After I accepted God’s new work, I doctrinally knew that God’s word is my lifeblood and I have to eat and drink it every day, but I had never had the sense to treasure God’s word. Not until a persecution arose did I realize that it was so foolish of me not to treasure God’s word. Even more, I tasted the pain of having no God’s word.
In the summer of 2004, the circumstances in our area were very adverse. God’s family informed us that we should hide our books and CDs in a safe place but we must persist in eating and drinking God’s word. In the face of the sudden persecution, I was scared out of my wits. I only remembered half of the word—hide the books and CDs in a safe place, but I did not keep some at home for myself to eat and drink.
As the days went by, somehow I always felt weak all over and had no strength to follow God. Besides, I became more and more afraid of the persecution. When I held a meeting in the church, I could not keep my heart quiet when I heard any sound outside, I was afraid that we would be heard when singing hymns, and I felt restrained when fellowshipping about God’s word. In each meeting, I only wished to end the meeting and leave there earlier. As a result, most of the meetings were not enjoyable and the majority of the brothers and sisters in the church lived in a passive and timid state. Especially when I walked in the street, I was all the more afraid of being tailed. After I got home, I wanted to have my spiritual devotions but had no God’s word in hand; I wanted to go for it but hated to take the trouble. So I lived in fear every day. Although I had a belief—behind persecution there was God’s good purpose, which was to test our faith and love, nevertheless, I felt darker and darker within and my relationship with God became more and more distant, and I even did not know what to say to God when praying.
I did not wake up until one day I read a passage of God’s word in a sister’s home. God’s word says: “…you should eat and drink God’s word at all times, busy or free, in suitable circumstances or not, and in trials or not. In a word, God’s word is the foundation of man’s existence. No one should leave God’s word. All should eat God’s words as their three meals. Is it so simple a thing to be perfected and to be gained by God?”
After reading this passage, I came to understand that I was passive and weak and timid and had no strength to follow because I had not eaten and drunk God’s word for a long time and thus had become too distant from God. Though outwardly I ran around performing my duty, I was supporting myself only by my willpower, without any words of God or vision within. Thus, I became unclear about God’s work, had no knowledge of God’s almightiness, and had no place for God in my heart, always living in timidity and fear. Although I doctrinally knew that there was God’s good purpose in the coming of the persecution, I did not understand what God’s good purpose was, what God wanted to perfect in me through its coming, and how I should cooperate with God. Only now do I realize that, it is so dangerous for one to not eat and drink God’s word; he may fall into darkness anytime and anywhere and lose the power and direction for his advance. Ay, I did not understand the arrangement of God’s family. I only remembered to hide the books but neglected to persist in eating and drinking God’s word. This shows that I did not value God’s word at all. In the past, when the persecution did not come, I did not know to treasure God’s word. I was really too foolish. O God, I was really ignorant. No matter how adverse the circumstances were, I should not have left your word. Now I know that at any time man cannot do without the supply of your word; apart from your word, man will wither right away and cannot achieve anything. From now on, no matter how adverse the circumstances may be, I will keep eating and drinking your word and never leave your word again.
Through this experience, I truly realize the preciousness of God’s word, and even more see my pitiableness when I was apart from God’s word. No wonder God requires us to eat and drink his word as our three meals; God’s word is our lifeblood and we must read it every day.
Huai’an City, Jiangsu Province