I Work Desperately to Make Money so I Can Live a Rich Life
When I married my husband we were very poor and were often cold-shouldered by others, and I became determined to make more money so that we could soon move into an apartment building and prevail over those who had looked down on us. I therefore went to work in a wool processing factory outside of town and I worked cleaning the strands of wool out of the drums. Because the machines turned very quickly, if I wasn’t fast enough with my hands then I would be swept into the machine to my death. But in order to earn more money, I risked this mortal danger and continued to work extra shifts. Normally, to save time and get more done, I would eat my meals whilst working, and I only slept around three or four hours a night. One evening when I was working an extra shift, I fell asleep while the machine was still running. Luckily, my husband saw me as he was ending his shift and an accident was avoided.
Although I sometimes felt exhausted, I only had to look at the money I was earning for my hard work and my heart would then be soothed. I always thought: “Money isn’t everything, but without it, you can do nothing,” and “Money makes the world go round.” Nothing was as important as earning money. As long as I had money, then I could earn other people’s respect and live the life I wanted; I was willing to achieve this no matter how much I had to suffer. In this way, seven years went by in a flash and we managed to save many tens of thousands of yuan. Our son had also married and had a son of his own, and our days were happy. At times, however, I still felt a nagging dissatisfaction. When I saw other people buying houses and luxury cars in the big city, I wanted to keep working hard to earn more money, striving to upgrade to a bigger house and to drive a luxury car.
Long-term Exhaustion Makes Me Sick
While I struggled and worked hard to achieve my ideal life, I was afflicted by various illnesses. Being overworked for such a long time caused me to suffer various ailments, such as severe strain in my back muscles, periarthritis in my shoulder, cervical spondylosis and cerebral vasospasm. If I sat down for too long, my back would become unbearably painful, and all I could do was remain standing at work to alleviate the pain; my cervical spondylosis caused my neck to become so stiff that it became too painful to bow my head, and I would often suffer from dizziness and tinnitus. Working extra night shifts night after night caused me to develop a kind of seasonal disease called cerebral vasospasm. Whenever it flared up, the pain made it hard for me to sleep and I would just hold my head and cry all night, not even daring to brush my hair. I couldn’t take the pain anymore, so I went to hospital and got some painkillers. The doctor cautioned me, saying, “This illness comes from working extra shifts at night. You must rest more.” But I refused to listen to the doctor’s advice and, so as not to let it interfere with my capacity to earn money, I persevered with my work and endured all my ailments. Finally, the periarthritis in my shoulder got so bad that I couldn’t move my right hand anymore, and I was forced to quit my job. Yet I thought to myself: If I can’t make lots of money, at least I can make some money. And so, I found myself a more relaxed job and continued working. As time went on, my illness got worse and worse. After an examination at the hospital, the doctor said, “You’ve had this illness for so long that the best time to treat it is past. Even if we treat it now, you will not make an easy recovery. All we can do is treat you and see how it goes, and you must come to the hospital every other day for physiotherapy.”
After around 20 days of treatment, my son pulled a grim face and said in a brusque tone, “Because you have so many illnesses, you’re spending all our money.” My husband also complained and said, “You can’t earn money, but you still keep spending it.” Hearing them reproach me so coldly, I was so hurt that I burst into tears, and I felt so upset, as though my heart had been broken. That evening, I sat on the bed and thought of how I had spent most of my life working hard to earn money. I had thought that I would be able to live a happy life if I had money, but in the end, though I had earned some money, I had ruined my body and was tormented unbearably every day by my illnesses. Not only was I not enjoying the happy life that money had brought me, but I was also being hated and rejected by my own family for trying to treat my illnesses. In my pain and despair, I gave a deep sigh and thought: What on earth am I living for? What’s the point of such a life?
God Comes to Comfort Me in My Pain and Disillusionment
When I was in the most pain, I came across God’s kingdom. Through the fellowships given by brothers and sisters, I came to understand that God is the one true God who created all things, that all our lives come from God, and that only God can save us, only God loves us the most. I also understood that the reason why we suffer from so many ailments and live such painful lives is because we have shunned God and been corrupted by Satan. Only by accepting God’s gospel and hearing His words can we obtain God’s care and protection, and experience peace and joy. I read these words of God: “The Almighty has mercy on these people who have suffered deeply; at the same time, He is fed up with these people who lack consciousness, as He has had to wait too long for an answer from humanity. He wishes to seek, to seek your heart and your spirit, to bring you water and food and to awaken you, that you may no longer be thirsty and hungry. When you are weary and when you begin to feel something of the bleak desolation of this world, do not be lost, do not cry. Almighty God, the Watcher, will embrace your arrival at any time.” Every word of God warmed my heart, and I couldn’t help but fall into deep thought. When I lost all hope and lost my courage to go on living, God knew my pain, He preached the gospel to me through the brothers and sisters and waited for me to return before Him; when my own family turned their backs on me and my relatives gave me the cold-shoulder, God did not abandon me, but instead He used His words to knock at the door of my benumbed heart, and I came to have a deep appreciation of God’s love for me. Thinking this, I burst into tears of gratitude. I felt like an orphan who had returned to its mother’s embrace; my heart was filled with love and warmth, and suddenly I found the courage to go on living.
Afterward, I began to get involved in the church life. Together with my brothers and sisters, we read God’s words, fellowshiped about our personal experiences, and we showed each other love and support. My heart felt more and more liberated, and I forgot all about my illnesses.
Through the Revelations of God’s Words, I Find the Root of All Pain
One day, I read these words of God: “‘Money makes the world go round’ is the philosophy of Satan and it prevails among the whole of mankind, among every human society. You could say that it is a trend because it has been instilled into the heart of every single person and is now affixed in their heart. … So after Satan uses this trend to corrupt people, how is it manifested in them? Don’t you feel that you couldn’t survive in this world without any money, that even one day would just be impossible? People’s status is based on how much money they have as is their respectability. The backs of the poor are bent in shame, while the rich enjoy their high status. They stand tall and proud, speaking loudly and living arrogantly. What does this saying and trend bring to people? Don’t many people see getting money as being worth any cost? Don’t many people sacrifice their dignity and integrity in the pursuit of more money? … Isn’t Satan sinister to use this method and this saying to corrupt man to such a degree? Isn’t this a malicious trick? As you progress from objecting to this popular saying to finally accepting it as truth, your heart falls completely under Satan’s grasp, and therefore you unwittingly come to live by it.”
God’s words were so true and they were a true portrayal of myself. Thinking back over recent years, I realized that I had lived by the satanic philosophies of “Money makes the world go round,” and “Money isn’t everything, but without it, you can do nothing.” I had regarded money as being more important than anything else and had believed that, by earning lots of money, I could then enjoy a life of luxury, earn the respect of others and not be looked down on by anyone. For this reason, I had worked like a money-making machine all day every day, I had worked desperately hard every day and every night and had not paid any attention to my own health at all. Even when I was beset by various illnesses, I’d still been unwilling to give up any opportunity to make money. In the end, I had some money and my material life had improved, but my body had been ruined, I was tormented by ailments, my family had no sympathy for me, and I lived in unbearable pain. I saw that I had been controlled and harmed by the phrase “Money is first;” I had been willing to risk my life for money’s sake and had not hesitated to pay any price—I had turned utterly into money’s slave. I then thought of how so many people get sick for the sake of earning money, who have to take medicine all year round, who spend the first half of their lives working hard for money and then the rest of their lives spending that money to treat their various illnesses; so many people overwork themselves too much and lose their lives for the sake of earning money…. All this was the consequence of Satan’s deception and corruption of man. Satan was using these ideas to control people’s hearts and to make people spend all their time and energy earning money, so much so that we are even willing to sacrifice our health and lives. Like beasts of burden, we live under the ravages of its corruption. And ultimately, we all end up living in pain. Satan’s intentions truly were so evil and malicious! And so, I silently made a resolution: From now on, I shall staunchly reject these fallacies of Satan and no longer be fooled and harmed by it, and I shalland follow Him in earnest, and live under God’s watchful care and protection.
Faced With Temptation, Which Way Should I Choose?
Under the guidance of God’s words, I no longer worked as hard to earn money as I had before, but instead I focused on reading more of God’s words and attending more gatherings with my brothers and sisters. I felt enriched every day, and my spirit gained a calm and a freedom it had never felt before. My health also gradually began to recover, and I actively performed my duty in the church as much as I was physically able.
But when Spring Festival came around, my son returned home and said to me, “Mom, I’ve contracted several projects out of town. Come with us and help us with the work and we can make a bit of money over the next few years. We will buy a house down south, so we won’t be coming back here. Start packing as we’ll be leaving in two days’ time.” Hearing him say this, I fell into deep thought: I suppose the job I do now is quite laid-back, but I don’t make much money. Now my son has contracted some projects, and down south is an industrial area so we will surely make money. To buy a big house in a big city and settle down there is my dream too! But then I thought: I’ve made a lot of money for years, but apart from getting sick and being treated coldly by my family, what have I actually gained? Now that I have begun to believe in God, my health has started to get better, but my son wants me to go make money again…. Thinking these thoughts, I said a silentto God: “O God, You have already bestowed enough grace and blessings upon me. My son now wants me to go south to earn money, but I don’t want to fall into Satan’s temptation and continue to be harmed by it. Please lead me to overcome Satan’s temptation and protect my heart so that I may live in Your presence.” After praying, I thought of these words of God: “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?” God’s words of authority knocked at the door to my heart, and I thought: Yes, God predestined and arranged long ago how much money I would have in my life, and no one can change whatever God has predestined. No matter how I may bustle and strive, I can never change my fate. A proverb says, “It will come if the time comes in your life, do not force it if the time does not come.” I have suffered enough pain from the harm of Satan, and I must not go back to be part of Satan’s following.
I Rid Myself of Money’s Harm and Live a Happy Life
I later read these words from God: “After you recognize this, your task is to lay aside your old view of life, stay far from various traps, let God take charge of your life and make arrangements for you, try only to submit to God’s orchestrations and guidance, to have no choice, and to become a person who worships God.” God’s words showed me the path of practice and I realized that I should entrust my life to God and submit to His sovereignty and arrangements. My life had been so painful before and I’d spent most of my life earning money, thus causing the ruin of my own body; there was no way I could continue to walk that old road. Now, I had no worries about the basic necessities in life and my laid-back job paid enough to cover everything. What’s more, I could attend gatherings and read God’s words with my brothers and sisters, and I found my life very joyful. Thinking this, I decided to take a rational approach to money, and I decided never again to be money’s slave. What I had to do was reestablish my life goals, seek to love God, live out a meaningful life, perform my duty as a created being and shun the harm caused by Satan. I therefore politely refused my son’s request. After having practiced in this way, I felt unbridled joy and I truly experienced the sense of happiness and peace that comes from having God’s protection and having God beside me.
Afterward, I gradually corrected the way I had lived as well as the wrong goals I had pursued. I would no longer struggle and toil for money or live for money, but instead would live to pursue the truth; I would seek to submit to the sovereignty and arrangements of the Creator, live a regular life, have a normal job, read God’s words together with my brothers and sisters, sing in praise of God and perform my duty as a created being. Slowly, I came to understand many truths and was able to discern many of Satan’s deceitful schemes, thereby avoiding much of the harm and trickery of Satan, and lived a life that grew more and more carefree over time. The various ailments, such as the muscle strain in my back, my cerebral vasospasm and the periarthritis in my shoulder, which had held me in their grip for years, all went away. Thanks be to God for showing me mercy and kindness, and for enabling me to rid myself of Satan’s harm and live out a meaningful life.