By Shunxin, Thailand
Editor’s Note: If you have someone like this in your life, someone who wants to become wealthy but never succeeds, and who lives in torment, how should you help him escape his misery? What follows is the experience of author Shun Xin, whose predicament was precisely this, but today she can calmly evaluate her monetary gains and losses, and has found a wealth more valuable than riches. How did she emerge from her torment? And what is this wealth more valuable than money? Let’s discover these things through her story.
Struggling in Vain to Become Wealthy
I experienced the shame of poverty and the hardship of life as a child, so I became determined to study hard and become rich in the future, to enjoy wealth and luxury, and to have others admire and look up to me. After more than ten years of bitter study, I was only able to enter a third-class university, but I wasn’t discouraged. I believed that as long as I worked hard, I could still become rich.
After graduating from university, I found a job as an English teacher. When I learned that my colleagues who worked for two years were only paid just over 2,000 yuan, I resolutely resigned. Later, I went to training schools in Shanghai and then Qingdao to work in sales. Every day, from morning to night, I constantly called people to sell our products, and through significant effort, my monthly salary reached nearly 10,000 yuan. Just when I was eager to do something even bigger, school leadership changed, and I was fired for no reason. I didn’t want to go, but there was nothing I could do except leave with regret.
My Desire Stimulated Again After Coming to Canada
After I got married, my husband and I came to Canada to start a business. I was unable to work because of my pregnancy, so I went to church to worship. When I first went to church, the pastor welcomed me very enthusiastically, but when he learned I wasn’t wealthy, he ignored me and treated the rich people in the church with enthusiasm and flattery. The pastor’s attitude confirmed even more for me the importance of money. In our era, when everyone looks to money, if you have money, you have everything, and without it you are looked down on everywhere. That’s when I made up my mind again to make more money and make those who looked down on me see me in a new light!
After I had my first son, I went to work to earn money, and no matter how difficult the work, I didn’t care. Later, I again became pregnant, and I was physically weak at the time. But, despite this, to earn more money, when my youngest son was just a month old, I started an import repurchasing business with my friends. I spent every day staring at my phone to learn about products, and even while I breastfed my child I was researching sales skills, Internet promotion techniques, and so on. Because I had to look at my phone for a long time every day and often stayed up late at night, my eyes hurt so much that I couldn’t open them and my back was stiff and sore, but I couldn’t let anything stop me from earning money, so I had to work from my bed. Because I devoted so much attention to my work, I didn’t have any left over to care for my children. Once, my oldest son grabbed my phone from my hand and threw it to the ground in anger and complained that I spent all day on my phone instead of spending time with them. But my son’s accusation didn’t make me feel bad, for I thought that if I couldn’t provide them with a good life, what is the point of spending time with them? We live in a society that cares only about money, and even though money can’t do everything, you can’t do anything without money! Only money can allow you to enjoy a better life, hold your head high, and make others look up to and admire you. Even though I realized I was pushing my children further and further away, and the realization tormented me, I continued to focus solely on my importing business.
Later, to make more money, I worked part-time in direct sales. After working hard for a while, I made some money, and I was very happy. My voice became loud when I talked to people, and I felt very proud when I sent money to my parents. It felt good to have money! Sometimes when I looked at my uplines, who had tens of thousands in monthly salary, enjoyed luxury, and lived a good life, I thought to myself that as long as I developed more downlines, I could be just like them before too long! Unfortunately, things didn’t go as smoothly as I expected. I spent a year to train ten downlines, but no one was willing to work with me, so all I could do was go back to where I started in my business. This predicament was a particularly frustrating setback for me. That year, I worked from dawn to dusk to train my downlines, so why was that the result?
Turning a Blind Eye When Salvation Comes
This was when God’sof the last days came to me. My brothers and sisters saw how I agonized and lived in misery to earn money, and fellowshiped to me, “The amount of wealth we have in life is preordained by God, and no amount of our own effort can change it. The said: ‘Take no thought for your life, what you shall eat, or what you shall drink; nor yet for your body, what you shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much better than they?’ (Matthew 6:25–26). God created us, gave us breath, and gives us what we need to survive under His care and protection. We don’t need to be anxious or worry about the future. As long as we work normally, we will have sufficient clothing and food. We have all seen how some people think of nothing but earning money, and work overtime and off-hours, and in turn lose their chances at intimacy with God and to hear God’s voice at meetings, and how their bodies collapse from exhaustion. God wants us to be content with sufficient clothing and food, but Satan thinks of ways to corrupt us. It makes money occupy our hearts, makes us want to earn ever more, and gives us insatiable desire. What are these but the tricks of Satan? Only by letting go of our endless desires and obeying God’s plans and arrangements can we ever find ease and release!” After hearing my brothers’ and sisters’ fellowship, I thought, “There is wisdom in what you say, but in today’s society, where the only thing we recognize is money, won’t I have to live the same shameful life I experienced before? No, I still need more money.” So, even though I accepted God’s gospel of the last days, I still expended all of my energy on my direct sales business. The first thing I did when I got up every morning was to send advertisements, reply to messages from customers, and so on. I had no time to spend on my spiritual development. In every I asked God to bless me and my husband with great wealth. That was how I believed in God, to the point that at meetings, I even secretly posted direct sales advertisements.
Seeing Through Satan’s Tricks From the Revelations of God’s Word
After my brothers and sisters learned about my situation, at a meeting they showed me a passage from God’s word, “‘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 imparted to everyone and is now affixed in their heart. People went from not accepting this saying to growing used to it so that when they came into contact with real life, they gradually gave tacit approval to it, acknowledged its existence and finally, they gave it their own seal of approval. Isn’t this process that of Satan corrupting man? … 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? (Yes.) 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? Don’t many more people lose the opportunity to perform their duty and follow God for the sake of money? Isn’t this a loss for people? (Yes.) Isn’t Satan sinister to use this method and this saying to corrupt man to such a degree? Isn’t this a malicious trick?” (“God Himself, the Unique V”).
After reading God’s words, one of my sisters fellowshiped to me, “In the past I didn’t understand why all of mankind worships money, why people spend all of their time and energy trying to make money, why people would rather make themselves sick than stop pursuing it, or why some people would even fight with others over money, deceive each other, struggle viciously, and even murder one another. But after reading God’s word, I know that money is a trick Satan uses to corrupt and harm mankind. Satan saturates our world with all kinds of atheistic theories and books and stories about great and famous men, and imbues us with notions such as ‘Money isn’t everything, but without it, you can do nothing,’ ‘Money is first,’ ‘Whoever gives me money is my father,’ so that we think that money is the most important thing in our lives, that if we have money we have everything, that we can win others’ admiration and do the things we like, and that we will feel accomplished if we have money. Otherwise, we think we will be belittled and looked down upon by others, and that we will have no place in society. We are imbued with these mistaken ideas, so we spend all of our time and energy to make money, we have no interest or attention for anything else, we even sacrifice the health of our bodies to earn money, and we become slaves to money. Even if we accept God’s salvation, we are still endlessly busy in pursuit of money, we have no interest in pursuing the truth or worshiping God, we are unable to fulfill our duties as created beings, and we live under the domain of Satan, far from God’s care and protection….”
My sister’s words cut straight to my heart. I have always believed that in our society that worships money, it takes wealth to live with dignity, be respected by others, and to have your words heard and respected, so it was right to pursue great wealth. After I graduated, I started trying all kinds of work, and as long as they earned money, I persisted no matter how difficult. After I had my son, I disregarded my weak body and continued my importing business from my bed. To make money, I spent nearly all of my time and energy on work, which put so much distance between myself and my children that sometimes they even ignored me. When God’s salvation came, I didn’t know to cherish it, and when my brothers and sisters fellowshiped, my heart’s desire for money wasn’t moved at all. I sent direct sales messages at meetings, and even in my prayers I only asked God to allow me to make more money. I always thought it was right that I pursued money, but after reading God’s word, I learned that this thought and notion comes from Satan, that this is only a trick Satan uses to harm and corrupt people. Satan imbues us with these notions because it wants us to be busy all the time pursuing money and a luxurious life to satisfy our vanity. It wants us to be willing to expend all our energy, far away from God’s care and protection, to control and harm us, and even take our own lives in pursuit of these goals. I thought of how I had worked all these years to make money, how I had wounded my eyes at a young age, how I had given myself permanent back pain, and how I had grown further and further apart from my children. Wasn’t Satan the dark power behind all this?
My sister also said, “In today’s society, those without money do everything in their power and sacrifice everything to get it. Meanwhile, some big bosses, rich people, and celebrities, even though they have wealth and enjoy a luxurious life, still feel empty, and some even choose suicide. From this, we can see that money only gives us temporary relief and enjoyment, and that those with money fall further and further into depravity, live extravagant, indulgent lives, and that when it passes, they are still left with emptiness and pain. If we do not go before God and gain the watering and supply of God’s word and do not understand the truth, we will never be able to see through Satan’s tricks to corrupt mankind, can only become ever more deeply entrapped by money, and in the end we can only be toyed with and harmed by Satan!”
After I heard my sister’s words, I thought: That’s right, today God has expressed the truth and does the work of saving mankind, allowing us to completely escape Satan’s corruption and control and gain God’s care and protection. I was fortunate enough to be chosen to accept God’s salvation in the last days, so if I continue to pursue money instead of the truth, even if I do become wealthy one day, what use will it be when God’s work of salvation concludes? When the great disaster comes, won’t it all be for nothing? Just as the Lord Jesus said, “For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?” (Mark 8:36). Once I understood these things, I no longer wanted to bitterly pursue money and be fooled by Satan. I considered that I would have to invest all of my energy to develop downlines in my direct sales business, which would leave me with no time to care for my children or go to meetings or fulfill my duties, so I chose to give up direct sales and only work in the repurchasing business, which was much less demanding of my time.
Obeying God’s Arrangements, Seeing God’s Blessings
After some time passed, I discovered a problem with one of my partners. She didn’t take her work seriously, and frequently sent her customers the wrong products, which led our customer service ratings to get continually worse. When I tried to resolve the problem with her, she ignored me, and our sales continued to decline. Helpless, I had to stop working with her and abandon all my customers and my 5-star WeChat shop. It was bittersweet to think that this shop already had 5–6,000 customers, and if I kept operating it, I would have made more money than ever, never had to worry again about food or clothing, and everyone would see me in a different light, but now I had to give it away. If I didn’t, though, I wouldn’t be able to find a suitable partner. It felt as if I had walked into a pit of quicksand, was being slowly sucked in, and couldn’t free myself. In my helplessness and torment, I could only continually pray to God and ask for guidance.
When a sister learned of my situation, she showed me two passages of God’s word, “What occupation one pursues, what one does for a living, and how much wealth one amasses in life are not decided by one’s parents, one’s talents, one’s efforts or one’s ambitions, but are predetermined by the Creator” (“God Himself, the Unique III”). “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?” (“Restoring the Normal Life of Man and Taking Him to a Wonderful Destination”).
After I read God’s word, I instantly understood. I am only a created being, and my future, fate, and life are all in God’s hands. God has preordained how I make my livelihood and how much I earned in this life. But I lacked true knowledge of how God rules and preordains, so I pursued money with all my strength, worried about financial gains and losses, felt tormented when I gave up my WeChat shop, and even worried about how I would survive in the future. I lived in anxiety and torment. Even though I didn’t know how my life would go in the future, I trusted that God had made suitable arrangements for me, so I ought to courageously entrust my future to God. Once I realized this, I felt much more at ease. I prayed to God to say I was willing to give my work over to God and entrust my life to God, and willing to let Him guide me on my future path.
Afterward, I had more time to read God’s word, and I attended meetings with my brothers and sisters, where we fellowshiped on our experiences and understanding. I brought my children before God. Every day, I read God’s word and sang hymns with them, and our relationship took a turn for the better. What surprised me even more was that after I parted ways with my partner, my husband’s business drastically improved. I saw that God’s arrangements for me were truly wonderful, and my heart was filled with gratitude for God.
Understanding the Truth and Living by God’s Word Are My Greatest Wealth
Afterward, I read these God’s words, “When you repeatedly investigate and carefully dissect the various goals of life that people pursue and their various different ways of living, you will find that not one of them fits the Creator’s original intention when He created humanity. All of them draw people away from the Creator’s sovereignty and care; they are all pits into which humanity falls, and which lead them to hell. 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 Himself, the Unique III”). After I read God’s word, I sniveled as I thought back on the path I’ve walked. I lacked knowledge of how God rules over all, so I thought only of making money and becoming wealthy, and in the end caused so much suffering for myself and my children. If God hadn’t saved me in time, I would have been sucked ever deeper and deeper into the quicksand pit of money, singularly pursued money, and moved ever farther away from God, until Satan finally swallowed me. God saved me and used His words to guide me, allowed me to break through Satan’s schemes, and allowed me to see clearly Satan’s evil intentions to use money to pull people far away from God’s care and protection and control and harm them, and made me understand the correct path to take in the future. I became willing to let go of my own mistaken pursuits, entrust my future life to God, and obey all of God’s plans and arrangements. I genuinely felt that only by coming before God and living by God’s words could I feel true ease and release and experience true peace and joy in my heart.
Today, I am performing my duties in the church and living under God’s guidance, and I feel secure, at peace, at ease, and release. I have the most valuable wealth in life—understanding of the truth, living by God’s word, and I have the love and salvation of the Creator! Thanks be to God!