“My Dear Charlie” by Harry Rimmer

Charles E Fuller (1887-1968) went to the Church of the Open Door in 1979, in Los Angeles, to hear Paul Rader (1879-1938) preach; he was converted to Christ. Fuller launched his radio ministry in 1925, and later became the director of a program he called The Old-Fashioned Revival Hour. For 15 years, beginning with World War II, the program was broadcast each Sunday afternoon from the Municipal Auditorium in Long Beach, California, where it drew huge audiences. In that enormous hall, many G.I.s found the Lord before being shipped to Pacific and European war theatres, many to die in battle. At the time of Dr. Fuller’s death, the broadcast was heard on more than 500 stations around the world.

Harry Rimmer (1890-1952) was a lecturer, scientist, archaeologist, author, and pastor. He was the pastor of the First Presbyterian Church of Duluth, MN, for many years. When Dr. Rimmer lay dying, he wrote Dr. Fuller the following letter. He died before he heard Fuller preach about Heaven. Fuller and Rimmer were close friends.

My Dear Charlie,

Next Sunday, I understand you are to talk about Heaven. I am interested in that land because I have had a clear title to a bit of property there for over 50 years. I did not buy it for it was given to me without money and without price. But the Donor purchased it for me at tremendous cost. I’m not holding it for speculation, for the deed is not transferable. It is not a vacant lot, for I have been sending materials there for over 50 years—out of which the greatest Architect and Builder of the Universe has been building a home for me which will suit me perfectly and will never need to be repaired. Termites cannot undermine its foundations, for it rests upon the “Rock of Ages.” Fire cannot destroy it. Floods cannot wash it away. No locks or bolts will ever be placed upon its doors for no devious person can ever enter that land where my dwelling stands, almost completed. It is ready for me to enter in and rest in peace eternally, without fear of being evicted.

     There is a valley of deep shadow between the place where I live in California and that to which I shall journey in a short time. I cannot reach my home in that city of gold without passing through this dark valley of shadows. But I am not afraid—because the best Friend I ever had went through this same valley long ago and drove away its gloom. He has stuck with me through thick and thin since we first became acquainted 52 years ago and I hold His promise in printed form—never to forsake me or to leave me alone. He will be with me as I walk through the valley of shadows, and I shall not lose when He is with me.

     I hope to hear your sermon next Sunday from my home here, but I have no assurance that I shall. My ticket to heaven has no date stamped upon it—no return coupon and no permit for baggage. I’m all ready to go, and I may not be here when you are talking next Sunday; but if not, I shall meet you there someday.

Reprinted from Life in the Spirit Journal
January/February 2006

Author: Ralph I. Tilley

I joyfully identify with the long history of the orthodox, evangelical stream of the Church. Theologically, I am a conservative. On issues of secondary importance, I will not quibble with my brothers and sisters in Christ. We are called to “maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” I would hope I have no doctrinal biases; however, I realize that is a practical impossibility: “Now I know in part.” You can read more on the About page.