I Have Found True Happiness (Audio Essay)
Zhang Hua, Cambodia
I was born into an ordinary farming family. Even though my family was not wealthy, my father and mother loved each other and treated me very well. Our family life was quite abundant and blessed. After I grew up, I told myself: I must find a husband that will treat me well and I must establish a blissful and happy family. This is what is most important. I do not seek riches, I only need to have a loving relationship with my husband and a peaceful family life.
I met my husband through a mutual acquaintance. I disliked him because he was quite short, but my father and mother looked favorably upon him. They said to me: “He has a good heart and he will treat you well.” I saw that my husband treated people very sincerely and he seemed like someone who would treat his family well. I thought, “It’s fine that he is a little short. As long as he treats me well, it is fine.” As a result, I agreed to the wedding and in 1989, we got married. After we got married, my husband treated me very tenderly and he took care of me very well. My married life was very blissful and abundant. My husband treated me well, and I remembered that in my heart. I also cared for him intently and thought about him in all matters. After our two daughters were born, in order to allow my husband to be at ease at work, I stayed at home and took care of the family. At that time, my little daughter got sick frequently. One time, during the night, she suddenly got a fever. My husband was working the night shift and he was not at home. In panic, I decided to bring my daughter to the hospital by myself. When my husband learned of this, he wanted to return home. He did not want me to suffer too much. I was very happy that my husband had this kind of a heart. Afterward, the two children went outside the village for schooling. I rented a place in order to accompany them while they studied and to take care of them. As long as I could handle a certain matter, I would not trouble my husband about it. Even though sometimes, it was difficult and I was a bit tired, our relationship as husband and wife was filled with mutual love and support. I felt that my life was very blessed.
At that time, the money that my husband earned was just enough to cover our daily expenses. Even though our lives were a little bit hard, I never complained to him. I felt that husband and wife should share in life’s joys and sorrows. Afterward, the economic situation at my husband’s place of work deteriorated and he was barely able to take home half his previous pay each month. Soon, we would not have been able to pay for our children’s school fees. In an effort to reduce my husband’s pressure, I borrowed money from our relatives frequently. I thought, “These hardships are only temporary. Things will get better eventually.” Since we borrowed money for so long, our debts became greater and greater. My husband and I both felt that the pressure was very significant. In 2013, my husband started thinking about going abroad to earn money. When I heard this, even though I was reluctant, I thought, “If he goes abroad for two to three years to earn some money, we can pay off some of our debts and improve our family situation.” What’s more, our children are growing up and we want to give them a good environment. For the sake of our family, I agreed to him going abroad to work.
My husband went to Cambodia for three years. During these three years, I stayed at home and took care of the kids and our older parents. In the beginning, my husband would frequently call back home and show that he cared for the family. He would also send money back home. Afterward, he would call back less and less and he would send very little money back home. In the end, it became so severe that he did not send any money back home and it would be a very long time before he phoned home. I was worried that something had happened to him. As a result, I brought our daughters with me to go see him. When we got to Cambodia and I saw that my husband was safe and sound, I was very relieved. Since this was our first time in Cambodia, I was prepared to stay there with our daughters for a period of time and accompany my husband before going home. However, I discovered that each time I accompanied my husband out of the house, the people that knew my husband would look at me with a strange expression. Since we did not speak the same language, I did not know what they were saying. One week later, my husband suddenly brought a strange child in his arms before me. He told the child, “Quickly say hello to your aunt.” At that time, I just stared blankly because I did not know what was going on. When I asked my husband, I found out that this was a child that he had with a woman that he met in Cambodia. I became unspeakably angry and had no idea what to do. When I reproached him, he prosaically replied, “This is very common. Many people here do this!” When I heard him say this, I was so angry that my entire body trembled. I never would have thought that my husband and I had loved each other for so many years, yet now he could say something so cold and ruthless and do something that was so brazen. In anger, I viciously slapped him twice. I was paralyzed at my husband’s betrayal. The fact of his betrayal was like thunder from a clear sky to me. He never showed any prior indication that he would act like this. I could not accept this about him. I sat on the floor and cried bitterly. I asked myself repeatedly, “Why would my husband do this to me? Where did the husband that I used to know go?” Could it be that his pledge of undying love, his tenderness and his care were all fake? I gave everything to this family. I never asked my husband to give me money or material enjoyment. However, now … My husband’s betrayal was a huge humiliation to me. I felt that I did not have any dignity to continue living.
The following days, I bathed my face in tears every day. I despised that woman and I despised that child. I told my husband that I wanted to have a divorce and I was prepared to take my daughters home and leave this so-called family. I did not think that my husband would not only not agree to divorce me but also did not want to leave that woman. Subsequently, I learned that some of my family members already knew that my husband had found another woman and had a child with her. They simply kept me in the dark about it. I felt even more so that I was not living with any dignity. I painstakingly sacrificed for this family. I never would have thought that I would be repaid with betrayal and deceit. My heart was broken … This betrayal was already very painful. What made it even harder for me to accept was that the people who knew my husband and that woman would look at me peculiarly and they would even criticize me. Originally, it was my husband who had betrayed me and it was that woman who shattered my family. However, now, in the eyes of other people, I was the third party. I cannot describe that pain that I was feeling at that time. Time crawls by when one is feeling wretched. In an instant, I lost more than 10kg of weight.
At the time when I was completely disheartened, I encountered Almighty God’s salvation of the last days. When my neighbor Lin Ting learned of this incident, she came over and preached the gospel to me. She said, “Believe in God. God can help you.” However, having been influenced by atheism, how could I simply believe in God! I did not give her any reply. Afterward, Lin Ting spoke to me once again, “Read God’s words. God is able to save you and help you break free of your pain.” She said things so sincerely that I felt moved emotionally. I felt embarrassed to reject her once again and as a result, I received a copy of the book The Word Appears in the Flesh. I opened the book and read the following passage: “Mankind, who left the supply of life from the Almighty, does not know why they exist, and yet fears death. There is no support, no help, but mankind is still reluctant to close their eyes, braving it all, drags out an ignoble existence in this world in bodies without the consciousness of souls. You live like such, with no hope; he exists like such, with no aim. There is only the Holy One in the legend who will come to save those who moan in suffering and long desperately for His arrival. … When you are weary and when you begin to feel the desolation of this world, do not be perplexed, do not cry. Almighty God, the Watcher, will embrace your arrival any time” (“The Sighing of the Almighty” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). When I read God’s heartfelt words, I was filled with tears and I felt that this God truly understands mankind. When I faced my husband’s betrayal, I wanted to die but I did not have the courage to do so nor was I resigned to die in such a way. I lost my life direction and purpose and I even wanted to give up myself. When I read God’s words, I could see the hope of life and my heart found peace. Even though my husband had betrayed me, I could rely on God. I was not alone. Almighty God said, “when you begin to feel the desolation of this world, do not be perplexed, do not cry. Almighty God, the Watcher, will embrace your arrival any time.” I was willing to rely on God because I was someone who was hurt and had no one who cared for me. I needed God’s embrace. I felt that each day was very painful and tiring. I did not want to continue on like this. Since God understands mankind so well, He could definitely lead me away from this pain. As a result, I started reading God’s words together with Lin Ting. We communicated God’s intentions and learned to sing hymns of worship to God. Lin Ting told me, “When you are going through difficult times, pray to God and read God’s words. God can comfort our injured heart.” I did what she told me to do. When I saw the MVs and hymn videos that the brothers and sisters of The Church of Almighty God shot, I started feeling happier in my heart. I felt that only God’s family had genuine love and that genuine joy could only be found with my brothers and sisters. This was especially the case when I saw the video, “The Happiness in the Good Land of Canaan.” My heart leaped along with the singing and dancing brothers and sisters. My suffering and depressed heart brightened up immediately and a smile finally started to appear on my face. Immediately, I felt that this was the family that I had truly wanted. As a result, I enjoyed a church life together with my brothers and sisters.
Afterward, I read some more of God’s words: “The issue of Satan taking advantage of social trends to corrupt man also needs specific explanation. These social trends include many things. Some people say: ‘Are they about the clothes we wear? Are they about the latest fashions, cosmetics, hairdressing and gourmet food?’ Are they about these things? These are a part of trends, but we do not wish to talk about these here. We only wish to talk about the ideas that social trends bring about for people, the way they cause people to conduct themselves in the world, the life goals and outlook that they bring about in people. These are very important; they can control and influence man’s state of mind. One after another, all these trends carry an evil influence that continually degenerates man, that lowers their morals and their quality of character more and more, to the extent that we can even say the majority of people now have no integrity, no humanity, neither do they have any conscience, much less any reason. … The majority of people, however, in the midst of their unawareness, will still be continually infected, assimilated and attracted by this kind of trend, until they all unknowingly and involuntarily accept it, and are all submerged in and controlled by it. For man who is not of sound body and mind, who never knows what is truth, who cannot tell the difference between positive and negative things, these kinds of trends one after another make them all willingly accept these trends, the life view, the life philosophies and values that come from Satan. They accept what Satan tells them on how to approach life and the way to live that Satan ‘bestows’ on them. They have not the strength, neither do they have the ability, much less the awareness to resist” (“God Himself, the Unique VI” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). When I read this section of God’s words, I thought of what my husband had said to me: “This is very common. Many people do it here!” Aren’t my husband’s thoughts portrayed in the truth that is revealed by God’s words of how society’s evil trends impacted by Satan corrupt and assimilate people? Before my husband left the country, he could take care of his family and care for me and our children. However, in three short years since he left home to work, he completely followed the evil tends of society and betrayed his own family. Then I thought: In present-day society, being a mistress is not a shameful matter. In fact, it is something that occurs quite frequently. Many men have been harmed by the poisonous thought that is as follows: “The red flag at home does not fall, the colored flags outside flutter in the breeze.” They brazenly have extra-marital affairs. Since they are not discouraged by shame, they are motivated by glory. My husband does not want to divorce me, yet he also does not want to leave that woman. Hasn’t he become controlled by this kind of thought and perspective? Through reading God’s words, I was able to understand this: In fact, everyone is a victim. Everyone has been deceived by Satan’s evil thoughts. This is why we have been corrupted to the point where we have no morals and shame. What have people gained if they fulfill their own selfish desires? Have they actually obtained happiness? As to my husband and that woman, I do not think that they are any happier than me. Moreover, our children are innocent victims. Isn’t the misery that my family has encountered the result of Satan’s corruption and harm? When I think of myself, if I did not encounter God’s salvation, I would also have been corroded by society’s evil trends. I thought that since my husband found another woman I could likewise also look for other men. I am not an unwanted woman in any sense. I am thankful that God saved me at the time when I was about to be swallowed by Satan. He allowed me to come before Him and receive His protection. Otherwise, I would have been ruined by this society’s evil tide.
As I continued reading, God’s words said, “Whenever Satan corrupts man or engages in unbridled harm, God does not stand idly by, neither does He brush aside or turn a blind eye to those He has chosen. … What God wants to see is that man’s heart can be revived. In other words, these ways that He uses to work on man are to continually awaken the heart of man, awaken man’s spirit, letting man know where they came from, who is guiding them, supporting them, providing for them, and who has allowed man to live up till now; they are to let man know who is the Creator, whom they should worship, what kind of road they should walk, and in what way man should come before God; they are used to gradually revive the heart of man, so man knows God’s heart, understands God’s heart, and comprehends the great care and thought behind His work to save man. When man’s heart is revived, they no longer wish to live the life of a degenerate, corrupt disposition, but instead wish to seek out the truth in the satisfaction of God. When man’s heart has been awakened, they are then able to make a clean break with Satan, no longer to be harmed by Satan, no longer to be controlled or fooled by it. Instead, man can cooperate in God’s work and in His words in a positive way to satisfy the heart of God, thus attaining fearing God and shunning evil. This is the original purpose of God’s work” (“God Himself, the Unique VI” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). From God’s words, I understood that even though Satan uses all kinds of societal trends to corrupt man, all along, God has done the work of saving mankind. He has never given up on our salvation because we have been corrupted too deeply. In the last days, God has been incarnated once again and expressed His words, to awaken man’s spirit and allow man to see through Satan’s evil, despicableness. He has also awakened us so that we pursue the truth and break free of our corrupt satanic disposition and thoroughly abandon Satan and return to God. From God’s words, I also understood that only God has a pure and holy essence, that God despises evil and wickedness and that God hopes that we will all come before Him, accept the guidance of His words and obtain the illumination of the light. Satan’s evil thoughts have corrupted man’s heart, caused man to be powerless to break away from it and to be corrupted and swallowed bit by bit. Only God is capable of saving us. Only the truths that God expresses can allow us to see through Satan’s wicked schemes and tricks of corrupting man and to have the power to break free from Satan’s harm and obtain a genuine human life. Thank Almighty God! It was Almighty God that rescued me from the abyss of pain! I am willing to read God’s words, pursue the truth and in the end, obtain His salvation.
Nowadays, as I continue reading more of God’s words, I understand a bit of the truth and I can see through many situations. I no longer hate my husband or that woman. They are free to choose the kind of life that they want to live. As for relatives and friends, I am able to deal with them calmly. I no longer blame my relatives because we have all been corrupted by Satan and we are all its victims. Now, I frequently attend gatherings with my brothers and sisters. We read God’s words and we communicate and share our individual experiences. We benefit daily from God’s words. Inside our hearts, we have peace and joy and our lives are full of hope. Thank You Almighty God for guiding me onto the correct path of life and for giving me a genuine family. Here, I have found true happiness! I am willing to follow God forever!