“The $40,000 Lab Countertop” by Reva Lachica Moore

You’re probably asking, “Why $40,000? Is the countertop gold-plated?” No, in fact this is a small countertop. Only 3 x 3 x 4 feet.

In the early 80’s, I worked in a chemical lab where I became sensitized and sick. A certain chemical caused me to have respiratory problems. Whenever a lab tech becomes sensitized, he or she is taken away from the chemical and the area in question. Because of this, my superiors transferred me to a much safer lab environment. That was many years ago. In our workplace, there are 8 laboratories. I was happy for I liked my new lab right away. I work by myself and wish to stay here until I retire. But my joy was short lived because shortly after my transfer, bad news came.

“Reva, we are going to make a new product for a new customer and this product will involve the same chemical that made you sick.” The lab manager informed me one day.

“Because of this, we will have to transfer you again to another laboratory.”

I couldn’t believe what I heard. I had finally found a lab that I really liked and now, they were moving me out again. That night I earnestly pleaded with God to do something.

Amazingly, that same night I had a dream. In the dream I saw that all the offices in the building where my current lab was located, had new people and new nameplates on the office doors, and that I didn’t recognize anyone. As if I saw the future in my dream and I was still working in the same lab. Could my mind have made the dream up?

A week later, my supervisor gave me a bit of good news. “Reva, you I can stay in this lab for a year because we will send all the lab work that pertained to the chemical in question to another lab; but definitely, when the year is over, you are moving to another lab.”

I continued to talk to God about the situation. In the mean time, the construction of tanks and structures for the new chemical product got started outside our building. Many
instruments/machines costing over $100,000 were purchased for the lab. In a few months’ time, our area had become a busy site with many changes–reminding me of my imminent transfer. And I dreaded it.

Life was normal and quiet for me for a year. I decided to enjoy my work and the place while anticipating my relocation. A whole year went by, but nobody came for me. Then another two months. Still no one came to transfer me. I started to wonder if they forgot. I didn’t want to ask because I didn’t want to remind them. Another 6 months passed. I was getting very anxious. Finally, one day I couldn’t take the suspense any longer.

“How come you all haven’t moved me out? Did you decide to continue sending the work to another lab?” I finally asked.
“We are no longer making the new product. After all the big expenses, the customer changed his mind.” My lab supervisor informed me.

“So I don’t have to move?” I’m sure my excitement showed all over my face.

“That’s right. You are staying here until further notice.”
I told my superiors about how I prayed that I may be able to stay, and also told them about my dream. They shook their heads and said that just maybe God indeed heard my prayers. I would surely like to think so. My immediate supervisor said, “Reva, I am afraid of your God.”

So, what about this $40,000 countertop? What does my story have to do with it? Well, one of the expensive machines purchased during that time was a gigantic (3 x 3 x 4 ft) centrifuge. Before it arrived, carpenters came and cut out part of the existing countertop near the main door. Inside the hole, they placed the huge centrifuge, which was exactly level with the rest of the countertop. Needless to say, the centrifuge was never used.

It stayed closed and the top part is used as a countertop. A scanner and a labeling machine sit on top of it. And once in a while, some new folks would ask me, “What is this huge machine and why is it just sitting here—unused?” I’m the only one who can answer their questions because 15 years later, I still worked in the same lab. And as shown in the dream, everyone who used to work in the building, including my superiors, are no longer around. They were the ones who were transferred. Everyone working in the building is new to the place. And the $40,000 countertop is my reminder of a loving God who heard my prayers many years ago.

Sometimes when things in your life get really discouraging, when things just don’t go the way you wish for them to be, don’t despair. There’s this Higher Power Who can change things around, even to your advantage. Some people may call it pure luck. I’d prefer to call it my Shield and my Buckler and my Big HELP in times of trouble.

Psalms 91:4 “He shall cover you with His feathers, And under His wings you shall take refuge; His truth shall be your shield and buckler.”

Note: This happened many years ago. God allowed me to retire 9 years early (2004) and that’s another story.