By Xu Nuo
“Woo…,” a childish crying broke the still night. Wu You’s brother, thirteen years younger than her, cried again. She couldn’t clearly count how many times she had prepared milk formulas for her litter brother. Since her parents were arrested by the CCP, she had played the role of a father or a mother in her family. Every time after she made the milk, she would smartly put the pacifier into her brother’s mouth and rhythmically tap him on the back. When she watched her brother drink it, her thoughts couldn’t help drifting back to that day …
A Storm Arrived
On that day, the wind was piercingly cold. After lunch, Wu You heard some footsteps in the courtyard when she was cleaning up the dinner set. It was Aunt Cai in the church. Before she greeted her, the aunt first said, “Wu You, your parents were arrested by the CCP police when they were out preaching thethis morning….” At the news, Wu You felt afraid—her hands trembled uncontrollably and her heart beat strongly as if it would rose into her throat, so that she didn’t catch what the aunt had said that followed. Her mind went blank, and until after a while she came around and realized it was not a dream. Though she didn’t cry loudly, yet her tears couldn’t help running down. Aunt Cai held her hands and comforted her, “Child, though your parents were both arrested, we should believe everything is in God’s hand, and that we have the presence of God. Let’s pray to God for your parents. God will surely keep them. We need to have faith in God….” Hearing these words, Wu You nodded her head strongly. She understood that since her parents had been arrested, she should take the responsibility for her family. Her brother and sister were still very little and her granny was very old, so she told herself to be strong.
Growing Up in the Storm
The next day, Wu You’s mother was released, but she dare not go home for fear that she would bring trouble to the church, as well as that she would be arrested once more. So she had to bear pain to give up what she loved and leave her hometown for other places to perform her duty. Though her mother didn’t leave her any word, there was often a clear picture in her mind: Her mother holds the book of God’s word and carefully reads it, “Perhaps you all remember these words: ‘For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, works for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.’” Then her mother tells her, “All the pains and tribulations we’ve endured are temporary. Only through these hardships can we gain the sweetness in the future. If one day your dad and I are arrested by the CCP police, don’t fear. Whatever difficulties you encounter, you should pray to God and rely on Him more, because nothing is impossible for God. Only God has been watching over and protecting us, and guaranteeing our safety and keeping us from being devoured by Satan….” By recalling the words of God that her mother had fellowshiped about, her uneasy heart gradually calmed down.
Wu You, however, was a child under age after all. There was no doubt that without her parents at home, she was under a lot of stress—doing all the housework, sending her sister to school and helping her with her homework, and enduring the cold words of people around and their ironic or sarcastic remarks, so much so that she could hardly breathe. At that time, it was the middle of cold winter. As the water pipe in her family iced over, they couldn’t use the water. Wu You entreated a favor of her uncles and aunts, but unexpectedly, these relatives suddenly became very indifferent and strange, showing no mercy or sympathy toward her. The New Year was just around the corner. Outside the window, it blew stronger and snowed more heavily. In helplessness, Wu You had to go to her neighbor for help. At the moment when she entered his door, she saw his whole family were talking happily while enjoying their reunion dinner. She thought about her own situation—She had a blind grandmother with limited mobility, a young and innocent sister, and a little brother who could only cry for food, so she felt very sad in her heart. She held back the pain and grievance, forcedly stopping her tears from running down.
It pained her to face this broken family. She just didn’t understand: My parents are just humble peasants and never break the law; they just walk the right way of life for believing in God, but why do the CCP police arrest and persecute Christians and forcefully break up their harmonious families?
Seeing the True Colors
Wu You poured out her sorrow and confusion to Aunt Cai. Then Aunt Cai read to her some of God’s words: “For thousands of years this has been the land of filth, it is unbearably dirty, misery abounds, ghosts roam its every corner, tricking and deceiving, making groundless accusations, being ruthless and vicious, trampling this ghost town and leaving it littered with dead bodies; the stench of decay covers the land and pervades the air, and it is heavily guarded. Who can see the world beyond the skies? The devil tightly trusses all of man’s body, it puts out both his eyes, and seals his lips firmly shut. The king of devils has rampaged for several thousand years, right up until today, when it still keeps a close watch on the ghost town, as if it were an impenetrable palace of demons; this pack of watchdogs, meanwhile, stare with glaring eyes, deeply fearful that God will catch them unawares and wipe them all out, leaving them without a place of peace and happiness. How could the people of a ghost town such as this have ever seen God? Have they ever enjoyed the dearness and loveliness of God? What appreciation have they of the matters of the human world? Who of them can understand God’s eager will? Small wonder, then, that God incarnate remains completely hidden: In a dark society such as this, where the demons are merciless and inhumane, how could the king of devils, who kills people in the blink of an eye, tolerate the existence of a God who is lovely, kind, and also holy? How could it applaud and cheer the arrival of God?”
After reading them, Aunt Cai said to her, “It can be seen from God’s words that, for thousands of years, Satan has been frantically destroying and demolishing God’s work, acting against God all along. The CCP government is an atheistic regime, and they arrest and persecute Christians, attempting to abolish God’s work. Because the CCP is a satanic regime that is hostile to God, they stop people from believing in and following God, and they oppress, arrest, and persecute Christians. That is why many families were broken up and got separated from each other. Moreover, numerous Christians, in order to avoid being arrested by the CCP, have to leave their hometowns and escape away. The CCP also seizes this chance to spread rumors and lies to deceive people and makes public opinions so as to make people around isolate and forsake us. This is the scheme of Satan, the king of devils. It intends to induce us to deny God, complain against God, and betray God, so that we’ll eventually be destroyed by God along with it and fall into hell to be punished, ruining our opportunity of being saved. Satan’s motive is so sinister and malicious, and they are purely a gang of devils, and are the executioners who kill without blinking an eye. So, we must see through Satan’s scheme and understand God’s kind intention of saving man. Though we suffer some pains temporarily, God has never departed from us. He has been watching over us by our side and accompanying us through days and nights. We should be faithful to God, believing that He will lead us to break through all the force of darkness and stand up bravely.”
Hearing Aunt Cai’s fellowship, Wu You couldn’t help clenching her fists, thinking: It turns out that all the pains my parents and I have borne are brought by the CCP government; it is the CCP that makes me lose my parents’ love; it is they that make me bear a hard burden a minor can’t take up. These are all caused by the CCP government.
Tasting God’s Love and Obtaining the Treasure of Life
Aunt Cai found another passage of God’s words for Wu You. Wu You read it, “Now you should notice that God does not eliminate Satan right away, so that man is able to see how Satan has corrupted people, and how God has saved people. Only after man is able to see the extent of Satan’s corruption of man, how Satan’s list of crimes reaches the heavens does God ultimately eliminate Satan, so that people can see that therein is God’s righteousness and His disposition.” Then Aunt Cai continued, “With regard to this matter we encounter today, outwardly, it seems like a bad thing, but in truth, there is God’s wisdom in it. The arrest of the CCP makes you lose parents’ care, but meanwhile, through this matter we can clearly see the ugly face of the CCP who is sinister, evil, vicious, and atrocious, and see their true face of resisting God and condemning God with all means. They outwardly brandish the banner that citizens enjoy the freedom of religious belief, but they persecute the arrival of God and destroy God’s work behind. We can see that if we want tounder the rule of the CCP, we will surely be arrested and persecuted, and even pay the price of our life. Without these environments, we couldn’t see through the countless sins of the devil CCP resisting God. This is why God’s wisdom is based on Satan’s schemes. Only in such environment can we practically understand that only God is our strong rear guard, that only God can bring the light to mankind, and that only God is the symbol of justice and beauty and goodness.”
At that time, after reading God’s words and hearing Aunt Cai’s fellowship, faith and strength flared up inside her, giving her the feeling that the present troubles was nothing. Though her mind and body bore great pressure when her parents weren’t by her side, Wu You acquired much knowledge under the guidance of God’s love. Not only did she learn to do the housework, but she learnt to rely on and look up to God in all things, which allowed her to clearly see the evilness and darkness of this world. Over this particular period of time, she had grown up and become sensible, as well as understood that only God is sympathizing with and caring for her, and that God is her only reliance. What she gained through this experience became a treasure in the journey of her life.
Having understood this, Wu You gained some real knowledge of the passage of God’s words that her mother had read to her. God’s words say, “Perhaps you all remember these words: ‘For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, works for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.’ In the past, you have all heard this saying, yet none understood the true meaning of the words. Today, you know well the real significance they hold. These words are what God will accomplish in the last days. And they will be accomplished upon those cruelly afflicted by the great red dragon in the land where it lies. The great red dragon persecutes God and is the enemy of God, so in this land, those who believe in God are subjected to humiliation and persecution. That is why these words will become reality in you group of people. As the work is carried out in a land that opposes God, all of His work is met with inordinate hindrance, and many of His words cannot be accomplished in good time; hence, people are refined because of the words of God. This too is an element of suffering. It is greatly arduous for God to carry out His work in the land of the great red dragon, but it is through such difficulty that God does a stage of His work to make manifest His wisdom and wondrous deeds. God takes this opportunity to make this group of people complete. Because of people’s suffering, their caliber, and all the satanic disposition of people in this unclean land, God does His work of purification and conquest so that, from this, He may gain glory and gain those who stand witness to His deeds. This is the full significance of all the sacrifices that God has made for this group of people.”
Though Wu You couldn’t fully comprehend the profound meaning of God’s words, she understood that God uses the persecution of the CCP to make this group of people the overcomers, who will finally inherit the everlasting promises and blessings of God. She thought that she and her parents could accept God’s salvation of the last days, which was preordination and exaltation of God. Though she didn’t know much of God’s work, yet she had faith to stand up bravely in the frantic persecution of the CCP, not holding her parents down, or being passive, or complaining against God, but being willing to stand testimony before Satan and satisfy God’s heart.
Later on, her father was set free, but her mother was still out. Wu You knew that she still had a long way to go. Despite difficulties and obstacles, she believed that accompanied by God, she wouldn’t be lonely. Because God’s words say, “Their lives in this world are not alone. Mankind has God’s care, God is with them; people can always lean on God; He is the family of every one of His followers. With God to lean on, mankind will no longer be lonely or helpless….”
2. “Making groundless accusations” refers to the methods by which the devil harms people.
3. “Heavily guarded” indicates that the methods by which the devil afflicts people are especially vicious, and control people so much that they have no room to move.