Although I had a little discernment of the social trends directed by Satan, the Satan’s poisons inside me, which were deep-rooted, could not be removed at once, for I had been corrupted by Satan for many years. After a period of time, my addiction to mahjong hit me again. I was idle every day and my whole body felt uncomfortable, particularly wanting to go to the mahjong hall. I held the lucky mind, thinking: God hates me playing mahjong, then I won’t play. I just want to see how others play. When I had such an idea, Satan stuck a pin wherever there’s room, attacking me again through the people surrounding me. I could not resist the temptation of my mahjong friends again and again and began to play. When my wife knew, she communicated with me the words of God and asked me to see through Satan’s tricks, forsake my own desires, and stay away from mahjong hall. Although I also wanted to get rid of it, but I couldn’t extricate myself. Slowly, the time I spent reading the words of God became less and less, and I even did not go to the meeting but to the mahjong hall once I had time. Because I was farther and farther away from God, losing God’s protection, Satan took the opportunity to harm me. Later, a sudden disease struck me.
One day in May 2016, when I was playing mahjong with a few friends, I suddenly felt some pain in the waist, but I did not take it seriously, just simply taking some medicine. After that, when I handled something heavy or sat for a long time, I felt particularly hurt in the waist. Even so, I involuntarily went to play mahjong. One day in July 2016, after I helped my brother finish the work, I felt a particularly severe pain in my waist, so my wife rushed me to the hospital. After the examination, the doctor said I got calcification at the lumbar vertebrae, if acupuncture didn’t work, I would need an operation, which would probably cost 70,000 yuan. The doctor’s words were like a thunderbolt out of a clear sky. I was muddled: More than seventy thousand yuan! It is an astronomical fee for me; how I can have so much money to see a doctor! But if it were not cured, wouldn’t I be a useless man for the rest of my whole life? For lack of money, I had to go home to recover from the illness. On the way home, I felt very painful, feeling like wearing a mountain on my head, which made me breathless. After returning home, my condition was more serious, so that I had to lie in bed without moving, even having to depend on my wife to relieve the bowels. At this point, a sense of frustration filled my heart; I could not help but feel discouraged, thinking: I would rather drink pesticide to die if the disease cannot be cured. If I have to lie in bed for the rest of my life, what is the meaning of my life? How long will I haunt my wife? … The pain of the body and the pressure of my spirit tortured me with unspeakable suffering, and I was plunged completely into despair.
My wife knew my pain, so she often comforted me and asked me to see through Satan’s trick. She said Satan wanted to let us give up and lose confidence in life when we were in difficulty. She also read me the words of God: “When sickness happens it is due to God’s love and His good intentions are surely behind it. Even when your body endures suffering, take no ideas from Satan. Praise God in the midst of illness and enjoy God in the midst of your praise. Do not lose heart in the face of illness, keep seeking and never give up, and God shall shine His light to you” (“The Sixth Utterance”). She fellowshiped, “God says very clearly to us. Outwardly, the appearance of illness is a bad thing, but there are God’s good intentions and lessons we need to learn. Do not be discouraged, and now what you should do most is to come to God to reflect on yourself and see what is in God’s mind when you are in such pain. Do not blame and misunderstand God, but learn from this environment!” Listening to my wife’s words, I felt a little comfort in my heart. After that, I settled down, lying in bed to read the words of God, listen to the preaching and fellowship on entering into life and watch various videos and movies of the church.
One day, I read the words of God, “Satan destroys your mind, making you powerless to resist, meaning that very slowly your heart turns toward Satan in spite of yourself. It instills these things in you every day, every day using these ideas and cultures to influence and nurture you, very slowly ruining your will, making you not want to be a good person any longer, making you no longer wish to persevere standing up for what you call righteousness. Unknowingly, you no longer have the willpower to swim upstream against the tide, but instead flow down along with it. ‘Destruction’ means Satan torments people so much that they become like neither man nor ghost, then it seizes the opportunity to devour them. “Each one of these means that Satan employs to corrupt man can render man powerless to resist; any one of them can be fatal for people and leave them with no room to resist at all. In other words, anything Satan does and any means it employs can cause you to degenerate, can bring you under Satan’s control and can mire you in a quagmire of evil so that you cannot escape. These are the means Satan employs to corrupt man and they are extremely cruel, malicious, insidious and despicable. Everyone has personally tasted the bitterness of these means, so man’s heart can then hate Satan bitterly and resolve to rebel against this evil demon” (“God Himself, the Unique VI”). At that moment, I could not help thinking of my experience of playing mahjong again and again. Thinking: God earnestly says so many words and dissects clearly the means and the ways Satan corrupts human beings, hoping I can see through Satan’s despicable purpose, so that I can hate Satan and stay away from the harm of Satan to live under the care and protection of God. However, although I had some theoretical knowledge about how Satan does harm to man, neither did I carry out the words of God, nor did I hate and reject Satan in my heart. Under the temptation of Satan, I would still involuntarily follow Satan, because in my heart, Satan has long instilled the poison, “Life is short, why not entertain in time?” As a result, I always thought in the subconscious: as a man, smoking, drinking, playing mahjong are normal; when alive, we should entertain timely. I would feel aggrieved if not play mahjong for a whole life. … So, under the control of these distorted ideas, I have been seeing playing mahjong as a good and positive thing. In order to play mahjong, I stole and deceived money from home regardless of my wife’s feelings. After believing in God, I made up my mind to give up playing it but disobeyed my vows before God again and again. I did not know how many times I was rebellious to God and resisted God, willing to stay away from God to be harmed by Satan, finally I was almost swallowed by it. By the pain I returned to God, reflecting on myself. Thinking: but for the pain and illness this time, I would have gone to the mahjong hall all day and would not have listened to my wife talking about the truth. In this way, I would be farther and farther away from God, and ultimately swallowed by Satan, completely losing the opportunity to be saved. Now because of this pain, I lay in bed and could do nothing, which gave me an opportunity to read the words of God and equip myself with the truth. From the words of God, I also recognized the cruel means of Satan harming and swallowing man and experienced the results of living by the law of Satan. At this time, I understood that the pain and illness I was suffering from isto me and the love of God!
Experiencing the judgement, chastening, and discipline of God, I personally experienced that I could live without mahjong or anyone but I really could not live without God. Now thinking about my loss of God’s care and protection, falling into the darkness and suffering from Satan’s torture, I really lived as neither a man nor a ghost, and felt especially painful and helpless in the soul. So I prayed to God in silence: “God, I am too disobedient. I made up my mind not to play mahjong in front of you again and again but still involuntarily followed Satan. But when I was about to slide into the abyss, You awakened and saved me by the illness and pain. Oh God, You love me so much. I am really ashamed and do not deserve to enjoy your love. God! I would like to entrust my disease to your hands, and whether it will recover or not, I am willing to be obedient in front of you without any complaints.”
Later, as the peaches in the peach orchard were ripe and ready to be sold and the farm work was particularly busy, my wife alone could not sell the peaches by herself, but I could not move. Just as we did not know what to do, several brothers and sisters came to my house to help. Seeing the brothers and sisters enthusiastically help us, my heart was very touched, thinking of what the Lord said, “Who is my mother? and who are my brothers? … Behold my mother and my brothers! For whoever shall do the will of my Father which is in heaven, the same is my brother, and sister, and mother” (Matthew 12:48-50). Then I saw that only brothers and sisters are my real brothers and sisters. When I was in the most difficulty, it was brothers and sisters that helped us through the difficulty, which made me feel the most genuine love of God again! God’s love aroused my will to repay His love. I thought: I cannot disobey and resist God as before, hurting God’s heart. I need to make a fresh start in life! So I swore before God: From now on I will never play mahjong again. If I play it again, may God’s punishment and discipline not leave me. When I really repented to God, miracles took place. Nine days later, I could actually get out of bed to move and do some light work. At this point, I saw the power of God and His wonderful deeds and could not help but utter real thanks to praise Him from my heart. Later, under the blessings of God, I basically recovered from my illness in twenty days, so I drove with my wife to the orchard to pick peaches. When the neighbors saw me, they said in surprise: “We did not expect Wang Feng could recover from such a heavy disease. This is really a miracle!” “His family believe in God; it’s good to believe in God!” … Listening to what the neighbors said, I thanked and praised God from my heart.
When I gradually recovered, Satan was not willing to fail, luring me to play mahjong again by my mahjong friend. One day, a friend saw me and said in surprise: “Yo! Wang Feng, are you ok? Let’s play mahjong, we just miss one.” His words and the sound coming from the mahjong table made my heart move. I had to say that I really would like to play again. At this time, I suddenly thought of the words of God and the means and ways that Satan corrupts man revealed by God, and understood that Satan was luring me by my mahjong friend. Besides, I thought of the situation of my being harmed by Satan and the oath I had made before God. If I continued to play mahjong, wouldn’t I deceive God and humiliate God? No, I can no longer suffer from Satan’s tricks, and I have to betray Satan and satisfy God. Thinking of this, I firmly said to him: “I will not play, go to find someone else!” He saw my attitude was very resolute, so he did not say anything more. Walking on the way home, I was particularly pleased. I knew it was because of God’s protection to me that I could overcome the test of Satan.
Since then, I have never played mahjong. My wife and I no longer quarrel over the matter. We often talk about the words of God together and I feel particularly relaxed, secure and happy. I completely get rid of the tie of mahjong to me. Now, my wife and I are able to perform our duty in return for the great love from God! God says, “Because the essence of God is holy, that means that only through God can you walk the bright, right road through life; only through God can you know the meaning of life, only through God can you live out a real life, possess the truth, know the truth, and only through God can you obtain life from the truth. Only God Himself can help you shun evil and deliver you from the harm and control of Satan. Besides God, no one and nothing can save you from the sea of suffering so that you suffer no longer: This is determined by the essence of God. Only God Himself saves you so selflessly, only God is ultimately responsible for your future, for your destiny and for your life, and He arranges all things for you. This is something that nothing created or non-created can achieve” (“God Himself, the Unique VI”). God is holy, and He wants us to understand His will, accept His salvation, live by the words that He has given us, comport ourselves according to the truth, stay away from the evil trends of Satan, and walk in the bright and right way of life. Only in this way, will His heart be comforted; if we blindly follow Satan to live in the evil trends, greedily enjoy the joy of sin and resist God, God’s heart will be sad and anxious. Looking back on the road I have walked step by step, this is really God’s salvation to me and God’s love for me, a rebellious son again and again. I get rid of my addiction to mahjong through the inspiring and leading of God’s words and the illness and pain. I cannot help but give God a true praise from my heart: Thank God for His salvation to me!
All the glory be to God!
Wang Feng, Hebei Province
Part One: Get Rid of the Temptation of Mahjong (I)