God’s Provision at Sheridan Meadows
At Sheridan Meadows, the Adventist retreat center near Republic, Wash., work was beginning to prepare for Northeast Washington Camp Meeting. A local contractor was hauling gravel and making our road so much nicer. While all the trucks were coming and going there was not much else to do, so the water was turned on for the first time of the season. There is most always something the winter freeze has ruined — water lines frozen and split, needing repair.
This year there were no lines needing repair, but there was a urinal in the men’s bathroom acting like an artesian well that the drain could barely keep up with. The water was shut off and the urinal disassembled. Leon Anderson was going to go into Republic to try to get the needed parts to fix it. Urinals have rather specialized plumbing, and Republic is a very small town. Colville is more than 50 miles away and many times larger, but even at that it was not likely either place would have the needed part — but Leon would at least go to Republic and try.
In the story of Lazarus, Jesus asked them to roll away the stone from the grave. He could have spoken and it would have been done. Instead, He chose to work with humanity: "Thus Christ would show that humanity is to co-operate with divinity. What human power can do divine power is not summoned to do. God does not dispense with man’s aid. He strengthens him, co-operating with him as he uses the powers and capabilities given him" (Desire of Ages, p. 535.3).
So Leon was heading to Republic.
Near the highway leading to Republic there is a small singlewide trailer that the local Veterans of Foreign Wars have as a clubhouse, just a few hundred feet from the highway. A plumber from Republic had pulled in there, made a U-turn and was heading back to the highway. At that moment Leon drove by him and flagged him down. Leon asked him if he might have any parts he needed. The plumber had a truck similar to a small U-haul truck. He got out and rolled up his door, which revealed basically an empty van box. He started sorting around in some boxes on the floor near the front and pulled out the exact parts that were needed. He also informed Leon he needed to replace a small O-ring. The plumber sorted around some more and found one of those also.
What’s the chance of a plumber driving by at just the right time, having just the right part in a nearly empty truck, telling Leon what else he needed and having that part also? Only God knows, but He leaves us a good clue: "And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear" (Is. 65:24).
Patty Marsh, Kettle Falls Church member