Section X - Health Food Work
Pages 471 - 496
During the past night many things have been opened before me. The manufacture and sale of health foods will require careful and prayerful consideration.
There are many minds in many places to whom the Lord will surely give knowledge of how to prepare foods that are healthful and palatable, if He sees that they will use this knowledge righteously. Animals are becoming more and more diseased, and it will not be long until animal food will be discarded by many besides Seventh-day Adventists. Foods that are healthful and life-sustaining are to be prepared, so that men and women will not need to eat meat.
The Lord will teach many in all parts of the world to combine fruits, grains, and vegetables into foods that will sustain life and will not bring disease. Those who have never seen the recipes for making the health foods now on the market will work intelligently, experimenting with the food productions of the earth, and will be given light regarding the use of these productions. The Lord will show them what to do.
He who gives skill and understanding to His people in one part of the world will give skill and understanding to His people in other parts of the world. It is His design that the food treasures of each country shall be so prepared that they can be used in the countries for which they are suited. As God gave manna from heaven to sustain the children of Israel, so He will now give His people
in different places skill and wisdom to use the productions of these countries in preparing foods to take the place of meat. These foods should be made in the different countries; for to transport them from one country to another makes them so expensive that the poor cannot afford them. It will never pay to depend upon America for the supply of health foods for other countries. Great difficulty will be found in handling the imported goods without financial loss.
All who handle the health foods are to work unselfishly for the benefit of their fellow men. Unless men allow the Lord to guide their minds, untold difficulties will arise as different ones engage in this work. When the Lord gives one skill and understanding, let that one remember that this wisdom was not given for his benefit only, but that with it he might help others.
No man is to think that he is the possessor of all knowledge regarding the preparation of health foods, or that he has the sole right to use the Lord's treasures of earth and tree in this work. No man is to feel free to use according to his own pleasure the knowledge God has given him on this subject. "Freely ye have received, freely give." Matthew 10:8.
It is our wisdom to prepare simple, inexpensive, healthful foods. Many of our people are poor, and healthful foods are to be provided that can be supplied at prices that the poor can afford to pay. It is the Lord's design that the poorest people in every place shall be supplied with inexpensive, healthful foods. In many places industries for the manufacture of these foods are to be established. That which is a blessing to the work in one place will be a blessing in another place where money is very much harder to obtain.
God is working in behalf of His people. He does not desire them to be without resources. He is bringing them back to the diet originally given to man. Their diet is to consist of the foods made from the materials He has provided. The materials principally used in these foods will be fruits and grains and nuts, but various roots will also be used.
The profits on these foods are to come principally from the world, rather than from the Lord's people. God's people have to sustain His work; they have to enter new fields and establish churches. On them rest the burdens of many missionary enterprises. No unnecessary burdens are to be placed upon them. To His people God is a present help in every time of need.
Great care should be exercised by those who prepare recipes for our health journals. Some of the specially prepared foods now being made can be improved, and our plans regarding their use will have to be modified. Some have used the nut preparations too freely. Many have written to me, "I cannot use the nut foods; what shall I use in place of meat?" One night I seemed to be standing before a company of people, telling them that nuts are used too freely in their preparation of foods, that the system cannot take care of them when used as in some of the recipes given, and that, if used more sparingly, the results would be more satisfactory.
The Lord desires those living in countries where fresh fruit can be obtained during a large part of the year, to awake to the blessing they have in this fruit. The more we depend upon the fresh fruit just as it is plucked from the tree, the greater will be the blessing. Some, after adopting a vegetarian diet, return to the use of flesh meat.
This is foolish indeed, and reveals a lack of knowledge of how to provide proper food in the place of meat.
Cooking schools, conducted by wise instructors, are to be held in America and in other lands. Everything that we can do should be done to show the people the value of the reform diet.
There is danger that our restaurants will be conducted in such a way that our helpers will work very hard day after day and week after week, and yet not be able to point to any good accomplished. This matter needs careful consideration. We have no right to bind our young people up in a work that yields no fruit to the glory of God.
There is danger that the restaurant work, though regarded as a wonderfully successful way of doing good, will be so conducted that it will promote merely the physical well-being of those whom it serves. A work may apparently bear the features of supreme excellence, but it is not good in God's sight unless it is performed with an earnest desire to do His will and fulfill His purpose. If God is not recognized as the author and end of our actions, they are weighed in the balances of the sanctuary, and found wanting.--Testimonies for the Church, vol. 7, p. 120 (1902).
The world will be convinced, not by what the pulpit teaches, but by what the church lives. The minister in the desk announces the theory of the gospel; the practical piety of the church demonstrates its power.--Testimonies for the Church, vol. 7, p. 16 (1902).
Wherever the truth is proclaimed, instruction should be given in the preparation of healthful foods. God desires that in every place the people shall be taught to use wisely the products that can be easily obtained. Skillful teachers should show the people how to utilize to the very best advantage the products that they can raise or secure in their section of the country. Thus the poor, as well as those in better circumstances, can learn to live healthfully.
From the beginning of the health-reform work, we have found it necessary to educate, educate, educate. God desires us to continue this work of educating the people. We are not to neglect it because of the effect we may fear it will have on the sales of the health foods prepared in our factories. That is not the most important matter. Our work is to show the people how they can obtain and prepare the most wholesome food, how they can co-operate with God in restoring His moral image in themselves.
Our workers should exercise their ingenuity in the preparation of healthful foods. None are to pry into Dr. Kellogg's secrets, but all should understand that the Lord is teaching many minds in many places to make healthful foods. There are many products which, if properly prepared and combined, can be made into foods that will be a blessing to those who cannot afford to purchase the more expensive, specially prepared health foods. He who in the building of tabernacle gave skill and understanding in all manner of cunning work, will give skill and understanding to His people in the combining of natural food products, thus showing them how to secure a healthful diet.
Knowledge in regard to the preparation of healthful foods is God's property, and has been communicated to man, in order that he may communicate it to his fellow men. In saying this, I do not refer to the special preparations that it has taken Dr. Kellogg and others long study and much expense to perfect. I refer especially to the simple preparations that all can make for themselves, instruction in regard to which should be given freely to those who desire to live healthfully, and especially to the poor.
It is the Lord's design that in every place men and women shall be encouraged to develop their talents by preparing healthful foods from the natural products of their own section of the country. If they look to God, exercising their skill and ingenuity under the guidance of His Spirit, they will learn how to prepare natural products into healthful foods. Thus they will be able to teach the poor how to provide themselves with foods that will take the place of flesh meat. Those thus helped can in turn instruct others. Such a work will yet be done with consecrated zeal and energy. If it had been done before, there would today be many more people in the truth, and many more who could give instruction. Let us learn what our duty is, and then do it. We are not to be dependent and helpless, waiting for others to do the work that God has committed to us.
In the use of foods we should exercise good, sound common sense. When we find that a certain food does not agree with us, we need not write letters of inquiry to learn the cause of the disturbance. Change the diet; use less of some foods; try other preparations. Soon we shall know the effect that certain combinations have on us.
As intelligent human beings, let us individually study the principles and use our experience and judgment in deciding what foods are best for us.
The foods used should be suited to the occupation in which we are engaged and the climate in which we live. Some foods that are suitable in one country will not do in another.
There are some who would be benefited more by abstinence from food for a day or two every week than by any amount of treatment or medical advice. To fast one day a week would be of incalculable benefit to them.
I have been instructed that the nut foods are often used unwisely, that too large a proportion of nuts is used, that some nuts are not as wholesome as others. Almonds are preferable to peanuts; but peanuts, in limited quantities, may be used in connection with grains to make nourishing and digestible food.
Olives may be so prepared as to be eaten with good results at every meal. The advantages sought by the use of butter may be obtained by the eating of properly prepared olives. The oil in the olives relieves constipation, and for consumptives, and for those who have inflamed, irritated stomachs, it is better than any drug. As food it is better than any oil coming secondhand from animals.
It would be well for us to do less cooking and to eat more fruit in its natural state. Let us teach the people to eat freely of the fresh grapes, apples, peaches, pears, berries, and all other kinds of fruit that can be obtained. Let these be prepared for winter use by canning, using glass, as far as possible, instead of tin.
Concerning flesh meat, we should educate the people to let it alone. Its use is contrary to the best development
of the physical, mental, and moral powers. And we should bear a clear testimony against the use of tea and coffee. It is also well to discard rich desserts. Milk, eggs, and butter should not be classed with flesh meat. In some cases the use of eggs is beneficial. The time has not come to say that the use of milk and eggs should be wholly discarded. There are poor families whose diet consists largely of bread and milk. They have little fruit and cannot afford to purchase the nut foods. In teaching health reform, as in all other gospel work, we are to meet the people where they are. Until we can teach them how to prepare health-reform foods that are palatable, nourishing, and yet inexpensive, we are not at liberty to present the most advanced propositions regarding health-reform diet.
Let the diet reform be progressive. Let the people be taught how to prepare food without the use of milk or butter. Tell them that the time will soon come when there will be no safety in using eggs, milk, cream, or butter, because disease in animals is increasing in proportion to the increase of wickedness among men. The time is near when, because of the iniquity of the fallen race, the whole animal creation will groan under the diseases that curse our earth.
God will give His people ability and tact to prepare wholesome food without these things. Let our people discard all unwholesome recipes. Let them learn how to live healthfully, teaching to others what they have learned. Let them impart this knowledge as they would Bible instruction. Let them teach the people to preserve the health and increase the strength by avoiding the large amount of cooking that has filled the world with chronic invalids. By precept and example make it plain that the
food which God gave Adam in his sinless state is the best for man's use as he seeks to regain that sinless state.
Those who teach the principles of health reform should be intelligent in regard to disease and its causes, understanding that every action of the human agent should be in perfect harmony with the laws of life. The light God has given on health reform is for our salvation and the salvation of the world. Men and women should be informed in regard to the human habitation, fitted up by our Creator as His dwelling place and over which He desires us to be faithful stewards. "For ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people." 2 Corinthians 6:16.
Hold up the principles of health reform, and let the Lord lead the honest in heart. Present the principles of temperance in their most attractive form. Circulate the books that give instruction in regard to healthful living.
The people are in sad need of the light shining from the pages of our health books and journals. God desires to use these books and journals as mediums through which flashes of light shall arrest the attention of the people and cause them to heed the warning of the message of the third angel. Our health journals are instrumentalities in the field to do a special work in disseminating the light that the inhabitants of the world must have in this day of God's preparation. They wield an untold influence in the interests of health and temperance and social-purity reform, and will accomplish great good in presenting these subjects in a proper manner and in their true light to the people.
The Lord has been sending us line upon line, and if we reject these principles, we are not rejecting the messenger who teaches them, but the One who has given us the principles.
Reform, continual reform, must be kept before the people, and by our example we must enforce our teaching. True religion and the laws of health go hand in hand. It is impossible to work for the salvation of men and women without presenting to them the need of breaking away from sinful gratifications, which destroy the health, debase the soul, and prevent divine truth from impressing the mind. Men and women must be taught to take a careful view of every habit and every practice and at once put away those things that cause an unhealthy condition of the body, and thus cast a dark shadow over the mind. God desires His light bearers ever to keep a high standard before them. By precept and example they must hold their perfect standard high above Satan's false standard, which, if followed, will lead to misery, degradation, disease, and death for both body and soul. Let those who have obtained a knowledge of how to eat and drink and dress so as to preserve health, impart this knowledge to others. Let the poor have the gospel of health preached unto them from a practical point of view, that they may know how to care properly for the body, which is the temple of the Holy Spirit.
We must do more than we have done to reach the people of our cities. We are not to erect large buildings in the cities, but over and over again the light has been given me that we should establish in all our cities small plants which shall be centers of influence.
The Lord has a message for our cities, and this message we are to proclaim in our camp meetings and by other public efforts, and also through our publications. In addition to this, hygienic restaurants are to be established in the cities, and by them the message of temperance is to be proclaimed. Arrangements should be made to hold meetings in connection with our restaurants. Whenever possible, let a room be provided where the patrons can be invited to lectures on the science of health and Christian temperance, where they can receive instruction on the preparation of wholesome food and on other important subjects. In these meetings there should be prayer and singing and talks, not only on health and temperance topics, but also on other appropriate Bible subjects. As the people are taught how to preserve physical health, many opportunities will be found to sow the seeds of the gospel of the kingdom.
The subjects should be presented in such a way as to impress the people favorably. There should be in the meetings nothing of a theatrical nature. The singing should not be done by a few only. All present should be encouraged to join in the song service. There are those who have a special gift of song, and there are times when a special message is borne by one singing alone or by several uniting in song. But the singing is seldom to be
done by a few. The ability to sing is a talent of influence, which God desires all to cultivate and use to His name's glory.
Those who come to our restaurants should be supplied with reading matter. Their attention should be called to our literature on temperance and dietetic reform, and leaflets treating on the lessons of Christ should also be given them. The burden of supplying this reading matter should be shared by all our people. All who come should be given something to read. It may be that many will leave the tract unread, but some among those in whose hands you place it may be searching for light. They will read and study what you give them, and then pass it on to others.
The workers in our restaurants should live in such close connection with God that they will recognize the promptings of His Spirit to talk personally about spiritual things to such and such a one who comes to the restaurant. When self is crucified and Christ is formed within, the hope of glory, we shall reveal in thought, word, and deed the reality of our belief in the truth. The Lord will be with us, and through us the Holy Spirit will work to reach those who are out of Christ.
The Lord has instructed me that this is the work to be done by those conducting our restaurants. The pressure and rush of business must not lead to a neglect of the work of soul saving. It is well to minister to the physical wants of our fellow men, but if ways are not found to let the light of the gospel shine forth to those who come day by day for their meals, how is God glorified by our work?
When the restaurant work was started, it was expected that it would be the means of reaching many with the
message of present truth. Has it done this? To the workers in our restaurants the question was asked by One in authority: "To how many have you spoken regarding their salvation? How many have heard from your lips earnest appeals to accept Christ as a personal Saviour? How many have been led by your words to turn from sin to the service of the living God?"
As in our restaurants people are supplied with temporal food, let not the workers forget that they themselves and those whom they serve need to be constantly supplied with the bread of heaven. Let them watch constantly for opportunities to speak of the truth to those who know it not.
The managers of our restaurants are to work for the salvation of the employees. They must not overwork, because by doing so they will place themselves where they have neither strength nor inclination to help the workers spiritually. They are to devote their best powers to instructing their employees in spiritual lines, explaining the Scriptures to them and praying with them and for them. They are to guard the religious interests of the helpers as carefully as parents are to guard the religious interests of their children. Patiently and tenderly they are to watch over them, doing all in their power to help them in the perfection of Christian characters. Their words are to be like apples of gold in pictures of silver; their actions are to be free from every trace of selfishness and harshness. They are to stand as minutemen, watching for souls as they that must give an account. They are to strive to keep their helpers standing on vantage ground, where their courage will constantly grow stronger and their faith in God constantly increase.
Unless our restaurants are conducted in this way, it will be necessary to warn our people against sending their children to them as workers. Many of those who patronize our restaurants do not bring with them the angels of God; they do not desire the companionship of these holy beings. They bring with them a worldly influence, and to withstand this influence the workers need to be closely connected with God. The managers of our restaurants must do more to save the young people in their employ. They must put forth greater efforts to keep them alive spiritually, so that their young minds will not be swayed by the worldly spirit with which they are constantly brought in contact. The girls and the young women in our restaurants need a shepherd. Every one of them needs to be sheltered by home influences.
There is danger that the youth, entering our institutions as believers, and desiring to help in the cause of God, will become weary and disheartened, losing their zeal and courage, and growing cold and indifferent. We cannot crowd these youth into small, dark rooms, and deprive them of the privileges of home life, and then expect them to have a wholesome religious experience.
It is important that wise plans be laid for the care of the helpers in all our institutions, and especially for those employed in our restaurants. Good helpers should be secured, and every advantage should be provided that will aid them to grow in grace and in the knowledge of Christ. They are not to be left to the mercy of haphazard circumstances, with no regular time for prayer, and no time at all for Bible study. When left thus, they become heedless and careless, indifferent to eternal realities.
With every restaurant there should be connected a man and his wife who can act as guardians of the helpers, a man and woman who love the Saviour and the souls for whom He died, and who keep the way of the Lord.
The young women should be under the care of a wise, judicious matron, a woman who is thoroughly converted, who will carefully guard the workers, especially the younger ones.
The workers are to feel that they have a home. They are God's helping hand, and they are to be treated as carefully and tenderly as Christ declared that the little child whom He set in the midst of His disciples was to be treated. "Whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in Me," He said, "it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea." "Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of My Father which is in heaven." Matthew 18:6, 10. The care that should be given to these employees is one of the reasons in favor of having in a large city several small restaurants instead of one large one. But this is not the only reason why it will be best to establish several small restaurants in different parts of our large cities.
The smaller restaurants will recommend the principles of health reform just as well as the larger establishment, and will be much more easily managed. We are not commissioned to feed the world, but we are instructed to educate the people. In the smaller restaurants there will not be so much work to do, and the helpers will have more time to devote to the study of the word,
more time to learn how to do their work well, and more time to answer the inquiries of the patrons who are desirous of learning about the principles of health reform.
If we fulfill the purpose of God in this work, the righteousness of Christ will go before us, and the glory of the Lord will be our rearward. But if there is no ingathering of souls, if the helpers themselves are not spiritually benefited, if they are not glorifying God in word and deed, why should we open and maintain such establishments? If we cannot conduct our restaurants to God's glory, if we cannot exert through them a strong religious influence, it would be better for us to close them up and use the talents of our youth in other lines of work. But our restaurants can be so conducted that they will be the means of saving souls. Let us seek the Lord earnestly for humility of heart, that He may teach us how to walk in the light of His counsel, how to understand His word, how to accept it, and how to put it into practice.
While in New York in the winter of 1901, I received light in regard to the work in that great city. Night after night the course that our brethren should pursue passed before me. In Greater New York the message is to go forth as a lamp that burneth. God will raise up laborers for this work, and His angels will go before them. Though our large cities are fast reaching a condition similar to the condition of the world before the Flood, though they are as Sodom for wickedness, yet there are in them many honest souls who, as they listen to the startling truths of the advent message, will feel the conviction of the Spirit. New York is ready to be worked. In that great city the message of truth will be given with the power of God. The Lord calls for workmen. He calls upon those who have gained an experience in the cause to take up and carry forward in His fear the work to be done in New York and in other large cities of America. He calls also for means to be used in this work.
It was presented to me that we should not rest satisfied because we have a vegetarian restaurant in Brooklyn, but that others should be established in other sections of the city. The people living in one part of Greater New York do not know what is going on in other parts of that great city. Men and women who eat at the restaurants established in different places will become conscious of an improvement in health. Their confidence once gained, they will be more ready to accept God's special message of truth.
Wherever medical missionary work is carried on in our large cities, cooking schools should be held; and wherever a strong educational missionary work is in progress, a hygienic restaurant of some sort should be
established, which shall give a practical illustration of the proper selection and the healthful preparation of foods.
When in Los Angeles, I was instructed that not only in various sections of that city, but in San Diego and in other tourist resorts of Southern California, health restaurants and treatment rooms should be established. Our efforts in these lines should include the great seaside resorts. As the voice of John the Baptist was heard in the wilderness, "Prepare ye the way of the Lord," so must the voice of the Lord's messengers be heard in the great tourist and seaside resorts.
I have been given light that in many cities it is advisable for a restaurant to be connected with treatment rooms. The two can co-operate in upholding right principles. In connection with these, it is sometimes advisable to have rooms that will serve as lodgings for the sick. These establishments will serve as feeders to the sanitariums located in the country and would better be conducted in rented buildings. We are not to erect in the cities large buildings in which to care for the sick, because God has plainly indicated that the sick can be better cared for outside of the cities. In many places it will be necessary to begin sanitarium work in the cities, but, as much as possible, this work should be transferred to the country as soon as suitable locations can be secured.--Testimonies for the Church, vol. 7, p. 60.
The question has been asked, "Should our restaurants be opened on the Sabbath?" My answer is, No, no! The observance of the Sabbath is our witness to God--the mark, or sign, between Him and us that we are His people. Never is this mark to be obliterated.
Were the workers in our restaurants to provide meals on the Sabbath the same as they do through the week, for the mass of people who would come, where would be their day of rest? What opportunity would they have to recruit their physical and spiritual strength?
Not long since, special light was given me on this subject. I was shown that efforts would be made to break down our standard of Sabbath observance, that men would plead for the opening of our restaurants on the Sabbath; but that this must never be done.
A scene passed before me. I was in our restaurant in San Francisco. It was Friday. Several of the workers were busily engaged in putting up packages of such foods as could be easily carried by the people to their homes, and a number were waiting to receive these packages. I asked the meaning of this, and the workers told me that some among their patrons were troubled because, on account of the closing of the restaurant, they could not on the Sabbath obtain food of the same kind as that which they used during the week. Realizing the value of the wholesome foods obtained at the restaurant, they protested against being denied them on the seventh day and pleaded with those in charge of the restaurant to keep it open every day in the week, pointing out what they
would suffer if this were not done. "What you see today," said the workers, "is our answer to this demand for the health foods upon the Sabbath. These people take on Friday food that lasts over the Sabbath, and in this way we avoid condemnation for refusing to open the restaurant on the Sabbath."
The line of demarcation between our people and the world must ever be kept unmistakably plain. Our platform is the law of God, in which we are enjoined to observe the Sabbath day, for, as is distinctly stated in the thirty-first chapter of Exodus, the observance of the Sabbath is a sign between God and His people. "Verily My Sabbaths ye shall keep," He declares; "for it is a sign between Me and you throughout your generations; that ye may know that I am the Lord that doth sanctify you. Ye shall keep the Sabbath therefore; for it is holy unto you. . . . It is a sign between Me and the children of Israel forever: for in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day He rested, and was refreshed."
We are to heed a "thus saith the Lord," even though by our obedience we cause great inconvenience to those who have no respect for the Sabbath. On one hand we have man's supposed necessities; on the other, God's commands. Which have the greatest weight with us?
In our sanitariums, the family of patients, with the physicians, nurses, and helpers, must be fed upon the Sabbath, as any other family, with as little labor as possible. But our restaurants should not be opened on the Sabbath. Let the workers be assured that they will have this day for the worship of God. The closed doors on the Sabbath stamp the restaurant as a memorial for God, a memorial which declares that the seventh day is the Sabbath and that on it no unnecessary work is to be done.
I have been instructed that one of the principal reasons why hygienic restaurants and treatment rooms should be established in the centers of large cities is that by this means the attention of leading men will be called to the third angel's message. Noticing that these restaurants are conducted in a way altogether different from the way in which ordinary restaurants are conducted, men of intelligence will begin to inquire into the reasons for the difference in business methods and will investigate the principles that lead us to serve superior food. Thus they will be led to a knowledge of the message for this time.
When thinking men find that our restaurants are closed on the Sabbath, they will make inquiries in regard to the principles that lead us to close our doors on Saturday. In answering their questions we shall have opportunity to acquaint them with the reasons for our faith. We can give them copies of our periodicals and tracts, so that they may be able to understand the difference between "him that serveth God and him that serveth Him not."
Not all our people are as particular as they should be in regard to Sabbath observance. May God help them to reform. It becomes the head of every family to plant his feet firmly on the platform of obedience.
Everything that can possibly be done on the six days which God has given to you, should be done. You should not rob God of one hour of holy time. Great blessings are promised to those who place a high estimate upon the Sabbath and realize the obligations resting upon them in regard to its observance.--Testimonies for the Church, vol. 2, p. 702 (1871).
The Lord has instructed me to say that He has not confined to a few persons all the light there is to be received in regard to the best preparations of health foods. . . .
God is the author of all wisdom, all intelligence, all talent. He will magnify His name by giving to many minds wisdom in the preparation of health foods. And when He does this, the making of these new foods is not to be looked upon as an infringement of the rights of those who are already manufacturing health foods, although in some respects the foods made by the different ones may be similar. God will take ordinary men and will give them skill and understanding in the use of the fruit of the earth. He deals impartially with His workers. Not one is forgotten by Him. He will impress businessmen who are Sabbathkeepers to establish industries that will provide employment for His people. He will teach His servants to prepare less expensive health foods which can be bought by the poor.
In all our plans we should remember that the health-food work is the property of God, and that it is not to be made a financial speculation for personal gain. It is God's gift to His people, and the profits are to be used for the good of suffering humanity everywhere.
Especially in the Southern States of North America many things will be devised and many facilities provided that the poor and needy can sustain themselves by the health-food industries. Under teachers who are laboring for the salvation of their souls, they will be taught how to cultivate and prepare for food those things that grow most readily in their locality.--Testimonies for the Church, vol. 7, pp. 128, 129 (1901).
I have a message to bear in regard to the Southern field. We have a great work to do in this field. Its condition is a condemnation of our professed Christianity. Look at its destitution of ministers, teachers, and medical missionaries. Consider the ignorance, the poverty, the misery, the distress, of many of the people. And yet this field lies close at our doors. How selfish, how inattentive, we have been to our neighbors! We have heartlessly passed them by, doing little to relieve their sufferings. If the gospel commission had been studied and obeyed by our people, the South would have received its proportionate share of ministry. If those who have received the light had walked in the light, they would have realized that upon them rested the responsibility of cultivating this long-neglected portion of the vineyard.
God is calling upon His people to give Him of the means that He has entrusted to them, in order that institutions may be established in the destitute fields that are ripe for the harvest. He calls upon those who have money in the banks to put it into circulation. By giving of our substance to sustain God's work, we show in a practical manner that we love Him supremely and our neighbor as ourselves.
Let schools and sanitariums now be established in many places in the Southern States. Let centers of influence be made in many of the Southern cities by the opening of food stores and vegetarian restaurants. Let there also be facilities for the manufacture of simple, inexpensive health foods. But let not selfish, worldly policy be brought into the work, for God forbids this. Let unselfish
men take hold of this work in the fear of God and with love for their fellow men.
The light given me is that in the Southern field, as elsewhere, the manufacture of health foods should be conducted, not as a speculation for personal gain, but as a business that God has devised whereby a door of hope may be opened for the people. In the South, special consideration should be shown to the poor, who have been terribly neglected. Men of ability and economy are to be chosen to take up the food work; for, in order to make it a success, the greatest wisdom and economy must be exercised. God desires His people to do acceptable service in the preparation of healthful food, not only for their own families, which are their first responsibility, but for the help of the poor everywhere. They are to show Christlike liberality, realizing that they are representing God and that all they have is His endowment.
Brethren, take hold of this work. Give no place to discouragement. Do not criticize those who are trying to do something in right lines, but go to work yourselves.
In connection with the health-food business, various industries may be established that will be a help to the cause in the Southern field. All that men as missionaries for God can do for this field should now be done, for if ever a field needed medical missionary work, it is the South. During the time that has passed into eternity, many should have been in the South, laboring together with God by doing personal work and by giving of their means to sustain themselves and other workers in that field.
The light given me is that it will not be very long before we shall have to give up using any animal food. Even milk will have to be discarded. Disease is accumulating rapidly. The curse of God is upon the earth, because man has cursed it. The habits and practices of men have brought the earth into such a condition that some other food than animal food must be substituted for the human family. We do not need flesh food at all. God can give us something else.
When we were talking about this land, it was said, "Nothing can be raised here." "Nevertheless," I said, "the Lord can spread a table in the wilderness." Under His direction food will go a long way. When we place ourselves in right relation to Him, He will help us and the food we eat in obedience to Him will satisfy us. We can subsist on very much less than we think we can, if God's blessing is on the food; and if it is for His glory He can multiply it.
We need to understand that God is in the health-reform movement. When we put Christ in it, it is right for us to grasp every probability and possibility.
The health-food business is to be connected with our school, and we should make provision for it. We are erecting buildings for the care of the sick, and food will be required for the patients. Wherever an interest is awakened, the people are to be taught the principles of health reform. If this line of work is brought in, it will be the entering wedge for the work of presenting truth. The health-food business should be established here. It should be one of the industries connected with the school. God has instructed me that parents can find work in this
industry and send their children to school. But everything that is done should be done with the greatest simplicity. There is to be no extravagance in anything. Solid work is to be done, because unless the work is done solidly a slipshod experience is the result. . . . The work must be solid. Just as soon as the helpers in this line of work are controlled by the Holy Spirit, the Lord will give them tact and intelligence in the manufacturing of foods, just as He gave the workers on the tabernacle understanding and ability. He will enable them to do the right kind of work in building up the tabernacle of the body.