God’s six-thousand-year management plan is coming to an end, and the gate of the kingdom has been opened to all those who seek the appearance of God. Dear brothers and sisters, what are you waiting for? What is it that you seek? Do you await the appearance of God? Are you searching for the footprints of God? How the appearance of God is yearned for! And how difficult it is to find God’s footprints! In an age such as this, in a world such as this, what must we do to witness the day of God’s appearance? What must we do to follow the footprints of God? Such questions are faced by all those who await the appearance of God. You have all considered them on more than one occasion—but with what outcome? Where does God appear? Where are the footprints of God? Have you gained the answers? Many people’s reply would be this: God appears among those who follow Him and His footprints are among us; it’s that simple! Anyone can provide a formulaic answer, but do you understand what the appearance of God is, and what the footprints of God are? The appearance of God refers to His personal arrival on earth to do His work. With His own identity and disposition, and in His inherent method, He descends among man to conduct the work of initiating an age and ending an age. This kind of appearance is not a form of ceremony. It is not a sign, a picture, a miracle, or a grand vision, and even less is it a kind of religious process. It is a real and actual fact that can be touched and beheld. This kind of appearance is not for the sake of following a process, or for the sake of a short-term undertaking; it is, rather, for the sake of a stage of work in His management plan. The appearance of God is always meaningful, and is always connected to His management plan. This appearance is completely different from the appearance of God’s guidance, leadership, and enlightenment of man. God carries out a stage of great work each time He reveals Himself. This work is different from that of any other age. It is unimaginable to man, and has never been experienced by man. It is work that starts a new age and concludes the old age, and it is a new and improved form of work for the salvation of mankind; moreover, it is work of bringing mankind into the new age. That is the significance of the appearance of God.
At the same time as understanding the appearance of God, how should you seek the footprints of God? This question is not hard to explain: Where there is the appearance of God, you will find the footsteps of God. Such an explanation sounds very straightforward, but is not so easy to do, for many people do not know where God reveals Himself, much less where He is willing to, or should, reveal Himself. Some impulsively believe that where there is the work of the Holy Spirit, there is the appearance of God. Or else they believe that where there are spiritual figures, there is the appearance of God. Or else they believe that where people are well-known, there is the appearance of God. For the moment, let us not deliberate whether such beliefs are right or wrong. To explain such question, we must first be clear about an objective: We are searching for the footprints of God. We are not seeking spiritual figures, much less are we following famous figures; we are following the footprints of God. As such, since we are searching for the footprints of God, we must search for God’s will, for the words of God, for the utterances of God—for where there are the new words of God, there is the voice of God, and where there are the footsteps of God, there are the deeds of God. Where there is the expression of God, there is the appearance of God, and where there is the appearance of God, there exists the truth, the way, and the life. While seeking the footprints of God, you ignored the words that “God is the truth, the way, and the life.” So when many people receive the truth, they do not believe that they have found the footprints of God and much less acknowledge the appearance of God. What a serious error that is! The appearance of God cannot be reconciled with the conceptions of man, much less can God appear at the behest of man. God makes His own choices and has His own plans when He does His work; moreover, He has His own objectives, and His own methods. It is not necessary for Him to discuss the work He does with man or to seek the advice of man, much less notify each and every person of His work. This is the disposition of God and, moreover, should be recognized by everyone. If you desire to witness the appearance of God, if you wish to follow the footprints of God, then you must first transcend your own conceptions. You must not demand that God do this or that, much less should you place Him within your own confines and limit Him to your own conceptions. Instead, you should ask how you should seek the footprints of God, how you should accept the appearance of God, and how you should submit to the new work of God; that is what should be done by man. Since man is not the truth, and is not possessed of the truth, man should seek, accept, and obey.
Regardless of whether you are American, British, or any other nationality, you should step beyond your own confines, should surpass yourself, and should view the work of God as a creature of God. In this way, you shall not place constraints on the footprints of God. Because, today, many people conceive it to be impossible that God will appear in a certain country or nation. How profound is the significance of God’s work, and how important is the appearance of God! How can they be measured by the conception and thinking of man? And so I say, you should break through the conceptions of your nationality or ethnicity when you seek the appearance of God. In this way, you shall not be constrained by your own conceptions; in this way, you will be qualified to welcome the appearance of God. Otherwise, you shall always be in the darkness, and shall never gain the approval of God.
God is the God of all mankind. He does not make Himself the private property of any country or nation, and does the work of His plan unconstrained by any form, country, or nation. Perhaps you have never imagined this form, or perhaps you deny its existence, or perhaps the country or nation in which God appears is discriminated against and the least developed on earth. Yet God has His wisdom. With His power and through His truth and disposition He has truly gained a group of people who are of one mind with Him. And He has gained a group of people that He wanted to make: a group conquered by Him, who endure agonizing trials and all manner of persecution and can follow Him to the very end. The objective of God’s appearance free from the constraints of any form or country is for Him to be able to complete the work of His plan. For example, when God became flesh in Judea, His aim was to complete the work of crucifixion to redeem all mankind. Yet the Jews believed that it was impossible for God to do this, and they thought it impossible that God could become flesh and assume the form of the . Their “impossible” became the basis by which they condemned and opposed God, and ultimately led to the destruction of Israel. Today, many people have committed a similar error. They wantonly proclaim the imminent appearance of God, yet also condemn His appearance; their “impossible” once more confines the appearance of God within the limits of their imagination. And so I have seen many people fall about laughing after coming upon the words of God. Isn’t this laughter no different from the condemnation and blasphemy of the Jews? You are not devout in facing the truth, much less do you yearn for the truth. You merely study blindly and wait nonchalantly. What can you gain from studying and waiting like this? Can you receive the personal guidance of God? If you cannot discern the utterances of God, how are you qualified to witness the appearance of God? Where God appears, there is the expression of the truth, and there is the voice of God. Only those who can accept the truth can hear the voice of God, and only such people are qualified to witness the appearance of God. Put your conceptions to one side! Stop and carefully read these words. If you yearn for the truth, God will enlighten you to understand His will and His words. Put aside your view of “impossible”! The more that people believe something is impossible, the more likely it is to occur, for the wisdom of God soars higher than the heavens, God’s thoughts are higher than man’s thoughts, and the work of God transcends the limits of man’s thinking and conception. The more that something is impossible, the more there is the truth to be sought; the more that something is beyond the conception and imagination of man, the more it contains the will of God. Because no matter where God reveals Himself, God is still God, and His substance will never change because of the location or manner of His appearance. The disposition of God remains the same regardless of where His footprints are. No matter where the footprints of God are, He is the God of all mankind. For example, the Lord Jesus is not only the God of Israelites, but is also the God of all people in Asia, Europe, and America, and even more the only God in the entire universe. So let us seek God’s will and discover His appearance from His utterances, and follow His footprints! God is the truth, the way, and the life. His words and His appearance exist concurrently, and His disposition and footprints shall always be accessible to mankind. Dear brothers and sisters, I hope that you can see the appearance of God in these words, and will begin to follow His footprints toward a new age, and into a beautiful new heaven and new earth prepared for those who await the appearance of God.
from The Word Appears in the Flesh