198 Understand the Truth and Be Free
1 Through many years of believing in the Lord, I only spoke words and doctrines, clung to rules, and performed religious rites. My every prayer was an empty boast; never did I actually voice my innermost thoughts to God. I did not seek the truth when I read His words, unable to contemplate God’s will. I thought that memorizing so many famous verses and sayings from the Bible meant that I possessed the reality of the truth. I merely focused on stopping myself from lying; as such, I thought myself honest. For years, I toiled tirelessly and gladly that I might enter the kingdom of heaven and be rewarded. How lucky I am that the words of Almighty God called to me; I heard His voice and returned before Him. From His words, I have come to understand many truths, and I have beheld His appearance and work.
2 The judgment of God’s words suddenly caused me to awaken and realize that to pursue the truth is in line with His will. If I believe in God but do not undergo His chastisement and judgment, then my corrupt disposition cannot change. If I do not know God, and have no reverence for Him, then my good behavior is but a sham. God’s righteous disposition is unoffendable by man, and deceitful man’s wish to enter the kingdom is but a dream. I resolve to practice and experience God’s words, gain the truth, and shed my corruption. In all things, I now seek and practice the truth; deep down, I feel grounded and at peace. I loyally perform my duty, happily rendering service to God; I do not ask for blessings, but only that I may love Him. Now that I understand the truth, I no longer cling to rules; living before God, I am set free.