Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 15 (1900)

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Lt 99, 1900

Caro, E. R.

“Sunnyside,” Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia

July 9, 1900

Portions of this letter are published in 2SM 199-200; TDG 199. +Note

Dear Brother:

In the conversation we had together with reference to the sanitarium, I mentioned the fact that an experienced woman should be chosen to stand as preceptress of the nurses that were being trained. You said that in your private opinion your mother could fill this place, and that she could do work similar to the work Sister Henry did to reach a certain class, especially the W.C.T.U. You seemed desirous to have your family move away from Napier. This I could heartily endorse. You expressed your mind quite freely, and our conversation was between ourselves. The matter passed from my mind till last Sunday evening, when matters were presented to me which I must present to you. 15LtMs, Lt 99, 1900, par. 1

We were considering who should have the care of the young ladies who are being trained as nurses. Some remarks were made by Dr. Caro with reference to his family being advised to leave Napier. He said that his mother could connect with some line of work in Sydney. He thought that she could help in training the nurses or in working as Sister Henry had done to reach the W.C.T.U. 15LtMs, Lt 99, 1900, par. 2

The instruction given me is that it would not be for the best interest of the work to have members of Dr. Caro’s family connected with the sanitarium. Dr. Caro, your mother’s work has not given her the experience which would fit her to unite with you in the work you are called to do. 15LtMs, Lt 99, 1900, par. 3

It would not be the best or wisest course to pursue to place members of your family in close relationship with you in the work. You are looked upon by your mother as one who is superior, and yet you are a young man who needs to be a learner. You have failed to receive correct ideas in regard to some things. Your habits of economy are not what they should be. 15LtMs, Lt 99, 1900, par. 4

Your mother has met your wishes and your calls for means when you should have pursued an entirely different course from what you did. You have not obtained the experience you should have obtained. Your life practice has led you to indulgence rather than to self-denial. These things are against you. And if your mother had the same resources that she has had, she would indulge you as she has done. She would not deny you in anything. She would cherish in you ideas that would spoil you for acting the part God designs you to act. 15LtMs, Lt 99, 1900, par. 5

“There are many things you have to learn,” said our Counsellor. You will have to learn that it means much more than you now realize to comply with the invitation, “Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me, for I am meek and lowly in heart, and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” [Matthew 11:28-30.] 15LtMs, Lt 99, 1900, par. 6

You have been placed in a position of responsibility similar to that of Dr. Kellogg. You have had to perform operations which need tact and skill. You are to teach others how to care for suffering humanity, but as far as being a leader is concerned, you need to be led. You need to be taught by the great Teacher how to be wise and discreet unto salvation. You should not be made a leader, for in some respects you would surely mislead. A more fitting person is needed to take charge of the nurses—a qualified, discreet woman, who can give them the education you should not attempt to give. God sees your danger, and He warns you off the ground, lest you shall become bound up in the society and instruction of young girls. 15LtMs, Lt 99, 1900, par. 7

The lady nurses need a class of instruction altogether different in some respects from that which they can receive from a gentleman physician. They need the training of a lady physician, who can teach them how to become skillful nurses. Gentleman physicians are not to perform those services which only women are qualified to do. 15LtMs, Lt 99, 1900, par. 8

Physicians, married or unmarried, are placed in a position of peculiar temptation and trial. Often they think they can do with safety, in their association with women, that which other men would be condemned for doing. Our sanitarium will not be complete without the services of a man and his wife who can stand together in the work, acting as Christian physicians should act. 15LtMs, Lt 99, 1900, par. 9

You have, imprinted in your very being, hereditary and cultivated tendencies which will make it necessary for you to be garrisoned on every side, lest some of the erroneous ideas that have been brought into your life shall become a warring lust. You need advisors who can stand as safe business managers, guarding every post as faithful sentinels. There is to be no departure from the law of God, even in the smallest things. I need not, if this counsel is heeded, speak of the larger things. Your success as a physician of no mean order forbids you from taking yourself into your own hands. You are not to feel that you are competent to manage yourself. You are not to take so many responsibilities upon you that your religious interests will become secondary. For your present and eternal good, you must never, never leave eternity out of your reckoning. 15LtMs, Lt 99, 1900, par. 10

You are not to practice dishonesty in your charges. In these matters you are not to follow the world’s customs or the world’s dishonest scheming. Your success as a Christian physician depends upon the wisdom and righteousness which you obtain from the Lord and upon the faithfulness with which you do that which the law of God enjoins. What other physicians do is not to be of any weight in the sanitarium that is to be established. You are to deal righteously with the patients, for they are the Lord’s property, bought with an infinite price. Any injustice in charges will prepare you to be among those who will be weighed in the balances and found wanting. The Lord will not countenance any wrong action, any unfair charges. The physician who expects the Lord to co-operate with him must co-operate with the Lord in every line and phase of his work. 15LtMs, Lt 99, 1900, par. 11

You are to learn lessons in wearing the yoke of Christ that are yet new to you. “Learn of me,” is the charge given us by the greatest Teacher the world ever knew. [Verse 29.] Your hands are not clean. Your spirit today is not clear from extortion. Unless you heed the law of the Lord, which is perfect, converting the soul, you will bring into your profession unchristian acts, which will divorce you from God. He will not countenance dishonesty in any place. 15LtMs, Lt 99, 1900, par. 12

You may ask, What shall I do? Keep the law of the Lord. A contract has been made with you, but the sooner this contract is changed, the better. The plan that you are to receive above your wages any money that you make in certain lines of work is opening a door of temptation which will lead to evil results. This is not discerned by you or by those who drew up these articles of agreement. But it will be the means of great injury to you, <and will bring reproach upon the cause of God.> There is in this plan an erroneous principle, which must be considered. Nothing is to be left at loose ends. Everything is to be bound off. You are to receive a definite sum as wages for your work, <and live within that sum.> 15LtMs, Lt 99, 1900, par. 13

Something of this character has been carried on in the negotiations with Dr. Kellogg. It is a fraudulent transaction. God sees its tendency and its result. This method of remuneration is not to be carried out in the sanitariums that is to established. This institution must pay you a suitable sum for your services. And all who are connected with the institution must receive remuneration in proportion to their services. 15LtMs, Lt 99, 1900, par. 14

The sanitarium is to take for its motto, “The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul.” [Psalm 19:7.] God desires every man to understand his duty and obey the call, working in the way of the Lord, not after his own devising. God always rewards the confidence of His people. The way to the throne of mercy is always open. God sees the wants of His people as clearly in the darkness of midnight which surrounds them as in the splendor of noonday. To look to God for help at all times, this is our safety. When God grants us His protection, and says of us, “Ye are laborers together with me,” <if you keep the way of the Lord you> are safe in the midst of the greatest dangers. When Satan seeks to deceive the child of faith and trust, God lifts up a standard against the enemy in behalf of those who are conscientiously working in harmony with Him. The standard which he uplifts is His law. Those who work righteousness have an ever-present Friend to help them. In every time of need and trouble and perplexity He is near them. When they are tempted He presents Himself as their defense, saying, I will guide thee with Mine eye. I will deliver thee from perplexity, and be a covert for thee against the strife of tongues. 15LtMs, Lt 99, 1900, par. 15

The Lord sees not as man sees. Those whom He loves and honors most are often the objects of the scorn and derision of the enemy. He desires us to learn the lesson that we shall not gain success in the work by following the criterion of the world or the devising of human beings. Physicians will not be truly successful unless the Lord gives them knowledge and skill and understanding. 15LtMs, Lt 99, 1900, par. 16

Men and women have no right to the name of medical missionaries unless their actions correspond with the name. Those who charge a high price for a simple operation performed for one of their brethren or for the poor not of their faith have no right to call their work medical missionary work. Hypocrisy and pretense can find no place with God. All that we put our hands to is performed [as] in the sight of the heavenly intelligences. All the thoughts of the mind, all the aspirations of the soul, are read by Him with whom we have to do. The victories gained by the soul are not measured by outside appearance or by the praise of men, but by goodness and mercy <and tender compassion> and a firm adherence to God’s law. This law is binding upon the members of the medical profession. To think that God’s law is not binding upon the medical practitioner as well as upon the workers in any other line of service is one of the greatest delusions that any soul can entertain. 15LtMs, Lt 99, 1900, par. 17

God’s people are in danger, notwithstanding the great light that shines upon their pathway, of following the customs of the world. Dishonest actions are recorded in the books of heaven just exactly as they are. When worldly customs are followed, when a charge is made that is disproportionate to the work done, God’s law is disregarded. The covering that has been placed over this work by giving it the name of medical missionary work is a farce and a deception. Let us be true to our colors. Let us raise the standard on which is inscribed, “The commandments of God and the faith of Jesus.” [Revelation 14:12.] Just as surely as acts of overreaching and oppression are performed, so surely will they meet the eye of eternal Justice. There needs to be a Christian reform among medical practitioners. A fair and honorable price should be charged for the actions performed to relieve suffering humanity. 15LtMs, Lt 99, 1900, par. 18