7. NOT STIRRING UP THE CONCERN OF THE SAINTS
Always avoid doing anything or saying anything that would stir up the saints’ concern for the Lord’s recovery. A number of times information came to me that a certain brother did something or said something. This stirred up the saints’ concern that this word or this kind of doing might damage the Lord’s recovery. We should not do anything or say anything to stir up the faithful saints’ concern for the Lord’s recovery, causing them to think that we might be doing something to cause trouble. Sometimes their suspicion may even go further in causing them to think that what you said or did is a sign that you are going to rebel. When things such as this were reported to me by the concerned saints, I always did my best to quench this kind of suspicion. We must realize, however, that what was done and what was said produced this effect. You may not have done something or said something with that particular intention, but the negative effect still came out. Just because you did something innocently does not mean that the innocence is excusable. The fact that the damage has been done is what matters.
Most of the faithful saints are very sensitive because they love the recovery to the uttermost. Because they are very much for the recovery, they are constantly on the “watchtower.” When information came to me from these kinds of saints, eight out of ten times the information was correct. By the Lord’s mercy, I would never take any information and believe in it. Every time the information came to me, the first thing I did was to calm down the other person. I always told them not to make an issue of this. I also told them not to talk to anyone from that time onward.
Again I say, try not to do things or say things that would stir up the faithful ones’ concern. They are not only concerned for the Lord’s recovery, but they are also concerned for you because they consider that you are so useful and that you are a real credit to the Lord’s recovery. It would bother them to see you do something or say something which may not be for the one testimony. This would become a concern in their heart for you and for the Lord’s recovery.
All of the information that ever has come to me in this kind of way was very carefully reported to me. The faithful saints who came to me with such information, came not in a careless or light way, but with very much consideration. At the beginning of 1978 I received some very long letters with detailed information concerning a troubling situation in a particular locality. In these letters the saints told me that they had considered this matter for a long time as to whether they should let me know about this situation. They told me that they had been for the Lord’s recovery for over thirty years and had nearly sacrificed their lives to go this way. They indicated that they had also given their finances for the Lord’s recovery and were absolutely for the migration to their particular locality. They said they had been watching the entire situation in their locality and after a certain amount of time they felt strongly that they must tell me. They also said that they felt that if they did not let me know about the matter, then they would not be faithful to the Lord.
After receiving these letters, I still would not believe the contents concerning this troubling situation. Yet I still considered. I never told anyone about this. I just kept this in my heart. Seemingly, I knew nothing because my intention was to let the fruit of this situation ripen by itself. Later, I was asked to go to this locality for the ministry of the Word. When I went and observed the situation there, I discovered that the letters I had received informed me of only twenty-five percent of the real situation there. The actual situation was seventy-five percent more than what these letters related to me.
This shows that there are some faithful ones in the Lord’s recovery who have been with us all these years. The Lord’s recovery is not “a new-born babe.” It has been on this earth for sixty years. It came to the United States from the Far East, and a good number of faithful ones in the Far East came to this country. Also, some faithful ones were raised up in the United States, and these dear ones have put their life into the Lord’s recovery. They are just for this. They are happy to see that you are so faithful and so useful. However, once they saw or heard something different, this concerned them very much. Your speaking and doing stirred up their concern. For example, when we went to the Far East in 1977, something was done which stirred up the real concern of the faithful ones in the Far East. Therefore, do not do anything or say anything that will stir up the faithful ones’ concern for you and for the Lord’s recovery. Always say something and do something to make the concerned ones feel peaceful.
(Elders' Training, Book 04: Other Crucial Matters Concerning the Practice of the Lord's Recovery, Chapter 5, by Witness Lee)