23. God Guides Me to Overcome the Demons’ Cruelty
By Wang Hua, Henan Province
My daughter and I are both Christians belonging to The Church of Almighty God. While we were following God, my daughter and I were both arrested and sentenced to reeducation through labor by the CCP government. I was sentenced to three years, and my daughter was sentenced to one year. Although I was subjected to inhuman persecution and harm by the CCP government, each time I found myself despairing and in danger, God was there, secretly watching over me, protecting me, and opening a way out for me. It was the words of Almighty God which gave me the courage and motivation to go on living, which guided me to overcome the torment of being cruelly tortured, and which helped me to persevere through three years in that hellish prison. In the midst of adversity, I witnessed Almighty God’s love and salvation, and I experienced the authority and power of God’s words. I feel favored to have gained so much, and I am resolved to follow God unswervingly and to walk the right path in life.
Before I believed in God, I ran a business. I was pretty good at it and I made a decent amount of money. But while busying about making my livelihood, I also experienced the vicissitudes of life to the fullest. Not only did I have to wrack my brains figuring out how to make money day in and day out, but I also had to deal with all sorts of item inspections from all manner of government departments. I had to engage in insincere talk all day long and put on a false front in my interactions with others. I felt this way of life to be both painful and exhausting, but I had no other option. Just as it had gotten to the point where I had become completely emotionally and physically exhausted from work, I accepted Almighty God’s gospel of the last days. I saw that the words expressed by Almighty God reveal life’s mysteries and expose the source of all mankind’s pain, as well as the truth of mankind’s corruption by Satan. They also show man the path of light to be followed throughout life, and my heart immediately took to God’s words. From the bottom of my heart, I became certain that this was the work of the true God, and that faith in God was the only right path through life. I felt so fortunate to be able to accept God’s work of the last days, and I thought about all the people in the world who were just like me, who were living empty lives, who couldn’t find direction in their lives, and who needed the last days’ salvation of Almighty God. I therefore wished to preach the gospel of the last days to more truth-seekers, so that even more people could attain the salvation of God. Moved by God’s love, whenever I talked about God’s work or His salvation, I could never say enough, and I was able to win some genuine truth-seekers over by preaching to them—I was thrilled. At that time, my daughter had only just graduated from high school. She saw how happy I’d become after I began to follow Almighty God, and she also saw that the brothers and sisters who came to our home were all pure and kind, that everyone gathered together to talk openly, to sing hymns, and to dance, and that there was always an incredibly kind and joyful energy. Consequently, she began to yearn for this life and very much wanted to believe in and follow God. From that point on, we ran our business during the day, and then prayed together, read God’s words together, learned hymns together, and fellowshiped about our understanding of God’s words at nighttime; our lives were filled with joy.
Just when we were feeling most immersed in and warmed by God’s love, unexpectedly, the demon claw of the CCP government lashed out at the two of us and caused us nightmarish, heartrending pain—it was a moment I’ll never forget. It was December 7, 2007, my daughter was doing laundry at home, and I was just getting ready to go out to perform my duty for the church, when all of a sudden, five or six plainclothes policemen burst in. One of them shouted, “You are believers in Almighty God! And, what’s more, you’re going around preaching to others!” He then pointed at my daughter and said to another two policemen, “Take her first!” and my daughter was immediately taken away by the two policemen. The remaining police then began to search my home from top to bottom, rummaging through the boxes and chests and even checking every pocket of our clothes. In moments, the beds and the floor were covered in mess, and they even trampled all over the beds with their leather shoes on. In the end, they took books of God’s words, some discs, two CD players, two MP3 players, 2,000 yuan in cash and a pair of gold earrings. They then shoved me along and put me in a police car. I questioned them, holding them to account, “What law have we broken by believing in God? Why are you arresting us?” To my surprise, they brazenly declared in front of all the people looking on, “Catching you believers in God is our specialty!” I was indignant. They were not the “People’s Police.” They were just a gang of bandits, ruffians and criminal underworld goons specially tasked with cracking down on the righteous!
When we arrived at the Public Security Bureau, I was handcuffed and led to an interrogation room. Seeing how fierce they looked, I couldn’t help but feel afraid, and I thought: “Now that I’ve fallen into the hands of these devils and they’ve found so many books of God’s words and discs at my home, they surely won’t let me go now. If I fail to withstand their torture and become a Judas, then I’ll be known for all of time as a traitor who betrayed God!” I prayed silently to God in my heart, asking Him to protect and guide me. Just then, I thought of God’s words that say: “Toward those who showed Me not the slightest loyalty during times of tribulation, I shall be merciful no more, for My mercy only extends so far. I have no liking, furthermore, for anyone who has once betrayed Me, much less do I like to associate with those who sell out the interests of their friends. This is My disposition, regardless of who the person may be” (“Prepare Sufficient Good Deeds for Your Destination” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). God’s words made me realize that His righteous disposition brooks no offense, and that God does not love those who betray Him. I then thought of God’s words that say: “Those in power may seem vicious from the outside, but do not be afraid, for this is because you have little faith. As long as your faith grows, nothing will be too difficult” (“Chapter 75” of Utterances of Christ in the Beginning in The Word Appears in the Flesh). “Yes!” I thought. “I must not fear them. No matter how formidable this bunch of evil policemen is, they are still in God’s hands, and without God’s permission they cannot harm a hair on my head no matter how terrible they are.” God’s words gave me faith and courage, and so I made a resolution to God: “O God! The time for You to test me has come. I wish to stand witness for You, and I swear on my life to never become a Judas.” After concluding my prayer, my heart grew calmer. At that moment, one of the evil police who seemed like a leader among them, scolded me, saying, “You stupid woman! All of the things you could have done, but of course you had to get your daughter to believe in God too, didn’t you? She’s a beauty, that one. She could make tens of thousands of yuan a year by selling herself to rich men, and yet she believes in God like a fool! Tell us now, when did you start believing in God? Who got you into it? Where did you get those books from?” Listening to him shoot his mouth off, I became furious. I couldn’t believe that a supposedly dignified official of the government could say such despicable and shameless things! In their eyes, selling one’s body is a good thing, and they even encourage people to go and do such wicked things. And yet we who believe in God and worship God, and seek to be honest people, are labeled as criminals who act wrongfully, and we become targets for severe crackdowns and arrests. By acting this way, are they not upholding evil, suppressing goodness and smothering justice? The CCP government is so wicked and corrupt! Seeing how they persisted in talking such nonsense and were deaf to all reason, I knew that there was no way to make them see sense, and so I kept my mouth shut. When they saw that I refused to speak, they escorted me back to a police car and threatened me, saying, “We found so much evidence in your home that if you don’t behave and tell us everything, we’ll drag you out to be shot!” Hearing them say this, I couldn’t help but feel terrified, and I thought: “These people are capable of anything. If they really do shoot me, then I’ll never see my daughter again.” The more I thought about it, the more distressed I felt, and I continually called on God in my heart, asking Him to protect my heart and rid me of the fear and worries I had inside. Just then, God’s words came to mind: “Of everything that occurs in the universe, there is nothing in which I do not have the final say. Is there anything that is not in My hands?” (“Chapter 1” of God’s Words to the Entire Universe in The Word Appears in the Flesh). “Faith is like a single log bridge: Those who cling abjectly to life will have difficulty in crossing it, but those who are ready to sacrifice themselves can pass over, sure of foot and worry-free. If man harbors timid and fearful thoughts, it is because Satan has fooled them, afraid that we will cross the bridge of faith to enter into God” (“Chapter 6” of Utterances of Christ in the Beginning in The Word Appears in the Flesh). At that moment, everything became clear: “Yes,” I thought. “My life and my daughter’s life are in God’s hands, and God has the final say on whether we live or die. These demons of Satan have no control over our fates. Without God’s permission, no one could even think about taking our lives. Satan is today trying to use my Achilles’ heel to threaten and intimidate me, hoping to make me fall prey to its cunning scheme and surrender to it. But I must not let it dupe me. Whether to die or live, I am willing to obey, as I would rather die than betray God.” Thinking this, I instantly found the determination to fight with Satan till the very end, and I no longer felt timid or afraid.
The police took me to the detention house. As soon as I was led into the courtyard, the correctional officers roughly searched me and ordered me to take off my shoes and clothes. They then made me stand in the freezing cold yard for near on 30 minutes. I was so cold that I could barely keep my balance, my whole body trembled violently, and my teeth chattered ceaselessly. Seeing that they hadn’t found anything on me, one of the correctional officers took me to a cell, and incited the head prisoner of the cell and the other inmates, saying, “This is a believer in Almighty God….” No sooner had she said this than the prisoners piled over to me and made me pull my trousers down to my ankles and then back up again. They made me do this again and again while they all laughed at me. After being teased and insulted, the head prisoner had me learn how to make things out of chicken feather down. But as this job required some skill and practice, I still hadn’t mastered it by the second day, and so the head prisoner took up a bamboo stick and savagely beat my hands. My hands were beaten until they had become numbed with pain, and I couldn’t even pinch chicken feathers together. When I moved to pick up the feathers that had fallen to the floor, the head prisoner stood on my hand and ground it down with her foot, which sent a searing pain through my fingers, as if they had been snapped apart. She still wasn’t done with me, however, as she took up her bamboo stick again and hit me over the head with it several times until my head grew dizzy and my eyes blurred over. Finally, she said cruelly, “Your punishment will be to take the night shift tonight. You’ll be questioned by the police tomorrow, so you have to do tomorrow’s work today. If you don’t get it all done, tomorrow night I’ll make you stand up all night long!” At that moment, I felt inexpressibly sorrowful and depressed. I thought about how I couldn’t bear it already, with the evil police joining up with the prisoners to hurt me in this way, so how on earth was I supposed to get through the days ahead? In distress, I wept at the injustice of it all, tears flowing down my face, and I confided silently in God, telling Him of my difficulties: “O God! Faced with the mockery and torment meted out to me by this gang of monsters, I feel so alone, helpless and afraid, and I don’t know how I’ll get through it. Please guide me and let me be strong.” After praying, God made me think of a passage of His words to enlighten me: “Those whom God refers to as ‘overcomers’ are those who are still able to stand witness and maintain their confidence and devotion to God when under the influence of Satan and while being laid siege to by Satan, that is, when they find themselves amidst the forces of darkness. If you are still able to keep a pure heart before God and maintain your genuine love for God no matter what, then you are standing witness in front of God, and this is what God refers to as being an ‘overcomer’” (“You Should Maintain Your Devotion to God” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). I derived a great deal of comfort from God’s words, and they enabled me to understand God’s will. God uses the siege and persecution of Satan to perfect man, to enable man to escape Satan’s influence so that we can be made by God into overcomers and enter into His kingdom. In this dark and evil country ruled over by the CCP government, people are only allowed to walk the path of evil and not the right path. The CCP government’s aim in doing this is to corrupt people so much that they can no longer tell good from evil or right from wrong, to make people advocate wickedness and forsake justice, until finally they perish along with it for having resisted God. Only by not capitulating when beleaguered on all sides by dark influences, by holding onto one’s faith, devotion and love before God, and by standing witness for God can one become a genuine overcomer, and only by doing this can one shame Satan and enable God to gain glory. I then said a prayer to God: “O God! You are using these demons of Satan in Your service in order to test my faith and to give me a chance to bear witness for You. In doing this, You exalt me, and I believe that everything that is happening to me now is orchestrated by You, and that You secretly scrutinize everything. I wish to stand witness for You and satisfy You in this trial. I ask only that You give me faith and strength, and the resolve to endure suffering, so that no matter what torment I may face, I will not fall or lose my way!”
At 9 a.m. on the morning of the third day, the police took me to an interrogation room. Brandishing my daughter’s cell phone, they began to question me. “The messages on this phone were sent by you. You said to your daughter that you were going to buy a house, so it seems as though you’re not short on cash.” These evil policemen were truly despicable—they left no stone unturned in their endeavor to squeeze every last penny out of me. I replied, “I was just joking around with her.” The policeman’s expression abruptly changed and, taking up a notepad, he began to smack it violently over my head and across my face until I felt dizzy and my face burned with pain. Through clenched teeth, he said, “Tell us! Where is your money? If you don’t tell us everything, we’ll drag you out and have you shot! Or else you’ll be sentenced to eight to ten years in prison!” I said I didn’t know anything. A tall and imposing policeman grew angry, launched at me and, grabbing hold of the back of my top, flung me a couple of yards across the floor. He then began to savagely kick my head, back and legs, saying as he did so, “This is what you get for not fessing up! You say you don’t know anything, but only a fool would believe you! If you don’t tell us what we want to know, then I’ll beat you to death this very day!” I gritted my teeth and bore the pain, calling on God constantly in my heart: “O God! These devils are so vicious. Please give me the strength to overcome their beatings and protect me so that I might stand witness for You.” Just then, I thought of God’s words that say: “The good soldiers of Christ must be brave and rely on Me to be spiritually strong; they must fight to become warriors and battle Satan to the death” (“Chapter 12” of Utterances of Christ in the Beginning in The Word Appears in the Flesh). “So long as you still have one breath, God will not let you die” (“Chapter 6” of Utterances of Christ in the Beginning in The Word Appears in the Flesh). God’s words gave me faith and strength, and they gave me the courage to overcome the hold that death had over me. I felt God’s love in that moment and saw that God was always beside me. I thought: “The more you beat me like this, the more I see your true colors as enemies of God. Even if I am to die, I will never surrender to you. If you think I’ll ever betray God, you can think again!” I instantly felt my body relax all over after thinking this. They alternated between beating me and questioning me that morning, and in the afternoon they made me kneel on the freezing, hard floor. They tortured me all that day until nightfall, and in the end I had been beaten so hard that my entire body ached unbearably and I hadn’t the strength to stand. They saw that they couldn’t get anything out of me by questioning me, so they escorted me back to the detention house.
Back in the detention house, the hard-hearted correctional officer never allowed me enough food but overloaded me with work tasks. She made me work for over 15 hours every day, and if I didn’t get all the work done, then she would have the head prisoner torment me. Because I’d only just begun to do this work and wasn’t performing quite up to speed, the head prisoner took the steel hammer I used in my work and hit me over the head with it. A large lump formed immediately on my head, after which she kicked and beat me until I was in unbearable pain all over my body and blood came trickling from my mouth. Being subjected to such cruel torture, I couldn’t help but think of my daughter. From the time she was arrested, I’d had no idea what tortures the evil demons were putting her through, much less how she was getting on in prison. Just then, I heard a sudden scream coming from the men’s cell next to mine, and one of the women in my cell said, “In here, killing someone is like killing an insect. One of the male prisoners couldn’t stand the torture so he ran away to the hills behind the prison. When the policemen found him, they beat him to death and then told his family that he’d killed himself. Just like that, it all ended in a cover-up.” This story terrified me, and I felt even more worried about my daughter. She’d only just turned 19 and had never had to suffer her whole life, much less had she experienced any kind of difficulty like this. These devils who could murder someone without blinking an eye were capable of any despicable act one could think of, and I didn’t know whether my daughter would be able to endure the torture and cruelty of these devils. Because I had no idea whether my daughter was even alive or dead, I felt deep anguish, and even in my dreams at night I would see terrible scenes of her being tortured by those demons. I would often wake from these dreams with a start, and then would be so upset that I wouldn’t be able to sleep again the entire night.
The next day, the correctional officer found some excuse to say that I wasn’t working hard enough and hit me across the face for no reason at all. She struck me so hard that my face burned and my ears were ringing. That wasn’t enough for her, though, as she yelled at me, “I don’t believe we can’t correct you in here, so I’ll give you a taste of the dreaded ‘iron maiden’!” She then gave an order and five or six others came and cut off so much of my hair that I no longer resembled myself. They then held me down on the floor and made me wear the most terrible tool of torture in all the prison—the “iron maiden.” They placed an iron ring on my head, one on each hand and again one on each foot, which were linked together by iron bars. Once I was all shackled with these implements of torture, I couldn’t even stay standing, but had to lean against the wall. The correctional officer made me wear these implements of torture every day from 5 a.m. to midnight (I had to remain standing for the full 19 hours), and ordered the head prisoner, saying, “Watch her for me. If she tries to sleep, give her a kick!” The head prisoner thereafter watched me every day and wouldn’t let me close my eyes for a second. Because these rings were made of iron and they were all over my body, it felt like they were cutting off my circulation. I ended up being totally unable to keep my eyes open, and so the head prisoner cursed me and, one time, she gave me a kicking as well. My whole body began to tremble and I could hardly bear the pain. When it came time to sleep at night, four prisoners would lift me up onto a large board I used to work on during the day, and the next morning they would come and lift me back down. Over those few days, there just so happened to be a terrible snowstorm outside, and the weather was unusually cold. To torment me, the hateful correctional officer made me wear these iron rings for seven days and seven nights. I couldn’t eat, drink, or go to the toilet by myself. When I had to go to the toilet, other prisoners who hadn’t managed to finish their work had to help me. All the prisoners were busy every day, and so every time they fed me food, they did so carelessly, and very seldom did they give me any water to drink. I truly suffered from the hunger and the cold, and every day felt like a lifetime. Early every morning when they lifted me down off the large board, I would feel incredibly anguished, not knowing how I would be able to endure another day. I longed only for night to fall, and it would have been fine by me if the sun never rose again. Because the iron rings were so heavy, on the second day that I was made to wear them, my hands swelled and turned black and purple, and the skin looked like it was about to split open. My whole body was swollen up like a balloon, and the swelling still hasn’t gone down completely even after ten months. I was under such torment then that death seemed preferable to life, and I was at the limit of my endurance of pain. And so, I begged God in prayer: “O God! I really cannot take this torment. I don’t want to live but I can’t die either. I just ask that You take my living breath, as I don’t wish to live one more minute.” Just as I was making this unreasonable request of God, wishing to die as a way to escape my pain, I thought of God’s words that say: “Today, most people do not have that knowledge. They believe that suffering is without value…. The suffering of some people reaches an extreme, and their thoughts turn to death. This is not true love for God; such people are cowards, they have no perseverance, they are weak and powerless! … Thus, during these last days you must bear testimony to God. No matter how great your suffering, you should walk until the very end, and even at your last breath, still you must be faithful to God and at the mercy of God; only this is truly loving God, and only this is the strong and resounding testimony” (“Only by Experiencing Painful Trials Can You Know the Loveliness of God” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). “Since you are a human being, you should expend yourself for God and endure all suffering! You should gladly and assuredly accept the little suffering you are subjected to today and live a meaningful life, like Job and Peter. … You are people who pursue the right path, those who seek improvement. You are people who rise up in the nation of the great red dragon, those whom God calls righteous. Is that not the most meaningful life?” (“Practice (2)” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). God’s words fell upon my parched heart like sweet dew. “Yes,” I thought. “This is the moment when God needs me to bear witness for Him. If I die because I’m unwilling to suffer pain, wouldn’t that make me a coward? Although I’m now suffering cruelty and torment at the hands of these devils, is it not the most meaningful and worthwhile thing to be able to bear witness for God and to be called righteous by God? I’ve followed God for all these years and have enjoyed so much grace and so many blessings from Him, so, today, I should bear witness for God before Satan—it is my honor to do so. I will cling to life no matter how much I suffer or how hard it gets, that God’s heart may be satisfied.” God’s words awakened both my heart and my spirit and enabled me to understand His will. I no longer wished to die, but instead wished only to endure any pain and submit to God’s orchestrations and arrangements. At last, seven days and nights of physical punishment came to an end. I had been tortured nearly to the brink of death, the skin on my heels had rubbed off and layer after layer of skin around my mouth had peeled away. I later heard a male prisoner in the cell next door say, “A strong and robust thirty-something male prisoner died under that torture.” When I heard this, I kept thanking God in my heart, as I knew that I hadn’t survived just because I’d been lucky, but because of God’s guidance and protection. It was God’s words imbued with life force that had kept me going, or else, given my frail, female constitution, I would have died from that torture long ago.
Having undergone that cruel torture, I truly witnessed the omnipotence of God and, even more so, I came to appreciate how powerless I am. During that trial, I couldn’t even take care of myself, and yet I had worried about whether or not my daughter would be able to stand firm—hadn’t I been just fretting over things of my own imagining? My daughter’s fate was in God’s hands and my worrying about her could not help her in the slightest. All it did was give Satan an opportunity to get to me and make me vulnerable to its deception and harm. All things are orchestrated and arranged by God, and I knew then that I should entrust my daughter to God and look to Him, trusting that, however God might lead me through this adversity, He would also be leading my daughter through this terrible time. And so, I said a prayer to God and thought of God’s words that say: “Why do you not entrust them into My hands? Do you not have sufficient faith in Me? Or is it that you are afraid I will make inappropriate arrangements for you? Why do you always worry about the family of your flesh? You always pine for your loved ones! Do I have a certain place in your heart?” (“Chapter 59” of Utterances of Christ in the Beginning in The Word Appears in the Flesh). God’s words remedied my state. “That’s right,” I thought. “The hardships people go through and the pain they suffer are all predestined by God. The suffering my daughter is going through has been permitted to befall her by God. Though I may not understand it and I don’t know what’s happening to her, God’s love is surely behind it all, for the love God has for man is the realest, the truest love. I wish to entrust my daughter to God for Him to rule over and make arrangements for her, and I am willing to obey all that comes from God.” Just when I let go of all these things and became willing to submit to God’s orchestrations, I saw my daughter in court. She surreptitiously told me that God had guided her to overcome some hardships and tortures, and that she had witnessed God’s blessings: God had mobilized some wealthy prisoners to help her, with some giving her clothes and some buying her things to eat and drink; when the head prisoner came to bully her under some flimsy pretext, someone stood up for her. These are just some of the blessings God bestowed on my daughter in prison. Through these experiences, my daughter came to have some understanding of God’s wondrous and wise work, and she came to appreciate that the love of God can never be put into words. I was overjoyed to hear these things from her, and my eyes filled with tears of gratitude to God. In my daughter, I saw once again God’s almighty sovereignty and wondrous deeds, and I saw that God had always been guiding and protecting us both so that we could pass through this adversity and persecution. My faith in God was thereby strengthened even further.
Over the days that followed, the correctional officer paid no attention to the fact that my body was swollen and in pain but continued to force me to work. Before long, I became so exhausted that I ended up with a whole host of new injuries on top of my existing ones, and my lower back hurt so much that I couldn’t stand up straight. The moment I moved or turned, I would feel shooting pains throughout every bone and every joint in my body, as though they were all being torn apart, and so it became difficult to fall asleep at night. Despite this, the correctional officer still didn’t let up on me, but instead made the head prisoner bully me at every opportunity. Because I had no money to buy them things to eat, the head prisoner violently kicked my lower body, at which I instinctively ducked away and tried to hide. Her frustration turned to rage and she kicked and stomped on me with abandon. As there was no oil used in the dishes we ate, I was often constipated, and if I spent a long time squatting over the toilet, they would curse me and punish me by making me empty the toilet bucket for over ten days. They would find any arbitrary reason to punish me by making me take others’ shifts and stand guard all night. They also said that I used too much raw material when I worked, and so they fined me 50 yuan. The correctional officer used the opportunity to take me to the office, and tried to lure me in by saying, “If you can tell me who else you believed in God with, I’ll ask the president of the court to reduce your sentence, and we won’t fine you this 50 yuan either.” These evil police had so many cunning schemes up their sleeves, alternating between soft and hard tactics, and trying every strategy they could think of to make me betray God, but all in vain! I refused her offer.
On August 25, 2008, the CCP government charged me with “joining a xie jiao organization and obstructing the enforcement of the law” and sentenced me to three years’ reeducation through labor. They then escorted me to the Provincial Women’s Labor Camp to serve my sentence. My daughter was sentenced to one year of reeducation through labor, to be served in the local detention house.
After two weeks in prison, the prison guards wanted to separate the prisoners into different work groups. I’d heard that the work done by the elderly prisoners was a little lighter, and I thought about how my body had been badly damaged, and almost ruined at the detention house, and about how I hadn’t the strength to do hard physical work any longer. I prayed to God about this, asking Him to open up a way for me. If He truly needed me to continue experiencing that kind of situation, then I would be willing to obey. Thanks be to God for hearing my prayer, as sure enough I was sent to the elderly prisoners’ work group. Everyone else said this was unheard of, but I knew well in my heart that this was all being orchestrated by God, and that God was showing me compassion for my weakness. In the elderly prisoners’ group, the prison guards spoke very pleasantly, “Whoever works hard and makes a good effort will have their sentence reduced. We will not show favor to anyone….” I believed them when they said this, thinking that the guards here were a little better than the correctional officers in the detention house. And so, I threw myself into the work and ended up in the top ten most productive workers out of almost 300 people. When it came time to announce the list of people whose sentences were to be reduced, however, the prison guards only arranged to reduce the sentences of those who liked to fight and who bought them gifts—my sentence wasn’t reduced even by one day. One prisoner worked herself to the bone in order to get her sentence reduced, but to her surprise the prison guards just said, “We ought to keep someone as capable as you in here for life!” When I heard this, I hated myself for my foolishness, for not understanding the cruel and brutal essence of the CCP government, and for having been so taken in by their lies. In fact, God said long ago: “For the sky above all mankind is turbid and dark, without the slightest impression of clarity, and the human world is plunged into pitchy darkness, so that one living in it cannot even see his outstretched hand before his face or the sun when he lifts up his head” (“What It Means to Be a Real Person” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). Comparing the revelations of God’s words against the facts of reality, I finally saw that the CCP government is nothing but darkness and filth from the very top to the very bottom and has not the slightest trace of fairness or justice. Those evil police could only cheat and fool people with lies and were simply incapable of treating us like human beings. To them, the prisoners were nothing more than tools for making money—the more capable the prisoners were, the less likely they were to have their sentences reduced. The prison guards wanted people to render service to them all the time and to work like mules so they could make even more money out of them. To increase work output, the evil police wouldn’t even let us use the bathroom, and several times I just couldn’t hold it and urinated in my trousers. Because I stood out for the amount of work I could get through, the main work team arranged to have me transferred to become a “pacesetter.” I had already seen their ugly faces clearly, and I knew that if I was transferred then they would surely exert more pressure on me to work even harder. I was afraid to be transferred, and so I constantly called on God: “O God! I know this is a trap that the demons have laid for me, but there is no way to escape it. Please open up a way out for me.” To my surprise, after saying this prayer, despite the hot weather my hands grew cold and my fingers became inseparably clenched tightly together and turned blue. The correctional officer for the main work team said I was faking it and forced two others to carry me upstairs to work. All I could do was cry desperately to God, with the result that I ended up falling from the third floor down to the second floor. Seeing this, they became afraid, and so they made me go back to join the elderly work group. Afterward, I realized that my body was not actually injured at all—once again I’d witnessed God protecting me.
In prison, believers in Almighty God are labeled as political prisoners and the CCP devils watch us all the time, meaning that we don’t even have the right to speak. If I spoke to someone, the prison guards would see and then question us as to what we’d been saying. At night, they made the head prisoner watch me to see whether I was discussing matters of faith with other people. Whenever anyone in my family came to visit me, the prison guards made me learn to say some phrases that slandered God, and if I didn’t say them then they would purposefully disrupt my conversations with my family (which meant that I would have less time to talk with them). Because I knew that to say such things would offend God, whenever I came across this situation, I would pray silently to God, and say, “O God! This is Satan trying to tempt me. Please protect me and keep me from saying anything that might offend Your disposition.” Because I never said anything they wanted me to say, there was nothing the prison guards could do about it in the end.
Three years in prison allowed me to see clearly the true colors of the CCP government. It acts one way to people’s face and then another way behind their back; to the outside world, it vaunts “freedom of religion,” but behind the scenes it persecutes and disrupts God’s work in every way possible, and it frantically arrests believers in God, extracts confessions from them through torture, and cruelly abuses them. It uses the most despicable means imaginable to force people to reject God, betray God and surrender to its despotic power in order to achieve its evil objective of subjugating and controlling people for all time. Mankind was created by God and is supposed to worship God. And yet the CCP government does all it can to banish the coming of God, it obstructs people from believing in God, preaching the gospel and testifying to God, and by doing so it completely exposes its evil essence that is both perverse and runs contrary to Heaven. After experiencing this persecution and adversity, although my flesh suffered some pain, I have no complaints and no regrets, for I have gained so much from God. When I was feeling weak and powerless, it was God who granted me faith and strength time and time again, enabling me to find the determination to battle with Satan till the very end; when I felt sorrowful and dejected, sad and despairing, it was God who used His words to comfort and encourage me; when I was at the brink of death, it was the words of God which gave me the motivation to survive and the courage to keep on living; whenever I was in danger, God stretched forth His hand of salvation in the nick of time, protecting me, helping me to escape danger and delivering me to safety. Through this experience, I not only came to see more clearly the God-opposing essence of the devil Satan, and came to hate it more deeply and more completely, but at the same time, I also came to have some true understanding of God’s wondrous deeds, as well as God’s love and salvation. I came to have a real appreciation for the goodness and humility of Christ and for the suffering He endured to save mankind, and my faith and love for God were deepened.
After I was released from prison, because the CCP devils drove wedges between us, my friends and family all rejected and shunned me. My brothers and sisters in the church, however, all cared for me and looked after me, and they gave me everything I needed to start life again—by doing this, they gave me a feeling of warmth that I would be hard pressed to find anywhere else. Thanks be to God for saving me: No matter how hard the road ahead might be, I will follow God till the very end and seek to live out a meaningful life to repay Him for His love.