By Qiao Hui
In this noisy and materialistic society, competition is everywhere. We are generally not content with the status quo, which causes our needs to arise and our desires to grow. Some people look very ordinary, but they dream that they can be as beautiful as Snow White and become the focus of public attention, and thus they boldly enter the beauty clinic. However, they are disfigured after plastic surgery. As a result, the pain will be with them all their lives. Some are born in a poor family, but they hope that they can become rich and live a life where they are above others. Therefore, they try every way to strive for that all their lives. But finally, they are mentally and physically exhausted and suffer the torture of illness in return, and at the same time, happiness is rather distant from them. Some have been very unfortunate in their official career, but they wish that they can be successful. They contemplate how to achieve a high rank all day, thus flattering and toadying up to those in charge and even doing illegal things. … In short, we are struggling all our lives to realize our own ideals, but many times we end up empty-handed and our lives pass quickly.
We constantly strive hard to realize these ideals and are still unwilling to stop even if we have paid a terrible price. Such is the case with later generations. What is the real reason for this?
God’s word cuts to the point and reveals the source of this issue, “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”). Pondering God’s word, I realize that all kinds of pains we have suffered in pursuit of our personal interests are not caused by our being born unlucky, but by our holding on to the mistaken viewpoints and having extravagant desires. Our pursuit and paying a price are in order to tower above others to satisfy our ambitions and desires. We always think that we will live out a life with true value and meaning if we can stand out from the crowd and become someone to be looked up to. On the contrary, if we can’t fulfill this and we are looked down on and left out in the cold, we’ll think it meaningless and degraded to live like this. So, each of us has taken fame and gain as the goal of our pursuit and thus strives to become an outstanding and special talent as well as to turn ourselves extraordinary and superior. No matter what we do, we always work hard to achieve this goal. In fact, everything God has planned for us is the best, and can also meet our needs, but we always have too many insatiable demands, dissatisfied with our current situations. We want to surpass others in life and work to become the best and brightest who is admired by all. If we can’t achieve our goals, we will feel great pain and suffering in our hearts. Clearly, if we do not recognize God’s sovereignty and arrangements but want to rely on our own thinking to alter our fate to satisfy our desires, in the end we will definitely fail.
The only way for us to live freely is to turn back to God, place ourselves in God’s hands, and allow God to rule over and arrange everything for us. Just as God’s word says, “So no matter how far you have walked in life, no matter how old you are now, no matter how long the rest of your journey is, first you must recognize God’s authority and take it seriously, accept the fact that God is your unique Master. Attaining clear, accurate knowledge and understanding of these truths regarding God’s sovereignty over human fate is a mandatory lesson for everyone, is the key to knowing human life and attaining the truth, is the life and basic lesson of knowing God that everyone faces each day, and which no one can evade. If one of you wishes to take shortcuts to reach this goal, then I say to you, that is impossible! If you want to escape God’s sovereignty, that is even more impossible! God is man’s only Lord, God is the only Master of human fate, and so it is impossible for man to dictate his own fate, impossible for him to surpass it. No matter how great one’s abilities, one cannot influence, much less orchestrate, arrange, control, or change the fates of others. Only the unique God Himself dictates all things for man, for only He possesses the unique authority that holds sovereignty over human fate; and so only the Creator is man’s unique Master” (“God Himself, the Unique III”). God’s word points out the only way for us to get rid of these pains. That is to recognize God’s sovereignty and predestination, change our mistaken viewpoints, put aside the extravagant desires in our hearts, and accept God as our sole Master. Only in this way can we live in joy and peace, freely and happily! In truth, when each of us comes into this world, our life destiny has already been arranged by God. God has long ago preordained everything for us, which includes the families we are born into, our appearances, the circumstances in which we grow up, the work we engage in, and our marriages and descendants. No matter whether we are tall or short, good-looking or ugly, rich or poor, we can’t let these become the burdens in the journey of our lives. Because in the eyes of God, all beings that He created have their own inherent value. For example, the weeds are not as beautiful as flowers, nor are they as straight and tall as pines, but they make the earth green every year and they never complain about how ordinary they are; oxen are born to be used to plow, and they are not spoiled by people, but they abide by their duty every day and serve people diligently, never complaining; … All things live according to the trajectory predestined by God, and they never compare themselves to others, nor do they complain about their ordinary lives. They just keep their places and give their all to play their roles. With the adornment of all things, this world becomes more colorful, full of life and vitality.
So, the greatest wisdom is to know God and to obey His sovereignty and arrangements. If we can rely on God in everything, we will surely reap a harvest we’ve never imagined.