Seeing That I Was Sick of the Truth
By Li Xiang, USA
One day, I found that a newcomer who just joined the church hadn’t come to the meeting twice, so I asked the group leader why, but the group leader didn’t reply. Later, the newcomer resumed coming to meetings again, so I didn’t ask the group leader for the reason. I thought, “As long as the newcomer attends meetings normally, that’s fine. My duties are so busy now, and following up in detail takes a lot of time and effort. I’ll ask about it again when I have time.” But later, I forgot about it. At another meeting, I noticed that this newcomer left halfway through. I asked the group leader why, and she still didn’t answer me. But when I saw the newcomer return to the meeting, I wasn’t so anxious anymore, so I didn’t pursue the matter further. I also didn’t go to the newcomer to ask if she had any states or difficulties. After a while, I suddenly noticed this newcomer hadn’t attended meetings several times in a row. This is when I started to worry. I quickly contacted the newcomer, but she didn’t reply, which made me even more anxious. I worried that the newcomer would leave the church, so I contacted the group leader to see if she could get in touch with the newcomer, but the group leader told me, “This newcomer never approved my friend request, so I can’t get in touch.” I felt a little regret. If I had looked into this earlier, I could have thought of ways to remedy it, but it was too late now. It was my fault for not following up. Soon after, I read through the chat records with the newcomer, hoping to know more about her situation. It turned out that after saying a few words of greeting to this newcomer, I never talked to her about anything else. I didn’t know anything about her. I realized the hope of getting this newcomer back was very slim. The reason this happened was that I muddled through. But at the time, I didn’t seriously reflect on myself over this matter. I just thought about it briefly, admitting that I was a little careless, and that was all.
It didn’t take long for the supervisor to ask me about this newcomer. That made me very nervous. I thought, “Uh oh, I’m about to be exposed.” The supervisor would definitely say I muddled through my duty and wasn’t reliable. What would I do if I was dismissed? Sure enough, the supervisor pointed out my problem after seeing the chat record, saying I went through the motions and didn’t care or try to learn about the newcomer’s state. When I heard this, I was very nervous, and quickly replied, “The newcomer didn’t respond to my greeting, so I couldn’t continue the conversation.” The supervisor dealt with me, saying, “It’s not that you couldn’t talk, it’s that you didn’t care about the newcomer at all.” I worried that if I admitted to muddling through, I would have to take responsibility, so I quickly explained, “The group leader was mainly responsible for that newcomer. I thought she was in touch with the newcomer, so I didn’t ask about the newcomer’s situation in time. I asked the group leader, but she didn’t reply in time.” I showed the messages I sent to the group leader to the supervisor to prove that I actually cared about the newcomer. I also showed the supervisor the messages I sent to the newcomer later to prove it was me who discovered she wasn’t coming to meetings and that I tried to get in touch with her in a timely manner, but she hadn’t answered me. I even found a reason to say I couldn’t reach the newcomer by phone, and the gospel preacher hadn’t provided the newcomer’s phone number. I gave many objective reasons, hoping the supervisor would think there was a reason for the problem, that it wasn’t my fault, or at least others shared the blame, and it wasn’t all mine. The supervisor saw that I didn’t admit my problems and shirked responsibility, and dealt with me by saying, “This newcomer has been to several meetings, which shows her heart yearns for the truth, but you didn’t ask about her situation and difficulties in time, and now you shirk responsibility by saying you didn’t have her number. This is a little unreasonable!” I realized the supervisor saw my problems clearly and I couldn’t avoid taking responsibility. I was worried, and thought, “What will the supervisor think of me? Will she say I don’t do any practical work? Would I be dismissed?” I was very anxious, and I couldn’t calm myself. After that, I went over everything that led to this in my mind, and I realized I wasn’t being an honest person in this matter or accepting pruning and dealing. I clearly hadn’t done my duty, I had muddled through, but I was still playing tricks and making excuses to justify myself. I even tried to blame the gospel preacher for not providing the phone number. I was refusing to admit the fact that I muddled through my duty, and I didn’t reflect on myself. Looking at my behavior made me very uncomfortable. Although I read God’s word every day, when an actual environment came upon me, when I was dealt with, I still lived by my corrupt dispositions and didn’t accept the truth. I felt my corruption was too deep, and I decided it would be difficult for me to change, so I felt a little negative.
Later, I read a passage of. “Pursuing the truth is voluntary; if you love the truth, the Holy Spirit works. With love for the truth as your foundation, examining and knowing yourself when things befall you, and proactively seeking the principles of the truth, and becoming able in the end to practice according to those principles—this series of behaviors and entries is all voluntary; no one is forcing you to do it, and there is not one additional condition attached. Having done these things, what you gain in the end is the truth, and what you enter is the reality of the truth. … Whatever your reasons, or whether they are adequate, or whether they are viable in the light of day, it does not matter—if you do not pursue the truth, the final result will be that God treats you based on your not having pursued the truth. Your reasons are invalid; God categorically disregards them. What does it mean that He ‘disregards’ them? It means that He does not care about your reasons. Tie yourself in knots as you please; try to reason as you like—does God care? Would God converse with such a person? Would He debate and confer with you? Would He consult with you? What is the answer? No. He absolutely would not. Your reason is invalid, however sound it is. People must not misunderstand God’s will, thinking they can offer all sorts of reasons and excuses for not pursuing the truth. God would have you seek the truth in all environments and in every matter that comes your way, eventually achieving entry into the reality of the truth and gaining the truth. The specific circumstances that God has arranged for you, the people and events you encounter, and the environment in which you find yourself are precisely the lessons you should learn in pursuing the truth. You should pray to God and seek the truth to find a solution. If you look always to give excuses, to be evasive, to refuse, to resist, then God will give up on you. It will be useless for you to be intractable, or difficult, or to give your reasoning; God will not concern Himself with you” (The Discourses of Christ of the Last Days). I saw in God’s word that to resolve corruption and enter into the realities of truth is not difficult. The key is in how people choose and whether they seek and practice the truth. No matter what the circumstances, be they pruning and dealing or failures and setbacks, people must be able to reflect on themselves and actively seek the truth. Once you understand a little, put it into practice, and act on the principles of truth. Do this, and you will see growth and change. However, when you are pruned and dealt with, if you always evade, refuse, and make excuses, you will not only fail to gain the truth, you will be rejected by God. This time when I was revealed, pruned, and dealt with, I didn’t accept, obey, honestly own up to it, reflect on my problem, and actively seek the truth to resolve my corrupt disposition. Instead, I became negative, opposed it, and decided it was too hard for me to change. I was being unreasonable and rejecting the environment set up by God! This wasn’t an attitude of pursuing and accepting the truth. When I recognized this, I didn’t want to live in a negative state and delimit myself. I wanted to seek the truth to resolve my problems. I began to reflect and wondered why I usually spoke so pleasingly, but when I was dealt with, I didn’t accept it, and became negative and opposed. What disposition did this reveal?
In my seeking, I read two passages of God’s word. “There are people who may be able to admit that they are devils, Satan, offspring of the great red dragon, who speak quite prettily about their knowledge of themselves, but when they reveal their corrupt disposition, and someone exposes them, deals with them, and prunes them, they try with all their might to justify themselves and do not accept the truth in the least. What is the issue here? In this, a person is exposed utterly. They speak so prettily when they talk about knowing themselves, so why is it that when faced with pruning and being dealt with, they cannot accept the truth? There is a problem here. Is this sort of thing not quite common? Is it easy to identify? It is, in fact. There are quite a few people who admit they are devils and Satan when they speak of their self-knowledge, but they do not repent or change afterward. So, is such talk of self-knowledge true or false? Is theirs sincere knowledge, or is it a ruse meant to trick others? The answer is self-evident. Therefore, to tell whether a person knows themselves sincerely, you should not merely listen to their talk of that knowledge—you should look to their attitude and to whether they can accept the truth when they are faced with pruning and being dealt with. That is what is most crucial. Whoever does not accept being dealt with and pruned has an essence of not accepting the truth, of refusal to accept it. Their disposition is one of being fed up with the truth. This is beyond a doubt. Some people, no matter how much corruption they have revealed, do not allow others to deal with them. No one may prune them or deal with them. They are fine speaking about their own self-knowledge and will say anything at all, but if someone else exposes them or criticizes them or deals with them, however objectively or factually, they do not accept it. Whatever aspect of their revealed disposition is exposed, they are very recalcitrant and insist on giving specious justifications for themselves, without even a bit of true submission” (The Discourses of Christ of the Last Days). “The main ways in which being fed up with the truth manifests are not just feelings of aversion to the truth when one hears it; they also include an unwillingness to practice the truth. When it is time to put the truth into practice, such a person withdraws, and the truth has nothing to do with them. When some people fellowship during gatherings, they seem very animated, they like repeating words of doctrines and making lofty statements to win others over; it makes them look good, and feel good, and they go on and on endlessly. And then there are those who are busy all day with matters of faith: reading God’s words, praying, listening to hymns, taking notes, as if they cannot be apart from God even for a moment. From daybreak until the dark of night, they are busy performing their duties. Do these people really love the truth, then? Do they have no disposition that is sick of it? When is it that one can see their true state? (When the time comes to practice the truth, they shrink from it, and when they are met with being dealt with and pruned, they are unwilling to accept it.) Could this be because they don’t understand what they hear or is it because they don’t understand the truth that they are unwilling to accept it? Neither—they are governed by their nature, and the problem is dispositional. In their hearts, they know quite well that God’s words are the truth and positive things, that practicing the truth can bring about a change in one’s disposition and bring a person to satisfy God’s will, but they simply do not accept them or practice them. That is what it is to be fed up with the truth” (The Word, Vol. 3. The Discourses of Christ of the Last Days. Six Aspects of a Corrupt Disposition Must Be Understood for a Change in Disposition).
From God’s word, I saw that people have a disposition of being sick of the truth. It manifests as not accepting the truth, not accepting pruning and dealing, and not practicing the truth. I read God’s words and performed my duty every day, and during meetings, I could admit I had corrupt dispositions in accordance with God’s words, that I was the devil Satan, a child of the great red dragon, and so on. Outwardly, I seemed to accept the truth. But in the matter of this newcomer, when I was pruned and dealt with, I finally realized I am not someone who accepts and obeys the truth at all, and that I exposed the disposition of being sick of the truth in everything. I knew that as a watering worker, the basic requirement is to be responsible and patient. Newcomers are like newborn babies. They don’t understand the truth, they haven’t put down roots in the true way, and they are very weak in life. If they don’t come to meetings, we have to find a way to water and support them quickly. I understood these principles, but when it came time to practice, suffer, and pay the price, I didn’t want to do it. I clearly knew the truth but didn’t practice it. I recalled that except for the few times I greeted this newcomer, I didn’t offer any watering or support. When I saw the newcomer missed several meetings, or came and left halfway through, I didn’t become anxious, think about how I could quickly contact her, or get to know her problems and difficulties. I was negligent and irresponsible in the first crucial phase of watering a newcomer, which caused her to withdraw. But even then, I didn’t reflect on myself. When the supervisor pointed out my problems, I tried every means to make excuses for my muddling through, hoping to pin the responsibility on the group leader and gospel preacher. How was this an attitude of accepting and obeying the truth? All I exposed was a disposition of being sick of the truth!
Later, I read another passage of God’s word. “Regardless of the circumstances that cause someone to be dealt with or pruned, what is the most crucial attitude to have toward it? First, you must accept it, no matter who is dealing with you, for what reason, whether it comes across as harsh, or what the tone and wording, you should accept it. Then, you should recognize what you have done wrong, what corrupt disposition you have exposed, and whether you acted in accordance with the principles of truth. When you are pruned and dealt with, first and foremost, this is the attitude you should have. And are antichrists possessed of such an attitude? They do not; from start to finish, the attitude they exude is one of resistance and aversion. With an attitude like that, can they come before God and quiet themselves, and listen intently, and be modestly receptive? That cannot be. So, what will they do, then? First of all, they will vigorously argue and offer justifications, defending and arguing against the wrongs they have done and the corrupt disposition they have revealed, in hopes of winning people’s understanding and forgiveness, so that they need not take any responsibility or accept words that deal with them and prune them. What is the attitude they evince when faced with being dealt with and pruned? ‘I haven’t sinned. I’ve done nothing wrong. If I made a mistake, there was a reason for it; if I made a mistake, I didn’t do so on purpose; if I made a mistake, I shouldn’t have to take responsibility for it. Who doesn’t make a few mistakes?’ They seize on these statements and phrases, clinging tightly to them and not letting go, but they do not seek the truth, nor do they acknowledge the corrupt disposition they revealed while committing their transgression—and they certainly do not acknowledge that they have such an essence. … No matter how the facts bring their corrupt disposition to light, they do not acknowledge it, but go on with their defiance and resistance. Whatever others say, they do not accept it or acknowledge it, but think, ‘Let’s see who can outtalk whom; let’s see whose mouth is quicker.’ This is one sort of attitude with which antichrists regard being dealt with and pruned” (The Word, Vol. 4. Exposing Antichrists. Item Nine (Part Eight)). From what God’s word revealed, I saw that when normal people are pruned and dealt with, they can receive it from God, accept and obey, reflect on themselves, and achieve genuine repentance. Even if they can’t accept it in the moment, afterward, through continuous seeking and reflection, they can learn lessons from pruning and dealing. But an antichrist’s nature is sick of and loathes the truth. When they are pruned and dealt with, they never reflect on themselves. They only display an attitude of resistance, rejection, and hatred. Then I thought about my behavior. I muddled through and didn’t follow up with the newcomer in time, causing her to withdraw. This was already a transgression. Anyone with some conscience and reason would feel miserable and guilty, reflect on their own problems, and that would be that. But not only did I not feel guilty, I also didn’t admit my own problems. I was faced with such an obvious fact and I still tried to knowingly shirk responsibility, saying at first that the newcomer wouldn’t answer me, and then that the group leader was irresponsible, and finally, I blamed the gospel preacher, hoping to rid myself of any responsibility and gain the supervisor’s understanding. After what God revealed and when pruning and dealing came upon me, I didn’t reflect on myself at all. Instead, I resisted, opposed, and found various excuses to justify and defend myself, because I didn’t want to take responsibility. I had no humanity or reason at all! I saw that what I exposed were dispositions of stubbornness and sickness of the truth. Just like an antichrist, I had no fear of God. When I realized this, I felt utterly miserable. I saw that after believing in God for so many years, I outwardly seemed to pursue the truth, but I didn’t actually accept the truth, and I was fed up with and resisted the truth. My disposition was the same as an antichrist’s!
Later, I read another passage of God’s words that gave me more knowledge of my problem of not accepting dealing and pruning.says, “Antichrists’ archetypal attitude toward dealing and pruning is to vehemently refuse to accept or admit it. No matter how much evil they have done, how much harm they have done to the life entry of God’s chosen people and the work of God’s house, they do not feel the slightest remorse or that they owe anything. From this point of view, do the antichrists have humanity? Absolutely not. They have caused all sorts of damage to God’s chosen people, brought such harm to all sorts of work of God’s house—God’s chosen people can see it as clear as day, and they have seen antichrists’ evil deeds, one after another. And yet the antichrists do not accept or acknowledge this fact, they stubbornly refuse to admit that they are in error or that they are responsible. Is this not an indication that they are sick of the truth? Such is the extent to which antichrists are sick of the truth, and no matter how much wickedness they commit, they refuse to admit it, and they remain unyielding to the end. This proves that antichrists have never taken the work of God’s house or accepting the truth seriously. They haven’t come to believe in God—they are minions of Satan, come to disturb and disrupt the work of God’s house. In their hearts there are only name and status. They believe that if they were to acknowledge their error, then they would have to accept responsibility, and then their status and prestige would be severely compromised. So they staunchly refuse to acknowledge it, they absolutely do not admit it, and even if they do admit this in their hearts, they will still not do so outwardly, believing that once they admit this, it will all be over for them. Whether their denial is deliberate or not, in short, in one regard this relates to the antichrists’ nature and essence of being sick of and hating the truth. In another regard, it shows how much the antichrists treasure their own status, prestige, and interests. What, meanwhile, is their attitude toward the house of God, and the interests of the church? It is one of contempt and denial of responsibility. They lack all conscience and reason. Does the antichrists’ shirking of responsibility demonstrate these issues? In one regard, shirking responsibility proves their attitude of being sick of and hating the truth, while in another regard, it shows their lack of conscience, reason, and humanity. No matter how much other people’s interests are harmed because of them, they feel no self-recrimination and could never be troubled by this. What sort of creature is this? Even if they only acknowledged in their heart, thinking ‘I did have something to do with this, but it wasn’t all my fault,’ even this little admission could still be considered as having some humanity, some conscience, a moral baseline—but the antichrists do not even have that slight amount of humanity. So what would you say they are? The essence of such people is the devil. They do not see the tremendous damage they have done to the interests of the house of God, they are not remotely troubled in their hearts, and nor do they reproach themselves, much less feel indebted. Are their hearts even made of flesh and blood? Are they even people? This is absolutely not what should be seen in normal people. This is the devil” (The Word, Vol. 4. Exposing Antichrists. Item Nine (Part Three)). From God’s word, I saw that antichrists don’t accept dealings and pruning because of his nature of being fed up with and loathing the truth, and also because they especially love their own interests. Once anything touches on their reputation, or if their reputation is damaged, they do all they can to justify themselves and find reasons to shirk responsibility. Even when their actions harm the interests of God’s house or lives of other people, they feel no reproach or remorse. If they are found out, they stubbornly refuse to admit it out of fear that admitting responsibility will damage their reputation. I saw that antichrists are selfish and despicable, have no humanity, and are essentially devils. When I saw the word “devil,” I was heartbroken, because my behavior and the dispositions I exposed were the same as an antichrist. I clearly made a mistake and harmed the interests of God’s house, but I still didn’t admit it. When I was pruned and dealt with, I justified myself and dodged responsibility to maintain my reputation. I thought about how difficult it is for newcomers to accept the gospel. It requires God to arrange a suitable environment, and to enlighten and guide them, and it takes a great deal of time and effort from many brothers and sisters. God is especially responsible for everyone. Out of a hundred sheep, if He loses just one, He will leave the ninety-nine others to find His lost sheep, and He deeply cherishes every person’s life. But when God’s house made me responsible for watering newcomers, I treated it carelessly. When I saw that the newcomer wasn’t attending meetings, I didn’t worry or care. Sometimes I went through the motions of asking, and in following up on the group leader’s work, I muddled through and was irresponsible. When I saw that she didn’t reply to me several times, I didn’t urgently ask why, I also didn’t look into whether she had any problems and difficulties or was irresponsible in her duty. I treated the newcomer with a careless and irresponsible attitude and didn’t take her life seriously at all. But even then, I still didn’t feel remorse or guilt, and I didn’t try to remedy it. When the supervisor pointed out that I muddled through and was irresponsible, I tried my best to argue and justify myself and looked for reasons to shirk responsibility, because I feared taking responsibility if I admitted my problems, that I would give the supervisor a bad impression, and that I would be dismissed. From start to end, I never considered the interests of God’s house, and I never considered whether I would harm the newcomer’s life. I only considered whether my own interests would be harmed, and whether I could maintain my image and status. I saw that I was especially selfish, and all I protected were my personal interests. I truly had no humanity, and God detested me. So, I came before God and prayed, saying, “God, I caused tremendous harm and didn’t admit it. What I considered wasn’t the life of the newcomer, but my own reputation and status. I truly have no humanity! God, now I wish to repent.
Later, I read more of God’s words, and found a path of practice. Almighty God says, “Gaining the truth is not difficult, nor is entering into the reality of the truth, but if people are always fed up with the truth, are they able to gain it? They cannot. So you must always come in front of God, examine your internal states of being fed up with the truth, see what displays of being fed up with the truth you have, and what ways of doing things are being fed up with the truth, and in which things you have an attitude of being fed up with the truth—you must often reflect on these things” (The Discourses of Christ of the Last Days). “If you want to follow God and perform your duty well, you must first come not to be impulsive when things do not go your way. Calm down first and be quiet before God, and in your heart, pray to Him and seek from Him. Do not be headstrong; come to submit first. Only with such a mindset can one bring better resolutions to problems. If you can persevere in living before God, and whatever befalls you, you are able to pray to Him and seek from Him, and to face that thing with a mentality of submission, then it does not matter how many expressions there are of your corrupt disposition, nor do your past transgressions matter—you will be able to resolve it by seeking the truth. No matter what trials befall you, you will be able to stand firm. As long as you have the right mentality, are able to accept the truth, and obey God in accord with His requirements, then you are entirely capable of putting the truth into practice. Though you may be a little rebellious and resistant at times, and sometimes offer defensive reasoning and are unable to submit, if you can pray to God and turn your rebellious state around, then you can accept the truth. Having done so, reflect on why it was that rebelliousness and resistance arose in you. Find the reason, then seek the truth to resolve it, and that aspect of your corrupt disposition can be purified. After several recoveries from such stumbles and falls, until you can put the truth into practice, your corrupt disposition will gradually be cast off. And then, the truth will reign inside you and become your life, and there will be no further obstacles to your practice of the truth. You will become able to truly submit to God, and you will live out the reality of the truth” (The Discourses of Christ of the Last Days). From God’s word, I understood that to resolve a disposition of being sick of the truth, I must always reflect on myself, and examine whether my statements, practices, intentions, attitudes, and opinions show sickness of the truth. When things happen, no matter if they are in line with what I want, I must first calm myself and not resist. If I can’t accept what others say and find myself in an argumentative state, I need to come before God, pray and seek more, look at what God’s word says, and reflect on myself using God’s word, or seek fellowship with brothers and sisters who understand the truth. This way, I can gradually accept the truth and enter into its realities, and then, bit by bit, cast off my corrupt dispositions. Once I understood the path of practice, I resolved to change.
Knowing that not following up on this newcomer in time was already a transgression, I started to turn things around. I checked to see if I failed to learn about or follow up with any newcomers I oversaw. Later, as I was talking with a sister, I found that she didn’t quite understand the truth regarding the Lord’s return and the three stages of God’s work. I asked my leader whether a gospel preacher should fellowship with her, but the leader told me to fellowship with her. Although I knew that quickly understanding newcomers’ states and resolving their problems was my responsibility, I was still very resistant. I wanted to argue, and I didn’t want to obey. I felt that this happened because the gospel preacher didn’t fellowship clearly, so why was I responsible for following up? And now, with so many newcomers, I didn’t have enough time, so it should be the gospel preacher who did it. Then I realized my state was incorrect. What my leader said was appropriate. The suggestion was correct, so why couldn’t I accept it? Why did I still want to argue so much? Why couldn’t I obey? So, I prayed to God, asking Him to guide me in accepting this environment, not considering my fleshly interests, and being responsible for the newcomer. I remembered that everyone’s ability to receive is different. Some people hear a gospel preacher’s fellowship and understand it at the time, but it isn’t as clear later. This requires watering workers to follow up and fill in the gaps. This is harmonious cooperation. As a watering worker, it is my job to resolve problems when I find them. I shouldn’t be picky, do what’s easy, leave hard problems to others, and only strive to save trouble and be at ease. I shouldn’t insist on conditions or make excuses in my duty. If I am assigned a newcomer, it is my responsibility to water them well, ensure they understand the truth, and lay a foundation in the true way. This is God’s commission, my duty. This is genuinely practicing the truth, and real change. At the time, my heart felt brightened. After the meeting, I went to find this newcomer and fellowship with her on her problem. As I practiced like this, not only did I feel no resistance, I was quite happy. I understood that practicing the truth is not an outward action. Instead, it means accepting God’s words from the heart, acting on the principles of truth, and using God’s word as criteria for how we see people and matters, act, and behave. This way, our mistaken intentions and views, and our corrupt dispositions will unconsciously be replaced by God’s word and the truth.
After that, I saw that God’s revelation of me came just in time. God has recently fellowshiped about what it means to pursue the truth and revealed that we do not pursue the truth primarily because we have dispositions of stubbornness and being sick of the truth. At that time, although I outwardly admitted that God’s revelation was right, I had little genuine knowledge of my dispositions of stubbornness and being sick of the truth, and no real acceptance of it in my heart. If God hadn’t arranged an environment to reveal me, or judged and revealed me in His word, I would never recognize my disposition of being sick of the truth, and would never repent and change. Thank God!