Having This Ministry
A Digital Newsletter from Living Stream Ministry

The History of the Life-study Publication Work (3)

In the August 2023 issue of “Having This Ministry…” we presented the second part of our interview with Brother Ron Kangas concerning the history of the Life-study publication work. In this issue we present the third part of that interview.


Question: What was Brother Lee’s involvement in getting the Life-study messages ready for publication? Also, when you read the edited Life-study messages back to him, did he receive further light during the reading that would then go into the printed messages?

Brother Ron: First, we had to have a reliable serving sister to transcribe exactly what Brother Lee said in his spoken message. I mention this with some emphasis because we had a number of sisters who did this faithfully, with one exception. I will come back to this.

We had to have an accurate, word-for-word transcript. Brother Lee had to train me concerning what was to be put in print from the transcript. Certain things that were in the spoken message may not have been put in print because they were addressed to a live audience, and not all readers were in that environment. I learned Brother Lee’s vocabulary. I would go to his house every Thursday at 8:30 a.m. We sat down in his library, and I read to him, he listened, and we adjusted anything that he wanted to adjust. As I was reading, he might realize that he wanted to add more.

Nearly every Thursday there was a meeting at the Living Stream office of all the serving ones who came once a week to package books and serve in other ways. There were usually a few dozen of us. Brother Lee gave a message on Wednesday nights, and on Thursday he would give “part two” of the message. The two were put together and became a Life-study message. Brother Lee once told me that if he were to do the Life-study of Genesis again, it would be altogether different. I simply trusted him and believed this.

Brother Lee also instructed me to have a group of sisters to help me by reading through everything I edited. I found out experientially that the sisters are so good in the details, and I realized that it was impossible to do this work without them. They knew their place, and we knew their place, but we needed them. They were keen with specific things. They would not insist; they would just make a recommendation, and then I would make the decision. If I could not make a decision, then I called Brother Lee and told him that this was not a decision that I could make because it touched a way of expressing a point of the truth.

Now I would like to go back to one particular event in December 1974. Brother Lee was carrying out the life-study of Romans, and he was on the subject of justification by faith. While he was speaking on the platform, he was getting remarkable, fresh light and revelation from the Lord. He readjusted the schedule of the messages and gave two or three more that were beyond description for their importance on the subjective side of justification. I read through these again recently as I was preparing for a Wednesday night ministry meeting. The messages came out almost half a century ago, and they were still so fresh. However, this is what happened. We had a sister who was quite capable in typing the word-for-word transcript. She gave me the message from Romans that she had edited. I read it and realized that certain things from the message were not in the transcript. She had deleted them. She had edited while she was typing. I asked the sister who was coordinating with me and guiding the sisters who were doing the transcribing work to find another sister to transcribe the entire message again. Matters of utmost importance had just been deleted. This aspect of this particular sister’s self and disposition continued until the end. Brother Lee even said a rare, open word concerning her. The other serving sister and I met with her, and there was no repentance. Therefore, I had to tell the one coordinating with me that this sister could not transcribe any longer. This shows how the enemy can use the natural life and the self. However, that was atypical. The other sisters considered it a service to the Lord, and without them we would not have the transcripts.

Later, when I was still living in Irving, Texas, we found out that we were going to have computers and that I would have to do my editing on a computer. I was way behind with things that are electronic. This was in an early stage, and this meant that I would have to do the typing. We were not going to have sisters type my edited messages any longer. They would still type the transcripts, but I was going to have to do the actual editing on the computer. Prior to that I dictated my edited message onto a tape and the sisters would transcribe my dictation. That was the arrangement that Brother Lee had established. I would read over the transcribed message and edit it onto a tape. Then my edited message would be typed, and I would read it to Brother Lee. Now we were not going to do it that way. I went home to my wife and said, “What are we going to do? I don’t even know how to use a typewriter.” She arranged for me to go to the local high school for an evening typing class for adults. Therefore, I had to learn how to type. Eventually the whole process developed to be what it is now. When I began to work electronically in Irving, I would send the documents to Anaheim. Brother Lee had someone there, usually a serving sister, read to him the documents I had sent. One encouraging thing he said to a serving sister, and she passed it on to me in a proper way, was that there was not one wasted word in what was read to him. I can say that after probably more than a thousand hours during ten and a half years of being with him in Anaheim, there was never one wasted word with him. What a pattern.

To be continued…