A Rebirth (Part 2)

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In July of 2004 I went to a remote area in the mountains and cooperated with a brother there on the work of the gospel. When I started that work, I kept in mind my previous failures as lessons. I frequently reminded myself not to pursue reputation or status but to honestly fulfill my duty as a creation, so when there were issues I didn’t understand or wasn’t clear on, I would put myself aside and actively seek out my brother for fellowship, to discuss and resolve it. But as my work bore more and more fruit, my arrogant nature once again reared its head and I started to focus on my own image and status again. During a meeting one time, a member of the local evangelical team said to me happily: “Thanks to you coming here we’ve converted more believers….” My mouth said that this was the result of the work of the Holy Spirit, but in my heart I was very pleased with myself. After the meeting was over and I returned to my host family home, I sat on my bed and replayed in my mind every scene of my work during that time. I couldn’t help but become self-congratulatory, thinking: It seems I have true capability in this work. As long as I continue to work hard, I can certainly be promoted again. I saw myself then entirely as a hero, and God’s status was already gone from my heart. When performing my duty after that, I started to compete for status and compare positions with my co-workers. I started to blatantly show off in front of my brothers and sisters as if any results from our work were all because of my efforts. Just as I was sliding back into the abyss one step at a time, God once again extended a hand of salvation to me. One evening I suddenly came down with a serious flu. My temperature reached 102 degrees and even after taking medicine for several days I wasn’t getting any better. I went to the hospital to get an infusion, but my condition not only didn’t improve but became more serious. I couldn’t keep anything down, not even water. Finally, I was bed-ridden and felt as if I was on the verge of death. Under the torture of that illness, I no longer thought of what kind of status I would have the next day. I quickly knelt down and prayed to God: “Oh God! This illness coming upon me is Your benevolent will as well as Your righteous disposition. I do not want to misunderstand You or blame You; I only beg You to once again enlighten and illuminate me, to allow me to understand Your will so that I can more deeply understand my own corruption.” After praying, my heart was much more at peace. Just then, these words of God suddenly came upon me: “Your haughty and arrogant nature drives you to betray your own conscience, to rebel against and resist Christ, and to reveal your ugliness, thereby exposing to the light your intentions, notions, excessive desires, and eyes full of greed” (“Are You a True Believer of God?” in The Word Appears in the Flesh). Every one of these words from God pierced my heart like a sword; they struck at my mortal spot. Every single type of ugliness of arrogance that I had revealed came into my mind with great clarity. My heart was in pain and I was immeasurably embarrassed and ashamed. It was then that I clearly saw that it was my own arrogant nature that caused my conscience to lose its original function so that I wasn’t always able to honestly obey and worship God. This caused me to always harbor ambition and desire, and as soon as I got some opportunity I would compete for status, and I wanted to show myself off and suppress others. I couldn’t just be a well-behaved person. It was clear that any fruits of my work depended on the work of the Holy Spirit; it was God’s blessing. However, I would shamelessly compete with God for the credit and exploit the opportunity to lift myself up, once again becoming arrogant and competing with God for status. This arrogant nature of mine was precisely the root of my resistance to God. If I didn’t resolve it, I would never achieve obedience to God or devotion to fulfilling my duty. Continue reading “A Rebirth (Part 2)”

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