By Qi Min
Once, I had many dreams …
When I was young, my family was poor. My radio was my only companion. I liked listening to traditional opera most, such as local opera of north and northeast China (Pingju), Huangmei opera, and Peking opera; I liked them all. The repertoire of Xin Fengxia, a master of Pingju, especially, was my favorite. I always fascinatedly followed her to sing and thus I almost learned her repertoire. Afterward, when I watched a film starring her in my village, I even more envied her. So, I often learned skills in her performing in the mirror, expecting one day I could become her student and could become an opera star like her. However, my dream to be a star fell through for my parents, who often did everything by rule, had yet to send me to the school of drama.
When I was in senior high school, my favorite magazine was UFO Exploration. The wondrous and unfathomable UFO always made me indulge in fantasy: I dreamed that someday I would be a scientist, studying spaceship and going heaven to reach for the moon, to see what outer space is like and whether aliens really existed. But, because of my poor intelligence and family, I finally applied for a normal college. Thus, my dream to be a scientist was shattered.
In college, I started to be fond of literature, I subscribed kinds of literary magazines and weaved the dream of becoming a writer. I ever contributed articles, yet almost all disappeared like a rock dropped into the sea. Once again, my dream to be a writer fell through.
When I was in work, I began to dream of becoming a rich person. Usually, I worked for earning my salary; in my spare time, I made up lessons for students, and managed my own shop; besides, I was addicted to lottery tickets and dreamed of winning five million yuan on the lottery, becoming a rich person envied by others. But fate seemed to play a trick on me: No matter how hard I worked, I still couldn’t get extremely rich. Being tired and weary, I failed to realize my dream of becoming a rich person.
A Chinese proverb goes, “The greater the hope and expectation, the greater the disappointment,” but there was also a proverb that each French soldier carries a marshal’s baton in his knapsack, and I thought better to have dreams than not. Whereas, when my dreams were repeatedly shattered, I once blamed my parents for not training me at the time and not giving me a high IQ. I also complained about the injustice of my fate: Why did Heaven not love me? Why did the good things always happen to others but not me? After complaints, I could not help reflecting on: Why did I always be the failure? Why couldn’t I succeed? Did we come to the world, and in the end silently vanish just like wind?
Later, I saw God’s words says: “There will always be some distance between one’s dreams and the realities that one must confront; things are never as one would like them to be, and faced with such realities people can never achieve satisfaction or contentment. Some people will even go to any length imaginable, will put forth great efforts and make great sacrifices for the sake of their livelihoods and future, in attempt to change their own fate. But in the end, even if they can realize their dreams and desires by means of their own hard work, they can never change their fates, and no matter how doggedly they try they can never exceed what destiny has allotted them. … 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” (“God Himself, the Unique III”).
I understood from God’s words: Everyone doesn’t come to this world without any reason, nor we leave without any reason. Which is to say, each of us has his own mission, and we are all born for performing the duties and leave for fulfilling our mission. These all are in God’s hands and are arranged, planned and presided by God, and they aren’t decided by us. For example, what kind of appearance, figure, specialty, caliber, status we’ll have, how much money we’ll possess, how many years we’ll live, and so on, these are not up to ourselves, but are in God’s hands and are properly arranged by God. That is, from the moment each of us comes to this world, everything is predetermined by God and can’t be changed by us. However, it is because we don’t understand that everything is ruled and predestined by God, and because we can’t obey such sovereignty and ordination of God, that we always take our own way, willfully rely on our likes to do this or that and rely on our own hands to make our dream come true. Yet eventually, our struggle against fate all ends in our disastrous defeat.
God’s words also say: “As one of the creatures, man must keep his own position, and behave conscientiously, and dutifully guard that which is entrusted to him by the Creator. And man must not act out of line, or do things beyond his range of ability or do things that are loathsome to God. Man must not try to be great, or exceptional, or above others, nor seek to become God. This is how people should not desire to be. Seeking to become great or exceptional is absurd. Seeking to become God is even more disgraceful; it is disgusting, and despicable. What is commendable, and what the creatures should hold to more than anything else, is to become a true creature; this is the only goal that all people should pursue” (“God Himself, the Unique I”). “You can plan to have structure for every day of your life, plan what you need to do and that you will perform your duty well, that you will live every moment in God’s presence, that you will reflect on everything you do each day, everything that fell through, and everything you understood. However, it is impossible for man to plan what he will do tomorrow, or the day after, or in the future. You can only have one hope: that you can submit to each day’s environment that God prepares and each day of life He gives you, letting Him lead you, that you can most happily and peacefully live in His presence, allow Him to lead you, and are able to submit to His sovereignty. If you have this kind of attitude, you will then come to see without conscious effort that all this is under God’s command” (“A Person Can Live Life With Dignity Only by Submitting to and Revering God”).
From God’s words, I realized that my dreams of becoming a star, a scientist, a writer, a rich person, and so forth were my desires and expectations. From these dreams, I saw what I pursued was for fame and gain, was to be looked up to by others, and to have a place in others’ hearts. Furthermore, I had been under the control of satanic poison “Men should always strive to be better than their contemporaries,” so that I lost my way, lost myself. Thereby, when my dreams didn’t come true, I always lived in complaints.
Then, I started to find my position in God’s words. I no longer sought to become great, no longer sought to become a star, nor did I seek fantastic dreams. Instead, I sought to be a true creature: I’ll keep my own position, perform a creature’s duty conscientiously in my position, learn to completely entrust my heart to God, submit to God’s sovereignty, and experience the people, things and objects arranged by God. As long as I live, I’ll always seek to love and satisfy God, exalt and testify God, and seek to live out the reality of God’s words and glorify God.
Thank God! If I were not saved by God, I would still live in my dreams, live in unrealistic fantasies, and live in my notions and imaginations. I’m thankful that God allows me to find myself back and be myself. All the glory be to God!
Dear brothers and sisters, if you have any understanding or enlightenment from God,
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