Only by Often Living Before God Can One Have a Normal Relationship With Him (Part One)

Most of you have believed in God for several years, and have more or less laid a foundation upon the true way. Now you are able to cast off the entanglements of family and the secular world to follow God. You are training to perform a duty in God’s house, you are willing to expend yourselves for God, and ready to strive toward the truth. This means that you have begun to understand things, and that you have a bit of conscience and reason. That is a good thing. The significance of performing a duty is so great! Whether or not you can do your duty well has a direct relationship to your salvation and perfection. It may be said that one can only attain life entry by experiencing God’s work while performing a duty, and that one can only gain God’s approval by performing their duty well. Therefore, demanding a bit more of you when it comes to your duties and pruning you a little, will be of benefit to you. At the very least, you will make quicker life progress. It is not a bad thing that the demands put upon you are high, nor is it a bad thing to occasionally give you a difficult problem to test you. All of this is done to help you to grow in life and follow God’s will, and so that you can have a better grasp of some professional knowledge and become more effective in your duty. If these demands were not made of you, what would be the result? You would only be able to preach doctrines and follow regulations, and you would believe in God for many years without changing at all. In that case, when would you be able to progress? How could you perform your duty well? Not only would you make no progress regarding the truth, you would make no progress on the professional knowledge needed in your duty. Then, could you do your duty to an acceptable standard and bear testimony for God? As far as your present stature is concerned, your understanding of the truth is too shallow, and you have not grasped the principles for performing your duty. You are also very far from reaching the standards for performing your duty satisfactorily. And yet, you are unaware of this and feel as though you are doing well, and at times you are even extremely self-righteous and audacious. The words that you speak or the things that you do can’t see the light of day, and they are not in accordance with the truth principles. When someone points out one of your problems, you cannot accept it, nor do you seek the truth, and you even make excuses for yourself. What is the problem here? It is that you do not even possess the most rudimentary reason necessary to comport yourself properly. No matter what you are doing, it must, at the very least, be regarded as appropriate by most people. You must listen to everyone’s suggestions—if what they say is correct, then you must accept it, and then correct your mistakes. If everyone thinks that the results you have gotten are alright, and everyone approves of them, only then can your actions be considered acceptable. In this way, in one respect, you will be able to act in line with the principles while doing your duty, and you will become more mature and experienced at handling problems. In another respect, you will be able to learn more, and at the same time you will come to understand the truth and to have life entry. And so, when something befalls you, you must not be self-righteous. You must quiet yourself before God and learn a lesson. You must be able to let go of yourself in order to learn more. If you think, “I’m more of an expert at this than you, so I should be in charge, and you should all listen to me!”—what kind of disposition is that? It is arrogance and self-righteousness. It is a satanic, corrupt disposition and it is not something within the realm of normal humanity. So, what does it mean to not be self-righteous? (It means listening to everyone’s suggestions, and discussing things with everyone.) No matter what your personal thoughts and opinions are, if you blindly determine that they are correct and that they are the way that things should be done, that is arrogance and self-righteousness. If you have some ideas or opinions that you feel are correct, but you do not have complete faith in yourself, and you can confirm them through seeking and fellowship, that is what it means to not be self-righteous. Waiting to receive everyone’s support and approval before acting is the reasonable way of doing things. If someone disagrees with you, you should respond to it conscientiously, and be meticulous when it comes to the professional aspects of your work. You cannot turn a blind eye to it by saying, “Do you understand this better, or do I? I have been involved in this area of work for such a long time—should I not have a better understanding of it than you? What do you know about it? You don’t understand it!” That is not a good disposition, it is too arrogant and self-righteous. It is possible that the person who disagrees with you is an amateur, and that they do not have a good understanding of that area of work; you may be right and you may be doing things correctly, but it is your disposition that is the problem. What, then, is the right way to behave and act? How can you behave and act in accordance with the truth principles? You must put your ideas out on the table and let everyone see if there are any problems with them. If someone makes a suggestion, you must first accept it, and then let everyone confirm the correct path of practice. If nobody has any issues with it, you can then determine the most appropriate way of doing things and act in that way. If a problem is discovered, then you must solicit everyone’s opinions, and you should all seek the truth and fellowship on it together, and in that way, you will gain the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit. When your hearts are illuminated, and you have a better path, the results that you achieve will be better than before. Is this not the guidance of God? It is a marvelous thing! If you can avoid being self-righteous, if you can let go of your imaginings and ideas, and if you can listen to others’ correct opinions, you will be able to obtain the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit. Your heart will be illuminated and you will be able to find the correct path. You will have a way forward, and when you put it into practice, it will definitely be in accordance with the truth. Through such practice and experience you will learn how to practice the truth, and at the same time you will learn something new about that area of work. Is this not a good thing? Through this you will realize that when things happen to you, you must not be self-righteous and you must seek the truth, and that if you are self-righteous and do not accept the truth, everyone will dislike you and God will certainly loathe you. Is this not a lesson learned? If you always pursue in this way and practice the truth, you will keep honing the professional skills that you use in your duty, you will get better and better results in your duty, and God will enlighten and bless you, and allow you to gain even more. In addition to that, you will have a path for practicing the truth, and when you know how to practice the truth, you will gradually grasp the principles. When you know which actions will lead to God’s enlightenment and guidance, which will lead to His loathing and dismissal, and which will lead to His approval and blessings, you will have a way forward. When people receive God’s blessings and enlightenment, their life progress will quicken. They will receive God’s enlightenment and guidance every day, and there will be peace and happiness in their hearts. Will this not bring them pleasure? When your actions can be presented before God, and accepted by God, you will feel pleasure in your heart, and inwardly, you will have peace and happiness. This peace and happiness are feelings that God has given you, they are a sensation bestowed upon you by the Holy Spirit.

Being arrogant and self-righteous is man’s most conspicuous satanic disposition, and if people do not accept the truth, they will have no way of cleansing it. People all have arrogant and self-righteous dispositions, and they are always conceited. No matter what they think, or what they say, or how they see things, they always think that their own points of view and their own attitudes are correct, and that what others say is not as good or as right as what they say. They always cling to their own opinions, and no matter who speaks, they will not listen to them. Even if what someone else says is correct, or in line with the truth, they will not accept it; they will only appear to be listening but they will not really adopt the idea, and when it comes time to act, they will still do things their own way, always thinking that what they say is right and reasonable. It is possible that what you say is, indeed, right and reasonable, or that what you have done is right and faultless, but what kind of disposition have you revealed? Is it not one of arrogance and self-righteousness? If you do not cast off this arrogant and self-righteous disposition, will it not affect your performance of your duty? Will it not affect your practice of the truth? If you do not resolve your arrogant and self-righteous disposition, will it not cause you serious setbacks in the future? You will definitely experience setbacks, this is inevitable. Tell Me, can God see such behavior of man? God is more than able to see it! God not only scrutinizes the depths of people’s hearts, He also observes their every word and deed at all times and places. What will God say when He sees this behavior of yours? God will say: “You are intransigent! It’s understandable that you might cling to your own ideas when you do not know that you are mistaken, but when you clearly know that you are mistaken and you still cling to your ideas, and would die before repenting, you are just a stubborn fool, and you are in trouble. If, no matter who makes a suggestion, you always adopt a negative, resistant attitude toward it, and do not accept even a little bit of the truth, and if your heart is completely resistant, closed, and dismissive, then you are so ridiculous, you are an absurd person! You are too difficult to deal with!” In what way are you difficult to deal with? You are difficult to deal with because what you are displaying is not an erroneous approach, or an erroneous behavior, but a revelation of your disposition. A revelation of what disposition? A disposition in which you are averse to the truth, and hate the truth. Once you have been identified as a person who hates the truth, in God’s eyes you are in trouble, and He will spurn and ignore you. From people’s perspective, the most they will say is: “This person’s disposition is bad, they are incredibly obstinate, intransigent, and arrogant! This person is hard to get along with and does not love the truth. They have never accepted the truth and they do not put the truth into practice.” At the most, everyone will give you this appraisal, but can this appraisal decide your fate? The appraisal that people give you cannot decide your fate, but there is one thing that you must not forget: God scrutinizes people’s hearts, and at the same time God observes their every word and deed. If God defines you in this way, and says that you hate the truth, if He does not merely say that you have a bit of a corrupt disposition, or that you are a little disobedient, is this not a very serious problem? (It is serious.) This means trouble, and this trouble does not lie in the way that people see you, or how they appraise you, it lies in how God views your corrupt disposition of hating the truth. So, how does God view it? Has God merely determined that you hate and do not love the truth, and that is all? Is it that simple? Where does the truth come from? Who does the truth represent? (It represents God.) Ponder on this: If a person hates the truth, then from God’s perspective, how will He view them? (As His enemy.) Is this not a serious problem? When a person hates the truth, they hate God! Why do I say that they hate God? Did they curse God? Did they oppose God to His face? Did they judge or condemn Him behind His back? Not necessarily. So why do I say that revealing a disposition that hates the truth is to hate God? This is not making a mountain out of a molehill, it is the reality of the situation. It is like the hypocritical Pharisees who nailed the Lord Jesus to the cross because they hated the truth—the consequences that followed were terrible. What this means is that if a person has a disposition that is averse to the truth and hates the truth, they may reveal it anytime and anywhere, and if they live by it, will they not oppose God? When they are confronted with something that involves the truth or making a choice, if they cannot accept the truth, and they live by their corrupt disposition, they will naturally oppose God, and betray Him, because their corrupt disposition is one that hates God and hates the truth. If you have such a disposition, then even when it comes to words spoken by God, you will question them, and want to analyze and dissect them. Then you will be suspicious of God’s words, and say, “Are these really God’s words? They don’t look like the truth to me, they don’t necessarily all seem correct to me!” In this way, has your disposition of hating the truth not revealed itself? When you think in this way, can you submit to God? You definitely cannot. If you cannot submit to God, is He still your God? He is not. Then, what will God be to you? You will treat Him like a research subject, someone to be doubted, someone to condemn; you will treat Him like an ordinary and regular person, and condemn Him as such. In doing so, you will become someone who resists and blasphemes against God. What kind of disposition causes this? It is caused by an arrogant disposition that has become inflated to a certain degree; not only will your satanic disposition be revealed from you, your satanic face will also be completely laid bare. What happens to the relationship between God and a person who has reached the stage of resisting God, and whose rebelliousness against God has reached a certain degree? It becomes a hostile relationship where a person places God in opposition to themselves. If, in your belief in God, you cannot accept and submit to the truth, then God is not your God. If you refuse the truth and reject it, then you will have already become someone who resists God. Can God still save you, then? He definitely cannot. God gives you an opportunity to receive His salvation and does not see you as an enemy, but you cannot accept the truth and you place God in opposition to you; your inability to accept God as your truth and as your path makes you a person who resists God. How should this problem be resolved? You must quickly repent and change course. For example, when you encounter a problem or a difficulty while performing your duty and you do not know how to resolve it, you must not blindly ponder on it, you must first quiet yourself before God, pray and seek from Him, and see what God’s words say about it. If, after reading God’s words, you still do not understand, and do not know what truths this issue pertains to, you must hold fast to one principle—that is, first submit, have no personal ideas or thoughts, wait with a peaceful heart, and see how God intends and wants to act. When you do not understand the truth, you should seek it, and you should wait for God, rather than acting blindly and carelessly. If someone gives you a suggestion when you do not understand the truth, and tells you how to act in accordance with the truth, you should first accept it and allow everyone to fellowship on it, and see if this path is correct or not, and whether it is in accordance with the truth principles or not. If you confirm that it is in accordance with the truth, then practice in that way; if you determine that it does not accord with the truth, then do not practice in that way. It is as simple as that. When you seek the truth, you should seek from many people. If anyone has something to say, you should listen to them, and treat all of their words seriously. Do not ignore or snub them, because this relates to matters within the scope of your duty and you must treat this seriously. This is the right attitude and the right state. When you are in the right state, and you do not reveal a disposition that is averse to the truth and hates the truth, then practicing in this way will supplant your corrupt disposition. This is practicing the truth. If you practice the truth in this way, what fruits will it bear? (We will be guided by the Holy Spirit.) Receiving the guidance of the Holy Spirit is one aspect. Sometimes the matter will be very simple and can be achieved using your own mind; after others finish giving you their suggestions and you understand, you will be able to rectify things and act in accordance with the principles. People may think that this is a small matter, but to God it is a great matter. Why do I say this? Because, when you practice in this way, to God you are a person who can practice the truth, a person who loves the truth, and a person who is not averse to the truth—when God sees into your heart, He also sees your disposition, and this is a great matter. In other words, when you do your duty and act in the presence of God, what you live out and pour forth are all truth realities that people should possess. The attitudes, thoughts, and states that you possess in everything you do are the most important things for God, and they are what God scrutinizes.

Is it not vile that some people like to split hairs and go down blind alleys whenever something happens to them? This is a big problem. Clear-minded people will not make this mistake, but this is what absurd people are like. They always imagine that others are making things difficult for them, that others are deliberately giving them a hard time, so they always antagonize other people. Is this not a deviation? They do not put in effort when it comes to the truth, they prefer to quibble about unimportant things when something happens to them, demanding explanations, trying to save face, and they always use human solutions to approach these matters. This is the greatest obstacle to life entry. If you believe in God this way, or practice this way, you will never attain the truth because you never come before God. You never come before God to receive all that God has set out for you, nor do you use the truth to approach all this, instead you use human solutions to approach things. Therefore, in the eyes of God, you have strayed too far from Him. Not only has your heart strayed from Him, your entire being does not live in His presence. This is how God views those who always over-analyze things and split hairs. There are those who are glib, smooth-talkers, whose minds are quick and shrewd, who think, “I’m well-spoken. Other people all really admire and esteem me, and hold me in high regard. People usually listen to me.” Is this useful? You have built up your prestige among people, but the way that you behave before God does not please Him. God says that you are a nonbeliever, and that you are hostile to the truth. Among people, you may be sophisticated and smooth, you might handle things very well, and get along with anyone; you may always be able to find a way to handle and take care of things no matter what the situation, but you do not come before God and seek the truth to resolve problems. People like this are very troublesome. God has only one thing to say in assessment of people like you: “You are a nonbeliever, you are trying to take advantage of this opportunity to gain blessings under the guise of believing in God. You are not a person who accepts the truth.” What do you think of this kind of assessment? Is it what you want? It definitely is not. It is possible that some people do not care, and say, “It doesn’t matter how God sees us, we can’t see God anyway. Our most immediate problem is to first get on good terms with the people around us. Once we have established a firm foothold for ourselves, we can then win over the leaders and workers, so that everyone admires us.” What sort of person is this? Are they someone who believes in God? They certainly are not; they are a nonbeliever. Those who believe in God must always live in the presence of God; no matter what issues they encounter, they must come before God to seek the truth so that in the end God says, “You are someone who loves the truth, who pleases God, and who God finds acceptable. God has seen your heart and He has also seen your submission.” What do you think of this kind of assessment? Only people like this can receive God’s approval. Can you completely understand this? I tell you that no matter what duty a believer in God performs—whether they handle external matters, or a duty that relates to the various work or fields of expertise of the house of God—if they do not frequently come before God, and live in His presence, and they do not dare to accept His scrutiny, and they do not seek the truth from God, then they are a nonbeliever, and they are no different from an unbeliever. Are you able to understand this point? It is possible that there are some people now who cannot do a duty because their environment is not suitable; they live in the environment of unbelievers, and yet they still frequently receive God’s enlightenment and guidance. How can this be? The most critical things are that they are able to pray to God, eat and drink the words of God, seek the truth and practice it, and maintain a normal relationship with God. These are the things that are key to determining if a person can live always in the presence of God. If you often cannot feel God and you are frequently weak and negative, or if you are often dissolute, or if you do not bear any burdens in your duty, and you are always muddled, is this a good state or a bad state? Is it a state of living before God, or a state of not living before God at all? (It is a state of not living before God.) So, you must measure this—do you often live before God or not? If you very seldom do, and you don’t even pray, or read the words of God, this spells trouble, it means that you are an unbeliever. Some people seldom keep their minds on proper affairs, they are dissolute and unrestrained, and when things happen to them, they are always confused and do not know how to seek the truth. They do not even know whether they have gotten results in the performance of their duties or not. They do not know which of their daily actions offend God, which are found to be acceptable by God, and which are loathed by God. They just muddle through day after day. What do you think of this state? Do people who live in these kinds of states have God-fearing hearts? Can there be any principles to what they do? Can they do reasonable things? When they are doing their duties can they say, “I must be restrained, I must do my duty well, I must do it with all my heart and with all my strength”? Can they achieve loyalty? (They cannot.) What are such people doing, then? They are only laboring! Have such people obtained the truth? (They have not.) That is a great loss. How can this group of fools not know to pursue the truth? They have believed in God for ten or twenty years and heard so many sermons, yet they do not know what is to be gained through belief in God, how they should pursue the truth, how they should practice the truth, or how they should perform their duties. If they are not even clear about these important things, are they not a bit foolish? They are so dull-witted and numb. They have no reaction to the truth at all, and this is dangerous. What is the most important thing about believing in God? It is to obtain the truth. What problems will be resolved when a person obtains the truth? Primarily it will be the problem of their sins, and the problem of their corrupt dispositions, and all the difficulties in their belief in God, and their mistaken points of view. All of these problems can be resolved. When a person obtains the truth, where should they put it to use? It should be used in the performance of their duty, and in bearing testimony for God—these are the most important things. Right now, you may lack true knowledge of this, you may have not yet recognized the value or significance of the truth, but one day you will.

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