“Teacher Li, you must go back to school next Monday.”
“Well!” Li Jin replied reluctantly.
Looking at the direction in which Headmaster Wang drove off, Li Jin breathed out deeply and was lost in thought. …
A few years ago, Li Jin couldn’t continue to work because of illness, and had to stay at home for treatment. During that period of time, he was fortunate to accept Almighty God’s work of the last days. Subsequently, his illness began to get better. He deeply felt that it was God who had mercy on and saved him. In order to repay God’s love, Li Jin began to perform his duty in the church. However, the good times didn’t last long. Since Headmaster Wang knew about Li Jin’s belief in God, he had talked to Li Jin many times, warning him: Though religious freedom is provided in the Constitution, yet the Chinese Communist Party government is secretly cracking down on and banning all religious belief. The headmaster told him that he had better clearly see the situation, or else believing in God under the CCP’s nose would not come to a good end. He also obliged Li Jin to return to school to work, otherwise his salary would suffer loss.
Being Enforced to Return to School
On Monday, Li Jin had to return to school. Headmaster Wang didn’t directly arrange for him to teach his class but asked him to work in the office of Wang Jian, the assistant of the headmaster. The content of his work every day was studying Chinese President Xi Jinping’s theory of administrating the country and copying the study notes. On top of that, as long as Wang Jian went out for something, he would ask Li Jin to keep him company, hardly leaving Li Jin half a step. In the beginning, Li Jin didn’t think much about it, but only thought that the headmaster assigned him an easy work. One day, when Li Jin followed Wang Jian to go on an errand, he happened to meet a colleague. The colleague said to him significantly, “Li Jin, our leader really think highly of you!” Hearing the words, Li Jin just responded with a smile and still didn’t think much more about it. After returning to the office, he thought back to the colleague’s look just now, wondering: Could it be that God used the colleague to remind me something? In his search, he suddenly understood: It turns out that the headmaster who asked me to study Xi Jinping’s theory and copy notes is taking the chance to instill the atheistic view into me, and attempt to change my mind. Besides, Assistant Wang took me even when he went on an errand, it is because they are preventing me from preachingto others. Is this not a disguised monitoring? The thought of this immediately made Li Jin’s hair stand on end. He realized that the purpose that the headmaster asked him to return to school was to restrict his activities and shackle his mind.
Li Jin deeply felt his foolishness, and thought: Controlled by others every day, I still thought that the headmaster gave me a good treatment. Actually, I was poisoned by the atheistic ideas every day. If God didn’t remind me through the colleague, I would still be kept in the dark. No wonder God says, “Man has met with misfortune, but he does not know it, and in this dark society he suffers mishap after mishap, …” (“Work and Entry (8)”). It seemed that Satan’s cunning schemes are really impossible to defend against.
In a blink, a new school term began. The school arranged for Li Jin to teach a couple of grades’ subsidiary subjects. One day, when Li Jin returned to the office, he found several teachers were looking at something at Wang Jian’s desk.
“Teacher Liu, what’re you looking at?” Li Jin asked curiously.
Teacher Liu picked up a form and passed it to Li Jin. Immediately, a bold line “Teaching Staff’s Commitment to Fulfilling Their Job Duties in XX County” came into his sight. As Li Jin read the message downward, his smile immediately became anger, because on the form was clearly printed the words that “Teaching staff are forbidden to take part in any religious activities or cult organizations.” After reading it, Li Jin pretended to be calm, put the form back on the desk and returned to his seat. Then other teachers, aside from Teacher Liu, left one after another because they had lessons to take.
At that time, Li Jin was clear: This is Satan’s temptation befalling me. Because since the foundation of the CCP, the atheistic regime, it began to condemn belief in God and proper gatherings as cult organizations, and to wantonly oppress and persecute them. If I signed the form, it equals betraying God and bowing down and surrendering before Satan. Then wouldn’t I become a Judas? At all events, I can never betray God and blaspheme God.
“What’s the matter, Li Jin? You’re not yourself.” Teacher Liu seemed to feel something and asked doubtfully.
Teacher Liu broke into Li Jin’s thinking, and then she continued directly, “You look depressed. Are you worrying about your belief in God?”
Li Jin didn’t sheer off and said with a heavy heart, “I’m bored by the consent form.”
“Isn’t it signing your name on the paper? Is there anything serious? Won’t it be fine as long as you sign?”
“It’s not that simple. It concerns my attitude toward God, and concerns whether I am a true believer in God.” Li Jin, looking at Teacher Liu, said seriously.
“If you can’t sign, well, doesn’t it solve that I sign for you?”
“Absolutely not!” Li Jin shook his head and said, “As a person, I must have conscience, and particularly, I should have loyalty to God. Once I sign, it means I become a treacherous traitor. You say, how can I do that?”
“Then what are you gonna do?”
“I must confront it, but I’ll never sign,” said Li Jin resolutely, “even if … I quit this job.”
Teacher Liu stood up, slapped him on the shoulder, and then said, “Don’t be hasty. It has a bearing on your family’s livelihood in the future. I advise you’d better look before you leap.”
Li Jin also stood up and said to her calmly, “Am I that sort of person in your eyes? I’ve considered it for long. Since I’ve followed God, I’ll walk this path to the end. In China, it’s impossible to walk this path without paying any price. The people God wants are those who have true faith in Him. Without a true heart or price, no one could walk to the end.”
In the following days, Assistant Wang Jian asked Li Jin to sign the consent form a couple of times, but was refused. Li Jin knew that the headmaster would be certain to fall out with him on this matter, because the headmaster had talked to him many times, and had told him directly, “Since the CCP gives you this job, you must listen to it. Now this is the CCP’s world; the CCP most hates people believing in God. If you still don’t turn back, you’ll become a hand-grenade in my hand. Once something happens to you one day, you will make trouble for me. So, you’d better find another way. Just go to believe in your God where you are allowed to.” After finishing the talk every time, the headmaster would make Li Jin leave a note indicating that he himself would face the consequences. After all, the headmaster was afraid that Li Jin would cause trouble for him and influence his position, so he asked Li Jin to voluntarily leave school. Therefore, Li Jin thought: How can the headmaster let him off this time?
The Battle Between Justice and Evil
One morning, the headmaster sent Wang Jian to ask Li Jin to go to his office. On his way there, Li Jin thought: It must be a battle today. And meanwhile, he prayed to God in his heart and asked God to give him faith and courage to make sure that he could stand testimony for God.
“Why do you not sign?” Before Li Jin sat down, the headmaster furiously questioned him with a long face.
“I can’t sign, even if I am imprisoned and executed.” Li Jin said with justice.
“Good! Write down why you refuse to sign. Now.” The headmaster shouted angrily pointing at Li Jin, because he saw Li Jin had a resolute attitude.
Without hesitation, Li Jin wrote it down and passed it to the headmaster. While reading it, the headmaster fiercely said to Director Jia, who was in charge of the political and teaching affairs, “Director Jia, record every word he said just now. Collect the materials of him and report it to the upper level, asking them to deal with him.”
Looking at all this before him, Li Jin knew: Things are incompatible now. It’s meaningless to talk further with them. I’d better take this chance to express my perspective. Then, Li Jin said calmly, “I can’t sign because I’m a believer in God. Since God saved me, I must be a person with conscience and loyalty to God according to. I would never do anything to deny and betray God. As for this matter, I’ll take all the responsibility myself. I won’t incriminate any one of you.”
At this time, some leaders in the school couldn’t bear to see what the headmaster did, and talked, “This CCP doesn’t do proper things but only consider how to fix others. People have the choice of signing or not signing. Why do they force others to do something against their will?”
“I just don’t understand. Doesn’t the CCP stipulate freedom of belief? Believing in God is everyone’s freedom, how can they do in this way?” …
Without any response to them, the headmaster turned his nose up at Li Jin and said, “Humph! Your word sounds strong. I think you must never experience the CCP’s iron hand.”
Li Jin calmed himself a bit and said frankly, “Imprisonment and execution can’t even frighten me, then what shall I fear? God’s word says, ‘We trust that no country or power can stand in the way of what God wishes to achieve. Those that obstruct God’s work, resist the, disturb and impair the plan of God shall ultimately be punished by God. He who defies the work of God shall be sent to hell; any country that defies the work of God shall be destroyed; any nation that rises up to oppose the work of God shall be wiped from this earth, and shall cease to exist’ (‘God Presides Over the Fate of All Mankind’). No matter what means the CCP tries, it can’t stop my heart from following God.”
After finishing his word, Li Jin calmly left the headmaster’s office. He walked in the corridor, recalling what had happened just now. He knew it was God’s protection, and that God is accompanying and leading him by his side.
Being Forced to Leave His Post
At noon, it was so quiet in the common room that even a needle dropping to the ground could be heard. But Li Jin’s heart was in tumult. At the thought that he would leave the post he had engaged in for thirty years, he couldn’t help but feel grieved, because he had paid much price for this job. He recalled: Before I became a regular teacher, I could only earn a salary of tens of Chinese yuan each month. It was far from enough to maintain my whole family’s livelihood. In order to become a regular teacher, I stayed up far into the night preparing my lessons every day; I painstakingly studied varied teaching materials and humbly learned from the senior teachers. At last, as a Chinese proverb puts it, “bitterness ends and sweetness begins.” Later, I came out at the top of the list in teaching performance, which earned me the title of “The Model Teacher of County and Township” several times. By now, it is only over ten years since I got the normal pay, yet I was forced to resign by threats from CCP. When he thought about these things, he felt a bit depressed: To save this job, I have to sign, but that means my denial and betrayal of God and I’ll become a Judas. If I don’t sign, my family’s livelihood will be cut off. Besides, my children are about to get married, so we are in urgent need of money; supporting my old parents needs money also. How will I deal with these difficulties without this salary? And how will my relatives, friends, and colleagues talk about me after my resignation? … Thinking of that, he was really at a loss what to do. What remained in his mind was his hatred for the evil CCP. It just pinched his throats, attempting to put him to death. This kind of contemptible means was really too malicious.
Suddenly, a passage of God’s word came to Li Jin’s mind, “Forefathers of the ancient? Beloved leaders? They all oppose God! Their meddling has left all beneath heaven in a state of darkness and chaos! Religious freedom? The legitimate rights and interests of citizens? They are all tricks for covering up sin! … Thousands of years of hate are concentrated in the heart, millennia of sinfulness are inscribed upon the heart—how could this not inspire loathing?” (“Work and Entry (8)”). He thought: Yes. God has long since disclosed the evil CCP’s substance of frantically resisting God and being hostile to God. The CCP claims that citizens enjoy the legal right to freedom of religious belief; in truth, it only puts on a show to the international rights group. In order to maintain its everlasting authoritarian regime, it wishes to exterminate all believers in God. At this thought, Li Jin understood: His decision to be forced to resign is just caused by the CCP’s persecution. Now that the CCP hates and persecutes God so much, how couldn’t God hate it to the core? And How doesn’t it trigger God’s wrath? At this point, Li Jin no longer hesitated, and was determined to follow God to the end even if he resigned. The evil CCP could deprive him of his job, but could never take away his true heart of believing in God. At this moment, he had strength within unknowingly, which strengthened his will to rebel against Satan. Li Jin prayed to God in his heart: No matter what kind of difficulties I will encounter, I’m unwilling to leave You, because You are my Lord and Your word can accomplish everything.
Later, another passage of God’s word occurred to him, “Perhaps you all remember these words: ‘For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, works for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.’ In the past, you have all heard this saying, yet none understood the true meaning of the words. Today, you know well the real significance they hold. These words are what God will accomplish in the last days. And they will be accomplished upon those cruelly afflicted by the great red dragon in the land where it lies. The great red dragon persecutes God and is the enemy of God, so in this land, those who believe in God are subjected to humiliation and persecution. That is why these words will become reality in you group of people” (“Is the Work of God So Simple as Man Imagines?”). Encouraged by God’s word, Li Jin felt greatly touched. He thought: It’s meaningful and valuable to suffer this hardship. At the very moment, he saw God’s true love for him. God deeply knew his weakness and immaturity, so God led him to make the right choice with His word. At the thought of this, he wrote the letter of resignation as a result of the resolution to begin a life with dignity.
When school was over that afternoon, Li Jin passed his letter of resignation to the headmaster. After reading it, the headmaster assumed a look of surprise and regret, saying, “Do you really resign? Hum, you really want to give up such a good job?”
Then he continued in a hard tone, “Think before you make this decision. It’s your own business. Don’t be regretful.”
“Now that I’ve made the decision, I’ll never be regretful.” Said Li Jin calmly. Then, he resolutely went out of the door.
By Li Jin, China
“Suffers mishap after mishap” indicates that the people were born in the land of the great red dragon, and they are unable to hold their heads up high.