My Experience Sharing the Gospel in a School
By Yan Liang, Myanmar
I was born into an ordinary family in northern Myanmar. In December 2018, I accepted Almighty God’s work of the last days, and I was attending gatherings while studying. I graduated in 2021 and was assigned to teach in a remote, mountainous region. Though I was a teacher, I was also a soldier. I had to obey my superiors in everything I did. Otherwise, I’d be assigned to the forests in the most dangerous and remote part of the front line. I kept the superiors’ words in mind and spent my days teaching diligently. Because of my good behavior, the school leader asked me to oversee the students’ union. Though I was busy with work every day, I felt empty inside. I also found that the internet connection in the region was pretty bad and so I had no way to gather with the others. I arrived right at the start of the pandemic, and with all the cities and roads closed, I lost contact with the others for a whole semester. Though I wasn’t in contact with the others, I was still praying and reading God’s word. One time, I read a passage of God’s word that really motivated me. Almighty God says, “Are you aware of the burden on your shoulders, your commission, and your responsibility? Where is your sense of historic mission? How will you adequately serve as a master in the next age? Do you have a strong sense of masterhood? How would you explain the master of all things? Is it really the master of all living creatures and of all physical things in the world? What plans do you have for the progress of the next phase of the work? How many people are waiting for you to be their shepherd? Is your task a heavy one? … Has it ever occurred to you how grieved and anxious God’s heart is? How can He bear to see innocent mankind, whom He created with His own hands, suffering such torment? Human beings, after all, are the victims who have been poisoned. And although man has survived to this day, who would have known that mankind has long been poisoned by the evil one? Have you forgotten that you are one of the victims? Are you not willing to strive, out of your love for God, to save these survivors? Are you not willing to devote all of your energy to repaying God, who loves mankind like His own flesh and blood? When all is said and done, how would you interpret being used by God to live your extraordinary life? Do you really have the resolve and confidence to live the meaningful life of a pious, God-serving person?” (The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. How Should You Attend to Your Future Mission?). Having read God’s word, I understood His urgent will to save mankind. He hopes that more true believers will be able to gain His salvation. This is His most pressing wish. As a believer, I have an obligation to spread God’s gospel. This is my duty as a created being. I’d been in the faith for almost three years, I’d eaten and drunk of God’s word, and I understood some truths. Although I couldn’t gather normally because of work and the poor internet, I could still spread the gospel. I could bring more people before God to accept His salvation in the last days. The disasters are growing, and the pandemic is in full swing, but so many people haven’t yet heard God’s voice or received His salvation, which fills God with grief and worry. I couldn’t be without conscience. I had to share the gospel, bring those with good humanity who believed in God before Him, and do my duty to satisfy Him. But both my stature and understanding of the truth were limited and I didn’t know how to preach. I was willing but incapable. So I prayed to God: “God! My stature is small and I don’t know how to preach. Please guide me to bring those of true faith before You. I know spreading the gospel isn’t easy, but with Your guidance, I am sure I can bring them before You.”
I then planned to share the gospel with my colleagues and students. But at the time I felt quite conflicted. Because my superiors had told me I was a teacher and a soldier, so I couldn’t do anything unrelated to teaching, and if I were found out, I’d be sent to the front line, where there are often conflicts and terrorist attacks, and I could die at any moment. I’d also heard that the last principal of the school was a Christian and that he’d been transferred to another school by his superiors for preaching to his students, that he’d been demoted to a regular teacher, and that if he broke the rules again, he’d be sent to the front lines. Thinking about all this, I felt kind of afraid. I thought: “The principal was still able to teach after being removed, but I’m just a regular teacher. If they find out I’m preaching, I’ll be sent straight to the front with no more chance of being a teacher. Losing my job I can handle; the real problem is that I could die at any moment in such a dangerous place.” These thoughts made me too afraid to preach in the school. But I thought of how God’s work is coming to an end and how the disasters are growing, and if I didn’t preach to my colleagues, friends, and students and bring them before God, one day they’d fall into disaster, be punished and lose their chance to be saved. God’s urgent will is for the kingdom gospel to spread and to save those who can be saved, but I was just worrying about my own future and fate, and was too afraid to spread the gospel of the last days. I was really letting God down! I felt so conflicted. I later read a couple passages of God’s word that gave me faith. Almighty God says, “You should not be afraid of this and that; no matter how many difficulties and dangers you might face, you are capable of remaining steady before Me, unobstructed by any hindrance, so that My will may be carried out unimpeded. This is your duty…. You must endure all; for Me, you must be ready to relinquish everything you possess and do everything you can to follow Me, and be ready to expend your all. Now is the time that I shall test you: Will you offer your loyalty to Me? Can you loyally follow Me to the end of the road? Be not afraid; with My support, who could ever block this road? Remember this! Do not forget! All that occurs is by My good intention, and everything is under My observation. Can you follow My word in all that you say and do? When the trials of fire come upon you, will you kneel down and call out? Or will you cower, incapable of moving forward?” (The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. Utterances of Christ in the Beginning, Chapter 10). “As a creature of God, what should you do? You should perform your duty, doing what you ought to with all your heart, mind, and strength. The rest—things to do with prospects and fate, and humankind’s future destination—these are not something you can decide, they are in the hands of God, all of this is dictated and arranged by the Creator, and has nothing to do with any creature of God. … You must acknowledge one fact: No matter what kind of promise it is, be it good or ordinary, be it pleasing or uninteresting, all is dictated, arranged, and determined by the Creator. Only following and pursuing the correct direction and path indicated by the Creator is the duty and obligation of a creature of God. As for what you ultimately gain, and the share of which of God’s promises you receive, this is all based on your pursuit, on the path that you take, and on what is dictated by the Creator” (The Word, Vol. 4. Exposing Antichrists. Item Nine (Part Nine)). God’s word was clearly telling me not to be afraid and that everything was in God’s hands. Whether I continued as a teacher or got sent to the front wasn’t up to any one person, only God. It wasn’t up to the principal or the leaders. I had to have faith in God. With God behind me, I had nothing to fear, no matter how difficult it was to spread the gospel. I was always afraid that once the school found out I was preaching I’d be sent to the front line and be in grave danger, so I didn’t dare share the gospel. I’d had no faith in God at all. The following words touched me the most: “You should perform your duty, doing what you ought to with all your heart, mind, and strength. The rest—things to do with prospects and fate, and humankind’s future destination—these are not something you can decide, they are in the hands of God, all of this is dictated and arranged by the Creator, and has nothing to do with any creature of God.” I felt much more motivated. As a created being, I should do my duty and fulfill it wholeheartedly. No matter what happened with my job, whether I’d be sent to the front lines, or put in danger of death, these things were all dictated and arranged by the Lord of creation. I always worried the leaders would move me to the front lines if I was found preaching, because I didn’t understand God’s almighty sovereignty, as if my fate could be decided by the leaders. I was so foolish. The disasters and the pandemic are both worsening now and there’s really no time to waste. I’d been lucky enough to receive God’s work of the last days, but I wasn’t preaching to those around me. I was indebted to people and rebelling against God, and my conscience couldn’t find peace. Realizing these things, I gained faith. I became willing to put aside my worries and do my duty—preaching and testifying to God.
I later wondered, “Why does being sent to the front scare me to the point of not daring to do my duty? What exactly am I being constrained by?” Later, I saw this in God’s word. “The saddest thing about mankind’s belief in God is that man conducts his own management amidst the work of God and yet pays no heed to God’s management. Man’s biggest failure lies in how, at the same time as seeking to submit to God and worship Him, man is constructing his own ideal destination and plotting how to receive the greatest blessing and the best destination. Even if one understands how pitiable, detestable, and pathetic they are, how many can readily abandon their ideals and hopes? And who are able to halt their own steps and stop from thinking only of themselves? God needs those who will cooperate closely with Him to complete His management. He needs those who will submit to Him by devoting their entire mind and body to the work of His management. He does not need people who hold out their hands to beg from Him every day, much less those who give a little and then wait to be rewarded. God despises those who make a paltry contribution and then rest on their laurels. He hates those cold-blooded people who resent the work of His management and only want to talk about going to heaven and gaining blessings. He has an even greater loathing for those who take advantage of the opportunity presented by the work He does in saving mankind. That’s because these people have never cared about what God wishes to achieve and acquire through the work of His management. They are only concerned with how they can use the opportunity provided by the work of God to gain blessings. They care not about God’s heart, being wholly preoccupied with their own prospects and fate. Those who resent the work of God’s management and lack even the slightest interest in how God saves mankind and His will are only doing what pleases themselves in a way that is detached from the work of God’s management. Their behavior is neither remembered nor approved of by God—much less is it favorably looked upon by God” (The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. Appendix 3: Man Can Only Be Saved Amidst God’s Management). I realized after pondering God’s word that the main reason I was too scared to preach was because of concern over my fate. I was afraid the leaders would send me to the front once they found me preaching, and if that happened, I’d not only be unable to gather or read God’s word but also have to spend my days patrolling the forests with a gun. It was a region plagued by conflict and terrorism, and if I slipped up there, I’d likely die and forever lose my chance to be saved. I saw that I believed in God to gain blessings, not to pursue the truth or do the duty of a created being. My faith and duty were for my own interests. I was willing to do things that would grant me blessings but not things that wouldn’t. It was like the relationship between a boss and a worker—benefit-oriented and transactional, with no love or concern for God. I was so selfish and despicable. I believed in God but I wouldn’t put up with an ounce of suffering or the slightest hardship. I figured reading God’s word in comfort and praising Him through song and dance was good enough, but this faith of mine would never have led me to really experience or understand God’s word, recognize my corrupt disposition, or attain salvation. In our faith, God requires us to heed His will, love Him, and testify to Him. No matter what we face, we must always seek the truth, submit to God, fear God and shun evil, and only then can we attain salvation. My pursuit of blessings didn’t align with God’s will and was far from His requirements. As a believer, I should seek to love and obey God, and dedicate myself to testifying to His work in the last days. Only this is worthwhile and meaningful. So I prayed to God that I wouldn’t keep thinking about my own future. I had to spread and testify to God’s work of salvation in the last days.
I started by preaching to my colleagues, but I found they really resisted believing in God, so I went to preach to my students. I would read God’s word to them after class each day like “God Is the Source of Man’s Life,” “God Presides Over the Fate of All Mankind,” and I’d talk about things like God’s three stages of work. They were really eager to listen. Thanks to God’s guidance, within a month, I’d converted over 50 people in the school. My faith grew stronger at this time. I saw that these students were eager to gather and had good understandings, so I preached and testified to God with even greater conviction. I didn’t feel so nervous or afraid anymore, because I knew God was with me and I truly understood what He meant when He said: “You must have faith that everything is in God’s hands, and that humans are merely cooperating with Him. If your heart is sincere, God will see it, and He will open up all paths for you, making difficulties no longer difficult. This is the faith you must have. Therefore, you need not worry about anything while you perform your duty, as long as you use all your strength and put your heart into it. God will not make things difficult for you or force you to do what you are not capable of” (The Word, Vol. 3. The Discourses of Christ of the Last Days. In Believing in God, What Is Most Important Is to Practice and Experience His Words). God tells us that as long as we sincerely cooperate with Him, He will open a path for us. I didn’t need to worry so much. I just had to do my best, give it my all, and rely on God as I worked. What God asks of me is all within my reach and doesn’t go beyond my stature.
As more and more students accepted God’s work of the last days, the forces of Satan began to interfere. The students in the school were from an ethnic minority that believed in Buddhism, so they’d always been Buddhists. A few of the students told me that their parents had forbid them from believing. One student said that her parents had even warned her that if they found her believing in God again, they’d kick her out and disavow her as their daughter. Quite a few of the students didn’t know what to do. At the time, I was worried they’d become dispirited and weak because of their families’ persecution, or even feel unable to carry on and leave the faith. I was so anxious and didn’t know what to do. God’s work would soon end. If they left the faith, they’d lose God’s salvation. How would I account for this before God? I spent my days praying and asking God to guide me through. Later on, I read this in God’s word. “When God works, cares for a person, and looks upon this person, and when He favors and approves this person, Satan trails closely behind, trying to dupe the person and bring them to harm. If God wishes to gain this person, Satan will do everything in its power to obstruct God, using various evil ploys to tempt, disrupt and impair the work of God, in order to achieve its hidden objective. What is this objective? It does not want God to gain anyone; it wants to snatch possession of those whom God wishes to gain, it wants to control them, to take charge of them so they worship it, so they join it in committing evil acts, and resist God. Is this not Satan’s sinister motive? … In warring with God, and trailing along behind Him, Satan’s objective is to demolish all the work God wants to do, to occupy and control those whom God wants to gain, to completely extinguish those whom God wants to gain. If they are not extinguished, then they come to Satan’s possession, to be used by it—this is its objective” (The Word, Vol. 2. On Knowing God. God Himself, the Unique IV). Thinking over God’s word, I understood that while God works to save man, Satan trails behind corrupting and harming man, interfering in and destroying God’s work. This is determined by Satan’s evil essence. We preach and testify to God to save people, but Satan cannot abide this. Satan keeps trying to obstruct and harass us with the intent of tearing down God’s work, making us drift from God and betray Him. Then we lose His salvation, and accompany Satan to hell. I had to see through Satan’s tricks and avoid its traps. Realizing these things, I read God’s word with the brothers and sisters to make them understand the truth and see through Satan’s tricks. I fellowshiped with them: “Do you know why we run up against so many obstacles once we believe in God? It’s because we’ve always lived under Satan’s domain, but now that we believe in God, accept His salvation, and listen to His word, we no longer worship Satan. Satan doesn’t want us to be saved by God, so it uses those around us to harass us, with the intent of stopping us from believing in the true God, bringing us back under its domain, corrupting us, harming us, and making us lose our chance to be saved by God. So we can’t fall for Satan’s tricks.” I later fellowshiped with them on the truths of “the difference between the true God and fake gods,” “where Buddhism comes from,” and “There is only one true God.” After my fellowship, one brother said: “I understand now that once we believe in God and accept His work, we are obstructed and harassed because we don’t worship Satan and Satan is doing all it can to keep us from believing in God and walking the right path. We need to have discernment and can’t fall into Satan’s traps.” One sister said: “I understand what the true God is and what false gods are now. Only the true God is capable of creating the heavens and earth and all things, as well as mankind. He not only created everything; He rules over it. He also provides us with our daily bread in abundance. A false god can’t even create a single bug, let alone the heavens and earth and all things, so we shouldn’t believe in them.” Hearing the brothers and sisters say this really moved me. In the spiritual battle against Satan, they had understood the truth from God’s word and seen through Satan’s tricks. None of them had been tripped up. Instead, they were even more determined to follow God. This had all been achieved with God’s word. My faith in God grew so much stronger then, too.
One time, the principal really tore into me. He said: “Jonah, listen to me. This is the third time I’ve had to call you in here. Don’t make me tell you what you already know. You’ve become quite the celebrity. People from miles around all know you’ve been preaching in the school! We’re supposed to be teachers, imparting knowledge to the students, so why are you imparting faith in God? All the villagers here are Buddhists. We have to abide by their customs more and teach them their own faith. Your preaching like this is having a big impact on our school—are you trying to ruin our reputation? Do you want to be held in contempt by the students and their families? What you’re doing is unprofessional and unethical! You’re not worthy of being a teacher! If you don’t wake up, you’ll be transferred at the end of the semester!” I felt so resentful and I knew these words had come from the devil Satan. He just wanted people to follow the devil and wouldn’t let them come before God in worship. Faith in God is the most righteous thing, but in his eyes, it was evil. I saw that these devils misrepresent facts and can’t tell right from wrong. Back at the dormitory, I felt very upset. I didn’t know what would happen next and subconsciously, I started to consider my future again. What would happen if I really did get transferred? Would I get sent to the front line? How should I face the terrible situation on the front line? How could I believe in God? Could I still be saved? … These thoughts filled my eyes with tears. I didn’t feel sleepy at all that night. I just sat at the table all night, praying to God over and over: “God, why can’t I help being afraid in this situation?” I thought about the ways Satan corrupts people that are mentioned in God’s word. God says, “The first is control and coercion. That is, Satan will do everything possible to take control of your heart. What does ‘coercion’ mean? It means using threatening and forceful tactics to make you obey it, making you think of the consequences if you do not obey. You are afraid and dare not defy it, so you then submit to it” (The Word, Vol. 2. On Knowing God. God Himself, the Unique VI). Thinking over God’s word, I gained some more understanding of Satan’s ugly face. Satan knew I feared being sent to the front, where I’d be in constant mortal danger. That fear of death was my fatal flaw and greatest weakness. Satan was using the principal to harass me and the prospect of a transfer to threaten me, making me yield to and compromise with Satan by giving up my duty and no longer testifying to God. It may have seemed the principal was doing what was best for me, but really, he was coercing me to stop preaching in order to save his reputation. He wasn’t letting me preach God’s gospel of salvation, but wanted me to preach Satan’s way and compromise with Satan. I saw the principal’s true evil face. I had gained some discernment and knew these were Satan’s tricks. I knew why I had felt so constrained when preaching. It was because I was so afraid of death. I was afraid that once I was transferred to the front line to defend the frontier, I could be killed at any moment, and I was even more afraid that after death, I’d have no way to believe in God or be saved, so I held back and became dispirited.
After this, I brought this state of mine before God in prayer, asking Him to guide me in overcoming this fear of death. I later read a passage of God’s word. “How did those disciples of the Lord Jesus die? Among the disciples, there were those who were stoned, dragged behind a horse, crucified upside down, dismembered by five horses—every sort of death befell them. What was the reason for their deaths? Were they lawfully executed for their crimes? No. They were condemned, beaten, scolded, and put to death because they spread the Lord’s gospel and were rejected by the people of the world—that is how they were martyred. … No matter what the means of their death and departure was nor how it happened, it was not how God defined the final outcomes of those lives, of those created beings. This is something you must see clearly. On the contrary, they used precisely those means to condemn this world and to testify to God’s deeds. These created beings used their lives that are most precious—they used the last moment of their lives to testify to God’s deeds, to testify to God’s great power, and to declare to Satan and the world that God’s deeds are right, that the Lord Jesus is God, that He is the Lord, and is God’s incarnate flesh; even down to the final moment of their lives, they never denied the name of the Lord Jesus. Was this not a form of judgment upon this world? They used their lives to proclaim to the world, to confirm to human beings that the Lord Jesus is the Lord, that the Lord Jesus is Christ, that He is God’s incarnate flesh, that the work of redemption He wrought for all humanity allows humanity to live on—this fact is forever unchanging. Those who were martyred for spreading the gospel of the Lord Jesus, to what extent did they perform their duty? Was it to the ultimate extent? How was the ultimate extent manifested? (They offered their lives.) That’s right, they paid the price with their lives. Family, wealth, and the material things of this life are all external things; the only thing that is internal to self is life. To every living person, life is the thing most worthy of being treasured, the most precious thing and, as it happens, these people were able to offer their most precious possession—life—as confirmation of and testimony to God’s love for mankind. Until the day they died, they did not deny God’s name, nor did they deny God’s work, and they used their last moment of life to testify to the existence of this fact—is this not the highest form of testimony? This is the best way of doing one’s duty; this is what it is to fulfill one’s responsibility. When Satan threatened and terrorized them, and, in the end, even when it made them pay the price of their lives, they did not abrogate their responsibility. This is what it is to fulfill one’s duty to the utmost extent. What do I mean by this? Do I mean to have you use the same method to testify of God and to spread the gospel? You do not necessarily need to do so, but you must understand that this is your responsibility, that if God needs you to, you should accept it as a moral obligation. People today have fear and worry inside them, but what purpose do those feelings serve? If God does not need you to do this, what is the use in worrying about it? If God needs you to do this, you should not shirk this responsibility nor reject it. You should cooperate proactively and accept it without worry. No matter how one dies, they should not die before Satan, and not die in its hands. If one is going to die, they should die in God’s hands. People came from God, and to God they return—such is the sense and attitude that a created being should possess. This is the final truth one should understand in spreading the gospel and performing their duty—one must pay the price of their life to spread and testify to the gospel of God incarnate performing His work and saving mankind. If you have this aspiration, if you can bear testimony in this way, that is wonderful. If you still do not possess this sort of aspiration, you should, at least, properly fulfill the responsibility and duty that lie before you, giving the rest to God. Perhaps then, as the months and years pass and your experience and maturity increase, and your understanding of the truth deepens, you will realize that you have an obligation and a responsibility to offer your life to the work of God’s gospel, even unto the end of your life” (The Word, Vol. 3. The Discourses of Christ of the Last Days. Spreading the Gospel Is the Duty to Which All Believers Are Honor-Bound). From God’s word I saw that in the Age of Grace, the disciples of the Lord Jesus were condemned and persecuted for preaching God’s gospel, but no matter the processes or means by which they died, these did not represent their final outcome. The life and death of a person’s body do not indicate whether their outcome will be good or bad. Though the fatal persecution of the Lord Jesus’ disciples may seem like a bad thing, in reality, they were martyred to fulfill God’s commission, and this is commemorated by God. Faced with the evil forces of Satan, they testified to God’s work without regard to their lives or safety. This made their testimony even stronger, defeating Satan. Life is the most precious thing a person has, but they offered up this most precious life of theirs to testify to God and let the world know of God’s work. This is the greatest testimony. Thinking over God’s words, I felt humiliated and ashamed. When the principal warned that I’d be transferred if I preached again, I felt so afraid. I was scared I’d be sent to the front, and that once I died, it’d be over for me and I’d not be able to be saved. I cherished my life too much and had no backbone or testimony. Next to the apostles, I was really falling short. I thought about where my life came from and how it was given by God. God decides when we die, and nobody lives even a minute longer than this. If God protects a person and won’t let them die, then even if they’re in the most dangerous place, they won’t die. Humans have no control over when they live or die, let alone their final outcome. This is even more firmly in God’s hands. The Lord Jesus said, “For whoever will save his life shall lose it: and whoever will lose his life for My sake shall find it” (Matthew 16:25). When we preach and testify to God, we face much persecution and adversity. Like the disciples of the Lord Jesus, some may even be persecuted to death for preaching and testifying to God, but their souls are in God’s hands. Though their bodies may be dead, this doesn’t mean they have no final outcome. All is in God’s hands and is arranged by God. If I didn’t do my duty or preach the gospel because I craved life and feared death, even if I wasn’t sent to the front or in mortal danger, in God’s eyes I would have been a walking corpse, a dead man who must be cast out in the end. I should risk it all, even my own life, in order to follow God and preach the gospel. If I really was sent to the front, I should submit to God’s arrangements. I could also preach to the soldiers on the front to bring more people before God. Even if one day I really was persecuted to death for preaching and testifying to God, this would have been permitted by God and I wished to submit. Thinking on this, I resolved before God to continue preaching and testifying to Him, and that I mustn’t be constrained by anyone.
After this, I prayed to God daily and continued preaching and fellowshiping on God’s word with the others. I also led them in reviewing their lessons and arranged gathering times for them during holidays, and they became much more active than before. After their exams, I saw that these brothers and sisters were getting pretty good grades, with averages in each subject ranging from 76 to 98. None of them failed. I was amazed! The principal saw my class’s good grades and said to me: “Your class has gotten the highest marks in the school, so we’ve decided to let you be their class teacher next semester. Wishing you all the best next semester.” I was overjoyed to hear this, as it was completely beyond what I’d expected. This reminded me of a phrase from the Book of Proverbs in the Bible: “The king’s heart is in the hand of Jehovah, as the rivers of water: He turns it wherever He will” (Proverbs 21:1). Everything is in God’s hands and God controls all our fates. So long as I believe in God and sincerely cooperate with Him, He will open a path for me. I am still preaching the gospel on campus, leading brothers and sisters in gatherings, and quite a lot of people have accepted God’s work of the last days. Looking back on these days of preaching, I gained a lot and I know this was all God’s guidance.
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