Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 20 (1905)

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Lt 233, 1905

Kress, Brother and Sister [D. H.]

“Elmshaven,” St. Helena, California

August 9, 1905

This letter is published in entirety in 20MR 256-263. +Note

Dear Brother and Sister Kress,—

During the past few months I have been exceedingly busy, writing out the instruction given me as the Lord’s witness and messenger. Often I have written ten pages before others were up in the morning. I have been obliged to bear urgent messages to many persons. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 1

Last year at this time my hand was very weary. The joints showed rheumatic tendencies. The thought that I might lose the use of my hand distressed me. I prayed over the matter, and I rejoice to say that for months I have felt no troubled at all. My hands are supple, more so than they have been for years, and I am able to do a great deal of writing. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 2

I praise the Lord for preserving His aged servants in health and strength. There is Elder Haskell, working earnestly for the advancement of the cause in Nashville. His wife, younger than he is, and in good health, is a great help and blessing to him. They blend in their labors and are doing an important work in teaching young people how to do house-to-house work. They are most earnest workers. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 3

Elder Butler also is engaged in labor in Nashville, and just now he and Elder Haskell are holding a series of tent-meetings there. Last year they could not find a place for the tent, and the evangelical work seemed to be at a standstill. At times the workers were tempted to feel discouraged; for every way of advance seemed to be closed. I tried to encourage them, but means that should have been sent to Nashville was withheld, and I felt deeply that changes must be brought about, because the Lord could not be glorified in his work being hindered. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 4

The workers in Nashville have passed through a severe trial of their faith; but recently the Lord’s providence has been working for them in a remarkable manner. Not long ago an opportunity came to them to purchase a good meetinghouse in an excellent part of the city for five thousand dollars. This property, with the lot on which it stands, is worth twenty thousand dollars. The church belonged to the Baptists, but was too small for them, and they were anxious to sell. Our brethren accepted the offer and are to make the last payment the first of October. I tell them to have faith in God; for the money will come, and they will own the house. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 5

The brethren in Washington lent them one thousand dollars to make the first payment; but Elder Haskell and Elder Butler have been worrying for fear that the rest of the money would not come in time. I have written as the Lord’s messenger to persons who ought to help them. I determined that these old soldiers of the cross—self-sacrificing, earnest workers as they are—should not be disappointed if I could prevent it. I have it in my mind what we can do and what I shall do rather than that they should lose the meetinghouse. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 6

The church is of solid brick. The seats are cushioned and the floor carpeted. There is a pipe organ built into the wall, and there is also a good piano. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 7

When I heard of this favor that the Lord had bestowed upon his old, faithful workers, I thanked Him with heart and soul. These brethren have borne the burden in the heat of the day. They carried on their shoulders the burden of raising funds for the building up of our institutions in the beginning. Together with my husband and myself they bore all the load under which they could stand. They united with us in the early stages of the work, and ever since then their one aim has been the upbuilding of the cause of God in our world. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 8

My husband, the old warrior, has gone; but I am still on the field of battle. The Lord still permits me to have a part in His work, and for this I thank Him. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 9

The Lord knows all the perils that surround us at this time. He knows our necessities. He knows the strength that we need in order to uphold the truth in its elevated, holy character, and He will supply all our need. We are not to be depressed by any trials that may come. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 10

I wish to say to you that if God opens the way for the brethren in other parts of Australia to purchase property that may be used for sanitarium work, such as the place that Brother Semmens has written about, forbid them not. Utter not one word of remonstrance. There are many cities to be worked, and medical missionary work is not to be confined to a few centers. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 11

For a long time the Battle Creek Sanitarium was the only medical institution conducted by our people. But for many years light has been given that sanitariums should be established near every large city. Sanitariums should be established near such cities as Melbourne and Adelaide. And when opportunities come to establish the work in still other places, never are we to reach out the hand and say, NO; you must not create an interest in other places; for fear that our patronage will be decreased. If sanitarium work is the means by which the way is to be opened for the proclamation of the truth, encourage and do not discourage those who are tying to advance this work. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 12

May the Lord increase our faith and help us to see that He desires us all to become acquainted with His ministry of healing and with the mercy-seat. He desires the light of His grace to shine forth from many places. We are living in the last days. Troublous times are before us. He who understands the necessities of the situation arranges that advantages should be brought to the workers in various places, to enable them more effectually to arouse the attention of the people. He knows the needs and the necessities of the feeblest of His flock, and He sends His own message late into the highways and the byways. He loves us with an everlasting love. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 13

There are souls in many places who have not yet heard the message. Henceforth medical missionary work is to be carried forward with an earnestness with which it has never yet been done. This work is the door through which the truth is to find entrance to the large cities, and sanitariums are to be established in many places. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 14

Since we returned from Australia, the Lord has opened the way for the establishment of the sanitarium work in Southern California. The brethren there have found opportunity to buy several properties at a price very much below the original cost. The first of these was an opportunity to purchase the Fernando school buildings. These buildings were in every way adapted for school work, and I advised their purchase. The property consists of a large school building, a dwelling house, twelve and a half acres of land, partly set out to orange trees: and the price paid was eleven thousand dollars. I asked how this price compared with the real value of the property, and the answer was that we had obtained the property for about one third of its value. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 15

About seven miles from San Diego our brethren found a building admirably adapted for sanitarium work. It was erected by a Mrs. Potts for sanitarium work, and when I saw it, it seemed to be that we had found about all that we could ask. Here was a well-constructed, three-story building of about fifty rooms, standing upon a pleasant rise of ground and overlooking a beautiful valley. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 16

Besides the main building, there was a six-roomed cottage, which could be fitted up for helpers, and a good stable. About half of the twenty acres of land had once been planted out to fruit trees; but during the long drought from which the country and suffered, the trees had been allowed to die, except the ornamental trees and the shrubbery round the buildings and about seventy olive trees on the terrace. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 17

The owners of this property had become discouraged on account of the long drought and were offering it for twelve thousand dollars. We did not feel free to purchase it at this price, and a year later it was offered to us for eight thousand. Still we did not take it, and about a year afterward, we made an offer of four thousand dollars for the mortgage, which was accepted. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 18

After purchasing the property, we immediately set about making the necessary repairs and improvements. Patients began to come in before the building was ready for them, and ever since the helpers have been kept busy. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 19

Not long ago a building at Glendale, eight miles from Los Angeles, was purchased and fitted up for sanitarium work. Originally this building was an expensive one, costing the owners about forty thousand dollars. There are seventy-five rooms, many of which are arranged in suites—a small one for a bedroom and a larger one for a sitting room. There were two bathrooms on each floor, but they were not such as would be needed in giving treatments, and new treatment rooms have been added. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 20

The rooms in the building are pleasant, and the location of the building is very good. The place is a sightly one. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 21

When Brother Burden first went to see the agent about purchasing this place, twenty thousand dollars was asked for it. Brother Burden then told the agent something of the purpose for which those desirous of purchasing the building wished to use it. He told him about our medical missionary work and assured him that this work was carried on without any thought of making money except for missionary purposes. The agent was much interested and was inclined in favor of the idea, and he named a sum considerably lower than the sum first mentioned. But Brother Burden told him that it would be impossible for us to pay that price, and he then said, “You can have it for twelve thousand five hundred dollars, and you may consider the remainder of the price a gift to the institution.” 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 22

Recently we have purchased what is known as the Loma Linda property. This property is sixty miles from Los Angeles and is on the main railway line from Los Angeles to New Orleans. It was owned by a corporation of one hundred and fifty people, seventy of whom were physicians. But the physicians did not agree among themselves, and the place lost money instead of making it; and it was decided to sell. It continued to be a loss financially, and the stockholders became anxious to sell. It was offered for forty thousand dollars, and for this price our brethren have purchased it, paying down five thousand dollars. They will make three other payments of five thousand each, and after that will have three years in which to pay the remainder at six per cent interest. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 23

The property is a most beautiful one. There are seventy-six acres of land, twenty-three of which are set out to fruit and ornamental trees. There are twelve acres of oranges and eight acres of plums, apricots, lemons, and grapefruit. The rest of the land is garden, alfalfa, and pasture land. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 24

There is one large building and five cottages, four of which have four rooms each and one nine rooms. In all there are ninety rooms. The buildings are all furnished throughout and are ready for use. There are several good carriages, five horses, four cows, and one hundred and thirty-five chickens. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 25

There is an ample water supply, the property having two good wells. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 26

I know that it was in the providence of God that we had an opportunity to purchase this property. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 27

I wrote the foregoing last night, and this morning I am roused up to repeat the instruction that the Lord has given me in regard to establishing sanitariums. Again and again this matter has been presented to me, and one case especially has been urged upon my notice. At great cost a sanitarium was erected at Boulder, Colorado. It has been a very difficult matter to make this sanitarium what it should be, and yet meet all expenses. The effort to do this has meant a great deal of hard work and much careful study. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 28

During the past four years one of our doctors established himself in the city of Boulder, just a little distance from our sanitarium, and began to build up a private sanitarium. This was not right and has been to the injury of our sanitarium, which has always had a struggle to make a success and to accomplish the work which the Lord designed it to do. The action of the one who established this private sanitarium was neither just nor righteous. Were he to continue to do as he has done in the past, constant difficulties would arise. He draws patients away from the sanitarium established in the order of God. More than this, he allows his patients to have meat, while the workers in our sanitarium have always endeavored to show their patients that they would be better off without meat. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 29

The question is, What shall be done? Here are two institutions, one endeavoring to hold up and follow the principles of health reform and the other allowing its patients to indulge in the use of flesh meat, and because of this, drawing patients away from the first institution. The matter is to be treated in a fair, Christlike manner. When the one who has established himself so close beside the Lord’s institution is converted in heart and mind, he will see the necessity of carrying out the principles of the Word of God and will harmonize with his neighbors. If he cannot blend with them, he will go to some other place. There are many other places to which he could go. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 30

The question has been asked, Should we sell the Boulder Sanitarium to the one who has set up a practice so close to it? I answer, No, no! The one who has offered to buy it is not keeping up the standard of health reform, and the Lord would not be pleased to have the institution sold to him. The Boulder Sanitarium is to do its appointed work. From it the truth for this time is to shine forth and the great message of warning be given. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 31

In ancient times the remark was frequently made, “Wherever there are three physicians, there are two atheists.” But a change has come. Wherever the last message of warning is given, combined with medical missionary work and lessons on the right principles of living, wonderful results are seen. Our sanitariums are to be the means of enlightening those who come to them for treatment. The patients are to be shown how they can live upon a diet of grains, fruits, nuts, and other products of the soil. I have been instructed that lectures should be regularly given in our sanitariums on health topics. People are to be taught to discard those articles of food that weaken the health and strength of the beings for whom Christ gave His life. The injurious effects of tea and coffee are to be shown. The patients are to be taught how they can dispense with those articles of diet that injure the digestive organs. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 32

These things are to be treated from a health standpoint. The blessings that attend a disuse of tobacco and intoxicating liquor are to be plainly pointed out. Let the patients be shown the necessity of practicing the principles of health reform, if they would regain their health. Let the sick be shown how to get well by being temperate in eating and by taking regular exercise in the open air. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 33

It is that people may become intelligent in regard to these things that sanitariums are to be established. A great work is to be done. Those who are now ignorant are to become wise. By the work of our sanitariums, suffering is to be relieved and health restored. People are to be taught how, by carefulness in eating and drinking, they may keep well. Christ died to save men from ruin. Our sanitariums are to be his helping hand, teaching men and women how to live in such a way as to honor and glorify God. If this work is not done by our sanitariums, a great mistake is made by those conducting them. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 34

Abstinence from flesh meat will benefit those who abstain. The diet question is a subject of living interest. Those who do not conduct sanitariums in the right way lose their opportunity to help the very ones who need to make a reform in their manner of living. Our sanitariums are established for a special purpose, to teach people that we do not live to eat, but that we eat to live. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 35

In our sanitariums, the truth is to be cherished, not banished or hidden from sight. The light is to shine forth in clear, distinct rays. These institutions are the Lord’s facilities for the revival of pure, elevated morality. We do not establish them as a speculative business, but to help men and women to follow right habits of living. Christ, the great Medical Missionary, is no longer in our world in person. But He has not left the world in darkness. To His subjects He has given the commission, “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature,” “teaching them all things whatsoever I have commanded you; and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” [Mark 16:15; Matthew 28:20.] The great questions of Bible truth are to enter into the very heart of society to reform and convert men and women, bringing them to see the great necessity of preparing for the mansions that Christ told His disciples He would prepare for those that love Him. “If I go away,” He declared, “I will come again, and receive you unto Myself, that where I am, there ye may be also.” [John 14:3.] 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 36

Our work is to gain a knowledge of Him who is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. We are to interest people in the subjects that concern the health of the body, as well as in the subjects that concern the health of the soul. Believers have a decided message to bear to prepare the way for the kingdom of God. The will of the Lord is to be done on earth. We have not one moment to spend in idle speculation. “Prepare the way of the Lord; make His paths straight” is the message that we are to proclaim. [Matthew 3:3.] Amidst all the confusion that now fills the world, a clear, decided message is to be heard. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 37

Some will be attracted by one phase of the gospel and some by another. We are instructed by our Lord to work in such a way that all classes will be reached. The message must go to the whole world. Our sanitariums are to help to make up the number of God’s people. We are not to establish a few mammoth institutions; for thus it would be impossible to give the patients the messages that will bring health to the soul. Small sanitariums are to be established in many places. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 38

Satan will introduce every form of error in an effort to lead souls away from the work to be accomplished in these last days. There needs to be a decided awakening, in accordance with the importance of the subjects we are presenting. The conversion of souls is now to be our one object. Every facility for the advancement of God’s cause is to be put into use, that His will may be done on earth as it is done in heaven. We cannot afford to be irreligious and indifferent now. We must take advantage of the means that the Lord has placed in our hands for the carrying forward of medical missionary work. Through this work infidels will be converted. Through the wonderful restorations taking place in our sanitariums, souls will be led to look to Christ as the great Healer of soul and body. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 39

Let not our physicians think that they can set themselves up in private practice close beside our sanitariums. To those who have done this the Lord says, Are there not many other places in which you could have established your plant? 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 40

The Lord speaks to all medical missionaries, saying, Go work today in My vineyard to save souls. God hears the prayers of all who seek Him in truth. He has the power that we all need. He fills the heart with love, and joy, and peace, and holiness. Character is constantly being developed. We cannot afford to spend time working at cross purposes with God. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 41

There are physicians who because of a past connection with our sanitariums find it profitable to locate close to them; and they close their eyes to the great fields neglected and unworked in which unselfish labor would be a blessing to many. Missionary physicians can exert an uplifting, refining, sanctifying influence. Physicians who do not do this abuse their power and do a work that the Lord repudiates. 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 42

God wants every one to stand with the whole armor on, ready for the great review. He wants us to do the work that He has given us. “In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths.” [Proverbs 3:6.] “The secret of the Lord is with them that fear Him.” [Psalm 25:14.] 20LtMs, Lt 233, 1905, par. 43