DO 952–171 January 1981
Dear Dad, Maria, Peter & Family:
THANK YOU SO MUCH AGAIN FOR YOUR LOVE & WORDS OF ENCOURAGEMENT & CHASTENING. We've been so amazed by your mercy & your love & the generous way you shared with us & encouraged us by the Christmas gifts. I'm so amazed by the mercy & love you show us, & every day I'm learning more & more about how little I especially have deserved it.
I'VE BEEN VERY BUSY SINCE LAST WRITING YOU, doing the things I've neglected for so long in the physical, & trying by God's grace to obey you & Ho in filling my place in the house. We've moved from Hong Kong to China, fumigated our house, moved back in, changed from summer to Winter clothes & begun changing from immobile to mobile items & ways, stationary to camping clothing & gear‚ & forsaken much of the trappings accumulated. I've been relieved to finally be free of clothing & items given me by my late fish‚ Peter‚ & severed the relationship firmly.
I REALLY WANT TO BE FREE FROM THE INFLUENCES I YIELDED TO & BECAME A PARTAKER OF‚ & have asked the family here to forgive me for my selfishness & lack of sharing physically & materially. It's been a help & blessing to throw away these "things" & get freer in body & spirit of the Systemy things I'd gotten into. We're hoping to sell some of it, burn some, & given much away.
IT'S A JOY & BLESSING TO "FORSAKE ALL", although it hasn't been a total forsaking because there's still so much that the Lord has given me, my needs so well met. (Everything I do along this line exposes my selfishness & delusions, how far away from the simplicity of Jesus & your sample I became, & how corrupted by Systemy trappings.) It's been a real help. The most helpful thing has been obeying you, & getting back on where I got off, as a mother & housekeeper.
I FEEL LIKE EVERY DAY "MY SIN IS EVER BEFORE ME." Everywhere I turn my hands & eyes I see the fruits & results of my sins & rebellion, & the neglect of my job & how long my neglect has hurt the family & children & household. It continually makes me want to weep for the hurt I've caused, & the millions of ways my neglect affected the children.
I'M SO THANKFUL FOR HO & RUTHIE & THEIR STAND IN THE SPIRIT & the way they're helping me & the children to correct our faults. The Lord's been faithfully bringing to light one at a time the spiritual lacks & influences that have needed correction & help in the lives of each of the kids, & I'm so thankful they've been responding very favorably & we're seeing merciful results & changes for the better, thanks mainly to Ho & Ruthie's firm hand & insight.
THERE IS STILL A NEED FOR A REAL CHANGE IN MARIA (6), which is the strongest evidence & result of my terrible influence & failure & for whom I'm responsible for failing & allowing to be strongly wrongfully influenced. She's such a pitiful reflection of my sins & I'm sure there's probably more in me that needs brought to light & dealt with in order for both of us to be set really free. It breaks my heart to see how she's made to suffer because of my failure, & how shallow she is & how pitiful. I really pray for the Lord's mercy on her to set her free to begin to grow.
WE COULD WRITE A BOOK ON THE THINGS THAT COME UP EVERY DAY that reveal my failures with the children, & how directly they've reaped the bad influence of my bad sample. The Lord has been so merciful to strengthen & help them, though, & we have all been feeling very aware of God's mercy & new light & help in our lives.
I'VE BEEN PARTICULARLY ENCOURAGED BY MWM, THE TAPES & TESTIMONIES OF "PRODIGALS‚" FC tapes‚ & the Letters & Word, & have tried to keep your admonishments & rebukes close to me to help me be cleansed of these selfish & deluded ways I've been living. We've been trying to put the Word first in our Home by having nutritious milkshakes for breakfast & going right into a morning of devotions & Word time together until our main meal at around 1 or 2:00. We've felt so much encouraged by this.
I'VE TAKEN OVER THE HOUSEWORK & COOKING FULLY NOW, & have been happy & challenged by it. Our helper David has been so sweet, & in spite of my selfishness even helped us to make this recent transition before moving on to his new Home. Our new goal is to begin our work on the correspondence courses for school after this holiday period is over.
I'VE LEARNED SO MUCH BY DOING THIS, by facing every day the things I should have been doing all along, & realising how much my not doing them has hurt everyone for so long. I know I need more help, though, especially more Word & obedience, to have a complete change of heart so that I can be having the right spirit in what I do. I've claimed for my New Year's verse & prayer, "Create in me a clean heart, O God, & renew a right spirit within me."
I'VE BEEN SO FAR AWAY FROM JESUS & YOU & YOUR WORDS that it's taking time to open my eyes to where I am & how to get back. I pray for a renewed relationship with you & Jesus, & a re-education & washing in your Words. I really thank you for being the father & helper I needed to wake me up & shake me up & expose my sin & rebellion. This purge has felt so good, & has only just started to open my eyes to seeing what I was doing, & I really so love you for it & pray for your forgiveness & mercy & help.
"NOTHING IN MY HANDS I BRING" is such an appropriate line to describe the way the past three years here in Hong Kong have borne fruit. My selfishness & failures have reaped such a waste & resulted in wood‚ hay & stubble. At least I pray that I'll be able to see in the light of that fire & burning up of my failures to realise the real values & cling to them more faithfully.
THE WORD REVEALS MY SINS EVERY PLACE I READ & TURN, & warns me of the results of not heeding. When I realise how far back my "good works" & "service" have been tainted & influenced by my selfishness & personal ideas, as opposed to simple faith & obedience because of love, I wonder how the Lord could effect such a tremendous change in me. "Simply to Thy cross I cling". How much I love & appreciate the simple servants I see & know who have the right spirit & sweet & simple faith & love who are the fruit of your sample & love for Jesus.
I'VE BEEN A REAL BACKSLIDING HYPOCRITE‚ even worse for pretending to be someone I wasn't & have something I didn't. I hope it can help someone to see how deluded we can be when we don't obey & receive our callings thankfully, but entertain delusions of selfish "fulfilments" & "dreams."
I RESENTED & DESPISED THE SIMPLE & GREATEST CALLING THE LORD GAVE ME AS A MOTHER & HOUSEKEEPER & have been reaping the havoc of it in myself, & worse, Ho & the children. It's only mercy, & completely undeserved, that they're willing to help me & give me a chance to re-learn & try to find my place in the Family. (Next letter I want to write about how I was deceived & led away by my selfishness through a fish & the results it has put on us.)
SIR, I REALLY PRAY FOR HELP & CHANGE, & am sorry for my spirit of rebellion & resentment, for the lack of respect & love to obey you & follow you. Most of all, for how I reflected badly on you & doubted you. My selfish insanity did so much harm to you & Ho & I'm so thankful you've stopped & rebuked me & my ways & exposed them & I pray deeply & earnestly it will be the last of it.
I WANT TO REBUKE & RESIST THE DEVIL & HIS INFLUENCE ON ME & in me & cling to Jesus for help & power to be "born again" to be "in Christ," & a new creature, renewed with a right spirit. I know only Jesus can do this, & I pray for His mercy & help & the forgiveness of all of you I've offended.
YOUR MERCY & LOVE IN TELLING ME THE TRUTH ABOUT MYSELF was the greatest love you could have shown me, & I love you for it, & for taking the effort to try to reach me. Please know I thank you so much for it & for the new things it is changing & bringing about in me & our little family.
I FEEL THAT THERE IS SO VERY VERY MUCH FOR US TO BE THANKFUL FOR & pray you'll be encouraged to deal with me & keep telling me all I need to hear to be "exercised thereby". How can we thank you for your love & mercy? God help me to help you & be obedient & good for you & your son & grandchildren & God's plan. Love‚ Esther.
(REPLY FROM DAD: PTL! GBY! We're all so glad you're getting back on the right track and I'm praying for you! How can we all help but forgive you when we all need forgiveness ourselves for our own many sins‚ shortcomings‚ failures and mistakes!
WE CAN ALL ONLY PRAY THE PRAYER JESUS HIMSELF TAUGHT US TO PRAY: "Our Father which art in Heaven, Hallowed be Thy Name. Thy Kingdom come. Thy will be done in Earth, as it is in Heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil: For Thine is the Kingdom, and the power‚ and the glory, for ever. Amen." (Mat.6:9-13.)—In Jesus' name, amen! GBAKY closer to Him than ever before! WLY!—Dad & all.)