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We have had a very delightful visit from our dear Brother Bundy, who stopped with us for several days in Jacksonville, and I am writing to say that the Lord has blessed his visit greatly—to me at least.
As you know, I have not been in harmony with the Class here for more than two and one-half years; had many objections to many things, "the Vow" included, and now, after this long and unpleasant experience, through which the Lord has brought me, and from which he has saved me, I may be qualified to sound a note of warning to some others who, perhaps, are now under a similar cloud, or who may be harboring in their hearts some wrong thoughts that may sooner or later develop and blind them, and God only knows what the result may be.
Satan succeeded in getting a kind of sugar-coated poison in my heart, but the sugar coat soon wore off, and I found myself in mighty bad company—people whose principal business seems to be not to advance the Lord's cause and to develop the Christ-like character with the fruits of the Spirit, being more and more manifest; people whose business seems to be the destruction of the faith of the Lord's "little flock" and the discrediting, to say the least, of the one whom the Lord has been pleased to use in bringing us all into the light of the "Present Truth," even yourself, dear Brother. And only to think, I found myself, when I was roused to the fact, in this company, and I praise the Lord that he enabled me to get a good square look at myself and then at the company I was in, and I saw the positive earmarks in myself, as well as in them, of an unclean and unholy spirit, which, however well concealed, savored not of the sweet, kind, humble spirit of our Lord and his true followers.
After the Lord had opened my eyes to see the great danger that I was in, I went back to the Class and tried real hard to be sweet and to take up things where I had left off. It was a hard task and crucifying, indeed, to the flesh. I made a clean, frank statement, as honest as I knew how to make, and the Lord blessed it to my good. But the weeks that have followed have been weeks of veritable torture. Satan has withstood me to my very face and has tortured me through both men and women who are under his control, even using some of the Lord's own people to this end along almost every line. I have faced financial ruin as well, and from worse to worse until I thought I would lose my mind—driven almost to the very verge of suicide, Satan daring to take liberties with me that he never thought of taking before; but the Lord did not let me go. He has used our dear Brother Walter Bundy to show me (and, strange to say, against my will), that, as peculiar as it might seem to me, there was really a blessing, and not only so, but a positive means of safety, in that little "Vow." It had been the experience of many others, as well as his own, he said. After twenty-four hours of real struggle the Lord showed this to me very clearly. And now, dear Brother, if you would care to have it there, I want you to put my name on that Vow list, for I have made "the Vow" my own before the Lord and for the first time in nearly three years I have peace. Praise His Name!
I am now able to see how foolish I was, and how I presumed to criticise you and tried to disprove some of the things which you taught—you, whom the Lord had used to teach me all the real knowledge that I ever had concerning the Scriptures! You, who are so far ahead of me in every respect! Could I possibly have been in my right mind to thus presume?
I do not consider you infallible, dear Brother, and I and I am sure that you do not so consider yourself, but I am very sure that you are a mighty safe one to follow, and by the Grace and help of the Lord I am going to [R4670 : page 271] humbly follow until the Lord shows me positively that I should cease. Am trusting that I shall never again be deceived by the Adversary or listen to any of those whom he may be using in trying to injure the Lord's dear servant—no matter who they may be or how well they may mean in their own poor, deceived hearts.
I have wanted so often to write and tell you how much I appreciate and enjoy the Lord's blessings through the precious WATCH TOWER visits. My heart is full to overflowing with gratitude and praise to note how our great Captain is gloriously leading his people on safely even in the midst of Satan's oppositions and misrepresentations. And, dear Brother, you don't know how much I am rejoicing as I see your loving zeal and faithful care for the best interests of the Lord's true sheep.
I am glad to say I have always recognized in you the Lord's chosen servant to give us the meat in due season. Some who have once rejoiced with us, but see no beauty now that they might desire, are watching your every word that they might accuse you, but we know why Satan is so vigorously opposing you. It is because of your loyalty to God and his Truth. Your face is set as a flint to do his will, and you shall not be ashamed. (Isa. 50:7.) So, dear Brother and Pastor, accept my humble appreciation of your faithfulness and zeal in serving the great Captain's orders.
With sweet recollections of the refreshment enjoyed at the Chicago Convention I am daily plodding away at the accumulated work on my desk. I was fortunate in taking some notes at the Convention, as it gives us a second course in reviewing the discourses, etc.
In presenting a partial review of the Convention to the ecclesia here last Sunday, I stated your kind offer of sending one of the little heart souvenirs to each of the Lord's people present, or represented at the Convention. I therefore asked each one desiring one of these emblems to indicate by raising the hand. Nineteen expressed such desire, and we shall indeed be pleased to have you send that number.
It was a pleasure to observe the spirit of love manifested at the Convention, although some thoughts presented were not accepted by all. It was considered, however, that the invisible Lord, now present, would overrule all to the upbuilding of the saints. We were particularly pleased to see and hear you, and trust that the good words heard may remain with us to our spiritual development.
It was also a sweet occasion for me to see my dear wife and daughter symbolize their consecration. Our son Edwin was also along, but he has not been able to see these things to the point of consecration, but he is, no doubt, doing a great deal of thinking.
I was very glad to read in the last TOWER Brother Clarence E. Fowler's letter. May the dear Lord bless him, and may he help others also who at heart mean to do right; want to see this error. I am from time to time troubled with some of the seceders' literature. What I cannot harmonize is this: If they are earnest, why should they be afraid or ashamed to have their names attached to their publications.
My earnest prayer is that the love of Christ may always fill my heart, and that I may grow in grace and knowledge in the School of Christ. Pray for me, dear Brother; I always remember you at the throne of Grace.
Congress has passed the Postal Savings Bank bill. At first thought, it would seem to be an expected check on panics, but in giving the matter further thought, it is possibly right along the line of adding fuel to the fire, when a panic is once started. I passed through the 1893 panic as a bank teller, and was lately associated with the accountings of the Government. Its necessarily slow workings convince me that the effects of the Postal Savings Banks in time of panic will prove disastrous. Suppose, for instance, in our city the banks having on deposit some $22,000,000, the U.S. Depositories preparing to receive deposits from the local Post Office, would in all probability not expect 5 per cent. of this amount to be deposited through the Post Office, and would, no doubt, consider a guarantee deposit with the Government to such an amount more than ample for the expected deposit.
It should be noted that the matter of approving presented securities takes considerable time. Suppose "a run" made on the banks, the money redeposited with the Post Office, and in turn redeposited with the bank by the Post Office, the guarantee deposit limit would soon be reached, and the matter of presenting and approving additional securities, especially when the same conditions prevail at hundreds of places, would take weeks. A day or two sometimes with a bank will play havoc. The Post Office would not have sufficient vault capacity for the deposits, so it would prove an incentive for burglaries, etc. So we see how unsatisfactorily it might work.
Praying the Lord's continued favor, upon you, dear Brother, and all interested in the setting up of the Kingdom of God's Son, and that his grace may be sufficient for us in all of life's varied, and sometimes trying experiences, is the earnest desire of the writer. With sincere greetings from my family and self, I am,
Although it is several months since we appropriated to ourselves a share in "the Vow," we are reminded that we had not written you to that effect, and believing that it will be pleasing to you, we proceed to do so now. While from the first we believed "the Vow" to be of the Lord, we were inclined to look upon it as simply a test of our love for each other, because of the conflicting opinions of many.
Believing beyond doubt that we were safe on that score, we tried to dismiss the matter from our minds without making a very careful study of it. We were, however, led to consider it more seriously by your comments in THE TOWERS. Then it dawned upon us that we should not treat lightly anything which we believed came from the Lord. We are happy to say that we now understand what are some of the blessings experienced by those who have taken "the Vow."
Assuring you, dear brother, of our increasing love for you as we become better acquainted, and witness your unselfish zeal and devotion to the Lord, the Truth and the friends, and wishing you our Heavenly Father's continued blessings, we are by his grace,