By Ning Chen
When I heard that the leader was going to transfer Li Man to our group, I felt uneasy: Why do they transfer her to my group? I worked with her before, so I knew a little bit about her: She is very smart and good at learning new things; no matter what it is she can learn it easily. She is of high quality. If she came to our group, she would be the favorite in our group, removing me from the spotlight. … Thinking about this, I was so disappointed, but there was nothing I could do, so I secretly hoped that other groups also needed people and they would have to move her to those groups …
A few days later, when several groups were working together, Li Man joined us. Unexpectedly, in only a few days, she made two proposals, and wanted us to see if there were any mistakes. I found that her proposals and her ideas were particularly new and unique, and there were only a few flaws, which was the result of being unfamiliar with the work. Seeing her make such good proposals in such a short amount of time, I thought to myself: She really has the ability and intelligence to do this job. If it were not because of the fact that I have worked in this area for a longer period of time than her and am more familiar with the work, she would catch up to me soon. … While thinking about it, I heard other colleagues constantly praising Li Man’s proposal. I expected this to happen, but I was still bitter in my heart.
Whatever you are afraid of is what will come! About a month later, Li Man transferred to our group. Her performance really didn’t surprise me. After two days, when we were reviewing a proposal from a branch company, she blurted out the core problem of the proposal after reading it just once. She was sharp and her performance was accurate. Usually when we face some problems and difficulties at work, we do not know how to solve them, but she has unique insights. Then I cannot help but think that when I first came to work here, I was so busy working hard to get familiar with the business. However, Li Man quickly got a great grasp of all aspects of this business. I really felt hurt and started to become jealous. The flame of envy began to burn in my heart.
In the following days, when I saw that sometimes Li Man couldn’t understand the work that my colleagues and I were discussing, I couldn’t help but be in high spirits because her lack of understanding would prevent her from joining the conversation, leaving me in the spotlight. I didn’t want to take the initiative to teach her lest she would surpass me. … Sometimes when Li Man was depressed and showed no initiative because of her being unfamiliar with the work, I pretended to encourage her with my colleagues, but in my heart I wanted her to keep passive so that she would never steal the limelight from me again. When she encountered a problem that she couldn’t figure out and asked me, I helped her, but deep inside, I was still afraid of her becoming better than me, so my assistance was always half-hearted.
On one occasion, the leader issued a new task. It was a very important short-term project, so we needed to select one person in the group to be in charge of it. I thought: In the group, nobody else but me should be able to qualify for this project. I have always been recognized as the most capable in our group, plus, my colleagues also trust me a lot. … While I was thinking about this, the colleague sitting next to me said to Li Man: “I think you are most suitable for this project, and since you are the sharpest person here, I nominate you for the person in charge of the project. …” After I heard these words, my heart was burning with envy: Are you kidding me? How long have I been working here?! Although I am not clever, I am serious and responsible for my work, and my attitude to work every day is for all to see, but now you actually ignore my existence and recommend Li Man. What does she understand? I was very angry, but I didn’t say anything because I didn’t want to reveal my jealousy. However, I felt extremely unhappy, thinking: She just got here not long ago but everyone supports her. Pretty soon, there will be no place for me. Suddenly I felt that I had been replaced as the best, and I felt left out.
Dazed by my jealousy, I felt extremely unbalanced, and my envy of Li Man sublimated into “revenge and attack”. At the time when she just took over the new assignment, I saw that she had a few problems at work. I started to point out and exaggerate the mistakes she made, and gave her a hard time just to release my anger and seek revenge. However, Li Man had her own opinions and my colleagues also agreed with her ideas. Again, not only did I lose my public image, but my opinion was also denied, so I tried to find evidence to fight back and deny her ideas. … I finally was successful in rejecting her views and got my revenge, so I was satisfied. However, Li Man became somewhat passive after that. At this moment, I felt a little regret. In all fairness, Li Man’s point of view was not entirely wrong. With a little bit of correction, it would have been perfect, but why did I deny her entire proposal and force her to use my ideas? How did I become like this?
Later, the performance of our group began to plummet. As a result, the leader had meetings with us every other day to solve the problems. Looking at this situation, I was stunned and didn’t know how we got into such a situation or how to deal with it. I had been dedicated to the work, but I messed it up. In the face of the decline in performance and the criticism from the leadership, I felt miserable. As a Christian, I could only pray to God and tell Him my pain.
One day I read God’s words, “You always worry that others will stand out more than you, that others will become greater than you. Is this not being jealous of worth and ability? … What kind of disposition is this? This is venomousness!” “What is the standard by which a person’s acts are evaluated as good or evil? It is whether or not you, in your thoughts, expressions, and actions, have the testimony of putting truth into practice and of living out the reality of truth. If you do not have this reality or do not have this living out, then you are without a doubt an evildoer. How does God look on evildoers? Your thoughts and external acts all make God ashamed. They do not testify of God. They do not put Satan to shame or defeat it; instead, in everything they are the mark of making God ashamed.”
After reading God’s words, I began to reflect on my recent actions. From the very beginning when I heard that Li Man was coming to our group, I rejected her arrival because of her good caliber and ability. I feared that she would rob me of the limelight. When she was with us and her work was at a low ebb, I was relieved of my jealousy; when she worked actively, I was more concerned about her being better at work than me; seeing that she had just joined us but already had a good grasp on the business, I was jealous. I was always cautious when I taught her as I didn’t want her to learn too much from me and participate in our work so quickly. When my colleagues nominated her to do the new project, I was disappointed. I felt like I lost my position. … Since she got here, the only thing I could think about was my jealousy towards her. I didn’t want to give her advice at work because I was afraid she would surpass me. From these things I saw how selfish I was. Besides, just because I wanted to protect my own image, I rejected her and gave her a hard time on purpose, which caused her to become passive in her work. When she lost efficiency in her work, instead of feeling bad, I gloated. I really saw my vicious self. For all this time, I just concentrated on bringing down Li Man instead of working together with the team to improve our performance. Thinking about this I felt really guilty. I had been putting all of my efforts and energy into keeping my image and position, living in jealousy and strife. As a result, I suffered from the anxiety about gain and loss, exhausting myself. As a Christian. I didn’t live to testify to God, but instead I shamed God, exposing myself to Satan’s accusation and being its laughing stock, and didn’t have the likeness of a Christian. I felt so ashamed. Seeing my vicious disposition, I felt like I had no dignity to see God.
After praying and repenting, I read another passage of God’s words, “Is not a person’s falling into these conditions a trap? This is the bondage of a satanically corrupted nature. Think about it for a minute: If a person has cast off these corrupt dispositions, is he then free and liberated? Ponder this: What kind of changes must a person make if he wants to refrain from falling into these conditions and wants to be able to cast off these conditions and free himself of the vexations of these things? What must a person obtain before he can free himself of the vexations of these things, loosen the bonds of these things, and be able truly to be free and liberated? On one hand, a person must see through things: These fame and fortune and positions are tools and methods for Satan to corrupt people, to entrap them, to harm them, and to cause their degeneration. You must first see clearly this aspect in theory. … You must learn to give up and set aside these things, to yield, to recommend others, to allow them to stand out. Do not struggle furiously and rush to take advantage as soon as you encounter an opportunity to stand out or obtain honor.” “Brothers and sisters coordinating with each other is a process of complementing each other. You use your strengths to make up for his shortcomings, and he uses his strengths to make up for your shortcomings. This is called learning from each other, and harmonious coordination. It is only through harmonious coordination that people can gain blessings in front of God. This way things will become smoother and smoother, brighter and brighter, and you will be more and more at ease. If you are always frustrated, and you’re never convinced by what others say and others don’t want to hear what you have to say, either; if you save them some face but they don’t do the same for you, and then you feel like you can’t get through it; if they say something but you don’t give them an easy exit, and they remember it in their heart, and the next time an issue occurs they don’t give you an easy exit; is it called complementing each other and coordinating harmoniously? It’s called strife, and living based on your hot blood and your corrupt dispositions. It will not gain—He is not pleased by that.”
God’s words gave me the path to practice. I needed to learn to give up and set aside these things, to allow those who are better than me to stand out. I should fulfil my duty and coordinate with my colleagues so that we can complement each other. In this way I can live with dignity and obtain release and freedom. Meanwhile, others can also get lots of benefits. I am willing to rely on God and escape Satan’s trap, and never compete for fame and status. I decided to become an honest person. Since I work for the company, I should put its needs before mine, devote my best effort and work in harmony with my colleagues. I will put my heart in front of God and accept God’s observation, hoping what I think and what I do can be God’s testimony. This is the only way that I can live like a human being. God told us only by working in harmony can we gain blessings from Him. I want to seek the truth, live in front of God, and be the one blessed by God. Actually, the talents and strengths each person has have been predestined by God. Li Man was born clever and talented, which was ordained by God. Instead of being jealous, I should use her strengths to make up for my shortcomings, so we can work in harmony and learn from each other. Is this not the best of both worlds? Why was I such a fool to ignore this?
Later, because Li Man was not familiar with the new project, she needed a partner. The colleagues nominated me to be her partner. Through God’s words, I realized that fame and status were shackles that Satan brings to me. Working together with one mind is the only way that we will obtain blessings from God. So, I often prayed and relied on God, and gradually, I gave up jealousy towards Li Man and stopped chasing fame, status, and a good public image. Instead, I accepted God’s observation and sought to seekand the truth in daily life to testify to God. In the following days, we worked together in harmony. Because we have different strengths, we divided the tasks by our talents. She is good at public speaking, so she was the speaking representative. I am good at busy work, so I stayed at the office. Our efficiency skyrocketed in 20 days. I saw God’s blessing when I followed God’s word, especially when I gave up fame, fortune and position. I felt a relief I had never felt before and didn’t live like a greedy, filthy gremlin. Thank God! Finally I can live out the human likeness.