What Course of Life to Take
Everyone is going forward along the predestined course of life. No one can go back to the past or see into the future. Even so, many still enjoy and never tire of exploring and planning their lives.
I have a friend. She had made plans for her future in her youth: getting into an elite university, opening her own grand hotel after graduation, achieving a great career. … She regarded realizing these ideals as her life goals. However, the first step in her life journey was an agonized failure. She only entered a second rate university after repeating two years of school. After entering university, she studied very hard, hoping that after graduation, she could start her career in a big city. But she didn’t do the trick and could only live and work in a third-tier city. Later, she persistently tried to establish a business, but all of her attempts came to nothing. … At last, she suffered a nervous breakdown, unable to fall asleep at nights. She was wrapped in depression, heavy of heart all day, and always complained about the bitterness of life.
My friend’s experiences made me ask myself: What is my ideal of life? What is my goal in life? What will my life course be like? I was not as much a utilitarian as my friend, but after seeking for a long time, I found no answer, and my mind still wandered. Looking around, some people devoted themselves to study, some chased their beloved arts. … I began to imitate them. I started to learn foreign languages, read various books, and seek the way of success. However, none of these things aroused my interest, so I failed to find my goal in life. I felt that the more I tried, the more confused I became. But I still told myself: Life without a goal would be totally meaningless. So, day after day I thought and thought, looking for the answers. But I never succeeded. Consequently, I began to complain: Why can I never find my course of life?
One day, in a book my friend gave me, I saw these words: “… that nothing happens at random, that these things’ ramifications, and their inevitability, cannot be shifted by human will. Every happening conveys an admonition from the Creator to mankind, and it also sends the message that human beings cannot control their own fates; at the same time every event is a rebuttal to humanity’s wild, futile ambition and desire to take its fate into its own hands. They are like powerful slaps about humanity’s ears one after another, forcing people to reconsider who, in the end, governs and controls their fate. And as their ambitions and desires are repeatedly thwarted and shattered, humans naturally arrive at an unconscious acceptance of what fate has in store, an acceptance of reality, of the will of Heaven and the Creator’s sovereignty. From these daily vicissitudes to the fates of entire human lives, there is nothing that does not reveal the Creator’s plans and His sovereignty; there is nothing that does not send the message that ‘the Creator’s authority cannot be exceeded,’ that does not convey the eternal truth that ‘the Creator’s authority is supreme.’”
“Because people do not recognize God’s orchestrations and God’s sovereignty, they always face fate defiantly, with a rebellious attitude, and always want to cast off God’s authority and sovereignty and the things fate has in store, hoping in vain to change their current circumstances and alter their fate. But they can never succeed; they are thwarted at every turn. This struggle, which takes place deep in one’s soul, is painful; the pain is unforgettable; and all the while one is frittering away one’s life. What is the cause of this pain? Is it because of God’s sovereignty, or because a person was born unlucky? Obviously neither is true. At bottom, it is because of the paths people take, the ways people choose to live their lives” (from “God Himself, the Unique III”).
It’s Never Too Late to Apprehend Happiness
As a popular saying goes: One proper word can wake up the dreamers. Pondering these thought-provoking words, I suddenly understood: Our specialties, likes, and what we will undergo in our lives have long been arranged by God. It turns out that God is the general director of our life course. Because we don’t know God’s sovereignty, we always want to take our life path according to our imaginations and dictate our own fate, and are not willing to obey God’s arrangements. Then, what we have brought for ourselves will only be endless pain. Haven’t I and my friend been like this? What she pursued was utilitarian and material, and what I pursued was also to be looked up to by others through my own efforts and find the so-called self-value. In a word, both of us wanted to oppose God’s sovereignty and change our own fate. We had wracked our brains to copy the lives of so-called successful men, thinking that only living such a life could be called success. However, as we were treading in others’ steps, we gradually realized that other people’s lives didn’t suit us. The time flew, and the prime of the years slipped by. In my backward glance, I suddenly realized that I had already let slip the chance to experience my own lives. Once again, I entered into a state of bewilderment after I had sought yet attained nothing. Living in misery, I didn’t know the way ahead, as if I was lost in a desert. I saw the mirage of an oasis again and again, but till my stock of energy was exhausted, I still couldn’t find any way out. Thus loneliness, emptiness, and melancholy piled up in the depths of my souls.
Now, I finally had some comprehension: If we don’t know God’s sovereignty or submit to it, attempt to surpass the fate predestined by God, then the only result for us is failure. My precious time was wasted and lost, and I regretted it. This kind of struggle deep in the soul was unbearable and distressful. Why not try my best to change myself and give all my life to God before it’s too late? Only by doing this can I begin my first step on the road to a free and happy life.
Life Like a Starry Sky
From then on, I gradually learned to obey God’s orchestrations. Without superior ability, I did what I could, like writing and dancing. Though it didn’t make me stand out from others, I saw that I was making progress. Without pretty face or fine figure, I could not capture more people’s hearts, but I gradually understood that it was God’s great protection for me. Because in this evil and licentious age, if I had a beautiful appearance and was coquettish, I would certainly fall into the temptation of Satan, lost in licentiousness and unable to extricate myself from it. Without the chance to chase fame and gain, I could attentively. Although I did not make a rise in life, I learned from God’s words the mysteries of life and understood that only by practicing and experiencing God’s words, can man be free from the bondage of sin and live out the manner of a true person who has truth and humanity, and can man’s heart and spirit receive freedom, relief, certainty, and peace from God…. In this way, I accepted the environment no matter how it changed, actively submitted to God’s guidance, and experienced the life course predestined for me by God. So, I lived a comfortable and happy life. As I continuously practiced and experienced God’s words—when I encountered difficulties, I often sought and prayed to God, looked up to and depended on Him; and I conducted myself according to His requirements—my corrupted disposition was gradually changed. Now, I have gone through most of my life; when I look back to these years after I came before God, I no longer feel empty and painful. I have walked the right way of life of fearing God and shunning evil, and feel free and joyful to live by truth before God.
Our lives are like the stars in the vast cosmos. If we devoutly live by the course predestined by God, submit to His guidance, and appreciate His deeds, then we will find that a life with God’s presence and blessings is indeed like the stars in the sky, peaceful, orderly, beautiful, and tranquil….