50. My Icy Heart Was Melted by God
Dunhua City, Jilin Province
My name is Zhuo Aiyan. I was born into a Christian family. I began to preach at the age of 12 and left home to serve God full time at the age of 19. I had studied theology and contacted many overseas pastors and missionaries, which I always took as my capital. In addition, as I was very familiar with the Bible, had many years of working experience, and was gifted by the Lord, I always considered myself superior to others. As such, I limited the Lord Jesus’ return within the Bible and my imaginations and notions. But I never dreamed that Almighty God, whom I had resisted frenziedly for six years, was actually the Lord Jesus I had been expecting day and night. During those six years, no matter how I resisted, God’s hand never left me…
One day in 1996, two brothers from Shenyang came to our church to preach God’s gospel of the last days, but I drove them out ruthlessly, because our senior servant had told me, “Now there is a gang of people called the ‘Eastern Lightning.’ They preach everywhere that God has come, which doesn’t correspond with the Bible. They are very wicked and are a mafia. If you refuse to accept their way, they will break your legs or gouge out your eyes. What they preach is another gospel. Galatians 1:9 says, ‘If any man preach any other gospel to you than that you have received, let him be accursed.’” Later, they came many times and tried to fellowship with me, but I shut the door on them every time.
Aunty Li was an elderly sister in our church who received the chief co-workers in her home. I once stayed in her home for over a year when I worked in that area. She had a very good humanity, and treated me as her own daughter. In the spring of 1998, I learned that she had joined the “Eastern Lightning,” so I immediately went to her home to fellowship with her. However, she not only didn’t turn back, but even tried to persuade me to accept it. I was very angry, so I stopped using her home as a host family. I also informed the brothers and sisters of all the churches to reject her and warned them that if anyone contacted her, he would share in her sins. However, Aunty Li didn’t bear grudges against me because of that, and she still came to my home again and again with patience to preach God’s new work to me. In the beginning, I treated her with due respect, but later, I began to turn a cold shoulder to her, for fear that I might be swayed by emotions and “deceived” by her.” Once, she came to my home again to preach, and I said to her, “You are at such an old age, but you are so thick-skinned! You know that I don’t want to receive you. Why do you still come?” Then, with tears in her eyes, she took a book out of her bag and said to me, “Aiyan! Please read this book! This is God’s personal word. Don’t resist anymore.” I said, “You go now! I won’t read it. Don’t waste your words.” Seeing me still so hardened, she cried and said, holding the book with both hands, “Aiyan! Please listen to me! This is really God’s word!” I said, “You’d better give up such a hope! Apart from the Bible, I read no other books. Today, if it were not for your past reception of me, I would have called the police. You go quickly…” Under my threat, Aunty Li put the book back into her bag and staggered away in tears. Looking at her receding figure, I had an unspeakable feeling in my heart. But I remembered the words in Curfew, which said that the people of the “Eastern Lightning” are most good at coaxing and pestering and showing love to others to win their sympathy and then achieve their ulterior purposes. So I wasn’t moved by what she had done to me.
In the middle of August, 1998, my child kept crying all day long, and he refused to go home. Once he was back home, he would cry. No matter how we coaxed him, he wouldn’t stop. And he also refused to walk the roads he had walked. As long as he saw it was a road he had walked, he would cry and scream, refusing to take it. We took him to many doctors, but he didn’t get well. All my co-workers fasted and prayed for him, but it didn’t work. At that time, I didn’t know why it had happened. I never thought that it was Almighty God’s discipline for my disobeying and resisting Him. Instead, I spread the rumors about the “Eastern Lightning” in the churches more fiercely and sealed off the churches by using my power. I even fabricated lies, telling false stories such as “the ‘Eastern Lightning’ followers kidnap people, and they will break their ribs if they refuse to accept their way,” and so on. Moreover, I led the brothers and sisters to read the “curses” (words cursing the “Eastern Lightning”). If anyone refused to read, I would drive them out of the church. At that time, I thought I was a faithful and wise servant by doing so and God would surely multiply His blessings to me.
But the fact was just the opposite. In June 1999, my husband got tuberculous encephalitis and was hospitalized. During that time, those who preached the new work of Almighty God often came to fellowship with me, but I still didn’t turn back. In August, my husband came back home from the hospital, and one of my old friends came to my home with two brothers. At the beginning, I had a harmonious fellowship with them. But when one brother said, “Sister, I have a piece of good news to tell you. There is a gospel in the last days, that is, the everlasting gospel mentioned in Revelation 14:6, and it is for the redemption of our body.” At this, I knew they were also people of the “Eastern Lightning.” So I said, “There is only one salvation. How can there be an everlasting gospel?” Before they finished their speaking, I began to drive them out, and I flung the peach in my hand at a brother’s head. But he didn’t get angry at all and still said gently, “Sister, you should come before God and seek why such things happened to your family. There is God’s will in them! How eagerly God hopes that you can wake up and turn back soon!” I said, “Whether I live or die, it’s none of your business!” My friend also tried to persuade me. Then, I picked up the phone and was about to dial “110.” She couldn’t but leave with the brothers in tears. Looking at their receding figures, I didn’t feel rebuked at all. From then on, my husband’s illness worsened. After examination in Changchun, he was diagnosed as having a brain tumor. The treatment failed, and he died on November 2, 2000. It was too great a blow to me, who was only 32 years old. I thought, “I have believed in the Lord so sincerely. I have preached for 20 years and have set up more than 20 churches with over one thousand believers. Why should I suffer such a calamity?” But I didn’t dare to complain. Having no alternative, I could only stand up and continue to preach. However, I felt powerless and had nothing to preach. Later, under the pressure of life (I was in debt because of the treatment of my husband’s illness), I opened a restaurant. But as I wasn’t good at managing it, I lost over 20,000 yuan in it. I was taken ill with an attack of internal heat and was hospitalized. I couldn’t eat or drink or open my eyes all day long, with blood trickling from my mouth. The doctors failed to diagnose my illness, and they only said that my condition was very serious. During my hospital stay, the sisters who had preached Almighty God’s work to me often visited me. They took care of me meticulously, and no matter what attitude I took with them, they treated me with love all the time. Sister Qiao, one of them, often brought me some delicious dishes she cooked at home despite her busy work, and she often comforted and encouraged me, so that my icy heart felt a true love. To ease my financial burden, she even let me live in her home. I felt very grateful in my heart.
On December 5, 2002, it was snowing. Two brothers came to Sister Qiao’s home. The elder one was covered in snow, with white frost on his eyebrows and mustache. He seemed to have walked a long distance. After entering the room, he said to me, “Peace be with you, sister. We came to have a fellowship with you.” Hearing that, I thought, “Here we go again! They come to preach the new work to me again.” I hastened to pick up the blanket and said, “I am feeling unwell and want to rest. Please don’t disturb me.” He said earnestly, “Sister, We believe in the same God, and we also have the Bible as the ruler. If our fellowship agrees with the Bible, you can accept it; if not, you can refuse to listen. Today our fellowship will not depart from the Bible. What do you think?” As I couldn’t find an excuse to refuse him, I said reluctantly, “I’ll ask a few questions. If your fellowship is reasonable, I’ll accept it.” “OK! Go ahead!” he said happily.
“First, Romans 10:9-10 says, ‘That if you shall confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus, and shall believe in your heart that God has raised him from the dead, you shall be saved. For with the heart man believes to righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made to salvation.’ I’m already saved; why do you always preach your way to me? There are so many people who don’t believe in the Lord. Why don’t you go and preach it to them? 1 Corinthians 3:11 says, ‘For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.’ Haven’t you laid other foundation today?” The brother said kindly, “Men, after being created, were living ones with spirit, soul, and body and full of vitality. God put them in the Garden of Eden and let them live there. They were holy and could speak with God face to face. After mankind was beguiled by the serpent and ate the forbidden fruit, their spirit, soul, and body fell into Satan’s hand and were trampled by it at will. But God didn’t have the heart to destroy the mankind He had created with His own hands, so He began His six-thousand-year work of saving mankind. In the beginning, God did the work of the Age of Law among men. He led people from the positive side, having them learn how to conduct themselves and how to live, and understand Jehovah’s way. At that time, God did the work on the slightly corrupted people, which had nothing to do with the transformation of their disposition or the growth of their life. As long as they observed all the commandments Jehovah had commanded them, it would be their righteousness. But as people became more and more corrupt, at the end of the Age of Grace, they could no longer keep the Law made by Jehovah. So, in the Age of Grace, God carried out a stage of new work, saving us from Satan’s hand through the crucifixion of the Lord Jesus. Although God has redeemed man from Satan’s hand with the Lord Jesus’ precious blood, man’s sinful nature is still deep-rooted in him. Many people still live in a state of committing sins in the daytime and confessing them at night. Because of the need of the corrupt mankind, God does a stage of work of judgment and chastisement with the word on the basis of the work of the Age of Grace to completely remove the root of men’s sins so that they can be transformed in their disposition. This is God’s complete salvation. Almighty God says, ‘The first incarnation was to redeem man from sin through the flesh of Jesus, that is, He saved man from the cross, but the corrupt satanic disposition still remained within man. The second incarnation is no longer to serve as a sin offering but to fully save those who were redeemed from sin. This is done so that those forgiven can be delivered from their sins and be fully made clean, and attain a change in disposition, thereby breaking free of Satan’s influence of darkness and returning before the throne of God. Only in this way can man be fully sanctified.’ ‘The sins of man could be forgiven through the sin offering, but man has been unable to resolve the issue of just how he can no longer sin and how his sinful nature can be cast away completely and be transformed. The sins of man were forgiven because of the work of God’s crucifixion, but man continued to live in the old, corrupt satanic disposition. As such, man must be completely saved from the corrupt satanic disposition so that the sinful nature of man is completely cast away and never again develops, thus allowing the disposition of man to be changed. This requires man to understand the path of growth in life, the way of life, and the way to change his disposition. It also needs man to act in accordance with this path so that the disposition of man can gradually be changed and he can live under the shining of the light, and that he can do all things in accord with the will of God, cast away the corrupt satanic disposition, and break free from Satan’s influence of darkness, thereby emerging fully from sin. Only then will man receive complete salvation.’” (from “The Mystery of the Incarnation (4)” in The Word Appears in the Flesh) After reading God’s words, the brother continued, “So why do we still always preach to you despite the fact that you have believed in the Lord? It’s because the work God does in the last days is to find all His sheep and form them into one flock. God wants to form His sheep into one flock; won’t we allow Him to do so? Leaders of different denominations or sects all say that they are shepherds of their churches. Actually, the true shepherd is God Himself. Who among men is worthy to be the shepherd? So, on the basis of the redemption by the precious blood of Jesus Christ, God does the unifying, purifying, and perfecting work. This is not laying another foundation, for the salvation of the last days has been prepared for the believers in Jesus. (1 Peter 1:5; 5:10)” I was utterly convinced by his fellowship and found it irrefutable. Then I asked the second question.
“Hebrews 13:8 says, ‘Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.’ How can you say that the age of Jesus has passed? Haven’t you changed the gospel of Christ?” The brother said with a smile, “Let’s look at Psalms 146:6 and 10: ‘The LORD his God: Which made heaven, and earth, the sea, and all that therein is: which keeps truth for ever…. The LORD shall reign for ever, even your God, O Zion, to all generations.’ The Age of Law ended when Jesus Christ came, but it is said in Psalms that the LORD shall reign to all generations. That is to say, before He had reigned to all generations, there was already the New Testament. Could God have made a mistake? Let’s look at Isaiah 43:10-11: ‘… I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me. I, even I, am the LORD; and beside me there is no savior.’ Then how come there is Jesus the Savior besides Jehovah? Actually, God’s work and words in each age are directed at that age. We should not circumscribe God within the Old or New Testament. The word in the Bible that the Lord Jesus is the same yesterday, to day, and forever refers to that God is forever God, His substance will not change, He can never become Satan, and no matter what He does, He does it to save man, and this core and purpose will never change and His intention of saving man will never change. However, God’s work continuously progresses forward. The age develops from the Age of Law to the Age of Grace, and from the Age of Grace to the Age of Kingdom. He does His work of saving man by three stages. Then Satan will be destroyed, and God and man will enter into God’s kingdom together and rest. Just as God says, ‘The work of God continues to advance, and though the purpose of His work remains unchanging, the means by which He works are constantly changing, and thereby so are those who follow God. The more work of God, the more thoroughly man comes to know God, and the disposition of man changes accordingly along with His work. However, it is because the work of God is ever-changing that those who do not know the work of the Holy Spirit and those absurd men who do not know the truth become opponents of God. Not ever does the work of God conform to the conceptions of man, for His work is always new and never old. Not ever does He repeat work of old but rather forges ahead with work never before done. As God does not repeat His work and man invariably judges the work of God today based on His work of the past, it is exceedingly difficult for God to carry out each stage of work of the new age. Man presents far too many hindrances! The thinking of man is too hidebound! No man knows the work of God, yet they all define such work. Away from God, man loses life, truth, and the blessings of God, yet neither does man accept life or truth, much less the greater blessings God bestows upon mankind. All men wish to gain God yet are unable to tolerate any changes in God’s work. Those who do not accept the new work of God believe that the work of God is changeless, and that the work of God forever remains at a standstill. In their belief, all that is needed to gain eternal salvation from God is to keep the law, and as long as they repent and confess their sins, the heart of God will be forever satisfied. They are of the opinion that God can only be the God under the law and the God who was nailed on the cross for man; it is their opinion too that God should not and cannot exceed the Bible. It is precisely these “opinions” that have shackled them firmly to the law of old and kept them fettered by rigid regulations.’” (from “How Can Man Who Has Defined God in His ‘Conceptions’ Receive the ‘Revelations’ of God?” in The Word Appears in the Flesh) After reading God’s words, the brother fellowshipped more with me, and I came to understand the inside truth, the significance, and the purpose of God’s work in the Age of Law, in the Age of Grace, and in the Age of Kingdom and some mysteries in the Bible. What thrilled me most was that the Lord Jesus whom I had been expecting eagerly had truly come back. When the brother solemnly handed the little scroll to me, my tears gushed out in floods. Holding the book of God’s personal utterance which I had rejected many times, I couldn’t help bursting out crying. At that moment I really hated myself for being so foolish and blind. “Why didn’t I wake up earlier? I have missed so many good opportunities. I believed in God but didn’t recognize God, and I resisted His work of the last days for six years. I was really too disobedient. I even treated the brothers and sisters who preached this stage of work to me ‘with swords and bludgeons.’ I had no humanity at all. God had trained me for so many years, but I turned round and resisted and blasphemed Him with what He had given me. I was a thorough ‘Pharisee’ of the present age.” I personally experienced that Almighty God truly saves man to the utmost. My stony heart was finally melted by God’s love.
It has been nearly a year since I accepted the work of Almighty God. During this period, I have truly seen the wonderful deeds of Almighty God and had a taste of His wisdom and almightiness, and I have also seen that God has truly expended much care and effort on man, so I all the more feel that I have been corrupted by Satan so deeply that I’m unworthy to receive such a great salvation of God. I only desire to dedicate all the rest of my life to God. Though I cannot repay one ten thousandth of God’s love, I wish to comfort God’s sorrowful heart a little, so as to make up for my past sins.