Finding the Way Back After Getting Lost
I’d always wanted a happy life with a high standard of living, so I came to the U.S.A. to work as hard as I could. After a few years of hard work and suffering, I was able to gradually get the things I wanted: my own company, my own car, my own house, etc. I was finally living the “happy” life that I’d dreamed of. During this period, I made friends with a few guys and enjoyed eating meals, drinking and having fun with them during our leisure time. We all got on pretty well together, and I thought I’d met a good bunch of guys. But then I came to realize that they were just drinking buddies who often talked nonsense, and when I was worried or depressed there was not one of them whom I could go to share my troubles with. Not only that, but they deliberately ripped me off: One of them lied to me about his mother in China being really ill and when I lent him some money he disappeared without trace. Another, from my home town, told a bunch of lies about needing finance for a project and cheated me of some money. And even the person nearest and dearest to me—my girlfriend—betrayed me and cheated me of a large sum of money that it had taken me years of blood, sweat, and tears to accumulate. The heartlessness of these people and the indifference of society made me depressed and disheartened. I lost confidence in my ability to keep on going, and it seemed that nobody could alleviate the bitterness and emptiness that I felt in my heart. After that, I often turned to eating, drinking and having fun to fill the emptiness in my heart, but these temporary physical pleasures were totally unable to resolve my spiritual suffering.
In the fall of 2015, fate determined that I became acquainted with my present wife. By that time, my wife had already accepted’s work of . When she told me the of the kingdom, it all seemed well and good to me, but because I was so busy with work I said to my wife: “I don’t have time for , but if you want to believe, go ahead. Knowing in my heart that God exists is enough for me.” One day half a year later my wife let me watch one of ’s videos with her—The Days of Noah Have Come. What I saw in the video really startled me: When faced with disasters mankind was tiny and fragile, unable to withstand the slightest of blows. I suddenly felt that no matter how much money a person has, how much luxury they enjoy or how high their status is, it’s all meaningless. When disaster strikes and death is staring us in the face, all of these material things are worthless and useless. As Almighty God’s words say: “However, I must tell you that in the time of Noah, men had been eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage to such a point that it was unbearable for God to witness, so He sent down a great flood to destroy mankind and left behind only Noah’s family of eight and all kinds of birds and beasts. In the last days, however, those kept by God are all those who have been loyal to Him until the end” (“Do You Know? God Has Done a Great Thing Among Men” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). “Then look upon the present age: Such righteous men as Noah, who could worship God and shun evil, have ceased to exist. Yet God is still gracious toward this mankind, and absolves mankind during this final era. God seeks those who long for Him to appear. He seeks those who are able to hear His words, those who have not forgotten His commission and offer up their heart and body to Him. He seeks those who are as obedient as babes before Him, and do not resist Him” (“God Presides Over the Fate of All Mankind” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). In these words I could feel the urgency of God’s intention to save mankind. I thought about how in these times nobody seems to like positive things or wish for God’s return. People’s hearts are full of selfishness, arrogance, and craftiness. In order to gain fame and fortune they plot and scheme against one another, cheat one another, and even resort to killing one another to get what they want. People are slaves to their sensual desires, and constantly trample on morals and virtue and bury their conscience. People have lost all humanity, and the degree of corruption of mankind really is far beyond that of the age of Noah. But God hasn’t destroyed mankind because of this wickedness and corruption, but instead is employing various forms of disasters to warn mankind and give us the chance to turn around and move toward God. When I pondered over God’s words, my heart was deeply moved by God’s love. I also thought about how the world was becoming more evil and corrupt by the day, about how the disasters were getting bigger, and about how when God finally vents His rage on evil mankind and destroys mankind, all of the money and status that I’ve accumulated will not be able to save me. Only by coming before God and seeking the truth can a person gain protection. When I thought all of this through it was like waking from a dream, and my intuition told me that I should come before God and accept His salvation as this is the only way to be saved. If I were to lose the chance of salvation due to the temporary pursuit of physical pleasures then I’d regret it all of my life! Consequently, in May 2016 I began to and attend meetings.
Not long after believing in God, I was surfing the web and unintentionally came across some negative propaganda that condemned and blasphemedof Almighty God. Reading the condemnation and blasphemy of Almighty God left me momentarily stunned. What was this “making people donate money and not respecting the boundaries between men and women” stuff? What I read seemed to make some sense and it became difficult for me to distinguish right from wrong, fact from fiction. I became confused and puzzled, and the burning fire of my faith in God was instantly extinguished by the negative stuff I was reading. And just at that moment I heard in the background my mother-in-law talking on the phone to my wife about donating money to the church, which made me even more inclined to believe what I was reading online. After that, I stopped my mother-in-law from donating any more money and also urged my wife to stop believing in Almighty God, to prevent the possibility of us being cheated. But my wife didn’t listen to me at all, and said to me firmly: “The reality of the situation is nothing like you’ve read online. The stuff online is all rumors, all false testimonies! …” Then she got a book of God’s words and started fellowshiping with me, but I’d already been totally convinced by the rumors and didn’t listen to her in the slightest. Not long after, some brothers and sisters came to our home, but I ignored them too. During those days I was living in darkness, and was constantly worried that my wife and my mother-in-law were being cheated. I was so worried that I couldn’t eat and couldn’t sleep well at night, and suffered greatly psychologically. Seeing the sorry state I was in, my wife tried to fellowship with me again. She opened up a book of Almighty God’s words and chose this passage to show me: “What I want is not human conceptions or human thoughts, even less do I want your money or your possessions. What I want is your heart, understand? This is My will, and even more it is what I want to obtain” (“The Sixty-first Utterance” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). My wife also read out some of the principles for the management of church life of The Church of Almighty God for me: “The church does not allow anyone to ask others to make offerings through preaching or any other reason. All those who are keen to talk about making offerings have ulterior motives” (“The Principles for Establishing a Church and the Management of Church Life” in Selected Annals of the Work Arrangements of The Church of Almighty God). Then she fellowshiped this with me: “In The Church of Almighty God there are strict required standards and principles for every aspect. As for donating money and other items, the words of Almighty God state very clearly that God doesn’t want our monies or objects. The principles for the management of church life also clearly stipulate that the church does not allow anyone to sermonize about donating money or employ any form of reasoning to encourage people to donate money. Since I’ve been following Almighty God, the church has never asked me to donate a single cent. Not only does the church not call on people to donate money, it even gives all the brothers and sisters who are true believers books, CDs, etc. free of charge. Now, my mother wants to give some money to help some of the brothers and sisters who are having financial difficulties. She’s doing it of her own free will; nobody is forcing her to do it. Anyway, helping people in need is a good deed, so there’s nothing to reproach her about, right?”
After reading Almighty God’s words and listening to my wife’s fellowship I suddenly remembered that one of the sisters had previously told me that The Church of Almighty God does not accept donations from new members, and anyone who wants to donate money or other items should pray a few times first until they are sure they are completely willing to do so and will never regret it. If the church thinks the money and other items are not being donated willingly, they absolutely will not accept them. When I remembered this, some of the worries and concerns that I had were somewhat alleviated, but the knot in my heart was not entirely loosened. My wife saw that I was still frowning, and knowing what I was thinking she said: “Don’t believe those rumors. Satan wants to disrupt and destroy God’s work of saving people, and prevent us from coming before God and accepting salvation, and so will say all sorts of garbage and give all sorts of false testimonies. God is holy and God detests mankind’s evil. As for those people who don’t have a good reputation and don’t know how to behave properly around members of the opposite sex, The Church of Almighty God never accepts them. This is something that Almighty God has spoken very explicitly about.” Then my wife read a passage of God’s words for me: “Many people will kneel down for mercy and forgiveness because the seven thunders peal. But this will no longer be the Age of Grace: It will be the time for wrath. As for all people who do evil (those who fornicate, or deal in dirty money, or have unclear boundaries between men and women, or who interrupt or damage My management, or whose spirits are blocked, or who are possessed by the evil spirits, and so on—all except My elect), none of them will be let off, nor any pardoned, but all will be cast down to Hades and perish forever!” (“The Ninety-fourth Utterance” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). Almighty God’s words are majestic and wrathful and cause people’s hearts to develop fear and reverence for God. I felt that God’s righteous disposition does not tolerate man’s offenses. God very much hates promiscuous people, and this kind of people will eventually suffer God’s righteous punishment. Realizing this got rid of some more of the concerns that were bothering me. My wife then fellowshiped the following with me: “When God was doing His work in the Age of Law anyone who acted promiscuously would be stoned to death. This amply shows God’s righteous, majestic, and wrathful disposition. In the Age of Kingdom, in terms of sexual relationships God’s administrative decrees are even stricter. As it says in God’s words: ‘Man has corrupt disposition and, moreover, he is possessed of emotions. As such, it is absolutely prohibited for two members of the opposite sex to work together when serving God. Any who are discovered doing so will be expelled, without exception—and no one is exempt’” (“The Ten Administrative Decrees That Must Be Obeyed by God’s Chosen People in the Age of Kingdom” in The Word Appears in the Flesh).