Once, in electing a gospel deacon, I thought of a brother. In both his ability of understanding and his ability of managing the work, he met the conditions for being a gospel deacon. But there was one point not to my liking, which was that he often pointed out my defects and made me lose face. So I calculated secretly: If he is really selected as the gospel deacon, maybe he’ll speak ill of me before the small-district leader. Besides, if he outdoes me later, won’t my being the leader come to an end? No, he can’t be selected! After I pondered so, I secretly began to juggle things. Soon, I found a sister who was very obedient to me. Although I knew she was inferior to that brother in managing the work, yet in order to preserve my position, I stubbornly acted according to my scheme against my conscience: First, talk much about the sister’s strong points before the deacons; then, seize the opportunity to belittle that brother. Just in this way, under my deception, the deacons had the same view as mine.
On the day of the meeting for election, after I talked about the conditions for the election, they began to vote. I casually opened The Manual of the Principles for the Church Work. Suddenly, I came across these words: “The result God works to achieve finally is to let people come before God through knowing God’s work. If one who is a leader does not exalt God and testify about God but shows himself off in everything and suppresses, dominates, and cages others in everything, forcing others to obey him, this is setting up a rival stage in opposition to God. He himself sits in God’s seat and makes others treat him as God, and his work becomes a work to vie with God for people. Isn’t this precisely satan’s action of resisting God? Now, there are many leaders each of whom has a group of followers under him, and they all select and train people according to their own ideas, yet eventually God doesn’t gain a single intimate. Who is all that they do actually for? … If one’s service is not exalting God and testifying about God, then he is definitely showing himself off. Even if he holds the banner of serving God, he works for his own position and for his own fleshly enjoyment, and not at all for exalting God and testifying about God. If anyone violates this principle of serving, it proves that he is one who resists God.” Having read this, I became frightened in my heart and realized the gravity of the matter. I could not help but begin to examine my actions and deeds. God has been working for many years in order to gain people’s hearts. However, I as a church leader did not care for God’s will, did not want God to gain the people’s hearts, and was not willing to lead the people before God. I always wished more people to support me and follow me, and I always feared that others would outdo me. To preserve my position, I even used every sordid means to deceive the brothers and sisters. Wasn’t this directly resisting God and opposing God? I was even more insidious and cunning than the ancient serpent. I am really one who deserves to be cursed! I tried every possible means to capture the people into my own presence; then isn’t the way I walked the way of an antichrist? O God, I was too audacious and reckless. I even held the banner of serving you to do things of deceiving and trapping people. Today, I have clearly seen my ugly features. I dare not continue to do evil. So, I immediately talked once again about the conditions for selecting people, and emphasized that the people God’s family selected were to do practical work and that anyone who understood the truth in a pure way and had the ability to do the work could be elected. Thank God that he preserved his own work. The person elected was just that brother. Only then was my heart somewhat relieved. And I made this resolution: From now on, I will no longer consider my own interests. I must coordinate with the brother harmoniously to do the church work well, so as to satisfy God’s heart’s desire.
Through this matter, I saw that I was really a person who resisted God. At the same time, I also realized that pursuing position was too harmful to men. It could cause me to be at enmity with God, and it nearly made me become an antichrist. I will bear this matter in mind forever as a warning on my future way of serving God.
Pingdingshan City, Henan Province