These letters between Brett Burrowes and Chris Anderson were sent the week prior tc and following Chris’ acceptance of Jesus Christ. They communicated by computer through E-mail.
Subj: Christian Fellowship Date: 95-11-15 21:46:03 EST From: CUZZMAN
How are you doing? I am grateful to have the opportunity to once again thank you for the inspiration you have helped me find in your teachings this past week. I must admit I am still a little bit overwhelmed, however. I have a strong desire to continue in learning about our Lord Jesus Christ.
This type of communication can be very unique for the fellowship. Let me explain, if the people in the fellowship have AOL [America On Line] as their on-line service, we could meet at a predetermined time and have discussions. We can do this by gathering in a personal chat room that just the members can get into, i.e. The Intercessor, or Zerubbabel Inc. or some-thing to that effect. Just think. This way we can have mini-conferences right from home. The steps to do this are really quite simple. The key is we need to all use the same service. Let me know what you think.
I would appreciate any correspondence that will help me in these early stages in understanding God’s word, taking the steps to truly give myself to Him. Thank you. I know you are busy. I will have questions as I go along and learn more. My first question, however, is why do you think there is more propensity for people to do evil than there is for good? It just seems to me that it is harder to do good and much easier to do bad. I don’t mean real heinous crimes but just everyday wrongdoing.
Thanks again…looking forward to hearing from you..Kathy says Hi!
Subj: Re: Christian Fellowship Date: 95-11-17 16:56:33 EST From: BBurrowes
I’m sorry about not getting back to you right away. I haven’t had the time to go on-line since I talked to you on the phone. I would be very interested in gathering together in a chat room and having a mini-conference with others in Zerubbabel. There are a few others in our fellowship who are on-line but I don’t know what service they have. Sounds fun!
To answer your question, people have a greater propensity to do wrong for two reasons. First of all, everyone has built into their humanity something called self-will, which consists of those drives, impulses and desires to take care of our-selves and our physical and emotional needs. These drives seem relentlessly compelling in their demands on us. But self-will alone is not sin or evil. It is neutral, for it is something God put in us for our own survival and safety. But self-will must be checked and balanced by God’s Spirit who indwells us and expresses His love through us for the good of others. In other words, God places us in situations which demand that we temporarily lay aside or delay the gratification of our own needs and desires for the good of another.
But something happened at the beginning of human history that caused self-will to run riot and out of control. In Genesis chapter three, Adam and Eve believed Satan and disobeyed God and gave them-selves over to Satan to be operated spiritually by him. So this world and all of humanity became Satan’s to operate. Satan expresses himself though self-will as the spirit of self-for-self, the spirit which pursues immediate gratification of our physical and emotional needs without regard for others or even at the expense of others. But when we believe in Jesus as our personal Savior and Lord, repenting of this self-for-self life, Satan is cast out and a new Spirit of self-for-others love enters in and operates us.
Of course, it is still not easy to do the right thing. Why? Because we still dwell in a world which is run and operated by Satan. Satan is the prince of this world (John 14:30) and the god of this age (2 Corinthians 4:4). As long as we are in this earthly body, we are subject to constant temptation and attack by him. Of course, God means this to happen for our good: temptations become opportunities for faith and trust in God, a faith which is more precious than gold in the eyes of God (I Peter 1:7). But even though it is difficult to do the right thing, God has sent the Spirit of Christ to live His life in, through, and as us (Gal. 2:20) and to actually cause us to walk in His ways (Ezekiel 36:26-27). In fact He promises even to give us the will to do what is right (Phil. 2:13). Though it may feel difficult in our feelings, we know that feelings are not spirit reality. The spirit reality is that Christ dwells within us to live our lives for us if we only believe that He is doing so each and every moment.
I am coming down tomorrow (Saturday) so I hope to see you then. I enjoyed meeting you and talking with you at the conference and I hope we can have many more conversations in the future online and in person.
Subj: God’s love
Date: 95-11-20 22:23:35 EST
From: BBurrowes To: CUZZMAN
I enjoyed coming down this weekend and I felt it was a real privilege to be a part of your receiving Christ. Jesus said that the angels rejoice in heaven when a sinner repents (Luke 15:10). I felt and still feel the same leap of joy when I think about your profession of faith and the privilege of being a part of it. I want you to know that it really was not you who sought to find God; in fact it was God who was seeking you and drew you to Himself with cords of loving-kindness. It is God who has loved you with an everlasting love (Jeremiah 31:3). It is my sincere belief that God has made an eternal covenant with you, that He will never cease doing good to you, that into your heart He will put the fear of Him so that you will never depart or turn away from following Him. In fact, God takes delight in doing good to you (Jeremiah 32:38-41). This eternal covenant God has made with you is like the vows of marriage you took with your wife, except that it is not until death do you part; it is for eternity. You are now joined in eternal spiritual union with your spiritual husband Jesus Christ (I Corinthians 6:17), and nothing can separate you from His love (Romans 8:35-39). Difficult circumstances and the most severe suffering cannot divide us from Christ nor can Satan or even our own sins as Christians break this indissoluble union. I want you to know how secure you are in God’s love and that you need not doubt the reality of your salvation. I know that such doubts will come and that Satan will try to tempt you with questions but take the shield of faith and stand upon God’s faithfulness to you. Your salvation does not depend on the strength of your faith, but on the unlimited strength of God’s faithfulness to you.
Chris, I want you to know how deep and wide the love is that God has for you, that it is beyond comprehension (Ephesians 3:1419). The love of God is so deep and so broad that it encompasses the whole of your life: past, present, and future. Every single detail of your life is within God’s total loving control. In every circumstance God has only the highest and best plans for you no matter how terrible the circumstances appear on the surface: "For we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose" (Romans 8:28). All things that happen to us form part of God’s plan for us.
And God’s plan is that He reproduce His Son in us (Galatians 2:20) and live out His life of love through us. God is love and whoever lives in love lives in God and God lives in him (I John 4:16). This is the God who has come to dwell in you and live His life through you. He is the love and the power and you are the empty vessel who contains and expresses Him. And how do we know what real love is? By looking to what Jesus did for us on the cross: "This is how we know what love is: Jesus laid down His life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers" (I John 3:16, see John 3:16 and Isaiah 52:13-53:12). But remember it is not we who live this life of love and lay down our lives for others; rather it is Christ who does it in us and as us. If we feel inadequate, we should, for we are inadequate. The task is impossible for us, but not for Christ who lives through us.
I know this is a lot to absorb and you may have difficulty finding the passages of Scripture, but I hope that what I have said will provide you with ammunition against the attacks of Satan which are sure to come. God has called you to Himself and He is not about to let you go. He is deter-mined and nothing in all creation will thwart the plans He has for you, plans for your good. I look forward to seeing you Friday afternoon in Greensboro for the "Walk Through the Bible."
May you always be fully persuaded of God’s love for you.
Subj: Re: Thanks from a new friend in Christ
Date: 95-11-21 21:05:48E
ST From: CUZZMAN
What can I say…. This week has been truly amazing. After everybody left Sunday, I started to feel a little overwhelmed and felt a little anxiety. Everything happening so fast, one day living life with an evil spirit inside… the next feeling the fullness and joy of eternal love in my heart. I suppose the feelings of anxiety were just Satan tugging at my strings trying to pull me in the wrong direction…. Oh, no, not this time…. I handled a situation that in the past I would have faltered, knowing confidently that this was because now I had Christ in me. I told my mom I was going down to North Carolina for a Walk Through the Bible. Felt no shame in telling her I had accepted Christ as my savior. I need to discuss with you what her reaction was. Let’s just say it was negative and only added to my anxiety…. However, I knew that there is only one person to answer to on judgement day. I can honestly say that I am looking forward to this weekend in great anticipation.
I want to thank you again for your inspirational words. God has chosen a wonderful vessel to help understand His word. See ya Friday.
More Articles from The Intercessor, Vol 12 No 1
- Editor’s Note
- Moments with Meryl
- Excerpt from The Intercession of Rees Howells
- Weekend in New York 1995
- The Letter to the Romans
- The Mailbox
- God’s Promises
- A Look at a Book
- Questions & Answers
- The Walk Through The Bible
- God’s Wonderful Plan
- New Light on the Twelve Steps
- Excerpt from After C.T. Studd
- Tape Talk
- Words to Live By