Fri. Mar 5th, 2021

LETTER MINISTRY
BY DANIEL L. BUTLER

INTRODUCTION

One of the most intriguing responsibilities in Modern America must be to participate in the almost archaic task of delivering the mail. The innate pleasure of the average North American in obtaining the precious artifacts from the mailbox never diminishes although the process continues daily regardless of rain, snow, or sleet. Just to observe the unique flow of individuals to their magnetic pedestals, immediately following the passing of the little white mail Jeep, must be most amusing.

Growing up in society having daily delivery of mail etches beautiful bouquets on the memoir of the soul. As a child, it brought nice gifts from loving Grandparents far away. Many teenage courtships were enhanced through the services of the postman. A postcard from vacationing relatives would temporarily build a fantasy castle, while words from a friend afar off, whether in a lengthy letter or on a Hallmark card, has brightened many gloomy days. Serving as a source of encouragement, information, and excitement, the mailbox edifice has been erected as a memorial of a welcomed activity for the American home.

Although the mailbox has served as the discovery of many special events, its most fascinating aspect is that of surprise. A common
household phrase has developed, “Did anything come in today’s mail?” projecting the euphoria encompassed in this daily detail. Announcements of births, weddings, and graduations filter to the proud pedestals to inform the public of their occurrence, while invitations to parties,meetings, and special occasions drift to a respectful recipient, blossoming his day with elation and ecstasy.

Little wonder it is to discover that one of the most effective means of advertising is through this magnificent marvel, the mailbox. Knowing people’s habits and desires, advertisers, successfully bombarding the public with a diversity of sales materials through the U.S. Postal Service, have been graciously rewarded for their efforts.

Undisputedly, the greatest business in the world is that of winning and leading souls to Jesus Christ and everlasting life. To assist in this lofty task, these materials have been prayerfully prepared with the purpose in mind to utilize the mail services.

SUGGESTIONS FOR LETTER MINISTRY

1. Letter Ministry was originally set up utilizing the technology of copy machines. A standard letter was composed, copied onto stationery, and then personalized. However, the availability and convenience of computers has provided the means to personalize every letter and consequently benefit by acquiring an additional name and address for a master mailing list.

2. Maintaining a letter ministry can become time-consuming. Therefore, it is advisable to obtain a volunteer to take this ministry to heart, and work it.

3. Visitor Letters: When a person walks into a church for the first time, he/she has just overcome a multitude of barriers. Blossoming into a beautiful potential is a new church member, no longer a remote possibility, but suddenly a probable reality! With the barriers of the initial visit annihilated, this individual will likely return if they feel wanted and loved. A kind response letter mailed to a visitor extends to the mailbox the compassionate embracing effect. Not only should a one-time visitor letter be sent, but upon subsequent visits, accompanying letters should grace the warming friends of the church: specifically, second and third visit letters.

4. OIKOS Letters: Knowing that every two years a person will experience a crisis that will create a climate to consider God, the Church should continually build relationships with people so when a probing situation is encountered, individuals will turn to the church. During those times of crisis is the opportune time to share with that needful person that you are praying for them. It is advisable to use prayer requests to solicit names and needs, and send letters of encouragement building relationships with people in need.

5. New Convert Letters: Needing a great deal of attention, New Converts can be strengthened and stabilized by weekly letters offering training and encouragement.

6. Saint Encouragement letters promote the basis necessary for pastor-saint relationships.

7. Consider a monthly, bi-monthly, or quarterly letter to the entire church.

8. Advertising Letters, using a compiling of several mailing lists derived from preceding sources, could advertise in the mail any church activity, such as revival, anniversary services, other special services, youth activities, etc. The mailing list for these letters
could be constructed at the time of the mailing. Simply, create a file (such as, Master.lis), read other mail lists into this file (such as, Obirth.lis, Odeath.lis, etc.), and then use this file to mailmerge.

OIKOS LETTER MINISTRY

Several years ago, Reverend Jack Hyles from Hammond, Indiana published a book filled with letters he had used in building the largest Baptist congregation in America. Within its pages were several letters composed for several masses of people. For example, Pastor Hyles would send a letter to every family in his community who had suffered the loss of a family member and every family who experienced the birth of a child. This sounded like a splendid idea, however for someone pastoring in a large metropolitan area, it was impractical.

Consideration was then given to the OIKOS principle of evangelism: The Bible principle of evangelism embraced by Jesus Christ and the Apostolic Church. This principle declares the early church grew by going from house to house, which in the Greek is from OIKOS to OIKOS. More than referring to the physical dwelling place, OIKOS refers to the inhabitants of the house. In Bible days, inhabitants of the house were family members, relatives, friends, and associates. Church growth came by friends and relatives going to friends and relatives with the Gospel. Interestingly, the OIKOS principle remains intact today. Statistically, seventy to ninety percent of all church growth is the direct result of individuals winning their family, relatives, and friends.

The question then arose, “How would it be to send courteous letters of encouragement to people with whom the church congregation is acquainted and is already within the church’s OIKOS?” The idea proved to be a valuable tool of outreach.

With every human being facing a God awareness crisis on the average of every two years, every congregation is in touch with many people in the valley of decision. Provoking situations, whether death of a loved one, birth of a child, divorce situation, personal and family sickness, family relocation, marriage, loss of a Job, or any personal tragedy, probe a person’s heart creating a special openness toward God. A letter of encouragement from a concerned pastor and church family is warmly accepted.

More than a general letter from any pastor, the OIKOS letter has special significance because it comes from the pastor of a friend.
Written within the contents of the letter is the name of the needful person’s friend, and the statement that the friend and church are praying for them. Aligning the letter of encouragement with a friend produces a special impact that would not be accomplished otherwise.

A worthwhile consideration would be to send an OIKOS letter to every person who is mentioned for prayer. A volunteer could possess the sole responsibility of obtaining address and situation information (also could be obtained on prayer request cards), and immediately a person in need could receive a letter stating that the church their friend attends loves them and is praying for them.

OIKOS letters produce several benefits. 1) An immediate means of quality outreach is established. 2) A name and address can be added to the mailing list to announce special meetings, revivals, etc. 3) The additional mailing list provides special significance because of the original OIKOS letter, based upon the friendship of a church member, being sent in a time of crisis. 4) The recipient of the OIKOS letter possesses stationery with the church and pastor’s name, address, and phone numbers.

Following are several sample OIKOS letters intended to enhance the evangelism of a church.

BIRTH OF A CHILD

December 30, 1988

Mr. and Mrs. John Doe
111 Any Street
AnyTown, US 11111

Dear Mr. and Mrs. Doe:

Congratulations! Your friend, Samuel Saint, told us of the birth of your precious bundle of life, Melody Joy.

These are undoubtedly days of excitement, thrill, and happiness, and we at the United Pentecostal Church desire to enter into your joy during these days. May we join the many others with an expression of thanksgiving unto the Lord for beautifully blessing your home.

Accompanying this great joy is a great responsibility. We assure you that our prayers blend together with yours for God to not only grant health, strength of character and a good mind to Melody Joy, but also grant wisdom and direction to you as parents. Most of all we pray for the child to receive Godly training and spiritual growth so when an age of understanding is attained, the Holy Spirit will lead in a decision to come to Jesus Christ, the only Savior.

We cordially invite you to be our guest in any of our church services where there is always an open door of welcome. What a grand
thrill it would be to be honored by a visit from the Doe family, especially Melody Joy.

Again, congratulations and may God richly bless you.

Sincerely,

Daniel L. Butler
Pastor

DLB/pb

WEDDING LETTER

December 30, 1988

Mr. John Doe
111 Any Street
AnyTown, US 11111

Dear Mr. Doe:

December 30, 1988

With sincere delight, we learned of the announcement of your wedding. Your friend, Sam Saint, shared with us the great news.

We at the United Pentecostal Church want to congratulate you and wish God’s blessings upon you in this new venture. Our prayers and support accompany you in your commitment one to another.

There is nothing as sacred as marriage vows. God Himself is the author and founder of the home, and we trust that you will include Him in your home.

We cordially invite you to be our guest sometime in service where there is always an open door of welcome. If we could ever assist you in any way, please feel free to contact us anytime.

Again, may we say congratulations and God bless you.

Sincerely,

Daniel L. Butler
Pastor

DLB/pb

DEATH OF A RELATIVE

December 30, 1988

Mr. John Doe
111 Any Street
AnyTown, US 11111

Dear Mr. Doe:

December 30, 1988

With deep sympathy, we learned of the passing of your mother. Your friend, Sam Saint, shared with us the news of your sorrowful loss.

Although there is pain because of the void created in your life, there also is a provision of peace and contentment obtainable through our Lord. Jesus spoke of the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, providing us with peace and Joy.

It is always the desire of our church to be helpful in time of sorrow. May we assure you that in the days to come, the United
Pentecostal Church will be praying for the Spirit of Jesus Christ to comfort and encourage you. If you feel that we could be of any service to you, we would be honored for you to contact us.

Our heart reaches out to you in sympathy, compassion, and bereavement. Our prayers are with you.

Sincerely,

Daniel L. Butler
Pastor

DLB/pb

DIVORCE

December 30, 1988

Mr. John Doe:
111 Any Street
AnyTown, US 11111

Dear Mr. Doe:

December 30, 1988

With deep sympathy, we learned of the situation of your divorce. Your friend, Sam Saint, shared with us the sad news.

Although there is pain because of the turmoil and anxiety you have experienced, there also is a provision of peace and contentment obtainable through our Lord. Jesus spoke of the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, providing us with peace and Joy.

It is always the desire of our church to be helpful in time of difficulty. May we assure you that in the days to come, the United
Pentecostal Church will be praying for the Spirit of Jesus Christ to comfort and encourage you. If you feel that we could be of any service to you, we would be honored for you to contact us.

Our heart reaches out to you in concern and compassion. Our prayers are with you.

Sincerely,

Daniel L. Butler
Pastor

DLB/pb

HOSPITAL STAY-NO OPERATION-SICKNESS, TESTS

December 30, 1988

Mr. John Doe
c/o Any Hospital
222 Any Street
AnyTown, US 11111

Dear Mr. Doe:

December 30, 1988

With sincere concern, we deeply regret learning of your being in the hospital. Your friend, Sam Saint, shared with us the sad news.

Although we are sincerely sorry for this situation arising which has led you to the hospital, we are grateful for a loving God who is
concerned about us. He knows every detail of your condition, and he is able to touch, strengthen, protect, and heal you.

We at the United Pentecostal Church consider it a privilege to serve others in any way possible. May we assure you that this church is praying in your behalf in this time of difficulty, and if we can be of any further assistance, please feel free to contact us anytime, day or night.

When you get well, we would be highly honored for you to be our guest in service sometime. Accompanying the warm fellowship of people who love you will be the sweet, tender presence of the Lord which will so warmly greet you.

We are looking forward to learning of your release from the hospital. May God bless you; we are praying for you.

Sincerely,

Daniel L. Butler
Pastor

DLB/pb

HOSPITAL RETURN

December 30, 1988

Mr. John Doe
111 Any Street
AnyTown, US 11111

Dear Mr. Doe:

December 30, 1988

It is a special thrill to know that you have been released from the hospital. May we join with your friend, Sam Saint, and welcome you home.

Accompanying your delight to return home is undoubtedly a renewed embracing of the precious gift God gives us — life. Certainly we are grateful for all His wonderful benevolences.

Your return from the hospital is very rewarding to us at the United Pentecostal Church because throughout your stay, we lifted you up in prayer. So wonderful it is to observe the hand of God in meeting needs and responding to our petitions. Unto our omnipotent Lord we will continue to pray for your complete recovery.

When you feel well, we would like to cordially invite you to be our guest in any of our church services. What a grand thrill it would
be to be honored by your visit.

Again, welcome home, and may God continue to bless you.

Sincerely,

Daniel L. Butler
Pastor

DLB/pb

INVITATIOON

December 30, 1988

Mr. John Doe
111 Any Street
AnyTown, US 11111

Dear Mr. Doe:

December 30, 1988

How thrilling it is to cordially invite you to the United Pentecostal Church. God’s richest blessings have been dispersed upon
this people, and we are excited to invite you to this experience.

As pastor of the United Pentecostal Church, I wanted to especially ask you to be our guest sometime in service. Accompanying a
warm welcome from the church will be a sweet, tender presence of the Lord which always graces our gatherings. You will also enjoy the fellowship of your friend, Sam Saint.

Thank you for coming and enjoying God’s blessings with us. We are looking forward to seeing you.

Sincerely,

Daniel L. Butler
Pastor

DLB/pb

TRAGEDY

December 30, 1988

Mr. John Doe
111 Any Street
AnyTown, US 11111

Dear Mr. Doe:

With sincere concern, we recently learned of your dreadful experience. Your friend, Sam Saint, shared with us the sorrowful news.

Although our heart swells in sympathy for your pain, we are grateful that mercy was extended to you and the accident was not more serious. You are alive and we are thankful.

In the midst of such trying times, there is comfort in knowing the provision of peace and contentment obtainable through our Lord Jesus. Jesus spoke of the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, providing us with peace and joy.

May we assure you the United Pentecostal Church is undergirding and supporting you in prayer. If you feel that we could be of any further assistance to you, please feel free to contact us.

God bless you is our prayer.

Sincerely,

Daniel L. Butler
Pastor

DLB/pb

RELATIVES RELATED TO ACCIDENT

December 30, 1988

Mr. John Doe
111 Any Street
AnyTown, US 11111

Dear Mr. Doe:

December 30, 1988

With sincere concern, we learned of the accident related to your family. Your friend, Sam Saint, shared with us the sorrowful news.

Although our heart swells in sympathy for your situation, we are grateful that mercy was extended and the accident was not more serious. There is life and we are thankful.

In the midst of such trying times, there is comfort in knowing the provision of peace and comfort obtainable through Jesus Christ.
Jesus spoke of the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, providing us with peace and Joy.

May we assure you the United Pentecostal Church is remembering you and your family in prayer. If you feel that we could be of any further assistance, please feel free to contact us.

God blest you is our prayer.

Sincerely,

Daniel L. Butler
Pastor

DLB/pb

VISITOR

December 30, 1988

Mr. John Doe
111 Any Street
Anytown, US 11111

Dear Mr. Doe:

December 30, 1988

What a pleasure it was having you recently in service with us at the United Pentecostal Church. Your visit was sincerely appreciated, and we are hoping to see you again soon.

We trust your visit was a pleasant experience with warm smiles, loving people, and most important, a genuine Spirit of God. In deep sincerity, your presence added a gracious dignity to our service, a blessing for which we are so grateful.

The doors of the United Pentecostal Church are always open to you and your family, and we cordially extend to you a warm invitation to worship again and again with us. It is also a special delight to inform you of the Church’s Home Bible Study opportunity: sharing the Word of God in your home at your convenience. If we can ever be of service to you in any way, please feel free to call us at any time.

Thank you again for your kindness. We are looking forward to seeing you again soon.

In His Service,

Daniel L. Butler
Pastor

DLB\pb

COMMEND DEDICATION

December 30, 1988

Mr. John Doe
111 Any Street
AnyTown, US 11111

Dear Brother Doe:

December 30, 1988

It is such a great pleasure to take a moment and express my thanksgiving to God for what you are allowing Him to do in your life.
Your dedication certainly is not unnoticed by the undershepherd nor the Chief Shepherd, but He who i. seeing everything done in secret will reward you openly.

Thank you, Brother Doe, for making yourself available to God. Your prayer and personal devotion has led you to becoming a brand new person. In the past few months, I have observed a tremendous spiritual growth in your life, and I know those who are around you see the same changes. There’s a new expression in your face, somewhat, I’m sure, like the expression of Moses when he came off of the mountain or of Steven when he was being stoned. Your dedicated life in Jesus is the most rewarding life you’ll ever discover, and mountains of blessings in answered prayer are awaiting in your horizon. May we highly commend you for your beautiful walk with God.

A common tendency when a person reaches a higher plateau in God is, when certain pleasures ease and God answers some prayers, to let up in their walk with God and decrease devotion and personal prayer. We trust and pray, Brother Doe, that you will never revert to any lower level, but will continually pursue the things of God.

Thank you again for your renewed dedication; it is a great inspiration to Sister Butler and I. May God continue to blest you is our prayer.

In deepest sincerity,

Daniel L. Butler
Pastor

DLB/pb

NEW CONVERT LETTERS

Individuals requiring the most attention are newly born babies. During awake hours, they require almost constant care. Likewise, within the Church, the Newborn Babes require the most amount of attention. The Scripture declares that newborn babes desire the sincere milk of the Word that they may grow thereby.

For church growth, a congregation must be willing to nurture new converts. Generally, a new convert walks with the Lord in his newfound life with relative ease for his first few weeks. After about three weeks, he will drift down from the glory clouds, return to planet earth, and wrestle with his old lifestyle in an unparalleled manner.

On the other hand, generally a church will saturate a new convert with attention for about three weeks and then feel that he is standing on his own feet. An individual new in the Lord receives the greater amount of attention when he needs it the least, and when he needs love and care the most, the church has just let him go to stand on his own.

New Convert Letters were devised to help a new spiritual baby make it through the first few weeks of his life. Mailing one letter a week for seven weeks will provide sustained strength and encouragement for a prolonged period of time. Also, the ties between the pastor and new convert are strengthened, enhancing the pastor-saint relationship and producing trust and loyalty.

Following are seven New Convert Letters. It may be a worthwhile suggestion to consider entering all seven letters onto a single file, printing all of them at the same time, and setting them aside to be mailed on the appropriate date.

Letter 1

&date1&

&name&
&address!&
&address2&

Dear &greeting&:

What a thrill it is having you worship with us at the United Pentecostal Church. Your interest in our church is deeply appreciated,
but more important, the dedication you have shown toward the Lord Jesus is highly commendable.

It was such a great pleasure to baptize you in Jesus’ lovely name and observe the infilling of His Spirit in your life. This spiritual
realm is an enlightened d, marvelous, and wonderful experience which cannot be matched with anything this world can offer. God’s richest blessings now await you with your life totally consecrated to Him.

Also, we want to take this opportunity to welcome you into the church family and wisp the blessings of the Lord upon your life as we serve Him together. If we can ever be of service to you in any way, please feel free to contact us any time

With sincere love/and deep concern for you \we continually pray for God’s benevolences to be bestowed upon your life in a beautiful array of blessings.

In sincere love,

Daniel L. Butler
Pastor

DLB/pb

Letter 2

&date2&

&name&
&address1&
&address2&

Dear &greeting&:

You have made the most important and life-changing decision of your life. You have experienced what is described as a “new birth”: being born of water and Spirit. “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new” (II Cor. 5:17).

This is the beginning of an entirely new life-style. Jesus has given you forgiveness, purpose, peace, and assurance of eternal life. He wants you to continue in this relationship with Him and to grow deeper in your understanding of His way. “As therefore you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in Him” (Col. 2:6). He wants to work through you to touch the lives of others.

As you think of your new life in Jesus, rethink the experience of receiving the Holy Ghost into your life and study the related Scripture passages.

You recognized something was missing in your life. There was a lack of central meaning and purpose. You learned God has provided central meaning and purpose, and he wanted to give you a more complete life (John 10:10). You became aware of the separation between you and God because of your sin, which brought spiritual death (Rom. 3:23, 6:23).

Sin is a condition of the heart being out of tune with God. It is a falling short of God’s requirement. It is personal rebellion against
God.

You recognized that it was impossible in your own power to “come alive” spiritually and that you were utterly helpless to do anything about it (Eph. 2:8-9).

You discovered God had provided a way for you: Jesus Christ lived, died, and rose again that you might have forgiveness and be put right with God (John 3:36; Rom. 4:25).

You came to the Lord Jesus in repentance (Mk. 2:17, Lu. 5:32). With a change in your heart, you asked forgiveness of sins and
determined to walk in the path of righteousness. With your sins blotted out by repentance (Acts 3:19); you then were baptized by immersion in Jesus’ Name — the Bible way to be baptized (Acts 2:38, 10:48, 19:5, 22:16) and your sins were washed away (Acts 22:16). You were then filled with the Holy Ghost — the Spirit of Jesus (Rom. 8:9-11). There is no doubt concerning your experience, because you spoke in tongues as the Spirit gave the utterance (Acts 2:1-4, 10:45, 46). You now have a growing relationship in Christ.

Receiving the Holy Ghost is the beginning. Growing in Him is the continuation (Col. 2:6): continuing to experience the following
essentials of growth.

The Holy Ghost — Jesus’ unique presence in your life today is the Holy Ghost. To live a growing and effective Christian life in your
own strength is impossible. If you try, you will fail. Living for God is possible only as He empowers you through His Spirit. He emphasizes the importance of the Spirit in the life of the believer in John 14-16. He wants you to be continually saturated, guided and controlled by His Spirit (Eph. 5:18; Rom. 8:1-9).

Prayer — Prayer is your personal communication with God, talking to God and allowing Him to speak to you. You cannot grow spiritually without an active prayer life. Find a place where you can pray in private and a time when you pray regularly. Always be in an attitude of prayer. Begin each day with a new commitment of your life to be an instrument through which God can act to reach others. Mark 1:35 tells of the prayer life of Jesus. Let this serve as a pattern for yours.

Bible Study — Now that you know the central character personally, Bible study can become an exciting and fruitful part of your daily life. The Bible is God’s personal message to you. Through it you begin to discover the many things God has made available to you. Become acquainted with the various books of the Bible. Memorize key verses. The Gospel of John is a good beginning point for a definite pattern of Bible study.

Regardless of how much you mature in your Christian life, you never outgrow the need for prayer and Bible study. Begin now to
establish this daily discipline. (Read II Tim. 3:15-16).

Witnessing — Perhaps your most significant task as a new Christian is to share Jesus with others. Leading someone to God is a
great joy. Ask the Lord to guide you and speak through you as you witness. Make a list of friends, relatives, and others with whom you want to share the Gospel. Pray that the Holy Ghost will lead you into situations where you can meaningfully share the good news. The Scripture declares that we are made overcomers by the word of our testimony (Rev. 12:11).

The Church — You need regular fellowship with other believers. You cannot be an effective disciple alone. The church is God’s
appointed way to provide a means by which His people might gather for worship, prayer, sharing, study, and proclaiming the message of Christ. In your early Christian life, you will need the assistance and counsel of others. You should become involved with such a group of disciples. Take a place of responsibility in your church as soon as you can. Give of your material means, creative talents, and physical energy to help strengthen the ministry and outreach of your church.

Your first days as a Christian may bring many unexpected difficulties and questions. Perhaps you will even face the temptation
to doubt the validity of your experience with God. Remember this is only the beginning. You are a new person in Him and doubts and trials are necessary for growth. Soon you will realize these trials are more precious than gold (I Pet. 1:7).

Live in faith. Trust God completely and He will continue to give you His power and presence. A glorious life is yours in a beautiful
walk with Him.

We love you

Sincerely in Christ,

Daniel L. Butler
Pastor

DLB/pb

..letter 3

&date3&

Sname&
&address1&
&address2&

Dear &greeting&:

How are you doing in your walk with God? Are you growing spiritually?

In spite of the insecurity, doubt, confusion, and frustration all about us, you can have assurance that Jesus is Lord of your life. Paul shared his own assurance with Timothy when he wrote, “For I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which I have committed unto Him against that day.”

There is no need for you to have any doubts about your relationship with God. He wants you to have real assurance. This assurance is based on three ideas.

Fact — Your life in Jesus is grounded in historical reality. The New Testament, as well as other historical documents, presents the
record of Jesus of Nazareth: His life of love and ministry, His death for our sins, and His resurrection from death. It records His words and actions and those of His immediate followers. This man named Jesus walked on this earth to deal with the problem of man’s separation from Him. He died for our sins and was raised from death to put us right with God. His followers believed Him to be the Savior of the world and the Lord of life.

What we believe is not fantasy; it is not legend. It is based on well-authenticated fact.

Faith — You examined the facts of the New Testament concerning what Jesus could do in your life, and you responded by putting your faith in Him. The fact became subjective historical experience when you received the Holy Ghost. Assurance is not based on “feeling,” because feeling can be fleeting emotion. Certainly a Christian should feel something in his life, but when he ceases to feel good it does not mean God is no longer present. Your salvation is based on faith, and feeling is a by-product of faith.

Your faith is strengthened by the testimony of God’s Word. Read John 3:16, 35; 5-24; Romans 35-39. God’s presence in your life is your assurance. “Now he which stablisheth us with you in Christ, and has anointed us in God; Who hath also sealed us, and given the earnest of the spirit in our hearts” (II Cor. 1:21-22). See also Romans 8:16 and I John 3:24.

Follow-through — After receiving this beautiful experience, the life you live demonstrates the genuineness of your walk with Him.
Speaking in tongues was the initial evidence of receiving the Holy Ghost, but the fruit of the Spirit is the continual proof of the
Spirit’s indwelling. ” …and hereby we do know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments” (I John 2:3), commandments to love God and each other. Obedience is also a vital key as First John illustrates.

With these three assurances of your salvation, you might ask, “What happens when I commit sins as a Christian?” Obviously, your sins affect your fellowship with God, displeasing him and bringing unhappiness to your life. Recognizing your condition, and having known the joy of full fellowship with him, you will repent again and again confessing your sins. “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive our sins, and cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (I John 1:9). A genuine Christian will not continue habitually in sin. He will depend on God’s power to overcome temptation to sin (I Cor. 10:13).

If your assurance in Jesus seems to diminish, ask yourself if you have been faithful in prayer and Bible study, in witnessing, in church involvement, and in obedience to his leadership.

Even while you have genuine assurance of your relationship to God, you will face temptations, difficulties, and questions. Peter
reminds us we will face many trials for the purpose of testing our faith (I Pet. 1:5-7). He also reminds us that because Christ suffered for us we may expect to suffer for him (I Pet. 2:21; 4:1, 13). See also Philippians 1:29.

Following Jesus Christ may not be easy, but it is worth every minute. Just remember that Jesus is living in you and He will continue to give you His power to live your life completely for Him.

Assurance is the calm, inner knowledge that God is honoring His promise: Christ in you the hope of glory (Col. 1:27). He has begun to work out His will in your life. Assurance is increased day by day as you study His Word and surrender control to Him. Just as you came to Jesus by faith, you live daily continuing to put your faith in Him (Col. 2:6). Assurance also gives us hope for what God has prepared for us in heaven. Life in Jesus does not end in death. He has given us assurance of eternal life (I Pet. 1:3-5, John 5:24; 14:1-6).

If you need us for anything, call any time day or night. We love you and are genuinely concerned about you and your Christian growth.

Sincerely in Christ,

Daniel L. Butler
Pastor

DLB/pb

..letter 4

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Dear &greeting&:

Praise the Lord! How are you doing today?

The most important factor of your assurance of Jesus is the indwelling presence of the Holy Ghost, the Spirit of Jesus Christ. He
desires to continually fill your life completely as you yield control to him. You can experience exciting adventure and genuine fulfillment only as you allow the Holy Ghost to have complete freedom in living through you. The Spirit-filled life is the Christ-controlled life.

On the evening before His crucifixion Jesus gave careful instructions for His followers concerning the ministry of the Holy
Ghost. John recorded this in chapters 14-16 of his Gospel. A careful study of these chapters will help clarify your understanding. Study also Romans 8:1-27 and Acts 1:4-8. The Holy Ghost is mentioned over two hundred and fifty times in the New Testament. It is vitally important that you understand all that He wishes to accomplish in your life (II Cor. 1:21-22).

The Holy Ghost infilling is Christ’s spirit dwelling in your life (Rom. 8:16). He will teach you and lead you into further knowledge of the truth (John 14:25-26; 16:13). Jesus Christ will be glorified in your life and this makes it exciting for you to live for Him (John 16:14-15). He provides the necessary power for you to be His witness (Acts 1:8). You will never be able to exhaust the boundless supply of all that God has for you through His Spirit!

When you initially received the Holy Ghost, you spoke in tongues, Just as they did when they received Christ’s Spirit in the early church of the Bible. When you totally yielded yourself to God, as a sign He took the hardest thing to control, the tongue (James 3:8), tamed it, and led you to-speak in an unknown language. Since the hardest thing to yield was tamed by God, it showed that you had yielded everything to Him.

The same secret is true not only in receiving the Holy Ghost, yielding everything to Jesus, but also in keeping the Holy Ghost. We
must allow Jesus to take full control of our lives every day. Learn to depend on Him. When you do this, you will begin to realize many things:

1. You will have a continuing awareness of God’s presence (John 15:4; Gal. 2:20). You sense His involvement in the smallest detail of your daily life.

2. You will have victory over sin and temptation (I Cor. 10:13). You may face the same kinds of problems, but you are aware of the power God has provided for overcoming them.

3. You will produce the fruit of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, humility, and self-control
(Gal. 5:16, 22-25).

4. You will have boldness and power to witness for Christ (Acts 1:8, 4:31). You are not afraid to speak up for Him.

5. You will develop a desire to continue to live a Spirit filled life daily. Having once experienced what it means to be filled with the
Holy Ghost, you can never be satisfied with anything less. Begin each day with prayer: ‘Lord, this is a new day and I belong to You. Fill me with Your Spirit and work through my life today to glorify and bring others to You.’

As time progresses, Jesus gets sweeter and sweeter.

We love you,

Sincerely in Christ,

Daniel L. Butler
Pastor

DLB/pb

..letter 5

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&name&
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Dear &greeting&:

Praise the Lord! Are you enjoying your fellowship with God? Read about your fellowship in I John, chapter 1.

In the New Testament, fellowship signifies a growing and loving relationship. This refers to your relationship both to Jesus and to
fellow believers in Him. The degree of joy and fulfillment you experience in your Christian life will be determined largely by the
depth and consistency of your fellowship with God through personal prayer and Bible study.

Set aside a specific time each day to grow in your fellowship with Him. Determine a “critical minimum,” perhaps ten to fifteen
minutes, and make it an important part of each day. Begin with a time of prayer; a moment of quiet reflection may be helpful in your spiritual preparation. Study a selected portion of the Bible for four or five minutes and spend the rest of the time in prayer. As you grow in your fellowship with Jesus, the time will be expanded according to your needs and burden for others.

Prayer is talking to God and allowing Him to speak to you through the Bible and your conscience. Prayer is communication. It is sharing. Try to be as natural and conversational as possible when you pray. God is not interested in a set formula or in the use of a special language.

Several elements of prayer may be discovered in the model of prayer or praises, Matthew 6:19.

Prayer must begin with the recognition of the greatness of God and the acknowledgment of the Lordship of Jesus in your life. Along with your adoration comes praise and thanksgiving for God’s provinces, and for His guidance, love and grace.

AS God’s greatness is recognized, faithfulness is realized. Thus, prayer must include repentance and confession of sin. The real heart of praise is bringing to God the things which relate to your involvement in His kingdom work from day to day. Talk with Him about your deepest needs and problems. Relinquish to Him all your cares and worries. Pray for others. This leads to commitment. Ask God to use you to meet these needs and to serve Him. Since prayer is communication with God, make plans and develop definite courses of action for the day and for the future. Such a prayer experience may be thought of as a “strategy
session” to discuss failures and accomplishments with God and to receive His guidance for the daily task.

A prayer list can be very helpful. It becomes your personal concerns list to be used in your regular prayer sessions. Using it can make a difference in your prayer life. It can help you to be specific and consistent in prayer.

Prayer is dynamic. Paul said, “Pray at all times” (I Thessalonians 5:17), thus, whether studying, working, relaxing, or whatever, you are in ready contact with God. You are in an attitude of prayer and feel God’s presence. This is dynamic prayer-in-force. Every moment.

Praying with other believers can open up new blessings and insights not possible while praying alone. Develop a definite prayer
relationship with at least one other person. Often a spouse serves beautifully as a prayer partner. Prayer meetings are also extremely important where a group will enter into a spirit of prayer.

Often a person, while praying, will enter into a deep prayer of praying in the Spirit. This is intercessory prayer where you actually
take a burden for somebody else and pray for them as if you were praying for yourself. You step “into their shoes” and plead with God in their behalf. Paul describes it in Romans 8:26 as “groanings which cannot be uttered.” In praying in this fashion, a person often prays in tongues. Since this is a special depth of prayer where God indirectly speaks through you, it is a time when many and most prayers are answered.

In intercessory prayer, a deep burden is accompanied with an urgency, and when something (when our heart and motives are right) becomes extremely important to us, God always responds. (James 5:16 “…The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.”) Jesus teaches us this lesson over and over, but it is especially seen in the parables of the widow and the unjust judge, and the friend at midnight (Luke 11:5, 18:6). May we strongly encourage you to enter into this depth of prayer and see God answer your petitions.

Study the following passages: Matthew 6:5-7 deals with insincerity and a use of a lot of words in prayer; John 14:1314 relates
prayer to the will of God for your life. Romans 8:26 and John 14:16-17 show how the Holy Ghost is involved in prayer life. (See also Romans 1:9, Hebrews 7:25, Philippians 4:6-8.)

Bible study is almost inseparable from prayer in maintaining a growing relationship with Jesus. The Bible is God’s special written
Word for His people. Your study of the Bible can become an exciting part of your new adventure with Jesus. Combine it with your daily prayer time. As you read and study the Bible, depend on the Holy Ghost to reveal its meaning to you. Before beginning, prepare your heart by praying: ‘Lord, I am going to read Your Word. Please speak to me through it and make me sensitive to the Holy Ghost and interpret its truth to me.’ (See John 16:13).

The New Testament is the heart of God’s message. Thus it would be a logical place to begin your study. Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John are accounts of the life and ministry of Jesus. Start with John, then read the Book of Acts to get an understanding of what happened in the lives of the followers of Jesus for the 30 years following the resurrection. Next, study the letter of Paul to the Romans for a basic understanding of the Christian message. Continue with a study of other books as you choose.

Sometimes use of a translation of the Bible which communicates well in today’s language is helpful. A very popular translation is
today’s English Version, or the New International Version. Memorize and underline key verses. You may begin by memorizing verses referred to in these letters. As you study, ask specific questions: What does the passage say? What is the main idea being presented? What problem or question does it raise in my mind? How can I apply this passage to my life and make it meaningful in my life?

Remember that your growing fellowship with Jesus is dependent upon the depth of your Bible study and prayer life. God bless you as you draw closer and closer to Him. We love you.

In His service,

Daniel L. Butler
Pastor

DLB/pb

..letter 6

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&name&
&address1&
&address2&

Dear &greeting&:

Praise the Lord! How is everything today in your walk with the Lord?

As a new Christian, one of your most challenging opportunities will be giving witness to that which has happened in your life. Witness is sharing. It is sharing the person of Christ with another through the vitality of your own unique personality. It is joy unspeakable. It is an overflow of your own experience in the Holy Ghost, coupled with a desire to pass it on to one with whom you share the relationship of life. Jesus said, “Whosoever believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water” (John 7:38).

Witness is more what you are than what you say, but it definitely includes a visible and verbal sharing. It is being available to the
Holy Ghost who desires to work through you, in sensing and meeting the needs of others.

In normal traffic patterns of daily life, you are meeting and becoming acquainted with scores of people. You are getting to know many of these on a deeper-than-casual level. Why not allow the Holy Ghost to use these natural day by day contacts to bring others to Jesus? This is where you are. This is where the good news of Christ becomes relevant as it is expressed and demonstrated through your life.

The following diagram represents your relations with an individual:

A—————–> B ————————> C
Depth Ministry Follow Up Ministry

At Point A, you meet a person and begin a relationship with him/her on a natural human friendship level. At first, this
relationship is rather general. You talk about matters that are a part of any average conversation, such as current events, cafeteria food, clothes, etc. As you move from Point A toward Point B. the relationship develops from the general to the particular–to begin relating on a deeper level, sharing life experiences, things that have to do with the meaning and purpose of life. You deal with problems, fears, and aspirations. Religion comes into the picture in a natural way, and you can begin to share the meaning of life in Jesus Christ.

How much time is involved between Point A and B? It depends on the individual situation. Some persons are immediately open and ready to hear what you have to share about Christ. This could mean in only ten minutes the natural and valid verbal witness could be given. Others have built up barriers. They have serious problems of doubt. It may take time-several months or years–to work with them in love and patience to earn the right to share personally with them. The Holy Ghost prepares the heart, and we must await His time.

Point B is the climax of the Depth Ministry. The relationship has been established and conversation concerning Christ has come about. Now it should be a natural thing to share what is involved in repentance, baptism in Jesus name and the Holy Ghost infilling. This is the verbal witness. It involves a sharing of your own testimony (what Jesus has done and is doing in your life) and sharing of the essentials of the gospel (why Jesus came, why man needs Him, how we can receive Him, etc.). Verbal witness must be backed by prayer and usually means assisting a person in prayer. Verbal witness many times leads to an opportunity to teach a Bible study in the home on a one-to-one level.

When he/she has been led to the Lord Jesus, the Point B to C part begins. You are then to assist the new Christian in his/her spiritual growth. This is a Follow-Up Ministry. Point B was his/her point of beginning of his/her walk with God. He/she must now grow from that point and expand his/her commitment toward C, which represents Christian maturity.

It is never enough to bring people to God, give a hearty God bless you, and then walk away and leave them. Discipleship is as
important as witnessing. Since your convert’s witness should be simultaneous with your discipleship of him/her, a more accurate diagram would be:

You: A——————> B ———————-> C
Depth Ministry Follow Up Ministry

Your convert: A ———————-> B ————-
Depth Ministry Follow

Their convert: A ————-
Depth

In order to be an effective witness, you should be experiencing a growing relationship with God through an active prayer life and a
systematic study of the Bible. You should have an intelligent understanding of your life in Jesus and an ability to communicate this relationship to others.

Your life should be filled and controlled by the Holy Ghost so that you will be sensitive to people and open to the opportunity He
gives. You must have a real love and concern for people and be willing to become involved in their lives.

You can begin now to share Jesus Christ in a natural and meaningful way. You do not have to force people to hear you. Just meet
them. Build relationships. Pray for the right opportunity to share. You have a unique witness to give. God has placed you where you are for a specific reason.

Let the following be your prayer each day: ‘Lord, this is a new day and it is Yours, and I belong to You. Help me to be sensitive to
Your Spirit in each contact I have today; to be aware of individual needs, and to allow You to speak through me in sharing Jesus Christ with those about me.’

Someone recently shared Jesus with you. You can “pass it on” to someone else. Continue to grow daily in God and allow Him to touch others through you. Some of God’s greatest blessings await you as you win someone for Him. We are praying for you.

We love you.

Sincerely in Jesus,

Daniel L. Butler
Pastor

DLB/pb

..letter 7

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&name&
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Dear &greeting&:

Praise the Lord! How are you doing today?

Following in the footsteps of Jesus requires an individual daily decision. Crucifying the flesh daily is a personal matter but it should be done in the context of fellowship of other Christians. The very nature of your walk with God demands a vital fellowship with other believers. You should become involved in the life and ministry of your local church.

A key analogy for the church in the New Testament is “body.” Paul compared the church to the human body, with its many functions and relationships. Every part is honored, every part is needed, and every part is responsible to others. (See Romans 12:4-8; I Corinthians 12:14-27.) Jesus left with His church the responsibility of sharing His good news. The Greek word translated church means called out ones, and can be translated assembly. The equivalent term in the Old Testament is used to describe God’s gathered people. Jesus gave the word “church” a unique significance. The origin and beginnings of the church are recalled in the gospels, and the development of the church is recorded in Acts. In each community, as a group of believers gathered, a church was formed. These churches were diverse in national and social backgrounds, but they had certain common beliefs and objectives which unified them in spirit with their brothers in other places. They were convinced that Jesus Christ was Lord, that He had come to give them life, and they were committed to sharing this message with the whole world.

When a person professed personal faith in Jesus, he repented of his past and was baptized in Jesus’ name by immersion to symbolize the death and resurrection of Christ, and his own death to the old life and resurrection to a new life. (Romans 6:3-7). The church leaders were called pastors or bishops. The early churches were independent of each other, and yet voluntarily cooperated with each other for Joint ministries.

Members met together at times usually on the first day of the week. They met to worship God and to share with each other. They parted from each other in order to share with others the good news of Christ. They often met in secret because of persecution. They had a deep love for one another and were even willing to give up personal possessions for the good of the body. Study the first few chapters of Acts for a clearer understanding of the early Church.

The purposes of the church are to enable believers to gather to help others in their spiritual journey, and to carry out the commission of Christ to make disciples in every nation and teach these disciples to follow Him (Matthew 28:19-20). God’s Word teaches us to forsake not the assembling of ourselves together (Hebrews 10:25). Your church-life is a vital part of your growth in Him.

With Jesus now the most important thing in your life, you will want to support your church in every way possible. Participate in
worship, prayer, study, outreach and financial support, and God will richly bless you.

In deep sincerity, words are inadequate to truly share with you our special delight in what the Lord is doing in your life. Indeed, it
is a grand privilege to observe God gracing your life with His presence.

As you continue to grow in God, please be assured that our total support is with you. If we can ever help you in any way, we would be honored to serve. We love you, and are praying for you daily.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Daniel L. Butler
Pastor

DLB/pb

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