How Can My Young, Brash, and Arrogant Self Get Along With My Grandmother?

Afterward, there was another time when I went to my grandmother’s house and since there was nobody there to play with me, I played with my cell phone. However, the battery level of my smart phone was very low and after a while, it ran out of power. As a result, when I wasn’t playing with my cell phone, I would charge its batteries. Who would have thought that after charging my cell phone for only ten minutes that my grandmother pulled the plug. At first, I believed that perhaps my grandmother thought the cell phone was already fully charged. I did not say anything and I simply plugged it back in. The result was that my grandmother pulled the plug once more. This happened two or three times. Finally, I became impatient and angrily told my grandmother, “My cell phone hasn’t finished charging. Why do you keep unplugging it?” My grandmother grumbled, “I know that it hasn’t finished charging. How much electricity do you need to waste in order to fully charge it? What’s more, why do you always have to charge your cell phone? My cell phone can last an entire week on a full charge!” After I heard my grandmother say this, I could not help but shout at her, “Your cell phone is for old people and it is completely outdated! Mine is a smart phone. Can you even compare your cell phone to mine? My cell phone does not require a lot of electricity to charge. What’s more, your living expenses are paid by my mother, so I am not wasting your money! You are so miserly!” After my grandmother heard me tell her off, she unhappily said, “You truly are an ungrateful brat! How dare you talk back to me! When you were little, I carried you and held you. Have you forgotten?” After she finished saying this, my grandmother left in an angry rage. After my grandmother left, I felt a little unwell. Meanwhile, I became very depressed: I did not want to yell at you, but why do you always try to make me conform to your generation’s rules? You are so outdated!

After I went home, I told my mother about this situation. My mother said, “You must not always rant at your grandmother. She is very old and you should speak to her nicely. Moreover, you are a Christian. You must not be so arrogant that you lose your sense. You can only honor God by living out a normal humanity!” My mother spoke at the same time as she opened up God’s words, “Take a look at what God has said about it!”

I took the book of God’s words and started reading what God said, “When some young people are talking, they keep rolling their eyes, they hold everyone in contempt, and everything they say is filled with a note of disdain. If you have a word with them but it’s not to their liking, they will just ignore you. It is rather hard to be a parent nowadays and very hard to get to know the mentality of young people. If they say one wrong word, their child will throw a tantrum and storm off, and it is very difficult for them to communicate with adults. This is to say that there are problems with the thinking of many young people today. Is this situation not created by evil trends and this evil society? The things of people’s normal humanity are becoming fewer and fewer” (“Young People Should See Through the Evil Trends of the World” in Records of Christ’s Talks). After I finished reading God’s words, it was very difficult for me to bear. I felt like I was receiving chastisement. God’s words were referring to me. This was the way I interacted with my grandmother. When she said that I was wrong, I would throw a tantrum. When she did something that was not to my liking, if I did not rant at her, I would embarrass her. My temper is quite bad. I thought about how my grandmother loved me all along. When there was something good to eat, she was not willing to eat it. She would wait for me and let me have it. However, if I was not hostile toward her about this, I would be hostile toward her about that. If we switched positions and I was the grandmother and my granddaughter treated me like this, I would feel very awful! The more I thought about this, the more I felt regret. At this time, my mother said to me, “People nowadays follow the trends of the world. They seek material enjoyment. They seek whatever is popular in society. The trends of society are not the truth and they are not positive things. If we become influenced and manipulated by the trends of society, our life perspectives and the way we see things will become seriously distorted. It would be in complete violation of God’s words, the truth and normal humanity. This would cause God to loathe us. However, we believe that we are following precisely with society’s trends and that we are standing in the forefront of our age. It is as if we understand everything. We know everything and there is nothing that can stop us. We believe that we ourselves are very capable. Gradually, our dispositions become more and more arrogant, conceited and condescending. We look down upon everyone and nobody dares to provoke us. These are the consequences which result when people nowadays are secretly influenced by societal trends.” After my mother said this, I could see that my own manifestations were exactly the same as that which God’s words revealed. Just as God said, “The things of normal humanity are becoming fewer and fewer.” I felt it extremely difficult to bear. I started hating myself: How could I be so wretched? My grandmother was correct when she said that I was an ungrateful little brat! When I thought back to how I talked to my own grandmother, I started to wonder whether it made her very sad. I really am corrupt and ignorant! Consequently, I prayed to God, “God, I feel really awful about getting angry at my grandmother this time. I no longer want to be this kind of a child. I must change my arrogant disposition, live out a normal humanity and be a well-behaved and sensible child. God, please guide me!”

During that time, I frequently prayed about this situation. When I went to my grandmother’s house, I would pay particular attention to putting this aspect into practice. At times when my grandmother talked with me in a wordy way and made me feel bothered, I prayed to God in my heart. After I finished praying, I did not feel as angry. There was one time when I was getting ready to go out with my grandmother. My grandmother was searching through her wardrobe but could not find anything she likes to wear. She asked me, “What should I wear?” I wanted to say: You’re so old that it doesn’t matter what you wear! Right as I was about to blurt it out, I became aware that this was wrong and that I was revealing an arrogant disposition. At that moment, I recalled God’s words regarding “the brashness and arrogance of youth.” As a result, I said, “Actually, these clothes look quite good. However, today’s weather is quite hot. Perhaps you shouldn’t wear too much. Wear this, it is thinner.” From then on, each time I wanted to throw a tantrum in front of my grandmother, I would recall God’s words of revealing and judgment. Consequently, I consciously forsook the flesh and put the truth into practice. When I started to put the truth into practice in this manner, I felt very relaxed. I was no longer felt as stifled as I did in the past when I was angry at my grandmother. In the past, because of some small matter, I would get angry at my grandmother. I seldom got the opportunity to return to her house, but when I was back, both of us were unhappy because of my anger. Especially when I reflected on my grandmother’s helpless eyes each time I finished ranting, I felt a lot of grief. I saw that I was so arrogant that I no longer had humanity. From now on, I must no longer be so incredibly arrogant. I must live in accordance with God’s words. I must live out a normal humanity and please other people and God!

Afterward, as long as I was together with my grandmother, my heart would not dare leave God because I knew that if I relied on myself, I would not be able to conquer my corrupt disposition. There was one time when my grandmother came over to my place to visit. During lunchtime when we were cooking, she added too much rice. The three of us basically could not eat so much rice. I thought: You’ve cooked for so many years. You do not know how much rice to put in? Just as I was about to give my grandmother an earful, suddenly, I thought of God’s words: “Don’t forget, you will also grow old one day. Can being able to do some things like this be considered a skill? Can it be considered an ability?” (“Young People Should See Through the Evil Trends of the World” in Records of Christ’s Talks). At this moment, I knew that my arrogant nature was a recurring disease. In my heart, I said to God, “God, once again I want to throw a tantrum and scold my grandmother. I know that this is my arrogant nature flaring up and that it is wrong. This is not Your intention. Please, help me let go of my arrogance and live out a normal humanity!” After I finished praying, my heart quieted down and I half-jokingly said to my grandmother, “You put too much rice. With so much rice in this pot, I do not know how much water needs to be added. If I add too much water, then we will just have congee.” When my grandmother heard me say this, she started to laugh. She praised me saying that I had changed a lot. Not only did I know how to do housework, my temper was no longer as foul as it used to be in the past. She said that I had now grown up and become sensible. I know that now, I no longer say things in accordance with an arrogant disposition. I am a little more wise and a little more sensible. This is all due to God’s words changing me. If I had to rely on myself, I would never have changed.

Afterward, I would frequently get my grandmother to tell me stories about her past. Gradually, I began to understand that my grandmother’s life habits in the present were related to her life in the past. If I were born during my grandmother’s time, I would have been the same as her. When I thought from my grandmother’s perspective, I began to understand her. When I changed the way I viewed things, let go of my own arrogance and started to treat my grandmother appropriately, the generation gap between my grandmother and me disappeared bit by bit. Now, I no longer say that my grandmother is outdated. On the contrary, I can learn a few positive things from my grandmother that people of my generation do not possess. I am thankful to God for changing me. May all the honor be to Almighty God!

Footnotes:

a. In Chinese, WiFi sounds similar to “Wai Mai,” which means “take-out.”

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