Throughout Peter’s experiences, he encountered hundreds of trials. Though the people of today are aware of the term “trial,” they are confused as to its true meaning and circumstances. God tempers people’s determination, refines their confidence, and perfects every part of them, and this is primarily achieved through trials, which are also the hidden work of the Holy Spirit. It seems as though God has forsaken people, and so if they are not careful, they will view these trials as the temptations of Satan. In fact, many trials can be considered temptations, and this is the principle and the rule by which God works. If people truly live in God’s presence, they will regard such things as trials from God, and will not let them slip away. If someone says that because God is with them, Satan will surely not approach them, this is not entirely correct; if that were the case, how can it be explained that Jesus faced temptations after He had fasted in the wilderness for forty days? So if people truly rectify their views on belief in God, they will see many things much more clearly, and their understanding will not be skewed and fallacious. If someone is truly resolved to be made perfect by God, they must approach all the matters that face them from many different angles, neither swaying to the left nor to the right. If you have no knowledge of God’s work, you will not know how to cooperate with God. If you do not know the principles of God’s work, and are unaware of how Satan works in man, you will have no path to practice. Zealous pursuit alone will not allow you to achieve the results demanded by God. Such a means of experiencing is akin to that of Lawrence: making no distinctions whatsoever and only focusing on experience, utterly unaware of what Satan’s work is, of what the work of the Holy Spirit is, of what state man is in without the presence of God, and what kind of people God wants to perfect. What principles should be adopted when dealing with different types of people, how to grasp God’s will in the present, how to know God’s disposition, and at which people, circumstances, and age God’s mercy, majesty, and righteousness are directed—he has no discernment in any of these. If people do not have multiple visions as a foundation for their experiences, then life is out of the question, and experience even more so; they can foolishly continue submitting to and enduring everything. Such people are very difficult to make perfect. It can be said that if you have nothing of the visions spoken of above, this is ample proof that you are a cretin, you are like a pillar of salt always standing in Israel. Such people are useless, good for nothing! Some people only ever submit blindly, they always know themselves and always use their own ways of conducting themselves when dealing with new matters, or they use “wisdom” to deal with trivial matters unworthy of mention. Such people are devoid of discernment, and it is as if their nature is to resign themselves to being picked on, and they are always the same; they never change. People like this are fools who lack even the slightest discernment. They never try to take measures appropriate to the circumstances or to different people. Such people do not have experience. I have seen some people who are so bound up in their knowledge of themselves that when confronted with people possessed by the work of evil spirits, they lower their heads and confess their sins, not daring to stand up and condemn them. And when faced with the obvious work of the Holy Spirit, they do not dare to obey. They believe that evil spirits are also in the hands of God, and have not the slightest courage to stand up and resist them. Such people bring shame to God, and are utterly incapable of bearing a heavy burden for Him. Such fools do not make distinctions of any kind. Such a means of experiencing, therefore, should be purged, for it is untenable in the eyes of God.
God indeed does a lot of work in people, sometimes trying them, sometimes creating environments to temper them, and sometimes speaking words to guide them and amend their shortcomings. Sometimes the Holy Spirit leads people to environments prepared by God for them to unknowingly discover many things that they lack. Through what people say and do, and the way that people treat others and deal with things, without their knowing it, the Holy Spirit enlightens them of many things that they did not previously understand, allowing them to see many things and people more clearly, allowing them to see into much of which they were previously unaware. When you engage with the world, you gradually start to discern the things of the world, and before you meet your end, you might conclude: “It is truly hard to be a person.” If you spend some time experiencing before God, and come to understand God’s work and His disposition, you will unconsciously gain much insight, and your stature will gradually grow. You will understand many spiritual things better, and you will be clearer about God’s work in particular. You will accept God’s words, God’s work, God’s every action, God’s disposition, and what God is and has as your own life. If all you do is wander in the world, your wings will grow ever harder, and your resistance against God will become ever greater; how then can God use you? Because there is too much of “in my opinion” in you, God does not use you. The more you are in the presence of God, the more experiences you will have. If you still live in the world like a beast—your mouth professing belief in God but your heart somewhere else—and if you still study the worldly philosophies for living, then will all your previous labors not have been for nothing? Therefore, the more that people are in the presence of God, the easier they are to be perfected by God. This is the path by which the Holy Spirit does His work. If you do not understand this, it will be impossible for you to enter onto the right track, and being perfected by God will be out of the question. You will not be able to have a normal spiritual life; it will be as if you are handicapped, and you will have only your own hard work and none of God’s work. Is this not a mistake in your experiencing? You do not necessarily have to pray to be in the presence of God; sometimes it is in your contemplating God or pondering His work, sometimes in your dealing with some matter, and sometimes through your being revealed in an event, that you come into God’s presence. Most people say, “Am I not in the presence of God, since I often pray?” Many people pray endlessly “in the presence of God.” Though prayers may be always on their lips, they do not really live in God’s presence. This is the only means by which such people can maintain their conditions in the presence of God; they are utterly incapable of using their hearts to engage with God at all times, and nor are they able to come before God by means of experiencing, whether through pondering, silent contemplation, or using their minds to engage with the God within their hearts, by being mindful of God’s burden. They just offer prayers to God in heaven with their mouths. Most people’s hearts are bereft of God, and God is only there when they draw close to Him; most of the time, God is not there at all. Is this not the manifestation of not having God in one’s heart? If they really had God in their hearts, could they do the things that robbers and beasts do? If a person really reveres God, they will bring their true heart into contact with God, and their thoughts and ideas will always be occupied by God’s words. They will not make mistakes in either speech or action, and will not do anything that obviously opposes God. Such is the standard for being a believer.
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