Just now we read through God’s words in “It Is Very Important to Establish a Proper Relationship With God.” Why have we wanted to fellowship this passage of God’s words three times in a row? This is primarily because this passage is the basis for entry into life, and the foundation for entry into life. Therefore, if God’s elect want to gain truth and life, they must begin from experiencing this passage. When one goes through this passage, what after all does one experience? What does one put into practice? In the opening of the passage that we just read, God says, “one of the most important issues is quieting your heart before God. It is an issue that concerns people’s spiritual life, and the progression of their life.” Do you understand this? Some say, “Is quieting the heart before God truly so important?” These are words that God has spoken, and what God says is the truth. What will be the consequences if someone does not seek the truth in God’s words, does not accept or obey them, does not put them into practice or experience them? The one who suffers loss is that person himself or herself! Is it an unimportant question that there are many people who cannot discern God’s words or understand that God’s words are the truth? If someone believes in God for many years without being able to discern God’s words or understand the truth of God’s words, such a person is certain to be abandoned and eliminated by God and unable to be saved. Can you accept the way I have put this?
At present quite a number of people have begun to practice quieting the heart before God. When they heard God’s words “quieting your heart before God,” everyone felt it was easy to understand, but once they put it into practice they discovered problems: “Why won’t my heart quiet down? I can’t manage to quiet down before God. I can’t quiet down even for a little while.” Once they put quieting down before God into practice they discover it is hard to do, that these words are difficult to experience, that these words are indeed difficult to enter into. What is the problem? Who can see into what is the essence of this problem? Is this enough to show that they have never been quiet before God and that they have never lived before God? If they have never been quiet before God, how could they have lived before God? That doesn’t fit the facts, does it? If it is difficult to enter into keeping quiet before God and very difficult to put it into practice, then is it easy for you to live before God? It is not easy. If you do not live before God, where do you live? Before whom do you live? Can we say that you are someone who lives before people, someone who lives before Satan? So what does being quiet before God have to do with living before God? They are directly related to each other: If you cannot be quiet before God, then you cannot live before God, is that it? What must you have in order to be quiet before God? What must you have before you can be quiet before God? We’ll give an example, such as sons and daughters living before their parents. Many children never live before their parents. They say, “Living in front of my parents is a bore. It’s great to live in the outside world. It’s great to live in front of video game machines. It’s great to live at gambling spots. It’s great to live at amusement parks.” So they don’t live in front of their parents. What does this say? They don’t think about their parents and they don’t care about their parents. They are indifferent to anything about their parents. They don’t have the least interest in anything that their parents care about and love, so they don’t want to live before their parents. Isn’t that so? So what is the problem if someone can’t live before God and can’t be quiet before God? It shows that they do not care about God. So if someone does not have God in his or her heart but still believes in God and wants to attain salvation from God, what is the problem that must first be resolved? “Being quiet before God” is the problem to resolve first. Someone says, “How can I be quiet before God?” Some people say, “Oh, I know. When I was in the religious church I saw those pastors and elders, and also old folks get up early every morning and kneel before God to pray for half an hour or an hour. Is that being quiet before God? When they were praying, some people wept ‘boohoo,’ sobbing out loud. Perhaps that is being quiet before God. I have to pray and weep together with them, and recite God’s words when we pray. That is being quiet before God.” Is what they said correct? Everybody knows it’s wrong. Why isn’t it correct? Whoever can answer this question clearly has the vision, has the light, has the way. Who can clarify this matter? You’re not sure, so I’ll tell you.
When one says his religious prayers, he is not being quiet before God. He is being quiet before a wall, being quiet before tables and chairs. Once he closes his eyes he is just there passing the time by himself, reciting God’s words, talking to himself, talking into thin air. Is that being quiet before God? No. Because he is talking to himself. He may look very quiet kneeling there. His hands are not fidgeting, his head isn’t turning this way and that, while his mouth keeps on praying to God. But he hasn’t opened his heart to God. His heart is closed to God, and it’s only his mouth that keeps on doing the talking. Is that being quiet before God? There’s no point to just keep on talking and making noise. You have to open your heart to God! Once you have opened your heart to God, spoken to God about what is in your heart, exposed what is in your heart, only then will you be moved by the Holy Spirit and be in the presence of God. That is being quiet before God. You must be moved by the Holy Spirit, be in the presence of the Holy Spirit, give your heart to God, contact God with your heart, and speak to God with your heart. These are being quiet before God. If someone just kneels down, their mouth speaking, it may seem they are talking with God, but actually they have not opened their heart to God, and what they say is not what is in their heart, just what they think of saying, they are just talking to themselves, or reciting some passages of scripture, this is not being quiet before God. Because they are without the work of the Holy Spirit and are not moved by the Holy Spirit, they are merely talking to themselves. To talk to oneself, praying to some vague God, praying into the thin air, without the work of the Holy Spirit: this is wishful thinking, and God does not acknowledge it! Is this so? Because this religious prayer is without the work of the Holy Spirit, without the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit, praying for many years will bring no results. When one finishes such a prayer, stands up, and goes home, he will turn back into a wolf, satanic nature will appear once again, and he will do as he pleases, without the least fear of God, and without the least appearance of godliness. Is that being quiet before God? To be genuinely quiet before God is to expose one’s heart to God, to say what is in one’s heart, to tell Him the troubles in one’s own heart, honestly pray to God, reflect on oneself before God, understand oneself before God, and be moved by the Holy Spirit, causing genuine remorse and self-reproach. Weeping such as this, prayer such as this, and speaking what is in one’s heart to God in these ways are the results of being quiet before God, and are the genuine accomplishments of being quiet before God. If in his prayer one is truly quiet before God then each time he can have some gain, he can understand some truth, can gain some enlightenment in God’s words, and can find paths to practice. Beyond these, he can have some understanding, especially about the revealing of his own corruption. If each time he is quiet before God he has some results in all these areas, that demonstrates that his heart is truly quiet before God. You need to understand this. Having no results from prayers means that one is not being quiet before God but quiet in a church, quiet in material things. Whenever people do not open their hearts to God when they pray, whenever their hearts have not genuinely pled, whenever their hearts do not seek the truth from God, or they do not give their hearts to God to talk to Him heart to heart, these are expressions of not being quiet before God.
By reason when I say this everyone understands. Yet so many people say, “No matter how we pray to God we cannot be quiet before God. What is the problem? We want to attain being quiet before God now, so is there a way to do that?” You see, there are some religious prayers. For example, when a believer realizes his child does not obey him, he closes his eyes and prays, “Lord, I entrust this child to You to discipline him. I cannot discipline him. He does not obey me. Lord, You are almighty. I give the child to You. I pray in the name of the Lord Jesus. Amen.” And that’s the end of it. Is that being quiet before God? In his prayer he takes no responsibility; he does not search for truth before God, but turns the child over to the Lord with no concern for whether the Lord has heard him. Without exposing his heart to the Lord or saying, “Raising a child is too difficult. Without the truth I cannot teach the child, and the child won’t obey me! This child was born in sin, and has inherited a sinful nature, even more rebellious than me. Lord, how can I teach him?” Say something intimate! You can say: “Lord, humans are created by You. You gave me this child, but I do not have the strength to teach him. Truly I see now that I don’t have the reality of the truth, nor am I what should be as a human, and I am not qualified and have no way to teach the child. This child is too disobedient. Perhaps I was the same when I was young. So the child is not all to blame, for I also am just as bad. Now I believe in the Lord but have not listened to the words of the Lord.” Say something human like this! Once God observes this, “Indeed, your greatest problem truly is this difficulty. It weighs on you so that you can hardly breathe. It has exhausted you these past several days, and you look in bad shape. These are words from your heart.” You say to God, weeping as you pray, that you can’t teach the child, that you have no reality of the truth and cannot live before God to do something for God, that you are more of a child than the child and not even as good as the child. “The child is young, but even though I have grown up I do not listen to the words of the Lord.” Once you have offered fellowship up to this point, you feel so remorseful that you begin to weep. Does praying like this have some of the meaning of being quiet before God? So what does being quiet before God mean? Someone says you must say what is in your heart when you speak. Is this saying what is in the heart? That is just what it is. Say what is in your heart when you have actual difficulty, and when you pray to God it will be easy to be quiet before God. If you have nothing to say from your heart when you go before God, then how can you be quiet before God? If there is nothing on your mind and in your heart you do not need God, but then still want to be quiet before God, is that easy? It’s like one person goes up to another person with nothing particular in mind, and the other person says, “What’s on your mind?” “Oh, uh, nothing much, just wanted to chat.” “Well, go ahead. What do you want to chat about?” “Actually, there’s nothing in particular, just wanted to chat, I don’t know about what.” “So what is on your mind after all?” “Just wanted to talk with you.” “So what do you want to talk about?” “I couldn’t think of anything, but then I still wanted to talk with you.” What nonsense. What sort of person is this? It’s someone who doesn’t make any sense, doesn’t have the sense of a normal person, right?