point souls to the Saviour as their only hope. We are not to be cold and indifferent in regard to giving efficacious remedies for the healing of the soul. It is our duty to make known the truth, not in our own strength, but in the strong faith, assurance, and confidence that God imparts.13MR 169.2

    In our sanitariums no day should be allowed to pass without something being done for the salvation of souls. We are to offer special prayers for the sick, both when with them and when away from them. Then when they inquire about the remedy for sin, our own souls, softened by the Holy Spirit, will be all aglow with a desire to help them give their hearts to God.13MR 169.3

    Christ wept over the impenitence of men. His pleading with sinners to turn to Him is most pathetic. He rejoices when they turn to Him with the question, What must I do to be saved? Today old and young men are to be warned and led to their Redeemer.13MR 169.4

    Let those engaged in different lines of service in our medical institutions lose no opportunity to bring patients to the great Healer of body and soul. Let the helpers, by a Christlike example, reveal what is truth. Let them reclaim the wanderer, edify the believer. Thus the humblest one in God's service increases his talents. His life becomes richer and still richer in experience. The consecrated nurse who leads his patients to direct their thought and attention to divine realities, is accomplishing a work for time and for eternity.13MR 169.5

    Every helper in any line of medical missionary effort should remember that Christ was ever touched with human woe, and that the light of truth which He has given us, if wisely used in institutional work, will become a powerful influence for the healing of souls as well as bodies. All the nurses and helpers are to give treatments and perform other kinds of service in such a delicate, reverential way—and withal so solidly, thoroughly, and cheerfully—that the Sanitarium will prove a haven of rest.13MR 170.1

    The individual worker in any line in the treatment of the sick and the afflicted in a medical institution is to act as a Christian. He is to let his light shine forth in good works. His words are to magnify our Lord Jesus Christ. In the place of waiting for great opportunities to come before doing anything, he is to make the very best use of the talents lent him of God, in order that these talents may be constantly increased. He is not to think that he must be silent on religious subjects. Wherever he is, there is his field, in which he is earnestly to represent in word and deed the saving power of truth. He is not to wait to see what others do. He has a personality of his own, and he is responsible to Christ, whose servant he is, for every word and act. He is to be as attentive and faithful to duty as if he heard the Saviour's voice, “Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven” [Matthew 18:3, 4].13MR 170.2

    It is highly important to know how to approach the sick with the comfort of a hope gained through faith in Christ Jesus and acceptance of His promises. When the awakened conscience cries out, “Lord, be merciful to me a sinner; make me Thy child,” be ready to tell the sufferer, the once indifferent one, that there is hope for him, that in Jesus he will find a refuge. The Saviour is inviting everyone, “Look unto Me, and live. Come unto Me, and find rest.” Those who in meekness and love present the hope of the gospel to afflicted souls so much in need of this hope, are the mouthpiece of the One who gave Himself for all mankind, that He might become a Healer, a tender, sympathetic, compassionate Saviour.13MR 171.1

    Let every means be devised to bring about the saving of souls in our medical institutions. This is our work. If the spiritual work is left undone, there is no necessity of calling upon our people to build these institutions. Those who have no burning desire to save souls are not the ones who should connect with our sanitariums. [Deuteronomy 10:12, quoted.]13MR 171.2

    But I am lengthening my letter by dwelling upon the object for which our sanitariums are established.13MR 171.3

    While the sanitarium work in Australia has brought much perplexity and many burdens to the workers, the health food business there has been far more perplexing. I feared that Brother Burden would break down under the pressure. The great indebtedness of the business, with so little to show for the investment made, and the lack of means with which properly to carry on the manufacture and sale of the health foods, makes the situation appalling. The small profit made by the food factory at Cooranbong is nearly all consumed by the payment of freight on the raw products shipped in and on the prepared foods shipped away from that place. It does not seem right to have to pay to the steamship and the railway companies so much of the profit of our toil and self-sacrificing effort. But at present I have no light that the food factory should be removed from Cooranbong.13MR 171.4

    In one of the letters we have received in regard to moving the food factory from Cooranbong, it is stated that “a property can be bought for six or seven thousand pounds sterling. The bank had to take it over for the debt. The offer of the property is liberal. This would place our food business on a firm basis.”13MR 172.1

    Now, my brother, your lack of means makes it unadvisable to purchase this property. We are not to begin to build a tower without first counting the cost to learn whether we shall be able to finish. When your sanitarium is opened, many of the helpers must be paid for their services. There will be a constant outlay of means for running expenses. This will necessitate wise management. Where are your men of capability to manage large institutions? In America this is becoming a serious question. We find it very difficult to secure good managers for our institutions here.13MR 172.2

    If the brethren in Australia undertake to carry an additional burden of indebtedness, as is suggested by the proposed purchase of this property for a food factory, I am afraid that they will find it difficult to wrestle with so heavy an obligation. We would feel very sorry to see you take on the worriment of an additional debt. While Brother Burden and his wife and sisters are willing to unite with their co-workers in economizing so as to be able to carry a still greater load, we cannot encourage them to do this. Every jot and tittle of their strength and ability will be needed to make the Sanitarium an institution bearing the endorsement of heaven.—Letter 159, 1902. (Written October 9, 1902, from Fresno, California, to Dr. M. G. Kellogg.)13MR 172.3

    White Estate

    Washington, D. C.,

    November 3, 1983.

    Entire Letter Released