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Gospel Reader

The Word of God Leads Me to Live Out the Likeness of Man

162

Xiao Ye, Japan

I was born into a blessed family. From a young age, my parents loved me very much. In addition, my grades were good and adults often praised me in front of my brothers, sisters and me: “Xiao Ye will certainly have good prospects in the future….” I really felt so much pride for myself after hearing this and always indulged in self-admiration and wild arrogance, thinking I was better than my siblings, regarding myself as a rare talent in the family…. I grew up in such a superior environment.

The Word of God Leads Me to Live Out the Likeness of Man, happy childhood

In 2013, when I stayed at Aunt Liu’s home to study, Aunt Liu told me about the gospel of the kingdom. Because I was busy with my studies, I did not attend meetings very often and I knew very little about God’s work. However, during this period, I experienced God’s love and blessings. So in my heart I always believed in and trusted God. In 2016 when I was a sophomore, the university had an overseas internship program and because of this I had the opportunity to go to Japan to be an intern. In addition to this Aunt Liu told me: “Now God works very fast. There are brothers and sisters of The Church of Almighty God everywhere. God’s work has already extended to all parts of the world.” Hearing Aunt Liu’s words, I could not suppress the excitement in my heart, because in China it really is too hard to believe in God, and every day you are on tenterhooks, hiding from the CCP government’s persecution and arrest. However, there is real freedom of religion overseas and it is so great to believe in God there. I was also attracted to that type of free and liberated life free from persecution by the CCP, free to read the word of God together with brothers and sisters, to share experiences, sing hymns, dance and praise God. So I promised Aunt Liu that I would contact brothers and sisters of The Church of Almighty God after arriving in Japan.

In September 2016 I arrived in Japan full of expectation. After one month’s language training, I entered a hotel in Hokkaido with several classmates and started my internship. To begin with I thought my Japanese was good and that I was smart and I could quickly pass the standard, so I did not place a lot of importance on the internship at all. However, for many reasons, I failed to connect with brothers and sisters from The Church of Almighty God. Work in the hotel restaurant was hard and tiring and the repetitive and hard work every day made me feel like I couldn’t go on. At that time, the thing I did most was praying to God in my heart. I especially hoped that God could give me super powers to finish these hard tasks with ease. On the eighth day of work, my senior saw me working hard with low efficiency and always having problems and scolded me: “I teach others twice and they can do the work, but you are taught several times and still cannot do it!” When I heard her say this, I had no rebuttal but in my heart I wasn’t convinced: You are insisting on me doing something that is impossible. I haven’t done anything at home. It is very normal not to be able to do these things. Of course, I also felt awful because I kept getting things wrong at work but I didn’t expect my senior to say I couldn’t do anything in front of the supervisor. That day, her “guidance” made me feel powerless to ward off, and her words “cannot do anything” threw me in the abyss of suffering even more. “I didn’t offend her. Why did she make such harsh demands of me?” I thought, very unwilling to submit. Besides, my colleagues whose Japanese was worse than mine and who were younger than me received their labels of eligibility but I still ranked as unqualified. The more I thought about that the more aggrieved I became. I could not help running to the bathroom and crying and the more I cried, the aggrieved I felt. I really wanted to flee from this environment immediately.

After returning to the dormitory, I felt particularly bad and really wanted to see brothers and sisters. I recalled the days of being with brothers and sisters. No matter what I did wrong, they would not laugh at me or belittle me but would give me the fellowship of God’s words, support me and help me get out of difficulties. But now I could not contact brothers and sisters, I felt so lost. At that moment, I remembered a movie I had seen, The Best of Youth. It described the experiences of a sister of The Church of Almighty God, who was pampered and lived in comfort since childhood. Sometimes her parents would say something she didn’t like and she would become angry and not eat. Later she believed in God. One time, whilst doing her duty, because she had to ride a bike very far and felt that this was very hard and she was very tired, she made a lot of complaints. When brothers and sisters communicated the truth to her and helped her, she could not accept it either and was still very arrogant and at loggerheads. Thinking of the similarities between my experience and hers, I really wanted to see how she had changed. After turning the video on, I saw the word of God and sister’s understanding: “‘God’s dealing of people’s external disposition is also one part of His work; dealing with people’s external, abnormal humanity, for example, or their lifestyle and habits, their ways and customs…’ (‘Only Loving God Is Truly Believing in God’ in The Word Appears in the Flesh). ‘No matter what your actual stature is, you must first possess the will to suffer hardship as well as true faith, and you must have the will to forsake the flesh. … God will perfect you through these things. If you lack these conditions, you cannot be perfected’ (‘Those Who Are to Be Made Perfect Must Undergo Refinement’ in The Word Appears in the Flesh). I understood God’s intention from His words. After being corrupted by Satan, I had no humanity and had become particularly fond of comfort of the flesh and afraid of hardship. I did not even have the ability to take care of myself. So God put me in this environment, to temper my will, strengthen my perseverance and reinforce my shortcomings…. So I stopped to reflect upon myself and saw that in the word of God it says: ‘What is the transformation of disposition? You must be a lover of truth, accept the judgment and chastisement of God’s word as you experience His work, and experience all kinds of suffering and refining, through which you are purified of the satanic poisons within you. This is the transformation in disposition’ (“How to Know Man’s Nature” in Records of Christ’s Talks). Through the judgment of the word of God, I understood that I wasn’t someone who accepted the truth. Sister’s dealing sprung up from God. It was to help me change. To love the truth, one must accept the truth. God uses all kinds of trials and refinement to cleanse the toxins within me and my life disposition can only change in this way. When I think back to the corruption I have revealed, I realize that it is satanic toxins, thinking ‘Only I myself am honorable’ inside me that are causing trouble, resulting in me not being able to get on harmoniously with brothers and sisters. I always want to have the final say and always want to make people listen to me, but this is the wrong standpoint. It is as if I were the boss. I lose my temper at the slightest thing that doesn’t please me. This is my satanic disposition being revealed. It also hurts other people.” Having read God’s words and the understanding of this sister, I saw that I am also someone who cannot endure hardship, who does not persevere with work and is extremely conceited. Faced with difficulties at work, I do not try to find ways to resolve them, endure hardship and pay the price to strive to do it well. On the contrary, I long for God to show a miracle and enable me to do everything. I do not want to suffer and pay the price because I am afraid of hardship and tiredness. Thinking more, not only do I not have the will to suffer, but I even do not allow others to point out my problems and after I have been taught a lesson, I want to flee that environment; I am both conceited and very weak. From God’s words I have understood that everything God does to me is to change my corrupt disposition and let me cast aside my arrogant, lazy, vulnerable disposition, humble myself and make me into a person who does things diligently, responsibly and with perseverance. After understanding God’s will, I prayed to God and asked Him to give me the will to endure suffering. That evening my classmates who came with me came to help and comfort me and told me what the trick was to do things. When I worked hard, I found I learned a lot. Once I took an old Japanese couple to their seats and they knew I was still studying and encouraged me saying: “頑張ってね (Keep at it!)” It warmed my heart to hear this and tears came to my eyes. I understood that this was God moving people to encourage me and in that moment, I felt that God was by my side, watching me grow little by little.

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