After I left home to perform my duty, whenever I came into contact with the brothers and sisters who performed their duties actively, I was encouraged by their zeal in spending themselves for God, and my strength to “love God” was stirred up accordingly. But soon afterward, that strength decreased unknowingly. At first I thought that this was because I followed God for a short time. A few years passed in a flash, but my strength to pursue to love God still went up and down and could never be normal. Because of this, I was very perplexed in my heart.
One day, I read God’s words: “A true love for God is from man’s innermost being, and is a love man has on the basis that he has knowledge of God. …because he has no knowledge of God. In this case, even though he has a little love, it is not spontaneous and is not true, because the love derived from man’s flesh is emotional, is not rooted in a true knowledge, is only a temporary excitement, and cannot produce a lasting adoration. Without the knowledge of God, man can only love God according to his own preferences and according to his own notions. Such love cannot be called spontaneous love or true love.” “People love God not because of others’ prompting or because of sudden emotional impulse. Rather, because they have seen God’s lovely elements, have seen that God is worthy of man’s love in so many aspects, and have seen God’s salvation, God’s wisdom, and God’s wonderful deeds, they utter true praises to God, have a true thirst for God, and are stirred up to have a passion that they cannot live if they cannot gain God.”
After reading these words, I realized that a true love for God is based on the knowledge of God. Only through practically experiencing God’s work and word can one gain a true knowledge of God and discover more of God’s loveliness, thereby having a true love for God. Only such a love is true and lasting. Peter became a true lover of God simply because he gained a true knowledge of God in experiencing God’s work and word. He found that God had so many things for man to love and was so worthy of man’s love, so he had an increasingly true love for God, and eventually could obey God unto death and love God to the utmost.
I reflected upon the several years of my following God. Though in name I was pursuing to love God and satisfy God, yet I did not pay attention to God’s work and word in my daily life, nor did I try to discover God’s loveliness and know God’s nature and substance in my experience. Rather, I only pursued to love God according to my own notions and preferences, because of the influence of my environment and the sudden impulse of my emotion. When I saw the brothers and sisters actively spending themselves for God, my strength to pursue to love God was stirred up. However, when I came into contact with the passive, weak brothers and sisters, my strength to pursue to love God decreased in spite of myself. When everything went smoothly or was to my liking, I could pursue to love God. But once I suffered a little frustration, I became passive and entirely forgot the pursuit of loving God and satisfying God. This shows that my love for God is completely influenced by my mood and by the surrounding people, matters, and things, and is not based on a true knowledge of God. Such a love has no foundation, so how can it last long? And how can it be called a true love? If I always pursue to love God in this way, how can I enter into the state of loving God normally?
Thank God for his inspiration. It has made me understand that a true love for God is based on the knowledge of God; only when one has a true knowledge of God can he have a true love for God from the bottom of his heart. At the same time, it has made me know my lack and deficiency and find the way to practice and enter in. In future, I will throw myself into God’s work body and heart, experience God’s work and word practically, and pursue to gain a true knowledge of God. No matter how long it may take and how much price I have to pay, if I can have a true love for God in the end, I will perseveringly pursue and enter in according to this right way.
Linyi City, Shandong Province