the church, prayer ,salvation

God’s Love Guided Me Out of the Vortex of Money (II)

One day, I saw a reading video of the words of Almighty God. God says, “One exhausts a lifetime’s worth of energy fighting against fate, spends all of one’s time bustling about trying to feed one’s family and shuttling back and forth between wealth and status. The things that people treasure are family, money, and fame; they view these as the most valuable things in life. All people complain about their fates, yet still they push to the back of their minds the questions that it is most imperative to examine and understand: why man is alive, how man should live, what the value and meaning of life is. All of their lives, however many years that may be, they just rush about seeking fame and fortune, until their youth has fled, until they become gray and wrinkled; until they see that fame and fortune cannot stop one’s slide toward senility, that money cannot fill the emptiness of the heart; until they understand that no one is exempt from the law of birth, aging, sickness, and death, that no one can escape what fate has in store” (“God Himself, the Unique III”). Almighty God’s words have revealed the root of my suffering. So, the fact that I have been living so miserably results from my chasing after fortune and fame. Thinking back, I pursued being a rich one from a child and thought that once one has money, he will have everything. Therefore, I strove for making more money without any hesitation. However, I was pushed to the teeth of the storm of chasing after fame and gain by money finally. After having made some money, I desired much more. Afterward, when I lost 800, 000 RMB because of buying stocks, I was nearly to be dispirited. Even if I was at my lowest time, I yet tried my hardest to keep my status of being “a rich one” painfully. Now for the sake of chasing after money, I left distantly my families and came to America, and I was so tired that I had a backache. Looking back on my life journey, I realized money brought me not bliss but lots and lots of suffering. God’s words say, “when one has property, one thinks that money is one’s mainstay, that it is one’s asset in life; when people have status, they cling tightly to it and would risk their lives for its sake. Only when people are about to let go of this world do they realize that the things they spent their lives pursuing are nothing but fleeting clouds, none of which they can hold onto, none of which they can take with them, none of which can exempt them from death, none of which can provide company or consolation to a lonely soul on its way back; and least of all, none of which can give a person salvation, allow them to transcend death. Fame and fortune one gains in the material world give one temporary satisfaction, passing pleasure, a false sense of ease, and make one lose one’s way. … People spend their lives chasing after money and fame; they clutch at these straws, thinking they are their only means of support, as if by having them they could keep on living, could exempt themselves from death. But only when they are close to dying do they realize how distant these things are from them, how weak they are in the face of death, how easily they shatter, how lonely and helpless they are, with nowhere to turn. They realize that life cannot be bought with money or fame, that no matter how wealthy a person is, no matter how lofty his or her position is, all people are equally poor and inconsequential in the face of death. They realize that money cannot buy life, that fame cannot erase death, that neither money nor fame can lengthen a person’s life by a single minute, a single second” (“God Himself, the Unique III”). I felt that each word of Almighty God is the truth, which reveals the substance of money. Indeed, money can only bring people passing satisfaction, can swell people’s desires and make one lose the direction to go forward. In the end, what it brings to man is still affliction. And through the fellowships of the brothers and sisters, I came to know that Satan does bind and afflict us with these things, resulting in that we live for these empty things and ignores God’s will. Satan blinds our mind in order to make us not have time to ponder what the meaning of life is and who rules man’s fate on earth. Furthermore, Satan lures us into one after another vortex by money and fame, making us accept Satan’s manipulation and toying and live in misery without being able to extricate ourselves. Satan’s scheme is to damage and harm us to make us stay distant from God. After understanding these, I was enlightened. I realized that my previous view of pursuit was wrong, and I would choose my way of life anew—to follow God and walk the bright path of pursuing the truth and knowing God. Though I had the wish to rebel against Satan and walk the right path of life, money had rooted in my heart too deeply. Sometimes my emotions would be affected because of bad business; sometimes, my heart was addicted to earning more money even if it was time to attend a meeting. However, I knew attending meetings could bring me more truth, and if I was absent, I would lose many truths. As a result, I dropped in the dilemma between earning money and attending meetings. Therefore, I told the trouble in my heart to the sister, then she helped me with a passage of God’s words. God says, “The sadness of man is not that man seeks happy life, not that he pursues fame and fortune or struggles against his own fate through the fog, but…

God’s Love Guided Me Out of the Vortex of Money (I)

I was born into a poor Chinese peasant family, I have six brothers and sisters and I am the oldest of them. Because there are many people in my family, we were often on short commons, with patches on our clothes, and we were always looked down upon by people around us. Later on, my aunt married and lived in the city. Every time she came to my home, she always dressed herself beautifully. Seeing her high-heeled shoes, I was very envious. From then on, the opinion of “Money is first” was planted in my mind, and I considered that if a man had money, he would live a life of being an important person, which, I thought, was truly happy. I told my parents, “In future, I will also live a wealthy life just like my aunt, wearing high-heeled shoes and steel-wired glasses.” In my teens, I determined that when I grew up, I must work hard to make money. As long as I made more money, I would live a wealthy life and others would no longer look down upon us. Time flies and I grew up. A wealthy boy pursued me and let a matchmaker come to my home, proposing my marriage. The boy is good-looking and has a wealthy family, which was to my liking very much. I thought: If I can marry him, I won’t live this kind of life inferior to others. Afterward, however, my parents learned about that the boy had made a few girlfriends before, and they were afraid that he was unreliable. So they began to be against our association. My parent’s thought was quickly spread to the boy’s mother, and she took sulks and said: “We are rich enough. My son would like to make whichever girlfriend he likes. Now even if your daughter wants to make friends with my son, we won’t agree to it. Even though your daughter gives birth to golden or silver children for us, we won’t let her step into our home.” For this reason, the relationship between our two families got worse and worse, and I had no choice but to break up with the boy. After the departure, I felt sad for so long a time. Her mother’s words often echoed in my mind and I felt utterly humiliated, I thought, “Don’t think that your family has money, and so you are feeling great. If I have money someday, I will let you look at me with new eyes…” Later on, by introduction, I knew a man and married him. During a few years, my two daughters and son were born continuously. When my son was born, I was diagnosed with serious oophoritic cyst and both of them were cut off one by one. One year later, I recovered gradually. I was just inquiring about some ways to make money everywhere and wanted to devote myself to my work when my husband requested a divorce. Only then did I know that during the period of my pregnancy, my husband cheated on me and found another woman outside. The news made me astonished, and I couldn’t bear this blow and felt weak and limp all over. Seeing my younger girl toddling around and my little son babbling, my heart was broken. Those days, every day, I lived a miserable life and shed tears of bitterness. Thinking of my idle husband, whichever child I left him, I would feel worried. Finally, I determined that: I will bring up these three children. As long as I work hard to make money, the children will not live a worse life than other children! After divorce, my husband left the two thatched cottages to me, I lived in the village of my mother-in-law with my three children. Facing people’s ridicules, I felt oppressive and miserable and just wanted to get rid of this kind of life. In order not to be looked down upon by others, I began to try all means to make money. At the beginning, I worked in a workshop overtime, knitting sweaters from dawn to dark. In order to save more money, I lived a pinching and scraping life, and sometimes, I even just ate one meal a day, and was never generous to buy any clothes for myself. Just like this, I struggled for more money. Later, a boss, who often came to our workshop to pick up goods, seeing that I did work fast, asked me to work in their factory by paying me double salary. From then on, we led a better life. People beside me also praised me and I tasted the sweetness that was brought by money. Afterward, I myself opened a shop for doing business of knitting sweaters. As I knitted, I sold them. Gradually, I built up a good business. For a few years, I have also saved some money, built new houses and entered into the group of the few wealthy persons in the village. But these didn’t satisfy me. To make more money, I found a channel of wholesaling publications and began to transport them. This work was very hard and tiring and I often had to eat and sleep on the truck. After a long duration, I was too tired to hold on. But, seeing the money in my hand increasing gradually, I told myself that I must hold on. During the short two or three years, I got CNY 800,000, which made me a wealthy woman on the list in my hometown in 1997. At that time, I became a focus among people. Hearing their words of flattery, I enjoyed the sense of achievements, having forgotten myself… With the wealthy friends around me gradually increasing, seeing their high-quality cars and luxury houses, I have already abandoned my desire of wearing high-heeled shoes and steel-wired glasses. And at that time I would like to earn more money to make my son and my daughters live an enviable life. So I still tried to…

Tempted by Money, She Practiced to Be an Honest Person Like This … (I)

Honestly Making Money Based on Conscience My husband and I set up a recycling station. At the outset of doing business, we treated every customer with sincerity. Especially when the old came to sell scrap, we would give them special favor. Customers were so trustful of us that they all sold scrap to us. Over time, our business began to become brisk. We could make one or two hundred yuan each day. Figuring it out in this way, we could make five thousand yuan a month. I was very content with that. One day, a business friend came to visit us. When he was drinking with my husband, he sighed and said, “Alas! My business is not doing as well this year as the former years. In the past two years, much money could be easily made. At that time, I could make from seven to ten hundred yuan a day at most. But I can’t do it now: Every day I can only make four or five hundred yuan; even when I make the most, it just reaches six or seven hundred yuan.” Upon hearing that, my husband said in surprise, “We can only make one or two hundred yuan a day. But you can make so much, how come you still feel it’s not enough? What’s your acquisition price?” The friend said, “Now there are many recycling stations and the competition is fierce. I lost some regular customers. But now I offer the highest price to collect their scrap, making some of them come back again.” My husband said helplessly, “Offering a high price means you can’t make money.” The friend said with a proud look, “Since I offer a high price, I certainly give them short weight, or else how can I make money? Do you not use some tricks on your platform balance?” Hearing his words, my husband and I felt a little puzzled. The friend seriously said to my husband and me, “You’re just too honest. Do you think people in this trade are all honest? These years, if people don’t cheat or make extra money in their business, who is willing to do it?” I said, “Doesn’t cheating others mean we lose our conscience?” He said indifferently, “Conscience? How much is the conscience worth? If you don’t cheat, you can’t make much money. Now business people are all doing like this.” Subsequently, the friend told us a trick of how to cheat customers. That was to remove the original weigh-beam from the platform balance, to buy a false weigh-beam that could give short weight to replace the original one, and then to decrease the weight by forty percent (fifty kilograms of scrap scales only thirty kilograms). Then, he personally taught us to practice it on our platform balance. He taught and said, “After the original weigh-beam is replaced with a false one, pull the beam out when you want to give short weight, and push it in when you don’t do it in ordinary days. In this way, it’s not easy to be found by others.” At his words, I immediately understood: It turned out that they made money by cheating customers. Little wonder that people of the same trade around can make four or five hundred yuan a day while we can only make one or two hundred yuan. But then I thought: If I give the customers forty percent short weight, then don’t they suffer too much loss? Doesn’t that mean gaining profit at others’ expense? I can’t cheat others like that, or else I’ll have an uneasy conscience. Though the friend taught us a “good method” of making money, I still did business honestly. A Dull Business Swayed My Heart After another period of time, people selling scrap to us complained that our price was low, so they all went to where a high price was given. Seeing customers left one after another, I felt very desolated and thought: What have you done? The recycling stations offering a high price are all cheating you. How come you still go there? Gradually, people who sold scrap to us became ever fewer. We could only collect several orders of scrap a day and make little money. Seeing our business became bad, I was very worried, thinking: If this goes on, not to mention buying a house and a car, it will be even difficult for us to pay our rent and living expense. Then how shall we live on? … Just when I was worrying about our livelihood, I suddenly thought of the friend’s words, “These years, if you don’t cheat, you can’t make money and can’t survive….” Right. If I still follow my conscience to honestly make money, I’m afraid that I can’t stand firm in this society. It seems that I have to play some tricks like them—offering a high price to attract my lost customers. Otherwise, our business will close down. But at the idea of that, I felt a bit uneasy in my heart: No. That’s too conscienceless. But I thought again: Now this society is too realistic. If I don’t play some tricks but still do business honestly, when can I buy a house and a car? And how can I gain status in this society? Like this, I thought this matter over and over in my heart. Finally, I had no choice but to make up my mind: As long as I can make money, I don’t care about conscience. How much is the conscience worth? As the saying goes, “Money makes the mare go” and “Money is not everything, but without it, you can do nothing.” Others can play tricks and so can I. It’s not merely us doing so. Going With the Tide and Cheating On the Platform Balance Later, we bought a false weigh-beam and set it on our platform balance, and started to learn giving short weight. Once, a customer carried a load of scrap to us. I thought: This customer comes…

The Gains Brought by One Document

The Gains Brought by One Document

During these days, our company had recruited some new employees. In order for our work to be completed better so as to get good achievements, the supervisor arranged for one of them to be my new partner. But to be honest, I didn’t want to change my partner at all. I considered: Presently, people are all self-righteous. What is my new partner like? Can we get along with each other? Suppose we were to have different opinions on things, would we be in conflict with each other? … These thoughts came out repeatedly in my mind so that I was very depressed. The next day, after finishing a document, I gave it to my new partner to check and modify it. But several days passed, she still made no reply to me. When I thought that my former partner always would reply to me the second day at the latest and she never delayed the progress of my work, I had some preconceptions about my new partner in my heart: How many days have passed! Yet I haven’t heard your reply. What do you mean? Don’t you think that my document is good? If so, you ought to tell me and I could modify it. But though I was very anxious, I didn’t want to actively ask her about my document. So I had to continue waiting for her reply “patiently”. Three days later, she gave me the answer at length. However, she not only pointed out many insufficiencies in my document, but advised me to rewrite it. Hearing these suggestions, I had a distrust of her in my heart: Do you actually understand the professional knowledge? Are you not mistaken? If you were, wouldn’t it be a pity for my document? Then, without communication with my partner, I directly abandoned my document in a fit of pique. Afterward, the supervisor handed over some works to me. Due to last unpleasant experience, this time, after I finished these documents, I directly gave them to other colleagues to check instead of my partner. Because in my heart I always had some misgivings: It is not long since my partner came to the company, and she is unfamiliar with the majority of the business. What a pity it would be if she rejected my document when she doesn’t understand the professional work! What’s more, I had been taking it to heart since she rejected my document last time. So I always wanted to save my face before her and not to be looked down on by her. However, subsequently, the colleagues who were familiar with the business became quite busy and had no more time to help me check the documents. Besides, one colleague emphasized again and again: Regardless of who your partner is, you should ask her to check it for you. Hearing the words, I felt depressed at once. After I came back home in the evening, thinking of the relationship between me and my partner, I could do nothing but pray to God in my heart once and again: “O God, I have a poor opinion of my partner, and I don’t want to get close to her at all. As a Christian, I know what I live out is not in accordance with Your will. But when facing my partner, I really can’t practice Your words. O God, what should I do?” After praying, I opened the book of God’s words and saw these words, “Again I say to you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the middle of them” (Matthew 18:19-20). “They don’t have any harmonious partnership. Why don’t they have any? (They are arrogant and self-righteous and are unwilling to relinquish themselves.) Being unwilling to relinquish themselves, being arrogant and self-righteous—these are all corrupt dispositions” (“To Attain the Truth, You Must Learn From the People, Matters, and Things Around You”). At this point I had an awakening. I realized the reason why I couldn’t get along well with my partner was because I lived within a state of arrogance and self-righteousness. When I saw she was a newcomer, I was afraid that she was unfamiliar with the business and couldn’t make a correct assessment of my documents so that she would reject my document by mistake. Therefore, I couldn’t treat her fairly and justly. Furthermore, I thought that as a new member, she should be humble and not reject my document as she pleased. Then I thought of a passage of God’s word: “Will you become even more arrogant and conceited, or will you stay as you are? (We’ll become even more arrogant and conceited.) Why is that? (We’ll think we have capital.) You’ll think you have seniority, yes? And what is the level of this seniority based on? Is it based on how many years you’ve been performing this duty? In addition, is it based on how much experience you’ve accrued from performing this duty? Slowly but surely, will you start judging people according to their seniority? (Yes.) And why will you take this path? Say, for example, there’s someone called Sister Zhang: She’s believed for many years, she’s a veteran—the first one who performed this duty. So she’s most qualified to speak. Brother Li came last; he might have a little caliber, but he doesn’t have enough experience to perform this duty, nor has he been a believer for very long. He is the least qualified to talk” (“Only If You Live Before God at All Times Can You Walk the Path of Salvation”). Although this passage is spoken by God to teach us Christians to perform our duty with one heart and mind, in our daily work, shouldn’t we do the same? Was not the reason why I could not accept my new…

salvation, gospel,Testimonies

The Happy Experience of Putting the Truth Into Practice

In the Autumn of 2014. I was forced to leave home to escape from the Chinese Communist Party Government’s fierce persecution of Christians. My uncle recommended me a temporary job in a restaurant. I worked as a desk clerk. I thought that as a Christian, I should work hard regardless of how long I stayed here so that I would live up to my own conscience and not shame the name of God. So, I dutifully worked in the restaurant as if I worked in my home. The boss thought I was trustworthy, and treated me very well. However, there was an aunt who worked in the kitchen and often found fault with me in nothing but some trifles. It troubled me a lot. At first, I could be patient with her. This was because from God’s words I knew that we had been deeply corrupted by Satan, and therefore it was difficult to avoid infighting when we interacted with each other. She didn’t believe in God, so it was normal for her to envy me when she found the boss treated me well. But later, she kept on finding faults with me, and sometimes she even ridiculed me, saying that I earned a living not through my ability but through my connection. Faced with this situation, I was friendly with her superficially, but in my heart, I really hated her and was not willing to talk to her. Sometimes when she asked me something, I would pretend not to hear her and intentionally talked with other colleagues. Sometimes when I had enough of it, I really wanted to complain to the boss about her mockery. One day, when I really was going to do that, I suddenly remembered God’s words, which says: “Be more patient and tolerant, practice conceding more, be generous and open with people, and learn from the ‘spirit of the prime minister.’ When you have thoughts that are not good, practice forsaking the flesh more. … When your hand of sin reaches out, pull it back and don’t let it extend so far. It’s useless! What you get from God is nothing but curses; be careful. Let your heart take pity on others and don’t always strike out with weapons in hand” (“Focus More on Reality”). God’s words tell us how to be a created being. We should be generous and open with people and be tolerant, which is the very least that one with conscience and reason should do. But taking a look at myself, when the aunt attacked me, I only wanted to take an eye for an eye by telling on her handles to the boss, and even could hardly wait to see the boss fire her, which would erase the hatred in my heart. Wasn’t I pursuing Satan’s principle that “Those who submit will prosper; those who resist shall perish”? It was the judgment of God’s words that made me realize that my thoughts came out of a corrupt disposition, which was at odds with God’s will. I can’t be obstinate, doing whatever I want. I should live by God’s words and live out normal humanity. I don’t want to be laughed at by those who don’t believe in God, and I mustn’t shame the name of God. Therefore, I dropped the idea of telling on her to the boss. But in my heart, I really didn’t want to face her because I was fed up with her contemptuous face. Every time I was annoyed with her, I would miss the brothers and sisters in the church very much. I didn’t need to be wary of them when I stayed with them. Even though I revealed my corrupt disposition, they would tolerate and be patient with me. And no one would ridicule or exclude me. When I thought about this, I didn’t want to stay here any longer. But if I returned home now, I would be in the danger of being arrested by the CCP Government. Therefore, I prayed in my heart: “O God, if it is Your will that I stay here, I’m willing to be obedient and experience Your work. However, my stature is too small. Please give me the courage to face the hard situation and difficulty, so that when I meet the persons and things that I don’t like, I can quiet before You and figure out Your will in Your words and live by Your words.” One day, when I was cleaning the wall, I found a stain on a piece of tile. The stain had been there since the restaurant was decorated. It could not be removed no matter how hard I tried. The aunt then saw it and murmured: “How can’t she do such a work. It’s so bad.” Hearing her words, I felt so aggrieved and thought: The hygiene has been improved a lot since I came here. The boss has praised me for several times. You are an employee, too. For what are you always reproving me? No, I will not tolerate you, otherwise, you will think I am easily bullied. At worst, I will quit my job after quarrelling with you. It’s no big deal! Thinking of this, I got ready to argue with her. But when I was about to say something, I suddenly remembered God’s words, which say: “You should know that everything that happens to you is a great trial and the time when God needs you to bear testimony. Externally, they might not seem like a big deal, but when these things happen they show whether or not you love God. If you do, you will be able to stand firm in your testimony to Him, and if you have not put the love of Him into practice, this shows you are not someone who puts the truth into practice, that you are without the truth, and without life, that you are chaff! Everything that happens to people is when God needs them to stand firm…

More »