NEWS FROM SWATOW, KWANGTUNG PROVINCE
Peace to Brother Chia Ju:
I received both your telegram and letter and have read them both. Sisters Ruth Lee and Liu Hui Fen both arrived here safely. More than ten people went onto the boat to receive them. The Shantung steamer arrived early Wednesday, so that evening the sisters gathered at the meeting hall for some fellowship. Although there was no message, all the sisters felt very satisfied and happy. On Thursday the sisters received people individually for the entire day. Both those who take the table and those who do not could speak with them individually. In this way they found out the needs of each one and received direction for their preaching.
On Friday and Saturday evenings there were meetings on the topic of general salvation. There were more than two hundred people. Mrs. Nee and Miss Sun P’ei Fen did the translation. (Parts omitted.)
Miss Lee plans to go to Tai Shan for a week after the twenty-sixth. Then she will return to Swatow, from where she will go on to Fukien.
From Monday through Friday of this week, there were two meetings, morning and evening. In the morning, we had a message meeting on a specific topic that began at 9:00. The topic was John 6:63. The evening meeting began at 7:00 and was for answering questions. The sisters asked questions concerning spiritual life and practices. Questions on spiritual life included, "How do we hear God’s voice? How do we know God’s will? How do we obey? etc." Questions on practices included such things as head covering, not cutting one’s hair, etc. There were about two hundred people in the meetings.
God did a marvelous work, and many believers were built up. Thank God. Not long after, ten more people were baptized. Now there are twenty brothers and forty-one sisters who break bread together. May we praise the Father because He has begun a good work in Swatow. All the glory should be given to our Father.
With regards to the building of a meeting hall, we are going ahead with our planning, on the one hand, and asking God for His provision, on the other. In the past month, we have received more than three hundred dollars. Our plan requires two thousand five hundred dollars. We are short about two thousand dollars. But we are not discouraged by the lack. We believe that our God will make it up. It is just a matter of time.
According to Miss Lee’s opinion, we can ask God to fulfill our goal in two ways: One is for the assembly to collect the offerings and build the meeting hall --then we would not have to pay monthly rent; the other is for some of the believers (one or a few) to build a simple hall and rent it to the assembly. The assembly would pay monthly rent, but it would be cheaper than renting a place from a Gentile.
It is better to ask the Lord to open up one of these two ways than to only ask Him to open one way. The brothers have no opinion. However God chooses to accomplish His will is fine. What is your opinion? Please tell us what you think.
(Of the two ways mentioned above, the second is better. --Editor) (Parts omitted.)
I have heard that Brother Nee will be going to Kuling in Foochow for the summer. Perhaps he will do some work in Foochow. Is this true? I have only heard rumors. When he comes to Fukien, will he pass through Swatow and go to Hong Kong? Please ask him for me and greet him for me.
Miss Lee says that Shen Ting Ling is very ill and vomits blood and feels dizzy. Oh, this brother loves the Lord very much. He lives every day on the cross, deals with the self-life, and is always making new progress. We should pray for him. May God preserve his life because both Brother Nee and I want to invite him to Swatow. If the Lord wills, it will be accomplished. I ask you to pray for this matter. I also ask you to wire him $____. I will repay this amount through Mr. Cheng. Please visit him for me and see how his illness is progressing. Ask him if there is anything he wants to say to me. You can write it to me on his behalf. I am afraid that he cannot hold a pen. I am grateful to you for spending this time. I know that God will repay you.
Brother Faithful Luk from P’u T’ien and Foochow has come for three weeks. He will have one gospel meeting here. Last week he went to Yen Wu to preach the gospel. Some brothers went with him. I also spoke for three days. This week he has gone to Fu Cheng. He has already been gone for two days. In a couple of days, perhaps I will go there to speak for a day or two. I do not know if I can or not. The people in the denominations hate me and say I steal lambs, so I am not very free. We only ask God to open the way. I will leave the rest of the matters to my next letter. Health in the Lord to your spirit, soul, and body (3 John 2).
Chiang Tze Hang
June 19, 1934
(Collected Works of Watchman Nee, The (Set 2) Vol. 25: Collection of Newsletters (1), Chapter 9, by Watchman Nee)