My family was very poor when I was young, and thus I set a goal in my heart: I can’t live in this way for my whole life, and I must rise above others when I grow up. So I studied hard at school, hoping to change my fate by testing into college. However, when I was fifteen, my father got hemiplegia, and he could no longer work to support our family. At that time, I didn’t do well in classes, so I thought I might as well drop out of school so as to reduce the burden on my parents. After leaving school, although my dream of rising above others in my studies was shattered, I believed that one could have a good fate by his own effort, and that as long as I worked hard, I would assuredly build up a career and change my hard lot. At that time, I noticed that auto mechanic was quite popular, then I asked a favor of my relatives to find a car mechanic in the county for me, and I began to learn automobile repairs from him. Through three years of diligent study and constant practice, I mastered many critical techniques.
Finally, I finished my apprenticeship. I was very excited, taking it for granted that I had the capital to change my fate. Thereupon, I traveled to other places to seek a proper job to play my abilities. With excellent skills, I was quite popular wherever I went. In 2003, I got a job in the car sales and service station of a private enterprise, where the employees were paid on a 50% commission. At that time, I was one of the most skillful mechanics in the whole company, so the highly skilled tasks were naturally assigned to me, which were not tiring but more profitable. And so, I soon became the celebrity of our company. And my average monthly salary was around 3,000 yuan, which was the highest in the company. All my colleagues envied me, but I wasn’t content with the status quo, thinking: With such great skills, I will surely make a bundle if I open a garage of my own. Then, driven by the ambition and desire, I left the company, opened a garage myself, and took on two trainees. At first, the business was bad, and I didn’t have much profit remaining after paying the general expense every month. Later, my business picked up gradually. In order to expand the business, I employed a few more trainees. As the number of personnel increased, the monthly expenditure of my garage also rose, but my business was always shaky. When the business was good, I felt happy; when it wasn’t, I felt pressured. Thus I constantly pondered how to change the situation and make more money.
One day, one of my friends, who ran a fuel pump calibration shop, said to me, “Repairing autos is not profitable enough. How about coming to help me manage my branch shop of fuel pump calibration? You just take it as a business of both of us.” I knew fuel pump calibration business was more profitable than auto repair. I thought: If I leave my garage in my apprentices’ charge and work in his shop, I will then have two incomes. And as long as I bear more hardships, I will be able to make a big fortune and live a superior life in the future. At this thought, hope flared up inside me, and I seemed to see the car and mansion were right ahead waving to me. So I accepted his offer without hesitation.
In order to turn the business of the branch shop around, I made great efforts—going out early and returning late every day, traveling back and forth between the two stores without a moment’s respite, and doing as much work as I could no matter how dirty or tiring it was. In result, I looked as old as a middle-aged man though I was not yet thirty then, but I simply had no time to attend to it. After a period of time, however, not only did the business not pick up, but the profit even could not cover the rent. Feeling helpless, I had to transfer the shop to someone. I couldn’t figure out: Why do I always fail to make a fortune by my professional skills? I have worked hard, but why can’t I change my hard lot? Suddenly I felt that my ability was too limited to change my fate. But, young and aggressive, I wasn’t reconciled to the fact, and still kept on seeking for opportunities. Not long after, my friend proposed opening a service station with me. I was very excited when hearing this and thought to myself: Running a service station is my strong suit. If I team up with him, I will be able to display my strength. I wanted to have another try by relying on my own ability, thinking that I might be able to change my fate through this business. So I agreed to it quickly. But I said to him embarrassedly, “It takes a lot of money to open a service station, yet I can’t afford to invest that much.” “You only need to invest 50,000 yuan,” he said readily, “and I’ll cover the rest.” Soon the service station was established and everything was ready. As my friend hardly knew anything about the repairing skills, it was I who bustled around all the day-to-day running of the service station, while he was just responsible for the overall management. I worked from dawn to dusk, and sometimes even couldn’t have dinner until 11 p.m. But in order to change my fate, I thought it was all worthy. After some time, the business of the service station picked up. However, right then, against all expectations, my partner, with the excuse of us not getting on well, directly said to me, “The service station can be only owned by one person. If you want it, just repay me the money I have invested. Otherwise, I will repay your investment, then the service station is mine.” He clearly knew that I couldn’t afford to take over the service station, and he just forced me to quit in this way. I was very distressed, thinking: I have been working conscientiously to make money with my skills, but only end up surrendering the fruits of my toil to my partner. I fell apart at that point, and really couldn’t understand: Why have I never been able to change my fate through my own efforts? Why am I thwarted at every turn in my career even though I have mastered excellent skills? At that moment, I felt my excellent skills so powerless in the face of reality. Seeing my aspiration to rise above others dissolved into thin air, my mood hit rock bottom and I fell to the lowest point in my life. I felt tired, really tired …
After I returned home for the Spring Festival, my wife preached to me God’s work. And she read s to me, “From the moment you come crying into this world, you begin to perform your duty. You assume your role in the plan of God and in the ordination of God. You begin the journey of life. Whatever your background and whatever the journey ahead of you, none can escape the orchestration and arrangement that Heaven has in store, and none are in control of their destiny, for only He who rules over all things is capable of such work” (“God Is the Source of Man’s Life”). “The fate of man is controlled by the hands of God. You are incapable of controlling yourself: Despite always rushing and busying about for himself, man remains incapable of controlling himself. If you could know your own prospects, if you could control your own fate, would you still be a creature?” (“Restoring the Normal Life of Man and Taking Him to a Wonderful Destination”). When I heard them, my heart was shocked. In the past, I occasionally sighed over my life and said, “That is fate!” But I never knew the specific reason behind it. Only then did I understand: From the moment someone is born, God has arranged the fate for him; the role one assumes and the path he takes in this life are all predestined by God; and each person fulfills their respective duties in different positions and plays different roles according to God’s orchestration. For example, some people are extremely wealthy and live in the lap of luxury for their whole life, whereas some toil all their life but can only provide enough food and clothing for their families. Regardless of how discontented we are with our fates, or how we rack our brains trying to change the fate of our own, it is all to no avail, for no one can control his own fate. At that time, I couldn’t help but recall my past experiences: Over these years, I’ve always been holding to the rule of survival “Every man is the architect of his own fate,” dreaming to rise above others and live a superior life by relying on my own ability. When I changed from an ordinary employee to a boss who owned a garage, I was still not satisfied with it, and wanted to associate with my friend in business by my professional skills. It was only when I was cheated by my friend and lay broken and bleeding that I gave up my dream reluctantly. All my experiences completely proved that everything of man depends on the predestination of God. My struggle against fate will bring me nothing but misery. Not until then did I completely understand that all my suffering comes from my disobedience to God’s sovereignty and arrangements and my struggling against fate.
Then, I saw the words of God: “but no matter how high your office, if you rely on your knowledge and ability in your undertakings, then you shall always be a failure, and shall always be bereft of the blessings of God, because God accepts nothing that you do, and He does not grant that your career is a righteous one …” (“God Presides Over the Fate of All Mankind”). After reflecting on God’s words, I realized that I really didn’t know the immensity of heaven and earth, for I always regarded the excellent skills I had as my capital to change my fate. Only in the reality did I see that we humans are always created beings and will never go beyond the life course that God has set for us, that even those talents, great or famous people, presidents, or scientists are unable to change God’s predestination, and that the whole of mankind lives under God’s sovereignty and arrangement. God’s words utterly convinced me. I was attracted by these words and willing to continue seeking and investigating God’s work.
After the Spring Festival, as my business was slack, I transferred the garage to someone and bought a second-hand truck for transportation business. At that time, my wife read a passage of God’s words to me, “ dominates all things and beings! So long as our hearts look up to Him at all times and we enter into the spirit and associate with Him, then He will show us all the things we seek and His will is sure to be revealed to us; our hearts will then be in joy and peace, steady with perfect clarity” (“The Seventh Utterance”). She told me, “You used to struggle against fate with your skills and ended up lying broken and bleeding. Now since you have believed in God, you should keep in mind at all times the fact that God presides over the fate of all mankind. Although driving is not your specialty, as long as you always look unto God and submit to His sovereignty and arrangement, you will see God’s wondrous deeds.” At first, I just had some perceptual understanding of these words that my wife had read to me, and only after I experienced them personally was I convinced that they are true.
The region where I transported goods was ringed by mountains. Every day I transported various machines to construction sites. As the road was very tough and dangerous, I earned every cent at great risk. One day I delivered a heavy mechanical digger to a village. The road there was very narrow, but the overall length of my truck was about 12 meters. What’s more, it was the first time I went there and I knew nothing about the state of the road. When I drove to a sharp bend, my truck got stuck, for it was too long to pass the bend. Looking around, I saw on one side was a cliff, and on the other side was the mountain. Besides, there were two breaks in the road which were caused by flood, and the rear wheels of the truck just lay between them, and the front of the truck was almost against the mountain, which made me caught in a real dilemma. What’s more, it was raining a bit, and if the rain increased and caused a landslide, the consequences would be unimaginable. I turned pale and shook all over with fear, and didn’t know what to do. In the midst of despair, I suddenly remembered God. So I immediately prayed to God, “O Almighty God! I’m very scared now and have no idea what to do. But I believe that my fate is controlled by Your hands, and I only wish to obey Your orchestration and arrangement. …” After the prayer, my heart calmed down a lot. About a few minutes later, a tractor, which was full of passengers, was driving toward me. Seeing this, I panicked, for I had heard that the natives were tough to handle. As my truck blocked the road, I was afraid they would hit or abuse me. So what should I do? … I cried out to God constantly. Unexpectedly, the tractor stopped in front of me, and a man came up to me and said, “It’s very dangerous to stop your truck like this. It happens that there are many people here. Let’s hurry and carry some stones to fill the breaks to ensure the safety of the truck, then unload the digger.” I couldn’t believe my ears, for I had never expected they would offer to help me. I was so excited that tears almost burst from my eyes. The scene at that time was quite moving. Men and women, old and young on the spot were all mobilized. Some carried the stones, and some lifted the flagstones. Two hours later, we finally filled the breaks and unloaded the mechanical digger safely. And then the empty truck negotiated the bend smoothly and got out of danger. Later, the driver of the mechanical digger, who went with me, said, “People here are not as black as they were painted. Aren’t they nice?” I smiled with relief and said nothing, for I knew it wasn’t because they were good but because God maneuvered them to help us out of danger. God holds sovereignty over all people, events, and things, and everything that He has arranged is His protection for us. From this, I saw that all things are controlled by God’s hands, and that as long as I truly rely on God, I will obtain peace and happiness. Similar things happened several times later on, and every time I saw: As long as I come before God, truly ’s orchestration and arrangement, and no longer struggle against fate, I can receive God’s care and protection.
After I believed in God, I learned to rely on Him and look unto Him in my experiences. I put my fate in God’s hands and submitted to His sovereignty and arrangement, and in less than three years, we bought a house, and the living standards of my family also improved a lot. In retrospect, before I believed in God, I had thought I could change my fate using my professional skills, which caused me to take many winding roads and suffer a lot and end up achieving nothing. But when I was willing to let go of my ambition and desire and put my fate and prospect in God’s hands, I saw God’s blessings in everything and lived easily and happily. Through my personal experiences, I have realized that whether our fates are good or not doesn’t depend on the profession or special skill but depends on whether we believe in and submits to God’s sovereignty and arrangement in our actions. Because everything of man comes from God, the wisest choice of man is to submit to God’s sovereignty. Through my personal experiences, I’m completely certain that Almighty God is the Ruler of all things and the only reliance of man. I’m willing to accept Almighty God as my Lord and my God. May all the glory be to Almighty God!