There Was No Happiness in My Childhood
Accompanied by a cry, I arrived in this world; I had a family which consisted of my father, mother, and elder sister. Though not knowing why I came crying, I believed I would grow happily with my family’s company.
I thought I should have an innocent and romantic childhood; I imagined that I, accompanied by my parents, was scampering on the green land with my playmates, wearing an innocent smile. However, all my childhood memories were my parents’ frequent quarrels and their angry countenance; at such a tender age, seeing my father hitting and kicking my mother time and again, I could do nothing but cry loudly with fear.
In my gloomy childhood, I seldom had happy time. I feared that my parents would get divorced one day, and thereby, I’d lose them and become a kid no one cares for or loves. At such a young age, I underwent too many sufferings that I shouldn’t have. Nevertheless, the most worrying and terrifying thing still happened: I overheard them discussing divorce. At that moment, standing in corridor, I was weeping silently. Enveloped in terror and helplessness, I sobbed and asked my sister: “Will mom and dad get divorced? Will they abandon us?”
When my father asked whom I’d like to live with, I expressed the voice of my heart: “I’d like to live with both of you.” How I longed for a happy family! Perhaps because of me, they didn’t get divorced; yet they still always quarreled with each other. And so, with countless tears I shed, I spent my gloomy childhood.
Gradually, as I grew up, I made the acquaintance of many schoolmates and friends. I really admired them, for they had a happy family with father’s protection and mother’s care, and could act like a spoiled child in their parents’ arms, whereas all of these were extravagant hopes for me. My life was still full of the squabbles of my parents, the difference was that I no longer cried but learned how to pretend to be strong. Yet in the depth of my heart, I still yearned for a warm family. I told myself inwardly: I must build my own happy family when I grow mature.
I Thought I Found Happiness, but It Was Just a Fantasy
Spring coming, on my eighteenth birthday, the “present” my parents gave me was their divorce and a broken family. That day, I alone walked on the seashore, and made my wish: I want a happy family! I long to find a person who cares for and loves me; then we’ll build our own family where there is no quarrels or tears; we’ll give our children a happy childhood, and our family will live happily together. I kept walking by the shore, carving deep trenches behind me. I hoped to bury all the sorrows of my past there, for I thought that maybe only the vast ocean could contain all my pain and misery.
Afterward, I encountered him, a perfectly ordinary boy who I firmly believed could give me a warm family and the happiness that I had been longing for. In the first two years, my mother and friends all disapproved our love, but we stuck together and our relationship had never been affected; we both considered each other as the right one. At that time, my heart was filled with happiness and warmth.
Like the unpredictable summer weather which could turn from bright to violent without warning, my happy life, without any sign, fell apart all of a sudden. In the third year, I discovered him flirting with other girls on the Internet, but I couldn’t bear to give up our love. For the happy family I dreamt of, I, suppressing my inner pain, forced myself to smile to him, and made compromises once and again. A year later, we started to build our wedding house; I made all arrangements personally, elaborately designing every room, and mixing the color of every wall myself. Countless times had I imagined our wedding ceremony; countless times had I dreamed that I, wearing the white wedding dress, walked into the wedding palace hand in hand with him, retrieving the happiness that I hadn’t got in my childhood. I thought I finally had my own family, but, unexpectedly, twenty-two days before the wedding, we broke up, turning into strangers as if we had never met before; I eventually didn’t get a happy life. The cruel reality broke my heart. When I thought of all the sacrifices I had made for our love, my heart was in great pain, as if it was bleeding drop by drop.
I screamed: “Why? Why? Why on earth? I’ve paid everything just for a happy and warm family; how could my dream explode like this? No! I can’t accept it!” Several times I almost lost my mind and then fell into depression; in countless nights, I alone walked by the shore, and wanted to walk into the depth of the vast sea to end my painful life.
That year I was only twenty-two. In the bloom of youth, I, like a flower buffeted by the storm, suffered the harm from life. How eagerly I wanted a family, which could bring me happiness and warmth, yet, I still lived all alone.
Autumn coming, withering yellow leaves slowly drifted down with the wind; I, like a falling leaf, didn’t know where to go. In the chilly wind, I shivered involuntarily, feeling the cold winter was coming closer and closer.
When I fell in the dumps, I thought my life would never have a change; when I lost all the hopes and attempted suicide, to my great surprise, I received the happiness that I had been longing for. I would never forget that day …
I Got Happiness From God
That day, the wind was piercingly cold, with snowflakes floating in the air. I hurriedly rushed into my house as usual, seeing an aunt of my mother’s age sitting in the living room, who looked very kind and strangely familiar.
She actively talked with me; from her eyes, I saw her sincerity; from her words, I felt the long-lost warmth. She told me there is a Creator in the world. He has always been standing guard by my side quietly. Although I didn’t know Him or know His existence, He has never been away from me. Every time when I was in extreme pain and wanted to end my life, He was watching over and protecting me silently.
That was the first time I knew God’s existence, the first time I softly called out His name. At that moment, a warm current melting my frozen heart, I couldn’t help shedding tears of happiness and joy, like a kid who had wandered for years finally returned to his mother’s embrace, a boat that had drifted for a long time ultimately found a haven. Meanwhile, a gentle hymn of God’s words reached my ears: “1. Mankind, who left the supply of life from the Almighty, does not know why they exist, and yet fears death. There is no support, no help, but mankind is still reluctant to close their eyes, braving it all, drags out an ignoble existence in this world in bodies without the consciousness of souls. You live like such, with no hope; he exists like such, with no aim. There is only the Holy One in the legend who will come to save those who moan in suffering and long desperately for His arrival. This belief cannot be realized so far in the people who are unconscious. However, the people still yearn for it so.
“2. The Almighty has mercy on these people who suffer deeply. At the same time, He is fed up with these people who have no consciousness, because He has to wait too long for the answer from humans. He desires to seek, seek your heart and your spirit. He wants to bring you food and water and to awaken you, so you are no longer thirsty, no longer hungry. When you are weary and when you begin to feel the desolation of this world, do not be perplexed, do not cry. Almighty God, the Watcher, will embrace your arrival any time.
“3. He is watching by your side, waiting for you to turn back. He is waiting for the day your memory suddenly recovers: becoming conscious of the fact that you came from God, somehow and somewhere once lost, falling unconscious on the roadside, and then, unknowingly having a father. You further realize that the Almighty has been watching there, awaiting your return all along” (“God Is Seeking Your Heart and Your Spirit”).
This is God’s voice, His sincere and earnest call! Turns out that God had always been waiting for me to return to His family. At last, I found my life direction and the family I dreamt of. Once, in the vast sea of humanity, I wracked my brain to find happiness, planted the seed of dream, yet reaped nothing but sorrow; in the mundane world, I, seeking for a long time, only wanted a happy family, yet ended up in failure. I came to realize: The root of all my sufferings was that I didn’t meet God and come before Him.
Later, I saw God’s words say: “Following the completion of My words, the kingdom is gradually formed on earth and man is gradually returned to normality, and thus there is established on earth the kingdom in My heart. In the kingdom, all the people of God recover the life of normal man. Gone is the frosty winter, replaced by a world of cities of spring, where it is spring all year round. No longer are people faced with the gloomy, miserable world of man, no longer do they endure the cold chill of the world of man. People do not fight with each other, countries do not go to war against each other, no longer is there carnage and the blood that flows from carnage; all lands are filled with happiness, and everywhere teems with warmth between men. I move throughout the world, I enjoy from atop My throne, I live among the stars. And the angels offer unto Me new songs and new dances. No longer does their own fragility cause tears to run down their faces. No longer do I hear, before Me, the sound of the angels weeping, and no longer does anyone complain of hardship to Me” (“The Twentieth Utterance”).
God reveals the beauty of the kingdom to me, letting me see a glorious life; God, using His words, leads me to walk toward the haven of happiness. Now I’m twenty-six. Among people of my age, some work hard and rush around to support their living, some are toiling for their kids and family. Living in the materialistic world, they all bear a heavy burden, and the cruel reality has worn down their vigour. In contrast, I needn’t endure all these hardships. There is no need for me to pretend to be strong; neither do I worry about the trivial matters of life nor suffer for the pursuit of the so-called happiness. In God’s family, I show what I truly am when getting along with brothers and sisters. Led and guided by God’s words, we, like little kids, are innocent and open, enjoying release and freedom in our spirits. We don’t scheme or struggle against each other; instead, we have patience and tolerance for each other, as well as support each other. Enjoying the supply of God’s living water of life, and accepting the judgment and purification of God’s words, we treat all people, matters and things according to His words, accept His observation in all things, and pursue to live out the likeness of a new man.
In God’s family, I no longer fear being cheated, or worry whether I’ll suffer betrayal. When I’m passive and weak, brothers and sisters patiently communicate God’s will to me, helping me out of the darkness. When I express my corruption, brothers and sisters never blame me; rather, they share their practical experiences and lead me to recognize my own deficiencies and inadequacies. When there is an estrangement among us, we immediatelyand seek God’s will, and then we’ll be open and talk heartily to remove the estrangement. Regardless of whether we are rich or poor, man or woman, young or old, or where we come from, we’re all brothers and sisters, and because our relationships are established on the foundation of God’s love, we are heart to heart and hold together all the time.
Thank God for bringing me to the haven of happiness, and making my life colorful! I deeply appreciate that it’s God who fills my life with sunshine.
By Chen Miao