Roadside Ministry Community Service Center Stocks Refreshments and Serves Prayer

December 01, 2006 | Diane Ball

When the Arlington, Wash., Adventist Community Service Center signed up to stock a Rest Area Coffee Kiosk, they planned to use this opportunity as a fundraiser, but God had other plans.

“The Lord started sending us all kinds of people asking for prayer, needing help or requiring medical attention,” said Diane Ball, president of the Snohomish Federation of Adventist Community Services (ACS) and director of the local ACS center.

Over a 48-hour shift, volunteers serve quite a variety of beverages. Ladies from the church also make homemade cookies and purchase Orowheat bakery items.

Many travelers who come through are just too tired to keep driving, and will stop to chat and wake up. Many times, they ask for prayer after sharing about their travels or family problems.

Recently, volunteers helped a homeless family retrieve their camper after it was impounded. Another time, a truck driver had a heart attack, and one of the volunteers, a registered nurse, was able to help him until medical personnel arrived.

“We have been able to share Jesus with people who would probably never darken a church door,” Ball said. “Other people tell us they were raised Adventist, went to an Adventist academy or graduated from one of our colleges, but have not been to church in years. Still others stop by to encourage us and thank us for what we are doing.”

Since 2004, the kiosk proceeds from 31 shifts have funded relief aid, mission trips, a mobile disaster relief trailer and community services training.