After that, though I prayed to God every day and asked Him to keep my heart and let me stay away from games, I still couldn’t betray my flesh and indulged in games as before. In a meeting, a sister fellowshiped: Every time when we practice the truth and betray our flesh, actually, it is a battle. Satan makes us satisfy it, butmoves us within. At this moment, it is up to us whether we follow our flesh or satisfy God. Betraying our flesh is a manifestation of satisfying God. If we can practically betray our flesh, Satan will be shamed, and God’s heart will be satisfied. Thinking that I needed to practically betray my flesh to drop games, I felt this process must be a torment. Then I felt a little weak and didn’t want to suffer.
My sister read my condition, so after the meeting, she found a passage of God’s word for me, “God does not do supernatural things; in people’s conceptions, God is almighty, and everything is done by God—with the result that people wait passively, do not read the words of God or pray, and merely await the touch of the Holy Spirit. Those with a correct understanding, however, believe this: God’s actions can only go as far as my cooperation, and the effect that God’s work has in me depends on how I cooperate. When God speaks, I should do all I can to seek and strive toward God’s words; this is what I should achieve.” After reading God’s word, I was particularly excited, feeling that God was talking with me face to face. Yes. God is practical. Wasn’t God’s word revealing my views? I just said with my mouth but didn’t cooperate practically. If I want to get rid of the bondage of games soon, I must practice God’s word and betray my flesh. Then, I prayed to God, saying that I would betray my flesh practically and never play games.
After some days, my strength of satisfying God disappeared; the desire of playing games began to stir and made me feel uncomfortable all over. But I thought: God’s word has been said so clearly and I have prayed to God and made my resolution. If I continue playing, will I hurt God’s heart? Let it go. I’d better delete it and thus I will never want to play…. Yet when I thought it was my precious painstaking work, I couldn’t bear to delete it and felt stirred in my heart. So I told my thoughts to my sister, and then she found a passage of God’s word for me, “Above all, you must have a plan for your daily life, for what you need to do and how to do it every day of the week, what things to do and how to do them during every time period of every day; make a schedule that tells you at what time to rest, what time to do your duties, what time to take care of some personal business, what time to get up in the morning and what you do after you get up. If your work is not normally busy when you get up in the morning and if time is not too pressing, shouldn’t you do your spiritual devotions? This is the number one major issue after you open your eyes. If there is no regularity to your spiritual life then your faith will not be able to progress. Above all, your life must have rules. The first matter of the day is spiritual devotions and your spiritual devotions every day must be guaranteed; pray-read the words of God, pray in silence, sing hymns, contemplate God’s words, eat and drink the words of God more, find people who understand to fellowship with, find brothers and sisters to fellowship with, seek to resolve your difficulties, examine what corrupt dispositions you have revealed during this time, examine the things you’ve done that do not conform with God’s will, the things that have gone against the truth and the things that have no humanity and no morality. You must sum up each and every period of time, write down in your notepad. In this way, your heart will unknowingly become quiet before God and you will come to like the life of believing in God. You will then have no great interest in those things outside concerned with eating, playing or trends, you will see those things less and less frequently, and they will have less and less ability to attract you and lure you.”
That’s right. I want to gain the truth, and also want to satisfy my flesh; how can there be such a good thing? If I always don’t give up playing games, won’t my belief in God be in vain? Though dropping games surely is a hard process, I can take some methods to overcome my flesh. Now God’s word has pointed out a way of practice to me. If I want to satisfy God and betray my flesh, I should first have a clear schedule to regulate my hours of every day, and I also need my sister to supervise me. Owing to my poor capability for self-restraint, I can’t just rely on myself and have to take some man-made methods. In the following days, as long as I had free time, I would watch gospel movies of The Church of Almighty God and fellowship God’s word together with my sister. After practicing a period of time, I surprisingly found I didn’t have to play games and that games didn’t have that much attraction for me. Sometimes I was able to not play all day and I also began to reject the warm invitations of my classmates. In this way, I had more and more strength to practice the truth. Seeing my change, my sister also felt happy for me.
However, good time didn’t last long. Some days later, my desire of playing games emerged again; especially when I had nothing to do, the desire became stronger and stronger, as if two little persons were fighting against each other. But at the thought of God’s word, I shrunk back. Just like this, I struggled back and forth…. When I was faced with choices and struggled fiercely, one idea suddenly arose in my mind—I could download another game! This idea made me have the direction to go forward. I thought: Before, I got addicted to games, it was because I had a poor capability for self-restraint. Now, I will never indulge in it anymore; I just play it when I am bored, so it won’t affect me. After some struggles, the restless feeling in my heart disappeared the very moment I played games again.
In the evening, when I did the dishes, because I was thinking about the new game, a bowl accidentally slipped from my hands and broke into pieces. And when picking up the pieces, I cut my finger on one sharp piece. My sister instantly came up and asked me: “What were you thinking while you did the dishes? How come you look so distracted? What’s up?” Hearing my sister asked me like this, I came to realize: I was lost in the game in a whole day. This little accident makes me awaken from dream. I just played for a day, but my heart has been occupied by the game. I can’t follow Satan to satisfy my flesh anymore. Later on, I saw God’s word says, “Before someone has gained the truth, their stature is too immature and these things outside are able to hook them very easily, and their hearts find it difficult to quiet down, their hearts are not under their own control. If you are unable to gain the truth, your heart is not your own; whose is it then? It’s being controlled by Satan, not by you. Therefore, you must seek for the truth without reserve. The more you practice the more you gain, and the more you gain the more you understand, and the more stature you will have to resist these seductions, environments and all manner of heresies and falsehoods from the outside. When you can discern these things and see through them, then you can resist them; if you cannot discern them or see through them, then you will be unable to resist them. Therefore, when your stature is immature, you must take great pains to exercise restraint and not be debauched with regard to many things, you must cooperate, have resolution. You must learn to restrain yourself, come often before God, let God guide you and discipline you, accept God’s disciplining, accept God’s chastening, and obey from your heart. You will slowly come to know that everything God does is good, that God’s hand has never left you, that God is beside you and, in this way, you will perceive more and more the true existence of God and your heart will become more and more true and ever sturdier in its belief in God.” God’s word let me know: Before gaining the truth, I am still in the danger of being captured by Satan at any time. Only through coming before God to pray and asking God to give me strength can I overcome the temptation of Satan. I can’t forgive myself or satisfy my flesh anymore, in which case I will leave Satan the chance that it can make use of. As the saying goes, “The fly does not bite the seamless egg.” Afterward, when I wanted to play games, I would come before God and pray to Him, and ask Him to keep my heart from the temptations of Satan. And meanwhile, by frequently reading God’s word, I knew some truths and was able to discern, forsake, and betray the wrong thoughts according to God’s word when they occurred in my mind. Thank be to God. Under the guidance of God, I gradually broke my internet addiction, and did my duty in the church.
Thank God! Had it not been for God’s mercy and salvation, I would still deeply sink in Satan’s prison, be gravely afflicted and corrupted into a base and ghost-like person, and be devoured by Satan in the end. It is God’s word that points out to me the right life direction and leads me to walk the right way of human life. Thanks and praise be to God!
Part One: Who Was It That Changed Me—A Young Addict? (I)
By Mary, United States