Practice (2)

In times past, people trained themselves to be with God and live within the spirit at every single moment. Compared to the practice of today, that is a simple form of spiritual training; it is the shallowest and simplest way of practice before people enter onto the right track of life, and it constitutes the very first stage of practice in people’s faith. If people always rely on this kind of practice in their lives, they will have a lot of feelings and will likely make mistakes, and they will be incapable of entering into true life experiences; they will only be able to train their spirits, draw near to God normally in their hearts, and will always find tremendous joy in having God with them. They will limit themselves to the small scope of their togetherness with God, and will be unable to access anything more profound. People who live within these boundaries are incapable of making any great progress. At any time, they are liable to cry out, “Ah! Lord Jesus. Amen!” They are like this practically every day—it is the practice of times past, the practice of living in the spirit at every moment. Is it not vulgar? Today, when it is time to ponder God’s words, just focus on pondering God’s words; when it is time to put the truth into practice, just focus on putting the truth into practice; when it is time to perform your duty, just perform your duty. This kind of practice is actually quite freeing; it releases you. It is not like how the old religious men pray and say grace. Of course, before, this was the practice of people of faith, but now practicing this way is too backward. God’s work is now at a higher level; what is spoken of today, “bringing God into real life,” is the most important aspect of practice. This is the normal humanity that people are expected to possess in their real lives, and what people should possess in their normal humanity is all the words God speaks today. Bringing these words of God into real life is the practical meaning of “bringing God into real life.” Today, people should primarily equip themselves with the following: In one regard, they must improve their caliber, get educated, and improve their reading and comprehension skills; in another, they must lead the life of a normal person. You have just come before God from the world; you must first train your heart to be quiet before God. This is the very beginning of practice, and it is also the first step in achieving change in your life disposition. Some people are relatively adaptable in their practice; they ponder the truth whilst working, figuring out the truths and the principles of practice that they should understand in reality. One aspect is that you must have a normal human life, and the other is that there must be entry into the truth. All of these things constitute the best practice for real life.

Bringing God into people’s real lives primarily requires that they worship God, seek to know God, and perform the duty of a created being within normal humanity. It is not that they absolutely have to pray to God every time they do something, that it is not okay and they should feel indebted to Him if they do not pray. Today’s practice is not like that; it is really relaxed and simple! It does not require people to abide by doctrines. Rather, each person should act according to their individual stature: If your family members do not believe in God, treat them as nonbelievers, and if they believe, treat them as believers. Do not exercise love and patience, rather, exercise wisdom. Some people go out to buy vegetables, and as they are walking along they murmur: “O God! What vegetables would You have me buy today? I beg Your assistance. God asks that we glorify His name in all things and that we all bear testimony, so even if the seller gives me something rotten, I will still give thanks to God—I will endure. We who believe in God cannot pick and choose from among the vegetables.” They think that doing this is testimony, and the result is that they spend money to buy a bunch of rotten vegetables, but they still pray and say: “O God! I’ll still eat these rotten vegetables as long as You find it acceptable.” Is such practice not distorted? Is it not following a doctrine? Before, people trained to live in the spirit at every moment—this is related to the work previously done in the Age of Grace. Piety, humility, love, patience, giving thanks for all things—these were what were required of every believer in the Age of Grace. At that time, people prayed to God in all things; they would pray when they bought clothes, and when notified of a gathering, they would also pray: “O God! Would You have me go or not? If You would have me go, then prepare a smooth path for me. If You would not have me go, have me trip and fall.” They would beseech God while praying, and after praying they would feel uneasy and would not go. Some sisters, fearing that upon returning home from gatherings they might suffer beatings from their nonbelieving husbands, would feel uneasy when they prayed and therefore would not go to gatherings. They believed this to be God’s will, when in fact, if they had gone, nothing would have happened. The result was that they missed a gathering. All of this was the result of people’s ignorance. People who practice in this way all live by their own feelings. This way of practicing is so distorted and is colored with vagueness. There are too many of their personal feelings and thoughts. If you are told of a gathering, then go; there is no further need to pray to God. Is this not simple? If you need to buy an item of clothing today, then go right out and do it. Do not pray to God and say: “O God! Would You have me go or not? What if one of the brothers and sisters happens to come around when I’m gone?” You are afraid a brother or a sister might come over so you do not go, yet the result is that evening rolls around and no one has come. Even in the Age of Grace, this way of practicing was deviant and erroneous. Thus, if people practice as in times gone by, there will be no change in their life. They will merely ignorantly resign themselves to whatever comes, will pay no heed to discernment, and will do nothing but blindly obey and endure. At that time, people focused on glorifying God—but God gained no glory from them, for they had not lived out anything practical. They merely restrained themselves and limited themselves according to their personal notions, and even many years of practice brought no change in their life. They knew only to endure, to be humble, to love, and forgive, but lacked the slightest enlightenment from the Holy Spirit. How could people know God that way? And how could they possibly glorify God?

People can only enter onto the right track of belief in God if they bring God into their real lives, and into their normal human lives. God’s words lead you today; there is no need to seek and grope about as in times past. When you can practice according to God’s words, and can examine and measure yourself according to the human states that I have revealed, then you will be able to achieve change. This is not doctrine, but what God requires of man. Today, let Me tell you how things are: Concern yourself only with acting according to My words. My requirements of you are based on the needs of a normal person. I have already told you My words; as long as you focus on practicing them, you will be in accord with God’s intentions. Now is the time of living within God’s words. God’s words have explained everything, all has been made clear, and as long as you live by God’s words, you will lead a life that is completely free and emancipated. In the past, when people brought God into their real lives, they practiced and went through too much doctrine and ritual; in even minor matters, they would pray and seek, putting the clearly-stated words of God aside and neglecting to read them. Instead, they would devote all their efforts to seeking—with the result that there was no effect. Take the issues of food and clothing, for example: You pray and put these matters in God’s hands, asking that God sort everything out for you. When God hears these words, He will say: “Do I need to concern Myself with such trifling details? Where have the normal humanity and reason that I created for you gone?” Sometimes, someone makes a mistake in their actions; then they believe they have offended God and they become inhibited. Some people’s states are very good, but when they do some small thing incorrectly, they believe that God is chastising them. In fact, this is not God’s doing, but is the influence of people’s own minds. Sometimes, there is nothing wrong with how you are experiencing, but others say you are not experiencing correctly, and so you become ensnared—you become negative, and dark inside. Often, when people are negative in this way, they believe they are being chastised by God, but God says: “I have not done any work of chastisement in you; how could you blame Me thus?” People become negative too easily. They are also frequently oversensitive and often complain about God. God does not require you to suffer in that way, yet you allow yourself to fall into that state. There is no value in that kind of suffering. People do not know the work done by God, and in many things they are ignorant and unable to see clearly, so they become trapped in their own notions and imaginings, growing ever more deeply entangled. Some people say that all things and matters are in God’s hands—so could God not know when people are negative? Of course God knows. When you are ensnared in human notions, the Holy Spirit has no way of working in you. Often times, some people become trapped in a negative state, but I still carry on with My work. Whether you are negative or positive, I am not constrained by you—but you should know that the many words I speak, and the great amount of work I do are closely linked, one to another, according to people’s states. When you are negative, this does not obstruct the work of the Holy Spirit. During the time of chastisement and the trial of death, people were all ensnared in a negative state, but this did not obstruct My work. When you were negative, the Holy Spirit continued doing what needed to be done in others. You may stop pursuing for a month, but I continue working—whatever you do in the present or the future, it cannot stop the work of the Holy Spirit. Some negative states come from human weakness; when people believe they are truly incapable of meeting God’s requirements or grasping them, they become negative. For example, during the time of chastisement, God’s words spoke of loving God to a certain point amid chastisement, but people believed themselves incapable. They felt especially sorrowful and lamented that their flesh had been so deeply corrupted by Satan, and that their caliber was so poor. They felt that it was such a pity that they were born into this environment. And some people felt it was too late for them to believe in God and know God, and that they were unworthy of being made perfect. All these are normal human states.

Man’s flesh is of Satan, it is full of rebellious dispositions, it is deplorably filthy, and it is something unclean. People covet the enjoyment of the flesh too much and there are too many manifestations of the flesh; this is why God despises man’s flesh to a certain extent. When people cast off the filthy, corrupt things of Satan, they gain God’s salvation. But if they still do not divest themselves of filth and corruption, then they are still living under the power of Satan. People’s conniving, deceitfulness, and crookedness are all things of Satan. God’s salvation of you is to extricate you from these things of Satan. God’s work cannot be wrong; it is all done in order to save people from darkness. When you have believed to a certain point and can divest yourself of the corruption of the flesh, and are no longer constrained by this corruption, will you not have been saved? When you live under Satan’s power you are incapable of manifesting God, you are something filthy, and cannot receive God’s inheritance. Once you have been cleansed and made perfect, you will be holy, you will be a normal person, and you will be blessed by God and delightful to God. The work done by God today is salvation, and, moreover, it is judgment, chastisement, and cursing. It has a number of aspects. You all see that God’s utterances contain judgment and chastisement, as well as curses. I speak in order to achieve an effect, to make people know themselves, and not to put people to death. My heart is for your sakes. Speaking is one of the methods by which I work; through words I express God’s disposition and allow you to understand God’s will. Your flesh may die, but you have a spirit and a soul. If people only had flesh, then there would be no meaning in their faith, nor would there be any meaning in all this work I have done. Today, I speak in one way and then another; for a time I am extremely hateful toward people, and then for a time I am supremely loving; I do all of this to achieve change in your dispositions, as well as to transform your notions of God’s work.

The last days have arrived and countries across the world are in turmoil. There is political disarray, there are famines, pestilences, floods, and droughts appearing everywhere. There is catastrophe in the world of man; Heaven has also sent down disaster. These are signs of the last days. But to people, it seems like a world of gaiety and splendor; it is becoming more and more so, people’s hearts are all drawn to it, and many people are entrapped and unable to extricate themselves from it; great numbers will be misled by those who engage in trickery and sorcery. If you do not strive for progress, are without ideals, and have not rooted yourself in the true way, you will be swept away by the swelling tides of sin. China is the most backward of all countries; it is the land where the great red dragon lies coiled, it has the most people who worship idols and engage in sorcery, the most temples, and it is a place in which filthy demons reside. You were born of it, you have been educated by it and steeped in its influence; you have been corrupted and tortured by it, but after being awoken you rebel against it and are completely gained by God. This is the glory of God, and this is why this stage of work has great significance. God has done work of such great scale, has spoken so many words, and He will ultimately completely gain you—this is one part of the work of God’s management, and you are the “victory spoils” of God’s battle with Satan. The more you understand the truth and the better your life of the church is, the more the great red dragon is brought to its knees. These are all matters of the spiritual realm—they are the battles of the spiritual realm, and when God is victorious, Satan shall be shamed and fall down. This stage of God’s work has tremendous significance. God does work on such a grand scale and completely saves this group of people so you can escape from the influence of Satan, live in the holy land, live in God’s light, and have the light’s leadership and guidance. Then there is meaning to your life. What you eat and wear is different from unbelievers; you enjoy the words of God and lead a life of meaning—and what do they enjoy? They enjoy only their “ancestral heritage” and their “national spirit.” They have not the slightest vestige of humanity! Your clothes, words, and actions are all different from theirs. Ultimately, you will completely escape from the filth, no longer be ensnared in the temptation of Satan, and gain God’s daily provision. You should always be cautious. Though you live in a filthy place, you are untainted with filth and can live alongside God, receiving His great protection. God has chosen you from among all on this yellow land. Are you not the most blessed people? You are a created being—you should of course worship God and pursue a life of meaning. If you do not worship God but live within your filthy flesh, then are you not just a beast in human attire? 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. In this world, man wears the devil’s clothing, eats food from the devil, and works and serves under the devil’s thumb, becoming completely trampled in its filth. If you do not grasp the meaning of life or obtain the true way, then what significance is there in living like this? 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?

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