Letter # 44 - This undated double letter from Janís older sister Griet and her husband Hendrik Joosten probably dates from 1881. They operate a barge on the waterways of Holland.

Wildervank, 27 January

Dearly Loved Brother and Sister,

Through the goodness and longsuffering of the Lord, we are still healthy and our heartfelt wish is that you may also receive these letters in good condition - which we with joy read in your letter and that the Lord had blessed your physical condition. Although we are far from each other physically, yet it is so very pleasing that we may be reassured about each otherís condition. May the blessings that the Lord provides us arouse praise to Him.

Regarding our professional activities, the previous year was not so great because commerce was so slow, so we just wait and hope for improvement. Further I can let you know that last week we bought a new ship in Pekela and exchanged our ship for it. It is approximately one hundred and fifteen tons in size, so that it is twenty five tons bigger than our ship. If we have open water, in fourteen days we will launch it, so these days Iím very busy because I have to go there every day. We hope that the Lordís favor may rest upon it.

Further we wish for you the most precious blessings of the Lord for soul and body and that the Lord may be mutually for us our Guide and Leader in all our ways and may it all work out for the salvation of our eternal and immortal souls in beginnings and in continuing.

Greetings from your Brother and Sister, H.H. Joosten, G.G. Rubingh


Dearly Loved Brother and Sister,

Iíll take up my pen to write you the news that through the goodness and longsuffering of the Lord we may find ourselves in reasonably good health and with gladness observed from your letter that in our distance from one another the Lord protected and spared us while so many of our contemporaries have been snatched away who will not be with us this year. Oh, that it may give us a really grateful heart and be acknowledged in our words, though our lives are fraught with many cares and concerns because even the most outstanding (achievement) is still trouble and sorrow and in the end failure. Oh, dear ones, that the Lord may grant us grace to understand that we are not our own, but we are Christís own possession and we should entrust our ways to Him because the Lord has all things in His hand and directs it all according to His will. You probably would not have thought that you would see Dominee again here (on earth).

Oh, dear Brother and Sister, we would so much like to see you on this side of death and the grave. Our children are agile; our Metteus is starting to walk. The ice is still thick and deep. Nowadays Hendrik goes every day to Pekela. Thatís quite a walk in the cold, but done in the favor of the Lord.

Greet you family. Further we wish you all the blessings of the Lord for souls and body and that the Lord may be our Counsel and Leader in all our ways that all may work out for His honor and the salvation of our immortal souls.

Further be greeted by us, Your loving Sister and Brother, G. Rubingh H. Joosten

Be so good as to write us again if you can.