The Proper Fulfillment of Duty Requires Harmonious Cooperation (Part One)

Harmonious cooperation is required for the proper fulfillment of duty. Because all people have corrupt dispositions and none possess the truth, it is only through harmonious cooperation that they can fulfill their duties properly. Harmonious cooperation is not only beneficial to people’s life entry, but also to the proper fulfillment of their duties, and the work of the church. Those who cooperate harmoniously are people of relatively good humanity and honesty, but if someone’s humanity is not good, if they are too arrogant and self-righteous, or too crooked and crafty, then they have no way of cooperating harmoniously with others. Some people don’t engage in honest work, are not conscientious when fulfilling their duty, and always commit evil acts. People like this cannot cooperate with others, and cannot find harmony or get along with anyone. Such people have no humanity, and belong with the beasts and the devil, Satan. All obedient and submissive people of good humanity will assuredly have results when fulfilling their duty, and easily cooperate with others. As for those who do not attend honestly to fulfilling their duty, who act out, or even disturb other people who are performing their duty—if they are incorrigible after multiple exhortations, and are never of the mind to repent, always causing disruptions and disturbances in their duties, and the quality of their humanity is vile, then they should be cleared out without delay, so as to avoid bringing trouble or calamity upon the work of the church. This is a problem that leaders and workers must solve.

Some people are irresponsible when fulfilling their duty, resulting in work always having to be redone. This seriously affects the work’s effectiveness. Apart from a person being deficient in specialist knowledge and lacking experience, are there any other reasons for the appearance of this problem? (When a person is comparatively arrogant and self-righteous, makes decisions on their own, and does not perform their duty according to principle.) Specialist knowledge and experience can be learned and accumulated bit by bit, but if there is a problem with a person’s disposition, do you think it is easy to solve? (No, it’s not easy.) Then, how should it be solved? (The person must experience chastisement and judgment, and be pruned and dealt with.) They need to experience judgment and chastisement, and be pruned and dealt with—these words are correct, but can only be achieved by those who pursue the truth. Can those who do not love the truth accept being pruned and dealt with? No, they cannot. When work always has to be redone as people perform their duty, the biggest problem is not a deficiency in specialist knowledge or lack of experience, but because they are too self-righteous and arrogant, because they do not work harmoniously, but decide and act alone—with the result that they make a mess of the work, and nothing is achieved, and all the effort is wasted. And the most grievous problem in this is people’s corrupt dispositions. When people’s corrupt dispositions are too grievous, they are no longer good people, they are wicked people. The dispositions of wicked people are much more severe than ordinary corrupt dispositions. Wicked people are liable to commit wicked deeds, they are liable to disrupt and disturb the work of the church. All that wicked people are capable of when they perform a duty is to do things badly and mess things up; their service is more trouble than it’s worth. Some people are not wicked, but they perform their duty according to their own corrupt dispositions—and they, likewise, are incapable of performing their duty properly. In sum, corrupt dispositions are extremely obstructive to people performing their duty properly. Which aspect of people’s corrupt dispositions, would you say, has the greatest impact on the effectiveness with which they perform their duty? (Arrogance and self-righteousness.) And what are the chief manifestations of arrogance and self-righteousness? Making decisions alone, going your own way, not listening to other people’s suggestions, not consulting with others, not cooperating harmoniously, and always trying to have the final say on things. Even though a good few brothers and sisters may be cooperating to perform a particular duty, each of them attending to their own task, certain group leaders or supervisors always want to have the final say; whatever they are doing, they never cooperate harmoniously with others, and they do not engage in fellowship, and they rashly do things without reaching consensus with others. They make everyone listen only to them, and herein is the problem. Moreover, when the others see the problem, yet do not come forth to stop the person in charge, it ultimately results in a situation where people are not effective in their duties, a complete mess is made of the work, and everyone involved has to redo their work, tiring themselves out in the process. Who is responsible for causing such a severe result? (The person in charge.) Are the other people involved also responsible? (Yes.) The person in charge made decisions on their own, insisting on doing things their way, and the others saw the problem, but did nothing to stop them, and, what is more serious, they even follow along; does this not make them accomplices? If you do not constrain, block, or expose this person, but instead follow them and allow them to manipulate you, are you not giving free rein to Satan to disturb the work of the church? This is certainly your problem. When you see a problem yet do nothing to stop it, do not fellowship about it, do not try to limit it, and moreover you do not report it to those above you, but play the part of people pleaser, is this a sign of disloyalty? Are people pleasers loyal to God? Not even a little. Such a person is not just disloyal to God—they are acting as Satan’s accomplice, its attendant and follower. They are faithless in their duty and responsibility, but to Satan, they are quite loyal. Herein lies the essence of the problem. As to professional inadequacy, it is possible to constantly learn and draw together your experiences while performing your duty. Such problems can be easily resolved. The most difficult thing to resolve is man’s corrupt disposition. If you do not pursue the truth or resolve your corrupt disposition, but are always playing the people pleaser, and not dealing with or helping those whom you have seen violate the principles, nor exposing or revealing them, but always shrinking back, not taking responsibility, then such performance of duty as yours will only compromise and delay the work of the church. Treating the fulfillment of your duty as a trifle without taking an iota of responsibility doesn’t just affect the work’s effectiveness, but also leads to repeated delays in the church’s work. When you fulfill your duty this way, are you not just doing the bare minimum and being deceptive toward God? Does it show any devotion to God? If you are constantly just trying to do the bare minimum while fulfilling your duty, and are steadfastly unrepentant, then you will inevitably be cast out.

How should you handle difficulties you encounter while performing your duty? The best way is for everyone to seek the truth together to solve a problem and reach a consensus. As long as you understand the principles, you’ll know what to do. This is the optimal way to solve problems. If you do not seek the truth to solve a problem, and instead act only on your personal notions and imagination, then you are not fulfilling your duty. What difference is there between this and working in secular society or Satan’s world? God’s house is ruled by the truth, and by God. No matter what problem appears, the truth must be sought to solve it. Regardless of how many different opinions there are or how much they differ, all of them should be brought up and fellowshiped on. Then, after a consensus is reached, action should be taken in accordance with principles. In this way, not only can you solve the problem, but you can also practice the truth and properly fulfill your duty. You can also achieve harmonious cooperation during the process of solving the problem. If those who do their duty all love the truth, then it is easy for them to accept and obey the truth; but if they are arrogant and self-righteous, then it is not easy for them to accept the truth, even when people fellowship on it. There are people who do not understand the truth, yet always want others to listen to them. People like this only disturb others who are doing their duty. This is the root of the issue, and it must be resolved before one’s duty can be properly performed. If, in doing one’s duty, one is always arrogant and willful, always making decisions on one’s own, doing everything recklessly and as one pleases, without cooperating or discussing things with other people, and without seeking the truth principles—what sort of attitude is this toward one’s duty? Can one’s duty be properly fulfilled this way? If this kind of person never accepts being pruned and dealt with, doesn’t accept the truth at all, and still continues to do things their own way, rashly and as they please, without repenting or changing—then it is not just an attitude problem, but a problem with their humanity and character. This is someone with no humanity. Can someone with no humanity fulfill their duty properly? Of course not. If, while doing their duty, a person even commits all kinds of outrageous acts and disturbs the work of the church, then they are an evil person. People like that are not fit to do their duty. Their performance of duty results only in disturbance and damage, and they do more harm than good, so they should be disqualified from performing their duty and removed from the church. That is why the ability to perform one’s duty well is not solely dependent on a person’s caliber, but principally on their attitude toward their duty, their character, whether their humanity is good or bad, and whether they are able to accept the truth. These are the root issues. Whether your heart is in your duty, whether you’re doing your best and acting wholeheartedly, whether you have a serious and conscientious attitude toward fulfilling your duty, whether you are earnest and work hard: these are the things God looks at, and God scrutinizes everyone. Can people’s duties be properly fulfilled if most of them are irresponsible and no one is earnest, and despite knowing in their hearts what is the right thing to do, they do not strive toward the principles, and no one takes it seriously? In this kind of situation, leaders and workers must follow up, inspect, and offer guidance, or find a responsible person to be the group leader or the person in charge. This way, most of the people can be spurred into action, and a good result can be achieved when they perform their duties. If there appears an individual who disturbs and damages, then let them be directly removed, as with the root problem solved it will be easy for people to be effective in their duty. Some people may have a little caliber, but are irresponsible in performing their duties. They may have technical skills or professional knowledge, but do not teach it to other people. Leaders and workers must solve this problem. They should fellowship with them, and encourage them to teach their skills to others, so that others learn the skills as quickly as possible, and master the professional knowledge. As someone well-versed in professional knowledge, you must not put on airs or flaunt your qualifications; you should proactively teach your skills and knowledge to novices, so that everyone can perform their duties well together. It may be that you are the most knowledgeable about your profession and lead in terms of skill, but this is a gift that God has given you, and you should use it to perform your duty and make use of your strengths. No matter how skilled or talented you are, you cannot undertake the work alone; a duty is performed more effectively if everyone is able to grasp the skills and knowledge of a profession. As the saying goes, a fence needs three posts. No matter how capable an individual is, without the help of everyone else, it’s not enough. Therefore, none should be arrogant and none should wish to act or make decisions on their own. People should forsake the flesh, put aside their own ideas and opinions, and work in harmony with everyone else. Whoever has professional knowledge should lovingly help others, so that they may also master these skills and knowledge. This is of benefit to the performance of duty. If having a skill is always viewed and treated as a meal ticket, and you fear teaching it to others will result in your own starvation—this is the view of unbelievers. It is a selfish, contemptible practice, and will not fly in God’s house. If you are never able to accept the truth, and are never willing to perform service, then you will only be cast out. If you are mindful of God’s will and are willing to be faithful to the work of His house, you should offer up all your strengths and skills, so that others may learn and grasp them, and perform their duties better. This is what accords with God’s will; only such people have humanity, and they are loved and blessed by God.

What must one do to perform their duty well? One must come to perform it with all their heart and all their energy. Using all one’s heart and energy means keeping all one’s thoughts on performing their duty and not letting other things occupy them, and then applying the energy that one has, exerting the entirety of one’s power, and bringing one’s caliber, gifts, strengths, and the things they have understood to bear on the task. If you have the comprehension and understanding ability, and have a good idea, you must communicate with others about it. This is what it means to cooperate in harmony. This is how you will perform your duty well, how you will achieve satisfactory performance of your duty. If you wish always to take on everything yourself, if you always want to do great things alone, if you always want the focus to be on you and not others, are you performing your duty? What you are doing is called autocracy; it is putting on a show. It is satanic behavior, not the performance of duty. No one, no matter their strengths, gifts, or special talents, can take on all the work themselves; they must learn to cooperate in harmony if they are to do the church’s work well. That is why harmonious cooperation is a principle of the practice of performing one’s duty. As long as you apply all your heart and all your energy and all your faithfulness, and offer up everything you can do, you are performing your duty well. If you have a thought or idea, tell it to others; do not hold it back or keep it tucked away—if you have suggestions, offer them; whoever’s idea is in accordance with the truth is to be accepted and obeyed. Do this, and you will have achieved cooperation in harmony. This is what it means to perform one’s duty faithfully. In performing your duty, you are not to take on everything yourself, nor are you to work yourself to death, or to be “the only flower in blossom” or maverick; rather, you are to learn how to cooperate with others in harmony, and to do all you can, to fulfill your responsibilities, to exert all your energy. That is what it means to perform your duty. To perform your duty is to brandish all the power and light that you have in order to achieve a result. That is enough. Do not try always to show off, always to say high-sounding things, to do things by yourself. You should learn how to work with others, and you should focus more on listening to others’ suggestions and discovering their strengths. In this way, cooperating in harmony becomes easy. If you try always to show off and have what you say go, you are not cooperating in harmony. What are you doing? You are causing a disturbance and undermining others. To cause a disturbance and undermine others is to play the role of Satan; it is not the performance of duty. If you always do things that cause a disturbance and undermine others, then no matter how much effort you expend or care you take, God will not remember. You may be of little strength, but if you are capable of working with others, and are able to accept suitable suggestions, and if you have the right motivations, you can protect the work of God’s house, then you are a right person. Sometimes, with a single sentence, you can solve a problem and benefit everyone; sometimes, after you fellowship on a single statement of the truth, everyone has a path to practice, and is able to work harmoniously together, and all strive toward a common goal, and share the same views and opinions, and so work is particularly effective. Although no one might remember that you played this role, and you might not feel as if you made much effort, God will see that you are a person who practices the truth, a person who acts according to the principles. God will remember your having done so. This is called fulfilling your duty faithfully. No matter the difficulties you have in fulfilling your duty, they can in fact all be easily solved. So long as you are an honest person with a heart inclined to God, and are able to seek truth, then there is no problem that cannot be solved. If you do not understand the truth, then you must learn to obey. If there is anyone who understands the truth or speaks in accordance with the truth, then you must accept it and obey. By no means should you do things that disturb or undermine, and do not act or make decisions on your own. This way, you will do no evil. You must remember: Fulfilling your duty is not a matter of undertaking your own endeavors or your own management. This is not your personal work, it is the work of the church, and you only contribute the strengths you have. What you do in God’s management work is but a small part of man’s cooperation. Yours is just a minor role in some corner. That is the responsibility you bear. In your heart, you should have this sense. And so, no matter how many people are performing their duties together, or what difficulties they face, the first thing everyone should do is pray to God and fellowship together, seek the truth, and then determine what the principles of practice are. When they perform their duties in this way, they will have a path to practice. Some people are always trying to show off, and when given responsibility for a job, they always want to have the final say. What kind of behavior is this? This is being a law unto oneself. They plan what they do on their own, without informing others, and do not discuss their opinions with anyone; they neither share them with anyone nor open them up but keep them hidden in their hearts. When the time comes to act, they always want to amaze others with their brilliant feats, to give everyone a big surprise, so that others will think highly of them. Is that performing their duty? They are trying to show off; and when they have status and renown, they will begin to run their own operation. Are such people not possessed of wild ambitions? Why would you not tell anyone what you are doing? As this work is not yours alone, why would you act without discussing it with anyone and make decisions on your own? Why would you act in secret, operating in a black box, so that no one knows about it? Why would you always try to make people heed you alone? Clearly you view this work as your own personal work. You are the boss, and everyone else is a worker—they all work for you. When you constantly have this mindset, is this not trouble? Is what this kind of person reveals not the very disposition of Satan? When people like this perform a duty, sooner or later they will be cast out.

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