With God by My Side I Overcame Satan’s Temptation (Part 2)
Multiple Hindrances Fail and the Threat of Divorce Is Employed
One day when my husband came home from work, he had completely changed his formerly fierce attitude and said to me, “If you really want to believe in God, I’ll go to church with you. As long as you don’t believe in, I’ll go to any church at all with you.” I knew very clearly in my heart that this was Satan tempting me again, so I turned him down and said, “God started His work of the last days a while ago, and so the Holy Spirit’s work also shifted to God’s work of the last days. The churches based on the Age of Grace are lacking the Holy Spirit’s work, and only by keeping up with God’s new work can we receive the sustenance of the living water of life and keep up with the footsteps of the Lamb. It’s just as in the Age of Grace when the came to do the work of redemption and the Holy Spirit was no longer working within the temple; the Spirit of God was upholding the Lord Jesus’ work, and only those who accepted that were able to receive enlightenment and guidance from the Holy Spirit, and gain the Lord’s salvation. And currently, Christ of the last days—Almighty God—has expressed millions of words of the truth, revealed all the mysteries of the Bible, and has pointed out to mankind the path to achieve dispositional change and be fully saved. We must keep up with God’s footsteps and experience His current work and words to gain the work of the Holy Spirit. The entire religious world is currently in a bleak state—it lost the work of the Holy Spirit some time ago. What good would it do to go back into religious circles to attend services?” After my husband heard me say this he wouldn’t even acknowledge me. I then urged him, “You’re trying everything to hinder me because you don’t understand God’s work. If you just looked into Almighty God’s work of the last days and read more of His words, you would see that they are all the truth and that God’s work truly can transform and save us.”
Seeing I still wouldn’t budge, my husband said threateningly, “If you’re going to keep your faith in Almighty God, we should get a divorce.” These words of his pierced me straight through the heart. I never imagined that he would say such a heartless thing to me and I couldn’t help but wonder what would happen with our two children if we were to get divorced. This thought was like twisting the knife in my heart—I felt an indescribable pain. I ran into our bedroom and threw myself on the bed, crying in pain.
After a bit of time I thought of these words from God: “Faith is like a single log bridge: Those who cling abjectly to life will have difficulty in crossing it, but those who are ready to sacrifice themselves can pass over, sure of foot and worry-free. If man harbors timid and fearful thoughts, it is because Satan has fooled them, afraid that we will cross the bridge of faith to enter into God. Satan is trying by every way possible to send us its thoughts. We should at every moment pray for God to illuminate us with His light, at every moment rely on God to purge Satan’s poison from within us, practice within our spirit at every moment how to come close to God, and let God have dominion over our whole being” (The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. Utterances of Christ in the Beginning, Chapter 6). provided me with faith and strength. It’s true: All events, all things really are ruled and arranged by God, and my marriage is also in His hands. God also has the final say in whether or not my husband divorces me, so wasn’t I playing right into Satan’s tricks with my worries and fears? Satan burrows into every little nook and cranny, and what it wants to do is seize upon my weaknesses and exploit my emotions to corner me. It wants me to give up the true way and betray God out of fear of losing my family. Satan is so evil, so despicable! I was facing that environment with God’s permission—God was testing the genuineness of my faith and love for God through the tricks employed by Satan to see if I could avoid being constrained by emotions in the midst of a test, and stand witness for God, satisfying Him. Though I felt some weakness and negativity the moment I thought of my husband divorcing me, I realized that the more I experienced this, the more I needed to come before God to pray to Him and lean on Him, and stand on the side of God. Otherwise, I could very easily allow Satan to exploit that weakness, and I could do something to betray God.
With this thought, I dried my tears, stifled the pain in my heart, and said to my husband, “We’ve been married for ten years and we still have feelings for each other. But if you want to force me to give up the true way with the threat of divorce, I won’t hear of it. I absolutely must believe in Almighty God. I’m upset, and I really can’t understand why you’ve become so heartless, but if you’ve decided that what you want is a divorce, then I’ll respect your decision.” As I finished I broke down in tears and couldn’t go on; I was in unbelievable pain.
Tribulations Are God’s Blessings
Facing my husband’s hindrances and coercion, I was left in a state of weakness and confusion. I thought, “I just want to believe in God, seek the truth, and walk the right path in life. Why does it have to be so hard?” I shared my confusion in a gathering, and a sister read a couple of passages of God’s words to me: “Do not be discouraged, do not be weak, and I will make things clear for you. The road to the kingdom is not so smooth; nothing is that simple! You want blessings to come to you easily, do you not? Today, everyone will have bitter trials to face. Without such trials, the loving heart you have for Me will not grow stronger and you will not have true love for Me. Even if these trials consist merely of minor circumstances, everyone must pass through them; it’s just that the difficulty of the trials will vary from one person to another. Trials are a blessing from Me” (The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. Utterances of Christ in the Beginning, Chapter 41). “You must possess My courage within you, and you must have principles when it comes to facing relatives who do not believe. For My sake, however, you also must not yield to any dark forces. Rely on My wisdom to walk the perfect way; do not allow any of Satan’s conspiracies to take hold. Put all your efforts into placing your heart before Me, and I shall comfort you and bring you peace and happiness. Do not strive to be a certain way in front of other people; does making Me satisfied not carry more value and weight? In satisfying Me, will you not be even further filled with eternal and lifelong peace and happiness?” (The Word, Vol. 1. The Appearance and Work of God. Utterances of Christ in the Beginning, Chapter 10).
After reading God’s words, she shared this with me in fellowship: “In our faith, we face difficulty after difficulty; this contains God’s wisdom as well as His kind intentions. The way we see it, suffering hardships is a bad thing, and what’s good is easily practicing our faith, having everything go peacefully and smoothly without any disruptions or hindrances, without any condemnation or oppression, and no illnesses or refinement. But if we conducted our faith in such a comfortable environment would we really be able to attain the truth and grow in our lives? The Bible says, ‘The prosperity of fools shall destroy them’ (Proverbs 1:32). If we lived within an environment of fleshly ease and comfort, we absolutely would not proactively come before God, rely on Him, and look to Him. We wouldn’t have real faith in God or love for Him, but would just know literal doctrines, and the moment God’s work wasn’t in line with our notions, as soon as difficulties came upon us, we would misunderstand and complain about God. And in serious cases, we might even do things to oppose or betray God. This is why a comfortable environment has no benefit for us in our lives. It’s just like bamboo—if it weren’t subjected to wind, sun, and rain, after growing tall it would be incredibly weak and would be of no use. Likewise, when people of faith like us undergo a number of hardships and tests, we can genuinely rely on God and seek the truth within that kind of environment. We can experience His work, and the negative elements within us such as weakness and fragility will be gradually whittled away. This is the only way our resolve and willpower to seek the truth, to seek righteousness, and to aspire to the light will be able to grow, and the only way our faith in God and our devotion to Him can become more genuine. Just like now, you’re encountering the oppression of your husband time after time, and even though you’re suffering quite a bit within your spirit, it’s in just this kind of environment that we can clearly see the CCP’s essence. We can see how it employs all sorts of despicable tactics to stop people from believing in God, fabricating all kinds of rumors to delude our families. This shows us that the CCP is a demon that opposes God and is His enemy, and we thus develop true hatred for it and our desire to seek the truth grows even stronger. We can also personally experience that no matter what kind of difficult environment we may be in, God is always by our side, guiding us with His words to overcome Satan’s tricks time and time again. Then we even better understand the authority and might of God’s words; our faith in Him grows and we become closer to Him. Can’t we now see that God makes use of Satan’s tricks in employing His wisdom? In fact, these trying environments are a blessing from God; they are meticulously planned to provide us with the truth so that we may grow in stature. Our present difficulties are trials from God as well as Satan’s temptation, and through them we must pray and lean on God more so that we may be wonderful, resounding witnesses for God!”
Through this sister’s fellowship I gained a clear understanding of God’s benevolence that lies within hardships; I felt faith and strength in my heart and a willingness to lean on God and continue experiencing this environment. I then thought of the rumors the CCP was spreading online saying that those of us who believe in Almighty God don’t care about our families and felt incensed. It’s very clear that it fabricates these rumors to sow discord in the homes of Christians so that our families develop notions about our faith and get in the way of us coming before God, which could lead to our families falling apart. But it’s just upending right and wrong, and shamelessly saying that it’s faith in God that leads to the breakup of families, using this to try to get us to give up our faith. The CCP is so insidious, so vile and despicable! As I thought through all of this my detest for the CCP grew and I also firmly resolved that no matter how great the difficulties ahead were, I was determined to follow God. Though thinking of the two children sent a wave of pain through my heart and I couldn’t hold the tears back, I knew deep in my heart that God rules over all things, and that I just needed to look to God and hand my worries over to Him.
Faith Completed Through Hardship
Sure enough, my husband later asked me for a divorce. After signing the agreement he said to me that if only I gave up my faith, he would do everything my way going forward. Hearing this from him shook me a bit—if I compromised, I could be with the children—but then I thought better of it. My faith is the right path in life, and if I were to give that up, that would be betraying God; I would then be devoid of any conscience or character. I knew I couldn’t not believe in God. But thinking of divorcing my husband was so painful; I frequently hoped within my heart that he would change his attitude and support my faith. That would be so wonderful! These thoughts always made me feel weak and I frequently prayed to God through my tears.
One day, I read these words from God: “If they wish to be saved, and wish to be completely gained by God, then all those who follow God must face temptations and attacks both great and small from Satan. Those who emerge from these temptations and attacks and are able to fully defeat Satan are those who have been saved by God. This is to say, those who have been saved unto God are those who have undergone God’s trials, and who have been tempted and attacked by Satan an untold number of times. Those who have been saved unto God understand God’s will and requirements, and are able to acquiesce to God’s sovereignty and arrangements, and they do not forsake the way of fearing God and shunning evil amid Satan’s temptations. Those who are saved unto God possess honesty, they are kindhearted, they differentiate between love and hate, they have a sense of justice and are rational, and they are able to care for God and treasure all that is of God. Such people are not bound, spied upon, accused, or abused by Satan; they are completely free, they have been completely liberated and released. Job was just such a man of freedom, and this is precisely the significance of why God had handed him over to Satan” (The Word, Vol. 2. On Knowing God. God’s Work, God’s Disposition, and God Himself II). I thought of how Job’s ability to overcome Satan’s accusations and temptation was because he had true faith in God, and true submission and reverence for God. Job believed that God ruled everything; he believed that all of his possessions had been given to him by God, and regardless of whether God blessed him or took away from him, as a created being he had to accept and submit to it. So, when he lost his children and his property, and even developed boils all over his body, when his wife said to him, “Do you still retain your integrity? curse God, and die” (Job 2:9), Job refused to blame God. He even rebuked his wife, saying, “You speak as one of the foolish women speaks. What? shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil?” (Job 2:10). Job was steadfast in his devotion to God through his trials; his complete uprightness is something that I should learn from. I then thought of my own experience. Satan knows that my emotions are my greatest vulnerability, so that’s what it was using to disrupt and tempt me, try to get me to wallow in weakness and negativity because I couldn’t let go of my children or husband, and thus lose faith to walk the path of belief in God. But God’s will was to use that environment to allow me to develop true faith and love for God and ultimately be able to hand myself over to Him, obey His rule and arrangements, and escape from being toyed with and harmed by Satan so that I could attain release and freedom.
Once I understood God’s will, I came before Him and prayed, “Oh God! In spite of my pain and weakness, I am willing to obey Your rule and arrangements and hand my marriage and family over to You. No matter what kind of trials come upon me, I will stand witness for You.”
To my surprise, after some time passed my husband called me and said, “Let’s go to the court and revoke our divorce agreement!” Flabbergasted, I asked him why he had changed his mind. He said, “I only said I wanted a divorce to scare you into giving up your faith, but I never imagined that you’d be so resolute in your belief! I won’t stand in your way anymore. As long as you take good care of the kids, it’ll be fine.” Hearing these words brought me an indescribable feeling of happiness, and I knew this was all God’s doing. I quietly thanked God within my heart.
I later read these words of God: “Without God’s permission, it is difficult for Satan to touch even a drop of water or grain of sand upon the land; without God’s permission, Satan is not even free to move the ants about upon the land, let alone mankind, who was created by God. In the eyes of God, Satan is inferior to the lilies on the mountain, to the birds flying in the air, to the fish in the sea, and to the maggots on the earth. Its role among all things is to serve all things, and work for mankind, and serve God’s work and His plan of management” (The Word, Vol. 2. On Knowing God. God Himself, the Unique I).
After undergoing disruption and suppression time after time, I truly saw how God’s wisdom makes use of Satan’s trickery and that Satan is nothing but a foil, a service-doer for God’s work. I also saw the authority and power within God’s words, and that He truly is my support. When I was feeling weak and negative, it was God’s words that gave me faith and strength, allowing me to stand firm. When faced with trials, it was also God’s words that guided me step by step to surpass Satan’s tricks so that I could stand witness and shame Satan. Even though Satan tried everything to stop me from following God and worshiping Him, God was always by my side leading and protecting me, guiding me on the path before me through His words.
Although I suffered a bit through these hardships, I grew a great deal in my life and I experienced that difficulties are actually a blessing from God. I now live a life of the church and fulfill my duty as a created being. I live every day in the resplendent light of God’s love and I feel immeasurably blessed! Thanks be to God!
How to Resolve a Spiritual Drought: The Answer Lies Within Her Experience (Part 1)