29. Experiencing the Tribulations, I Was Accompanied by God’s Love
Wang Yu Henan Province
My name is Wang Yu. I’m 76 years old. In 1978, I believed in the Lord Jesus because of illness. I received much grace during my believing. Because of that, I was very zealous in working for the Lord, giving messages and preaching the gospel everywhere and also hosting the brothers and sisters. Very soon, the believers in our church increased to over 2000. Then, the persecution of the CCP government also came. In order to stop me from believing in God and preaching the gospel, the policemen searched my house many times. Each time, they would take away anything that was worth some money and could be moved at my home, and they even unscrewed the light bulbs and took them away. Moreover, I was arrested and imprisoned by the Public Security Bureau a dozen times. In 1996, I accepted Almighty God’s end-time work. Two years later, I experienced more frenzied arrest and persecution of the CCP government. Although having undergone a great many afflictions, I felt God’s salvation and love for me.
At past 2 a.m. one day in May 1998, I was woken up by a violent knocking. I couldn’t help feeling nervous, thinking: It must be the police! There are five brothers and sisters who came from other places to preach the gospel staying at my home. What should I do to protect them? I got into a panic. Before I went to open the door, the evil policemen kicked it open with a “bam.” The Chief of the Political Protection Section of the Public Security Bureau, holding a gun, fiercely rushed in with a dozen of evil policemen who carried electric batons. One of the evil policemen kicked me violently as soon as he came in, and shouted abuses at me, “Shit! How dare you still believe in God after having been arrested so many times! I’ll reduce your family to poverty and ruin.” That gang of evil policemen shouted loudly in the house, “We’re the police. Get up quickly!” Before the brothers and sisters got dressed, they forcibly handcuffed the six of us in twos and searched us, and they also snatched the ring off my finger. Then they rummaged through boxes and chests in the house. Even the vat that held the flour was stirred so that the flour was scattered all over the ground, and other things were thrown everywhere. In all, they confiscated 11 recorders, a TV set, an electric fan, a typewriter, and more than 200 books of God’s word. They also pried open my son’s drawer and took away his wages of over 1000 yuan which was just paid. When they were about to take us to the police station, my son came back from work. When he saw his wages missing, he ran out to ask the evil policemen for the money. The evil policemen played a trick, saying, “We’ll go back and check it out. If it’s your money, we’ll return it to you.” However, they came to arrest my son on the charge of “disrupting public service” that night. Fortunately my son went out to escape it beforehand; otherwise, he would also have been arrested.
After the evil policemen took the confiscated books and things to the police station and unloaded them, they escorted the six of us to the County Public Security Bureau that night and locked us up separately there. In the cell, my heart couldn’t quiet down for a long time. I thought back to the scene of my being arrested in 1987. At that time, I was beaten and abused by the evil policemen and was nearly tortured to death. I also witnessed that a young man in his twenties was beaten to death by the evil policemen within two hours. A woman went back from the interrogation and said that she was raped by two evil policemen. The evil policemen also forced people to be seated on the torture-rack, burned them with searing-iron, and shocked their tongue with the electric baton so that it festered, and even shocked it until its thin blood became dry, and so on. They used all kinds of base and malicious means to torture men. Through the dozen times of arrests, I saw with my own eyes and personally experienced that these wicked and merciless devils could do anything lawless. Now I entered the “gate of hell” again, and the evil policemen said that since I came here, I would be “skinned.” Thinking of that, I felt very anxious and afraid: Today, they have searched out so many things in my home and arrested several brothers and sisters. The devils won’t let me off easily. Thus, I prayed to God in my heart, “O God! Today we fall into the hands of the devils out of your permission. These devils are all wild wolves without any humanity, so I’m very weak within. May you give me courage and wisdom and the proper words to say. I’m willing to stand testimony for you. I’ll never be a Judas and betray you! Moreover, I beseech you to keep the arrested brothers and sisters so that they can all stand firm in this environment! O God! You are the great King of the universe. All matters and all things are under your sovereignty and arrangement. I believe that you will surely lead us to overcome satan’s influence of darkness as long as we truly rely on you!” In prayer, God inspired me to remember his words, “Now the transcendent life of Christ has appeared. There is nothing you should fear. Satans are under our feet, and their end is not so distant. … In any circumstance, you should be faithful to me and go forward bravely. I am your solid Rock. Rely on me!” (from “The Tenth Piece of Word” in The Word Appears in the Flesh) God’s words gave me great faith: Yes! God is almighty. Satan is forever the loser in God’s hand. Without God’s permission, it can do nothing to me. I have been arrested by the CCP government a dozen times since I believed in God. Haven’t I overcome them under God’s keeping time after time? I also thought of the prophet Daniel and his three friends. Because they held on to Jehovah’s name and worshiped Jehovah, they were framed by the wicked and were thrown into the lion’s den and the burning fiery furnace. However, because of God’s keeping, they came out safe and sound. I apprehended God’s authority and great power, and then my timidity disappeared immediately and I was full of strength all over: No matter how satan persecutes and afflicts me, I fear nothing with God as my strong rear guard. I’m willing to cooperate with God by faith and bear testimony for God before satan.
The next morning, the evil policemen began to interrogate me. The evil policeman who had interrogated me many times before stared at me and struck the table, roaring, “It’s still you old woman. Today you fall into my hands again. If you still don’t confess honestly this time, I’ll let you suffer enough! Speak quickly! Where do those people who stayed at your home come from? Who is the church leader? Where did you get the books? Whom does the typewriter belong to?” At that time, I got nervous in spite of myself, because that evil policeman was so ferocious and savage that he even tried to fix men to death. I timidly kept silent with my head down and prayed to God inwardly to keep my heart. Seeing that I said nothing, the evil policeman hurled abuses at me, “You damned old woman. You’re really a dead mouse that feels no cold!” While cursing, he rushed toward me and swiftly kicked me on the heart. I was thrown several meters away and then heavily fell flat on my back, which made me so painful that I could hardly breathe. The devil still didn’t let me off. He rushed at me again, seized my collar, and dragged me up from the ground, saying, “Old woman! Today I’ll make you neither die nor live but suffer alive!” Saying this, he brought an electric baton and wanted to jab me. Seeing the electric baton giving off a blue light, I was very afraid, so I kept praying to God in my heart. Then God’s words resounded in my ears, “You should endure everything, be willing to give up everything for me and follow me with all your might, and pay all the price. This is the time to test you. Can you offer up your faithfulness? Can you follow me to the end faithfully? Remove your fear. With me as your rear guard, who can block the way? Remember! Remember! In everything there is my good purpose, and it is I who search in it. Can you walk in my word in your every word and deed? When fiery tests come, will you bow your knees and shout or flinch and be unable to go forward?” (from “The Tenth Piece of Word” in The Word Appears in the Flesh) God’s words made me strong and courageous and also made me know God’s will: Today I encounter this fiery trial, and it is just the time when God tests me. The devils torture my flesh in order to make me betray God, but God wants me to offer up my faithfulness and love to him at this time. God has an expectation of me. I can’t care for my flesh and yield to satan’s forces. I’ll stand on God’s side firmly and bear a good testimony for God. The evil policeman jabbed me wildly with the electric baton. The powerful electricity flowed through my whole body. My whole body twitched and huddled up. While jabbing me, he roared, “Speak quickly! If you still don’t confess, I’ll shock you to death!” I clenched my teeth and still said nothing. The evil policeman was mad with anger. At that time, I bitterly hated that gang of frenzied devils. Man is created by God, and it is right and proper for man to believe in and worship God. However, the CCP devil resists God and brutally persecutes the followers of God. They even didn’t let me a 60-year-old woman off and tried to fix me to death! The more the devil afflicted me, the more bitter hatred I had for it. Thus I swore in my heart: Even if I have to die, I’ll stand testimony for God and never be a betrayer for an ignoble existence to be ridiculed by satan. The evil policemen got tired from beating and cursing, and found that I still said nothing, so they could only drag me back to the interrogation room.
Lying on the ground, I couldn’t move at all, and I ached unbearably all over. At that time, a head of the evil policemen took the opportunity to coax me, “You’re old. What do you suffer all this for? As long as you confess honestly, telling us who sent you the stuff and where he lives, we’ll let you go home.” God inspired me to see through satan’s scheme, and I still didn’t say anything. Seeing me keep silent, he changed his countenance at once and threatened me, “We’re lenient to those who confess and harsh to those who resist. If you don’t tell, you’ll be sentenced to twelve years! So you can never go out!” When I heard that they would sentence me to twelve years, my head seemed to burst open with “buzzing.” I thought: I have a poor health. Not to mention twelve years, I can’t even hold on for one year and will die in the prison. Thinking that I would spend the rest of my life in the dark prison, I felt very sorrowful in my heart. Leaving the church life and losing the supply of God’s word, can I hold on? In perplexity, I prayed to God silently. Suddenly God inspired me to remember his words, “Everything in the whole universe, without exception, is decided by me. Is there anything that is not in my hand?” (from “The First Piece of Word” of God’s Utterance to the Entire Universe in The Word Appears in the Flesh) Right! Man’s destiny is in God’s hand. All matters and all things are under God’s sovereignty and arrangement and are decided by God without exception. If God doesn’t permit me to be imprisoned, it won’t count no matter what the evil policemen say. If God permits me to be imprisoned, I’ll obey and make no complaint. Peter could obey God’s chastisement and judgment and tribulation and refining, had no choice of his own, and committed himself completely into God’s hand and submitted to God’s manipulation. At last, he was crucified upside down for God and obeyed unto death, thus becoming a model of loving God. Today I’ll imitate Peter, committing myself to God. Even if I have to rot in prison, I’ll obey God. In the end, the evil policemen sent me to the detention house on the charge of “believing in a cult.”
When I entered the detention house, I seemed to enter hell on earth. In the cell, there was no window or light. Over 20 prisoners lived in a cell a dozen square meters, where we ate, drank, defecated, and urinated. There were small water-holes everywhere on the ground. Only some pieces of straw mats were scattered around, and there were even no bedclothes. The prisoners just slept on the ground with small water-holes. A commode was put in the corner, and the mosquitoes and flies flew everywhere. It was so stinking and suffocating that the prisoners shoved to lean over a little hole within a foot in the iron door to get some fresh air. Because the temperature was very high in summer and it was crowded in the cell, the prisoners were usually naked with nothing on. They often fought over some trifles, and dirty words could often be heard. What we ate every day was half cooked thin flour soup and thin noodles and vegetables boiled in water without salt or oil. When we finished eating, we could see that the bottom of the bowl was covered with dirt. All of us had diarrhea. One morning, when we were let outside and had roll call, I miscounted carelessly. Hearing that, the evil policeman became furious, cursing, “Look at your stupid appearance. You actually believe in God!” After that, he took a leather shoe and slapped my face ten times in succession. My face became purple-black. The over ten prisoners in my cell were all involved because of me and everyone was slapped ten times. Their faces became purple-black, and they all covered their face and cried. Later, the evil policemen asked me to wash their uniforms and shirts and unpick and wash their quilts every day. A head of the evil policemen ran a hotel, and he brought all the unpicked things and had me wash them. After washing them, I had to sew them up stitch by stitch. After a day’s work, I was so tired that I felt worn out and ached unbearably all over. A few days later, my hands were swollen. Sometimes when I really couldn’t hold on and had a little break, the evil policemen hurled abuses at me. I had no choice but to go on with the work in tears. When I rested at night, I was sleepy and tired and wanted to sleep, but I couldn’t sleep well. My arms were sore and painful, my waist couldn’t straighten up from pain, and my legs and feet went numb. Even now, my arms can only be lifted up at a 45 degree angle and can’t be brought to shoulder height. As the work was heavy and I didn’t have enough to eat, I got severe gastrointestinal problems and often had diarrhea. Besides, the wounds I got from the evil policemen’s beating didn’t heal; my health was declining, and later I had a low-grade fever for a long time, but the prison guards didn’t allow me to have treatment. I couldn’t but feel somewhat weak and thought: I’m so old. If I’m continuously tortured like this, I’ll die here one day. At that time, desolation and helplessness came over me. In misery, I prayed to God, “O God! I’m very weak now and can’t touch your will. O God! May you lead me so that I can stand testimony to satisfy you in such an environment.” I called out to God in my heart again and again. Unknowingly, God inspired me to remember a hymn of God’s word, and I sang it in a low voice, “God is incarnated this time to do the work he has not finished, to judge and end this age, to save men from the sea of misery, to thoroughly conquer them, and to transform their life disposition. For mankind to break free from the afflicting and pitch-dark force of darkness and for the sake of the work of mankind ah, God has had so many sleepless nights ah. He comes to the lowest place from the highest place and lives in hell on earth and spends days with men ah. He never complains about the miserableness of the world ah, and never makes exacting demands of men, but endures great humiliation doing his own work. For the whole mankind to enjoy rest earlier, he endures humiliation and swallows injustice to come to earth, personally coming into the tiger’s den to save mankind.” (from “The Practical God Is Saving Men in Obscurity” in Follow the Lamb and Sing New Songs) As I sang it, my tears kept rolling down. I thought: God is so supreme and great, but he humbled himself and was incarnated twice. In order to save mankind, he has endured infinite sufferings and humiliations. He not only suffers the resistance and condemnation of the corrupt mankind, but also suffers the hunting and persecution of the CCP devil. God is innocent, and he suffers for mankind’s future pleasant life. God has endured too many sufferings and too great humiliations, but he has never complained or poured out to anybody. The suffering I undergo today is God’s blessing coming upon me, and it is all for me to see through the evil substance of the devil and thus betray satan and break away from satan’s influence of darkness and be saved by God. However, I don’t understand God’s thoughtful kind intention, and when suffering a little, I become passive and weak. Compared with God’s love, I’m really too selfish. So, I made a firm resolution: No matter how hard and difficult it is, I’ll satisfy God and no longer grieve God, and I’ll pledge my life to stand testimony for God! When I was obedient, I saw God’s deed. After I was imprisoned by the police, God raised up my unbelieving younger sister to pay a fine of 16,000 yuan and more than 1,000 yuan for my food expense, and then I was released.
Through over three months of affliction in prison, although my flesh underwent all kinds of tortures, I saw clearly the true face of the CCP government, the gang of devils resisting God. Arrested by the CCP government many times, I had some practical knowledge of God’s work, God’s almightiness and wisdom, and God’s love. I saw that God was keeping and caring for me all the time and never left me for a single moment. When I felt extremely miserable from the devils’ various tortures, it was God’s words that led me to overcome satan’s torment and temptation time and again, making me have the faith and courage to transcend the influence of darkness. When I was weak and helpless, it was God’s words that inspired and guided me in time, became my real support, and accompanied me to pass through those difficult days and nights. Experiencing such persecution and tribulation, I gained the wealth of life I could never acquire in an easy environment. Therefore, my resolution to believe in God became firmer. No matter how adverse the environment will be in the future, I’ll pursue the truth and life and turn my heart to God, because God is the Creator and is my only redemption.