Old Meeting House Congregational Church (1643)

The Best Hidden Church in Norwich

A Letter Out of Life


Over the years I have received many letters. Most of them have been from people that I have known but from time to time I have 

received one from someone that I have never met. Where they get my name from I would like to know.

Sometime ago a total stranger wrote me a letter which really inspired me and I would like to share it with you now.

“I was getting near the bottom in my life and I just couldn’t find a way to stop the descent. Not even thoughts of my wonderful wife and children could stop me from going down and down. I went to my local church and asked for help. But I couldn’t seem to get through, though they tried to help me. I had no job at the time. I was spending my savings like water. I had no self-respect and no hope.

“One day in July I went down to the side of a lake hoping to get some relief from the oppressive heat. In a public park I started talking with a man. He was friendly sort and after we had chatted awhile I told him I was so discouraged that I had a hard knot in my stomach that wouldn’t go away and it was driving me crazy.

“He’d been reading a paperback and when I told him this he pushed the book over to me and said, “If you really want to get rid of that knot in your stomach, read this.”

“Well, the book was one of yours on finding peace (How to Get What Money Can’t Buy). I leafed through it, caught a couple of significant lines and started to think. After a bit of silence I got up and went and stood for a long time looking at the lake. And I began to pray.

“God,” I said, “that book tells me nothing that I haven’t heard before and yet I’ve never believed before. It says that You are right here beside me and if I ask You for help I’ll get it. Okay, here goes. God I need Your help desperately. Please give it to me now – not later – now.”

“I’m prepared to swear on the Bible that it was at that exact moment that the knot in my stomach disappeared and left me with a sense of incredible peace.

“I immediately went and got myself a copy of your book, took it home and read it until three o’clock the next morning, pausing frequently to practise some of your suggestions for communication with God. I’ve been practising them ever since and I’m reborn.

“I’m forty-five years old,” he goes on to explain. “I’ve been around the world and I’ve sinned as much as most men, maybe more.  As a Catholic I had been to confession, been forgiven, but had never really believed in that forgiveness. I carried my sins around like a sack on my back. Even though I thought it possible that they might have been forgiven, I just couldn’t believe that they had been forgotten. Now it’s as though they had vanished beyond recall. I feel pounds lighter.” Then he tells me the payoff, so to speak.

“There is a man I had hated with a deadly hatred for fifteen years. I tell you honestly that if I could have murdered him and got away with it I would have done so cheerfully. Yesterday I was not only able to forgive him but also to ask God to help him and to make me forget the original reason for my hatred. I am walking on air.”

Now, friends, this is the reason we believe in a power that can reach out in a public park by the side of a lake and touch a hard-bitten tough, defeated man and give him power and new life. Whatever your problem or trouble or discouragement may be, really pray about it. Then follow through on your praying: believe in God’s power, yield yourself to it, and start at once to live differently, in accordance with His will. You may be lifted from defeat to victory, from weakness to strength, from sadness to joy.

Actually the answer to any difficult situation is to let God start working in you. No matter how down you may feel or be, the power of a positive faith can lift you up, even from the bottom, to a glorious on-top-of-things feeling.



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