By Li Chao
When I was young, my father was a compulsive gambler. He neglected our family and had no pity for my mother. As I saw my parents lived a life without love, I thought: When I grow up, I must find a man who can love me dearly. Even if we have a poor life, as long as we can have conjugal affection and spend the rest of our lives together, I will be satisfied.
At the age of twenty-two, introduced by my cousin, I met a man who was simple and honest, and handsome. After we got married, I found my husband had a sharp mind, often thinking how to make money. He was not only good to me, but also was a family-centered man. However, he was naturally slow, doing something without haste, while I was naturally quick and had a bad temper. When I lost my temper and gave him hell, he never got upset but only gave a silent smile. Though, sometimes, we had some friction in our daily life because of something, yet we could still enjoy a sweet life. I was thankful that I had found a good husband. Not rich as our family was, we had a pleasant life.
One day, my husband said to me: “We can’t make big money in the countryside, let alone have a future. Let’s go to the downtown to make money.” Then I left my daughter behind with my mother and started a business with my husband in the downtown. Any trade that could make us rich quickly would be our choice. In the blink of an eye, ten years passed. We bought a house and a car, as well as had seventy or eighty thousand yuan of savings. Though we had made some money, the competition among the trade exhausted me. As a result, I suffered from angina when I was only over thirty. As the pain attacked me, I felt it was like pins and needles inside and I even couldn’t dare to make a movement. My husband said to me with pity: “These years you have suffered too much. Though we have made some money, you don’t have any enjoyment, but toil in the sun and rain all year round. Now you have suffered from this disease; I can’t make you toil anymore. If you go on like this, your health will be ruined. We should change to another business, which can both make big money and be easy to us.” Hearing my husband’s considerate words, I felt warm in my heart: These years I went through the hardships of living outside, but with my husband’s care and consideration, I still felt happy in my heart, no matter how arduous or tiring my life was.
Half a year later, we turned to start a restaurant business. In the beginning, our business was not bad. But gradually customers who came to our restaurant became less and less so that we almost made no money every day. On top of that, officials from the industrial and commercial bureau and the tax bureau, as well as the local ruffians all came to have meals without paying for them. And we dare not to provoke them. For this, I was very indignant in my heart. I had never expected that not only was it not easy to make money in this trade, but that we had to deal with these complicated people. Then, I talked over with my husband to transfer our restaurant. Unfortunately, there was no buyer, so we had to reluctantly run the business even if we lost money.
In order to keep our business, my husband associated with people from the underworld and the local policemen. He often drank with them and often got dead drunk. Though nobody came to our restaurant to stir up trouble, my husband was mixed up with these people all day. He often went to karaoke bars and dance halls, and sometimes even didn’t go home all night. Moreover, he almost didn’t pay attention to the restaurant business, much less did he give any concern about me. Seeing that, I was afraid that he would learn to do ill, so I often tried to persuade him not to always hang around with these people. Once, after I spoke to him, he changed his look and pulled a long face, abusing me before our staff: “You’re really short-sighted. How many days have you seen the world? You dare to mind my affairs. If I hadn’t taken you out from the countryside, you would just be a household woman. What do you know? I have made my way in the society for so many years, don’t I know more than you? Now our business is so bad; what if I don’t associate with these friends? From now on, don’t interfere in my affairs. Stay out of my business….” My husband’s unusual attitude astounded me. In the past, I often lost my temper with him, and no matter how I gave him hell, he didn’t get angry but said to me with smile: “As long as you don’t get angry, you can speak whatever you like.” But today, he abused and disgraced me in front of our staff. I was so angry that my entire body trembled, and I began to make a scene with him. Unexpectedly, he beat me. I was very sad because I had never suffered this.
Thereafter, even a trifle would get us into an incessant argument. However, considering our conjugal relationship, I still tried to persuade him with sincere words. But he just turned a deaf ear and complained about my constant nagging. Not only that, but he also drank much all day, neglecting whether our restaurant could make money. After drinking, he would go to karaoke bars or dance halls with riff-raffs, absolutely ignoring me and my feelings. Seeing my once honest husband had changed, I was heart-broken, feeling that our marriage had reached its end. So, I asked my husband for a divorce, but he disagreed. My mother also persuaded me: “In order for your child to have a complete family, you might as well live together.” Seeing my white-haired mother, who had been looking after my child all the time, and seeing my innocent daughter, I thought over and over again, and then gave up the idea of divorce. Burying all the pain in my heart, I supported this broken family.
I had never thought that, afterward, my husband asked me to drink with customers. I refused, and then he abused me and said: “Men drinking with customers can only make them come once, but women doing so can attract customers. Why are you so stubborn? You see, how good the landladies in other restaurants are at doing business! They often drink with customers, so their restaurants are all full of customers at noon….” Seeing my husband spoke such words, I hadn’t completely known him. Before, he didn’t make me suffer any grievance no matter how much hardship he endured. But now he could speak such words, which made me totally disappointed with him. Could our life go on? Once more, I asked my husband for the divorce. He said: “It’s fine! No kidding. Don’t scare me with this. Once we divorce, I can immediately find a maiden.” Then he gave me a beat with a broom. Seeing my husband was so heartless, I was so angry and sat on the ground crying loudly, feeling heartrending. Within over ten years of marriage, this was the first time that he had beaten me like this. He really changed, without any conjugal affection. At that time, I had a strong hatred for my husband, hating his ruthlessness and his deception of my feelings. Our once solemn pledge of love had vanished. The more I thought, the sadder I grew. Such marriage was too miserable, so I made up my mind to divorce him. But he obstinately refused to sign the divorce settlement and as a result, we were unable to divorce.
Every day, we shared the same bed but dreamed different dreams, so when I had to face my strange husband, I felt more miserable. I often thought: What do people live for?! If I have to live in pain every day, it’s better for me to die. If I died, all my annoyance would disappear. Filled with this idea, I went back to my mother’s home. I fought back tears to hold my innocent daughter in my arms, exhorting her to listen to her grandmother. Then, I got on the bus back to the downtown. When I was on the bus, my tears couldn’t help falling down. At the thought that I would leave my relatives forever, reluctance and pain welled up in my heart. I thought: Will I die in this way? If I jump into the big river and die, my old mother and young child will bear the pain of losing their loved one. And the old will bury the young…. Thinking of this, I lost the courage to die. Nevertheless, I was really perplexed how to live on for the rest of my days.
When I was perplexed and had no way out, an aunt preached God’s kingdomto me, and exhorted me to cherish this opportunity. She also gave me a book and said it is God’s word, which can resolve all pains and difficulties in our life. After hearing her words, I seemed to see hope. In the following days, as soon as I finished the work in our restaurant, I hurriedly opened the book to have a read.
God’s words say: “The Almighty has mercy on these people who suffer deeply. At the same time, He is fed up with these people who have no consciousness, because He has to wait too long for the answer from humans. He desires to seek, seek your heart and your spirit. He wants to bring you food and water and to awaken you, so you are no longer thirsty, no longer hungry. When you are weary and when you begin to feel the desolation of this world, do not be perplexed, do not cry. Almighty God, the Watcher, will embrace your arrival any time.” When I read these words, a warm current flowed into my heart. God’s words comforted me and gave me reliance. In retrospect, I lived in harmony with my husband with all my heart, but later on my husband became ruthless to me. When I was in agony, he even didn’t give me any comforting word. We once went together through thick and thin, but now he became so hard-hearted. Fortunately, when I was about to lose hope for my life, it was God who cared for me and sent people to save me—arranging for the aunt to preach the gospel to me and bringing me back to God’s family. Only God accompanies me by my side, never leaving and forsaking me. At that moment, my tears silently ran down. God’s words warmed my wounded heart and once again ignited my desire for life.
God’s words attracted me, and once I had time, I would read God’s words. As Sister Li in the church came to see me, I felt very happy. Through communication, I found Sister Li was honest, and was open with me. I also poured out my pain to Sister Li. She comforted me, saying: “Don’t be too worried. Today’s society is just what it is like. There is no affection between people, no true love between husband and wife. I experienced the same pain as yours. My husband had an affair with a woman behind my back. Once, when I returned home from work, I happened to see them. At that time, I really couldn’t believe it was true. But the fact just lay before my eyes. I was extremely indignant and miserable. Afterward, it was God’s words that saved me from misery. God’s words say: ‘“Man has been so corrupted by Satan that he no longer has the appearance of man.” This phrase has now gained slight recognition from the vast majority of people. It is so said because the “recognition” here is merely superficial acknowledgment as opposed to true knowledge. As none of you can accurately evaluate or thoroughly dissect yourselves, you always half-believe, half-doubt My words. But this time I am using facts to explain a most serious problem you have, and that is betrayal. All of you are familiar with the word “betrayal” because most people have done something to betray others before, such as a husband betraying his wife, a wife betraying her husband, a son betraying his father, a daughter betraying her mother, a slave betraying his master, friends betraying each other, relatives betraying each other, sellers betraying buyers, and so forth. All of these examples contain the essence of betrayal. In short, betrayal is a form of behavior in which one breaks a promise, violates moral principles, or goes against human ethics, and which demonstrates a loss of humanity.’ From God’s words, we can see: We have been long ago corrupted by Satan, so everyone has nature of betrayal and can involuntarily do something that betrays their relatives, friends, husband, wife and parents. In this large vat of society, people have been long ago assimilated by Satan, involuntarily living in sin. If we didn’t, without God’s protection, we would also follow the evil worldly trend to betray our husbands. The root cause is that people have the nature of betrayal.”
Hearing the sister’s fellowship, I felt brightened in my heart: My husband betrays me, it is because we were corrupted by Satan and we ourselves have the nature of betrayal. Besides, in this business he associates with many people who do nothing decent, and step by step, he was influenced and assimilated, long ago having forgotten our once solemn pledge of love. The people around me all live a debauched life and betray their relatives, not thinking it is shameful, but thinking it is glorious. Even my best friend also has affairs with other men behind her husband’s back. Reflecting on myself, when my husband changed his heart toward me, I also had the heart of betraying him. And many times I also wanted to retaliate against him. Now I realized it was God’s protection that kept me from doing so. At the idea of this, I put aside some resentment to my husband. He had his lifestyle while I have my own pursuit.
Through reading God’s words and having meetings, I come to understand more and more truth, and my viewpoint on things is also gradually changing. I read God’s words, which say: “All the work He has done is for the purpose of leading people to the right way of human life, so that they can have the normal life of mankind, because man does not know how to lead a life. Without such leading, you would only be able to live an empty life, would only be able to live a worthless and meaningless life…. As you do not know how to lead a life or how to live, and you live in this licentious and sinful place and are licentious and filthy devils, He does not have the heart to let you become even more depraved; neither has He the heart to see you living in the filthy place like this, being trampled by Satan at will, or the heart to let you fall into Hades. He only wants to gain this group of you and thoroughly save you.” Thinking back to my past life—finding a good husband, enjoying conjugal affection, and being able to promise each other for the rest of life, I believed that this kind of life was a happy life. So when my husband betrayed me, I lost the hope of life and just wanted to end up dying. Now I see I lived so pitifully. God has been providing for our lives, but I didn’t cherish my life God gives me and wanted to end it just because I couldn’t get my husband’s love. It was God who pulled me back from the edge of death, gave me the courage to live on, and led me to walk the right path of human life. At this moment, I was very thankful to God and made a resolution before Him: It is God who gives me a new life, so I will follow God for the rest of my life. Thereafter, I attended meetings actively and performed my duty. No matter what happened to me, God’s words could lead me to have a way forward. Every day I lived happily and was full of unspeakable joy and sense of happiness. I could get released from miseries, which is really God’s salvation.
A month later, God opened a way out for me. Our restaurant was torn down because the government would widen the road. That way we didn’t have to run our business that lost money. What I even hadn’t thought was that after the restaurant was torn down, my husband stopped drinking all day, but bought a vehicle to honestly start a business again. I put aside the past and preached the gospel to him. He also believed in God and cooperated to spread the gospel. Seeing my husband’s change, I thanked God from the bottom of my heart. Only Almighty God’s words can save people, and only God can save us from the bitter sea. Just as the hymn of God’s word goes, “He is not willing to sacrifice or lose a single soul. People do not care about their own fates, therefore, who on this earth loves you the most? You don’t love yourself, you don’t know to cherish your own life, and you don’t know how precious it is. Only God loves mankind the most.” It is true that only God loves people most.
All the glory be to God!