Do you know how to listen to God’s voice and welcome the Lord?
Xiaojuan had suffered from a stomach problem for some time. She couldn’t help but think of her dead relatives: Her mother died of rectal cancer long ago; after a period of several years, so did her elder sister and elder brother; later, one of her younger sisters and her little niece were also taken away by rectal cancer. It was a typical hereditary disease. Xiaojuan’s condition was somewhat alike to the symptoms of rectal cancer, which made her a little disconcerted …
A pounding on the door cut off Xiaojuan’s thoughts. It was her youngest sister. Before Xiaojuan could say anything, her younger sister, in surprise, quickly asked her, “I haven’t seen you lately. Why are you so skinny now?” These words struck Xiaojuan right where it hurt, so she told her little sister about her issues. After hearing this, her sister said anxiously, “You must go to the hospital and have a check-up as soon as possible. Don’t delay it anymore.”
The next day, Xiaojuan went to the hospital on an electric scooter. After the check-up, the doctor gravely said to Xiaojuan, “You have rectal cancer and it has reached a later stage.” At this grievous news, Xiaojuan nearly fell apart. Out of the will to live, she pulled herself together and asked the doctor, “Doctor, can you remove the cancer?” The doctor shook his head and said resignedly, “The cancer cells have spread. There is nothing I can do about it.” The doctor’s words pierced her heart like a knife, which made her afraid and uneasy. She then asked the doctor, “Could my cancer be killed?” The doctor shook his head, “No.” At this moment, despair mingled with fear crept upon her. She thought: Put aside the fact that I don’t have money to have an operation; even if I did have money, it would be of no avail. When my family members fell ill, each of them had paid a ton of money to treat the illness, but at last … Xiaojuan heaved a great sigh: It seems that all I can do is wait for my death.
On her way home, Xiaojuan was depressed, and she couldn’t stop the tears flowing down her face. At the thought that she would die of rectal cancer, she felt painful and at a loss. In despair, she suddenly thought of God. She seemed to have felt the possible chance of living and immediately prayed to God in her heart: “Oh God! I have contracted an incurable cancer. I know that my life is in Your hands. If You do not let me die, I will not die even if I don’t receive the treatment; if You have ordained that I should die, I won’t be able to survive no matter what I do. Oh God, I put my life into Your hands. I am willing to obey Your arrangements …”
After praying, Xiaojuan thought of the words of God: “Do not lose heart in the face of illness, keep seeking and never give up, and God shall shine His light on you. How faithful was Job? Almighty God is an all-powerful physician! To dwell in sickness is to be sick, but to dwell in the spirit is to be well. If you have but one breath, God will not let you die. The life of the resurrected Christ is within us. We really lack faith in the presence of God, and may God put true faith within us. The word of God is sweet indeed! God’s word is potent medicine! Put to shame the devils and Satan! If we grasp God’s word we will have support and His word will quickly save our hearts! It dispels all things and sets all in peace. Faith is like a single log bridge, those who cling abjectly to life will have difficulty in crossing it, but those who are ready to sacrifice themselves can pass over without worry. If man has timid and fearful thoughts, they are being fooled by Satan. It fears that we will cross the bridge of faith to enter into God. Satan devises every way possible to send us its thoughts, we should always pray that the light of God will shine on us, and we must always rely on God to purify us from Satan’s poison. We shall always be practicing in our spirits to come close to God. We shall let God have dominion over our whole being” (“The Sixth Utterance” of Utterances and Testimonies of Christ in the Beginning). Every word of God touched her heart. She realized: The illness coming upon me is an affliction of Satan; Satan uses illness to make me feel timid, fall into its trap, and live in pain and desperation. Actually, each person’s life is given by God, and whether we live or die is in God’s hands. I should have; even if God takes back my breath, I should never complain against Him. Under the guidance of , Xiaojuan’s heart was slowly calmed, for she knew that God was her reliance forever. She pondered God’s word all the way home.
After getting home, she couldn’t help but think of her child: My husband died early in life, and if I die, there will be nobody to take care of my child. Thinking of this, she couldn’t control her emotions and cried sadly. Then she knelt down and prayed to God again: “Oh God, I’m feeling so much pain. I know that man’s life and death are within Your hands, and my destiny is controlled by You as well. I beg You to protect me from falling prey to Satan’s tricks so that I will not misunderstand or complain against You, but face reality calmly.” After the prayer, Xiaojuan took out the hymn book and found the hymn of God’s words which she thought of on the way home. She repeatedly sang the hymn, trying to grasp the will of God, not daring to leave God even for one moment …
In the days that followed, Xiaojuan contemplated God’s words every day. At the thought of God’s words “To dwell in sickness is to be sick, but to dwell in the spirit is to be well. If you have but one breath, God will not let you die. … God’s word is potent medicine,” she felt especially moved in her heart. Unknowingly, she felt she had support and was less miserable. Xiaojuan now knew that God had not left her but was by her side, giving her encouragement and comfort. Then, she sought God in her heart: “O God! I have the illness, but how can I stop dwelling in it? Since dwelling in the spirit is to be well, how can I live in the spirit?” Trying over and over to figure out these words, Xiaojuan suddenly understood: To dwell in the spirit is to quiet my heart before God, that is, to read more of God’s words, to sing more hymns of God’s words, and to seek the truth andin His words. I shouldn’t live in my own conceptions and imaginings or I will fall into Satan’s trap. Afterward, Xiaojuan prayed and read God’s words with greater urgency every day, and sought the truth more to grasp God’s intentions. When she was pained inside, she would open up to God, regarding God as her sole reliance.
One day, Xiaojuan heard a hymn of God’s words, “After Satan’s corruption, man became more and more degenerate, the illnesses of man were deepened, and their suffering became more and more severe. Man felt more and more the emptiness, the tragedy and the inability to go on living of the world, and they felt less and less hope for the world. So this suffering was brought on man by Satan, and it only came after man had been corrupted by Satan and man’s flesh became degenerate. So in order to bring mankind back from Satan’s hand and give them the wonderful destination, God must experience this suffering Himself” (“The Meaning of God’s Experiencing the Pain of the World” in Records of Christ’s Talks). From God’s words, Xiaojuan came to realize: It is because the ancestors of mankind were corrupted by Satan in the beginning that man has birth, death, illness and old age. As Satan’s corruption of man becomes deeper and deeper, the illnesses and suffering of man are deepened, and they feel more and more empty. All these things are derived from the affliction of Satan. Meanwhile, she was deeply moved by God’s love. She thought: I am a corrupted person and it doesn’t matter if I die. God, however, is lofty and great. To save us corrupted people from sickness and suffering, He personally became flesh to experience these sufferings and finally He will thoroughly save us from Satan’s domain. God’s love for us is really so great! God is innocent, but He pays such a great price for saving us. What unreasonable demands can I have as a filthy and corrupt person? I have had the fortune to hear the voice of the Creator and taste His love in my life, so even if I die I will have no regret. At this moment, Xiaojuan felt calmer, willing to accept and submit to God’s sovereignty and arrangements. Under the guidance of God’s words, she felt a lot calmer and much relieved in her heart. She was unwilling to think about the painful things or live a life with a sad look.
To support her family, Xiaojuan continued to work in spite of her illness. Seeing that she took no heed of her illness and talked and laughed as a healthy person, her co-workers were mystified and said: “You are so sick, but you can still come to work and have joy. You are so optimistic!” Hearing these words, Xiaojuan thanked God in her heart silently. She knew that it was because God’s words had given her faith and strength that she could keep a positive outlook on her sickness. Xiaojuan made a resolution in her heart: I will cherish my time on earth, follow God with my heart and soul, and fulfill my duty of a created being to comfort God’s heart.
Several days later, Xiaojuan’s third eldest sister recommended some hospitals to her. Under her sister’s persuasion, she agreed to receive treatment. But whatever hospital she went to, she was told that her sickness could not be treated. On hearing these words, Xiaojuan thought: None of the doctors can heal me, for my life and death are in God’s hands. And then she prayed to God silently: “O God, though the doctors are incapable of curing my sickness, I believe that my life and death are in Your hands. I am willing to rely on You completely. May You give me faith and power. Now I commit my illness into Your hands and I will submit to Your sovereignty and arrangements no matter whether I will live or die.” Later, Xiaojuan’s younger sister and brother-in-law often called her and asked her to go to the hospital and take an examination again to see whether the cancer cells had spread further, but Xiaojuan had made up her mind and didn’t want to struggle anymore. So she said to them calmly: “You know that my sickness can’t be healed. I don’t want to go to a doctor anymore. I shall rely on God. Don’t worry about me …”
One day on her way to work, Xiaojuan saw a kind of plant on the roadside locally named Yandaiguo. She was not unfamiliar with it because every time when her skin itched because of her allergy to the ultraviolet rays from the sun, she would put it on her skin to stop the itchiness. Xiaojuan thought: This herb is created by God. It is good and beneficial to man. Why not gather some to make some herbal tea? To her surprise, after drinking the herbal tea for a period of time, she felt much better than before. Xiaojuan was very grateful to God in her heart.
One day later, Xiaojuan felt a fierce pain in her stomach as if there was something thrashing about in it. So she hurried to go to the toilet. After relieving her bowels, she felt her stomach eased greatly. Xiaojuan touched her abdomen and anus, and felt that they became soft. This was quite different from before, for they had always been coarse and swollen during her illness. She knew that it was God’s wonderful deed. She was so moved that she immediately offered a prayer of praise: “Oh God, thank You so much! I have truly appreciated that You are beside me and have never left me for a moment. Regarding my illness, I shall certainly die. However, You let me get much better and see Your wonderful deeds. Oh God, You are so almighty!” A few months passed, and Xiaojuan had been working and fulfilling her duty in the church peacefully. Later, after being examined, she was found to have recovered thoroughly.
Now five years have passed. Every time Xiaojuan talks about this, she is overwhelmed with gratitude. When the world had sentenced her to death, it was God’s word that gave her confidence, and it was God’s almightiness that saved her and made her recover from the illness and obtain a new life. She has truly experienced the authority of God’s words “to dwell in the spirit is to be well. … God’s word is potent medicine!” Moreover, she has seen that all matters and all things are within God’s hands and that everything is up to God.