by Wang Meng
At 16, I dropped out of school and started to work on the land in my hometown. For a young and short teenager like me, it was not easy to get all the job done by myself alone. When I saw others had help from their relatives and friends, I thought: Having many friends is a good thing, and with their help, one doesn’t need to worry anymore when having some work to be done. At 19, I got a job in a factory, and I planned to make many friends, for they say, “More friends, more paths. More enemies, more barriers.” I was a fitter in the factory, so in order to make many friends, whenever my fellow workers asked me to do something for them like welding household ironwares, I would agree at once on condition that their requests didn’t violate the factory regulations. And I would spend my off-duty time making things for them with waste materials without charging a penny. Gradually, whenever they saw me, they greeted me warmly and called me “Brother Wang,” and I was very pleased with that. Once when I told my workmates that I was going to repair my house, seven or eight of them immediately came to help and finished the work within one day. At this, I was much delighted and thought: It’s indeed good to have many friends.
Gradually, more and more people came to ask for my help, and a close friend even asked me to use the good materials of the factory to make household wares for him. That was unreasonable and put me in a bit of a dilemma, for it was against the factory regulations. So I said to him, “Materials of the factory can’t be used at will. You can buy some materials and I’ll make it for you.” Hearing this, His face darkened at once, “You can’t even do me such a small favor, you are not my friend!” Then, he turned and left angrily. After that, he gave me the cold shoulder whenever he saw me, and I was upset about it. There was another friend of mine who came to me to borrow the electric welding machines and cutters, and he wanted to use them in construction sites. I said to him, “No. If it’s found by the factory director!” Angry at my refusal, he slammed the door hard and left. That hurt me. I thought: Just one word could offend him; it’s so difficult to keep a friend. Later on, many workmates kept asking me to make things for them. I was quite troubled: If I refuse them, I will displease them; if I agree, I will break the factory regulations. I was in a quandary. Apart from that, most of my workmates were going to get married or have a baby, so I had to attend their wedding or their babies’ birthday parties. Using up all my salary on them wasn’t a big deal, and the worst thing was that I had to drink a lot, so that my stomach ached very often and my condition was declining. I often thought: I believe in “More friends, more paths,” but I’ve now got completely exhausted and suffered unspeakably because of trying to maintain interpersonal relationships.
Later, I quitted my job in the factory and became a self-employed laborer out of my hometown. In the new environment, I had less social intercourse, and my heart lightened a lot. During this time, I was lucky to have accepted ’s salvation of the last days. Through my interactions with the brothers and sisters from the Church of Almighty God, I found that they were very sincere in their association with others. When they were together, they would communicate and share their knowledge of s. When I didn’t understand God’s words, they fellowshiped with me patiently. Sometimes I told them that I could help make things for them in my store for free, every time their answer was: No, thanks. I found that their living out was totally different from my former friends. Once in a meeting, we shared a passage of God’s words: “A normal relationship between people is established on the foundation of giving their heart to God; it is not achieved through human effort. Without God, relationships between people are merely relationships of the flesh. They are not normal….” Through my brothers and sisters communicating together, I had a shallow knowledge of these words: Without the guidance of God’s words, men’s relationships could never be normal, but are of making a dealing with each other. Just like when I was in the factory, my friends and I all took advantage of each other, which made me feel very unhappy. Today, my brothers and sisters can have such a living out, this is the effect of God’s words. Only when men associate with each other according to God’s words can their relationships be normal.
Although I understood the literal meaning of these words, as I didn’t know my essence or God’s will, and what’s more, being a newcomer here, I had to do many things unaided, so I still thought it a good thing to have many friends—they could come in handy when I ran into trouble. But on the other hand, I recalled the time when I suffered physically and mentally for the sake of maintaining a friendship. After much toing and froing, I came to a conclusion that it was necessary to make friends, but I should be selective, and make several true and useful friends. Not long after that, my cousin called me to borrow money, but I didn’t have money in hand at the time. Then he pleaded with me to borrow some money from others for him and promised to reward me. Hearing his words, I thought: He is a big farmer with powerful economic strength, and besides, he is my relative. If I help him this time, he may help me in return one day; if I displease him, he won’t help me in case I need his help. And then the famous saying “more friends, more paths” came into my mind. Therefore, I managed to borrow 200 thousand Yuan for him and we set a deadline for repaying it. When the deadline came, the creditor urged me to return the money, but my cousin hadn’t given back the money yet. I couldn’t but go to his house and asked him to pay the money back. Unexpectedly, he delayed it with various excuses. I had to beg the creditor for days of grace. Just like this, I dealt with both sides for a period of time. That worn me out completely, and left me helpless and distressed. I asked myself: Why is my life so tiring? In agony, I called upon God and looked up to Him, hoping that He enlightened me to understand His will. Afterward, I read God’s words: “The Chinese nation which has been corrupted for thousands of years has continued on until today. All sorts of viruses continue to expand and are spreading everywhere like the plague; just looking at people’s relationships is enough to see how many viruses are in people. … People’s personalities, habits, the way they do things, everything they express in their lives and their interpersonal relationships are all broken beyond belief…. This is because those who live in this land have eaten too many viruses. It seems to be business as usual for people, and they think nothing of it. Therefore, the greater the corruption of the people in a place, the more improper their interpersonal relationships will be.” “Satan corrupts people through the education and influence of the national governments and the famous and great. Their lies and nonsense have become man’s life and nature. ‘Everyone for himself and the devil take the hindmost’ is a well-known satanic saying that has been instilled into everyone and become the human life. There are some other words of life philosophy that are also like this. … There are still many satanic poisons in people’s lives, in their doings, and in their conduct and dealings with others—they are almost without a shred of truth—for example, their life philosophies, their maxims for success, or their ways of doing things. Every person is filled with the poisons of the great red dragon, and they all come from Satan. So, what flows through people’s bones and blood are all things of Satan.”
Through Almighty God’s words, I knew that after I was corrupted by Satan, all I lived by were satanic poisons, and all I acted by and how I dealt with others were full of Satan’s philosophies, so my relationships with others weren’t normal. Being corrupted by Satan so deeply, I had lived in complete accord with Satan’s principles of existence such as “More friends, more paths,” “Everyone for himself and the devil take the hindmost,” and so on. When I helped my friends, I always thought they would help me when I have difficulties. When I helped my cousin, I thought I could get his help one day, for he had large networks of friends, and had wealth and power that could be figured on. But now I found that things were not what I had pictured. This selfish and base life philosophy of Satan—taking advantage of each other—put me into an awkward predicament and made me feel vexed. At this moment, I was a bit awakened: Satan uses these life philosophies to destroy the relationships among people, so that they treat each other without sincerity anymore. How can such a relationship hold long? How can my life not tiring and painful? Thinking of my association with my brothers and sisters, they all treated others with sincerity. Only then did I see clearly that anything that comes from God is positive, beautiful, and kind, and anything that comes from Satan is negative, which afflicts man.
Then, through prayer and seeking, God’s words showed me the way. Almighty God says: “If you don’t have a normal relationship with God, no matter what you do to maintain your relationships with other people, no matter how hard you work or how much energy you put into it, it still belongs to a human philosophy of life. You are maintaining your position among people through a human perspective and a human philosophy so that they will praise you. You do not establish normal relationships with people according to the word of God. If you don’t focus on your relationships with people but maintain a normal relationship with God, if you are willing to give your heart to God and learn to obey Him, very naturally, your relationships with all people will become normal.” Reading God’s words, I felt terribly ashamed. Since I believed in God, I have never sought the truth in God’s words, nor conducted myself according to God’s words although I knew that normal interpersonal relationships must be based on God’s words. On the contrary, I followed Satan’s principles of existence all the time and was unable to extricate myself from it. My conducting myself by Satan’s life philosophies was just spinning a cocoon around myself. God’s words clearly tell us that if we maintain a normal relationship with Him, our relationships with others would be normal. As long as we conducted ourselves in accordance with God’s requirements in everything and let Him reign in our heart, we could get rid of Satan’s control. So, I prayed to God for His guidance, so that I could betray Satan’s principles of existence and associate with others according to God’s words.
The Spring Festival was coming soon. I recalled in the past, I followed the principle of “more friends, more paths,” and would contact or meet my relatives and friends in the festival in order to maintain a good relationship with them to pave way for later use of them. Through Almighty God’s words of judgment and chastisement, I saw it was totally Satan’s life philosophy and was the tool Satan used to afflict man. So what should I do in this Spring Festival? I prayed to God a great deal about this. I asked God to enlighten and guide me to understand His will from His words and give me confidence and strength to break free from Satan’s bondage. Then I saw God’s words say: “God is always in the hearts of those who genuinely and they always carry within them a God-revering heart, a God-loving heart. Those who believe in God should do things with a cautious and prudent heart, and all they do should be in accordance with God’s requirements and be able to satisfy the heart of God. They should not be headstrong, doing whatever they please; that does not befit saintly propriety.” “Whenever you do or say anything, you must put your heart right, be righteous, and not be led by your emotions, or act according to your own will. These are the principles by which believers in God conduct themselves.” From God’s words, I understood that what I said and did should honor God, and that I should put my heart right in doing everything. Previously when I met or contacted my friends, my purpose was to exploit them, which was not the likeness of man. Now I should turn my back on my intention and treat my friends with sincerity. At this moment, I suddenly understood: It is time for me to rely on God to come out of the “cocoon.” I must betray Satan and treat my friends according to God’s words.
During the Spring Festival, my relatives and friends came to my house to visit us. Some of them asked me to help them with this or that. I put my heart right and treated them sincerely. If I could help, I would agree, and if I couldn’t, I would tell them why. In this way, I was free from life philosophies somewhat, and everyone was happy. Once, when one of my in-laws pestered me to help him get a bank loan and promised me a bonus, I was moved. I thought, “It’s not bad. If I agree, not only can I help him, but also I can make a buck. And what’s more, I can also ask for his help in case of any difficulties in the future. If I disagree, won’t I offend him? How am I going to get along with him afterward?” But then I thought, “How can I still act by satanic philosophy and have a selfish intention of making a deal with others?” Aware of my thought being wrong, I hastened to pray in my heart to God and gave up my wrong intention. After prayer, I frankly told him that I couldn’t help him this time. Unexpectedly, he didn’t anger, but repeatedly said, “It doesn’t matter.” I felt it easy and joyful to rely on God to deal with people, which allowed me to taste the delight of putting God’s words into practice. Afterward, I saw that when I depended on God’s words to associate with my relatives and friends, I not only didn’t mess up our relationships, but instead I felt released and no longer treated them with pretense. I have truly seen that only by practicing God’s words can we have normal relationships with others. It is God’s words that allow me to break out from the “cocoon.” All the glory be to Almighty God!