17. Gossip Is a “Fearful” Thing
Jiyuan City, Henan Province
Whenever I remember that in those gloomy days, I was fooled and deceived by satan and therefore dared not accept God’s new work, I even more loathe and abhor satan and all the schemes it employed.
At that time, my wife and I were both key co-workers of the Praise Church. In the meetings, we often heard our leader say, “People of ‘the Eastern Lightning’ are extremely vicious and full of wiles. They have a connection with the underworld. Once they fasten on you, if you don’t accept, they will harm you in secret. Several people will follow you secretly, suddenly bring you to the ground, and then break your legs with steel bars and run away. In other places there are many people whose ears have been cut off or eyes have been gouged out by them. Or they will buy you off with money, giving you eight or ten thousand yuan. Or they will give you whatever you lack. What’s more infuriating is that they are promiscuous, licentious and corrupt….” These appalling words scared us so much that we dared not go out, both feeling fear and detestation of “the Eastern Lightning.” During that period, I also served as satan’s accomplice as others did. However, I, who was guilty of the most heinous sin, received the Almighty God’s salvation and got the invaluable word that God brought to mankind in the end time—The Word Appears in the Flesh. At the same time, I saw the joy and happiness of the brothers and sisters who lived in the light. How enviable! Under the care of God’s love, they were full of cheers and laughter, without barrier or fleshly entanglement. They were leading a life on earth as if in heaven. For the sake of their common goal, they strived to the utmost with their hearts linked and their hands joined, they feared no hardship or tiredness, and they bore misunderstandings and humiliations, never losing heart or getting disappointed. Here, I saw that the group of people led by the Almighty God were like the good soldiers of the kingdom. Although they had manifestations of corruptions, they could mutually know themselves. So, all the rumors that we had heard before collapsed by themselves before the facts. What’s more, it is stipulated explicitly in Article 4 of God’s administrative decrees: “Man has corrupt nature and even more has emotions. So, in serving in coordination, all are forbidden to coordinate with the opposite sex alone. If they are discovered to do so, they shall be expelled, no matter who they are.” As to cutting off people’s noses or ears or gouging out people’s eyes, it was even more a sheer fabrication out of nothing. Then I understood that those rumors were the “masterpieces” of some people with ulterior motives (satan’s schemes). Their intention was to wreck God’s work and blind people’s eyes. They attempted to possess the brothers and sisters for their own enjoyment and forever deprive them of the opportunity to accept the true way. Thinking of these, I could not help shivering all over. What a close thing! I had almost been ruined at their hands! Thus I thanked God even more for his tremendously great salvation. However, satan vainly tried to war against God to the end. It continued its deathbed struggle, using vile means on us and still playing dirty tricks to attack us. Yet little did it know that God’s wisdom is based on its schemes.
After the news that my wife and I had accepted God’s end-time work spread over the Praise Church, it created a big stir and angered many senior and junior leaders. They felt restless about it. To drag us back from God’s hand, they employed all possible means, soft and hard, to disturb us, and they also said many blasphemous words. Although they had used all their schemes, they still did not succeed. Thank God! Under the shining of God’s light we saw through their lies. Finally, at their wits’ end, they played their final trump card: They spread the rumor in the churches that we were bought off with 15,000 yuan and joined “the Eastern Lightning,” and they told everyone to keep a strict guard and reject us resolutely. As the person concerned, I was struck dumb by those words and was lost in a fog, feeling very indignant. I pondered the origin of that rumor. Oh! Actually they made use of this thing: Before I accepted God’s new work, I had taken out a loan of 15,000 yuan to buy a car. My wife mentioned that in a casual conversation with a sister. Seeing that we were short of money at the time, the sister offered to lend us some money for now so that we could repay the loan earlier and therefore avoid paying the interest. I thought it was not proper, and besides, we did not want to put a burden on her. After thinking it over, we decided to decline her kindness. Because I was very busy and it was a long way to that sister’s home, I asked a brother of my former denomination to take my wife there by bike to tell her our decision. Unexpectedly, after the news that we had accepted God’s new work was spread, the above scene occurred. And the rumor spread further and further and became more and more absurd. They made groundless accusations, saying that we loved money and were bought off with 15,000 yuan and joined “the Eastern Lightning.” They did so to slander God’s work and deceive those brothers and sisters who had not come before the Almighty God. The viciousness of their intention was as clear as daylight! Just when they exerted themselves to make up rumors to stir up people, the Almighty God’s hand of punishing the wicked came upon a person of our village who was involved in making up the lies and who took the lead in resisting God. One day in early April 2003, this person suddenly fell down in a latrine and never got up again.
The war in the spiritual realm became more and more intense. Within a short period of time, rumors about us flew everywhere. Satan was still unwilling to give up. When one scheme failed, it made another. They said that I was always ashamed to lift up my head when coming across people, and must have done something disgraceful. They also said that my wife alternated between laughter and tears, and had gone insane…. Indeed, the gossip is a fearful thing! Last June, my wife came down with heatstroke because the weather was hot. After a doctor’s treatment, she got much better. To enable her to perform her duty as soon as possible, I went to the doctor again to get medicine. However, the doctor said, “I’ve heard that your wife is vomiting and passing blood. Don’t buy medicines here. Go to a big hospital quickly!” I was totally confused and got so angry that I kept asking him who said that. But then I thought, “Let it be. As long as we have a clear conscience, it doesn’t matter.” Later, for performing duty, my wife was often away from home. Then, they found one more thing to seize on. Immediately such intriguing stories as “my wife had been taken away by a man” and “she had disappeared” went around and spread to every family of our village. Hearing those things, my wife and I felt that we had reached the limit of our patience. Indeed, if they were out to condemn us, they could always trump up a charge! However, just when we found it difficult to go forward even one step, God’s revelation and guidance made us understand and clearly see that behind this matter was precisely a war in the spiritual realm. Satan was just using those vile and shameless means to keep those ignorant brothers and sisters firmly in its hand. At that time, I thought of that song: “I have given my heart to you, loving none but you…. I love you like a lily, unswerving in wind or rain. I suffer for loving you, never thinking about tomorrow. Gale or storm, I’m willing to experience it. I will endure all griefs and sorrows, and give you all my love and affection. Even if sufferings drown me, and even if rejections besiege me, I will never complain or regret; I have given my all to you. …” Immediately, I felt comforted and relieved. From then on, we were no longer angry at the rumors they made up maliciously and finally transcended satan’s power of darkness.
Thank God that his love melted our hearts. Thank God that his word became our support. Thank God that he inspired, comforted, and kept us so that we got through those days and nights. Here, how we hope that all the brothers and sisters who are fooled and deceived by the lies can see clearly from our experience satan’s true face of afflicting people and see through its intrigues and schemes! Dear brothers and sisters, do remember! Do remember! Never ever believe the slanders again. Otherwise, you will ruin yourself!
Return quickly! It is because the Almighty God Himself has already come, and his glory has lighted up the whole universe!