Loving God Only by Conscience Is Not Truly Loving God
Once, in The Summary of Christ’s Preachings and Conversations, I read these words of God: “Why am I always unwell in this last period? This is also meaningful. It is to bear some sufferings and diseases for mankind. The incarnate One suffers some illnesses…. She has sacrificed her all, her everything, for mankind.” Reading God’s words, I thought: God has borne sufferings and sacrificed his everything for us; even according to my conscience I ought to love God. So I made a resolution: I will offer up my whole being and complete the work commissioned by God so as to repay God’s love. In the following period, I was full of enthusiasm. Later, because the adjustment of my work was not to my liking, I was overwhelmed with passivity. Misunderstandings and complaints welled up within me, and I even wanted to give up my duty. I clearly knew these thoughts were wrong, but I just had no strength in my heart, and I could no longer “love God” though I wanted to.
One day, when eating and drinking the word of God, I read these words: “Man cannot feel God’s loveliness only by the feeling of his conscience. Only by your conscience you’ll have no strength to love God. If you only say you repay God’s grace and God’s love, your strength to love God cannot be stirred up. Loving God by the feeling of the conscience is a passive practice.” “A perfected person does not only have a normal humanity, but the truths he has go beyond the measure of his conscience and are higher than the standard of his conscience. He does not only repay God’s love according to his conscience, but even more he knows God and sees that God is lovely and is worthy of man’s love and God has many lovable things and man cannot but love him. A perfected person’s loving God is for fulfilling his own resolution and is a spontaneous love, a love without seeking reward, and a love without making bargain. He loves God only because of knowing God. He is not concerned whether God gives him grace but is content as long as he can satisfy God. He does not bargain over terms with God and does not love God according to his conscience: If you give me something, I will give you love in return. If you do not give me anything, I won’t give you anything in return.” Reading God’s words, I came to understand why I blew hot and cold: Since I followed God, I had lived only in the feeling of my conscience. When I saw God endured sufferings greater than in the Age of the Grace to prepare for mankind’s future destination, for the purpose that in the future mankind will have no more sorrow, groan, and tears, or birth, aging, illness, and death, I felt that even according to my conscience I should repay God’s love. However, when God’s work did not fit my notions, my strength to “love God” disappeared without a trace, and I even wanted to rebel against God. I was in such an unstable state simply because my love was only according to the feeling of my conscience and I repaid God’s love only with my conscience. Such a love of mine existed only under the condition that God gave me grace and everything was to my liking. My love was full of demands and bargains. Once I did not get what I wanted, I could not love God anymore. God’s love is hidden in his work. The more God’s work does not fit man’s notions, the deeper its significance is. I didn’t try to know God’s nature and discover God’s lovely aspects from God’s work and God’s word so as to develop a spontaneous love for God, but instead I measured my love for God with my conscience: If God gave me something, I would repay God; if God gave me nothing, I would not expend for God. Such a love of mine is not a true love, but a momentary love, a bartering love, with mixture and deception. If I continue to pursue so, I will never have a true love for God.
O God, thank you for your leading. It has made me know that loving you only by conscience is not truly loving you. From now on, I will no longer be content with repaying your love with my conscience; I will pursue the truth and pursue to know your lovely aspects, so as to offer you a true love.
Heze City, Shandong Province