When the Lord returns, how can we recognize His voice and welcome Him?
On the morning of October 8, 2014, at eleven, all the others in my family had went to work. As usual, I took care of my two-year-old daughter at home while doing the housework. Soon, I found that she had opened the medicine kit and was playing with a medicine bottle. A bottle of capsules were scattered all over the floor. I went to put them away in the bottle and took the kit away from her hands. Just after a short time, she ran before me and said, “Mommy, I wanna go to bed.” As she looked very sleepy, I thought: She usually went to bed after lunch. But why was she sleepy so early today? Then I thought maybe she got up too early in the morning. So I put her on the bed, tucking her into a small blanket.
Later, my mother-in-law knocked off. As soon as she entered the house, she said, “I’m back. Where is our baby? Look, granny’s got something delicious for you.”
Seeing my daughter still sleeping, she said with surprise, “Well, why did she go to bed so early today?”
“She has slept for two hours.” I said to her.
“It’s so long.” My mother-in-law said, “She doesn’t wake up even though I’ve got something tasty for her. Does she get sick?”
“She had dry-heaved twice before going to bed.” I said, “I asked if she had eaten something, she didn’t answer me but fell asleep straight.” Having touched my child’s forehead and hand, my mother-in-law said, “It doesn’t feel like a fever. It’s abnormal to keep sleeping. Let us wake her up.”
I took her into my arms, but she continued to sleep with her head on my shoulder. I had her stand on the floor to awaken her. Unexpectedly, she could only stand there for two seconds before she fell onto the ground.
“Xiaoxin, Xiaoxin, wake up quickly!” I cried aloud worriedly.
She opened her eyes, took a look at me, and fell asleep again.
Seeing that, my mother-in-law urged, “Let’s take her to the hospital quickly.” Then we hurriedly took my child to the Pediatrics Department in the city hospital. We waited in line for half an hour before seeing the doctor. But the doctor couldn’t be sure what was wrong with my child, so he asked us to take my child to do a urine test and then undergo a color doppler ultrasound to see what she had eaten. When we took her to do the urine test, my child had no urine. So I kept praying to God in my heart, “O God! I don’t know what’s wrong with my child today. She keeps sleeping, unable to wake up. I’m very worried for fear that something happens to her. God! Please guide me.” After praying, I calmed down a little. I knew God rules over everything and that everyone is in God’s hand. I was willing to commit my child to God.
Since my child had no urine, the test couldn’t be done. My mother-in-law and I hurried her to the ultrasound room. As soon as we got there, many pregnant women were seated waiting for check-up, which would take twenty minutes for each of them. We were not sure in what condition my child would be if we waited too long. So I immediately prayed to God within to entrust all this in God’s hand. My mother-in-law took my child in her arms and consulted with the pregnant woman in the head of the line, “Excuse me. We are not sure what’s wrong with my granddaughter. She can’t wake up. The doctor urged us to have a color Doppler exam. Would you mind if we take the test first? Thank you in advance.” She agreed readily.
The Color Doppler ultrasound image failed to show what was in my child’s stomach, and the doctor still couldn’t assign the cause for my child’s illness. He asked us to get my child ready to stay in hospital and receive intravenous fluids for observation. After we went to the Children’s Inpatient Department, a nurse came to draw blood from my child. When the nurse did it, my child just opened her eyes to take a look silently and then continued to sleep. At this sight, tears welled up in my eyes. In the past, when she got sick and had her blood drawn, she would cry her heart out and even several people couldn’t coax her. But today, she didn’t have any response. Perplex, fear, and anxiety all came upon me. I expected from my heart that my child could wake up soon.
Just then, God’s word enlightened me, “Job did not talk of trades with God, and made no requests or demands of God. His praising ofwas because of the great power and authority of God in ruling all things, and was not dependent on whether he gained blessings or was struck by disaster. He believed that regardless of whether God blesses people or brings disaster upon them, God’s power and authority will not change, and thus, regardless of a person’s circumstances, God’s name should be praised. That man is blessed by God is because of God’s sovereignty, and when disaster befalls man, so, too, is it because of God’s sovereignty. God’s power and authority rule over and arrange everything of man; the vagaries of man’s fortune are the manifestation of God’s power and authority, and regardless of one’s viewpoint, God’s name should be praised. This is what Job experienced and came to know during the years of his life. All of Job’s thoughts and actions reached the ears of God, and arrived before God, and were seen as important by God. God cherished this knowledge of Job, and treasured Job for having such a heart.” Yes. Job believed that everything is ruled by God. In his belief in God, he didn’t make deals with God, nor made any excessive demands of God. When he possessed great fortune, he knew that it was and thus praised God’s holy name. When calamities befell him, he lost a mountain of sheep and cattle and all of his property, his children were dead, and even his body was covered with sore boils, but he didn’t make any complaint and treated what had come upon him with a heart of fearing God. Regardless of blessings or disasters, he was able to praise God’s name. In comparison with Job’s faith and obedience toward God, what I revealed was not true . When my child couldn’t wake up, all that I had exhibited was worry and fear, with the only hope that God could keep my child safe and sound. I saw my stature was too small and pitiful. Thinking of this, I prayed to God silently, “O God! I know my stature is even not as big as a little finger of Job’s. I don’t know what the following result will be. Please give me faith. I’m willing to rely on You to experience it. No matter in what condition my child is, I’ll not complain against You.” After praying, I felt peace in my heart.
After a while, the attending physician came to see my child. He said to us, “According to our observation of your child’s condition, her sleepiness may be caused by medicine poisoning …”
At this news, I suddenly remembered it when my child played with the medicine bottle at noon.
Then my mother-in-law hurried to say, “Yes. There are purgative and cold cure in our house.”
“Right. It’s the purgative.” The doctor said quickly, “You should never underestimate it. A few days ago, a two-year-old boy swallowed tens of purgative pills and slept for a night and day. When he was rushed here, he had been ruined. Affected by a large amount of medicine, his brain got injured and his skin festered grievously. Over one hundred thousand yuan was vainly spent on his treatment. The child is retarded now. When did you find your child was abnormal?”
“At around twelve noon, I saw she vomited.” I said.
“From twelve to now, five p.m., the medicine has been absorbed.” Said the doctor, “The best time to pump her stomach is missed. Now it’s not necessary to do that. According to your child’s condition, you’d better be mentally prepared. The longer she sleeps, the more seriously her brain gets injured. You quickly go back home to see how many pills lessened. So we can prescribe the medicine accordingly.”
I went back home and checked the medicine bottle, making sure that my child had swallowed 28 pills. Anxiety and fear welled up in my heart, because I was very worried about my child’s safety: What if my child would end in the same way as the child mentioned by the doctor? …
At this time, my husband and my father-in-law got to the hospital. Seeing my child’s condition, my husband felt very bad and scolded me angrily, “Should my child have anything wrong, you go wherever you should. I don’t want to see you again.” At his word, I felt even more wronged and saddened. Taking another look at my child lying motionless in the intensive care unit, I was too painful to breathe easily, as if a stone blocked my chest. I kept crying out to God in my heart, “O God! Please lead me and give me confidence and strength so as not to make complaint of You in such a situation, because my stature is really too small. God! Please guide me and give me faith. Please keep me, keep me….” In my ceaseless prayer, God enlightened me with His word, “Job made no demands of God. What he demanded of himself was to wait for, accept, face, and obey all of the arrangements that came from God; Job believed this to be his duty, and it was precisely what was wanted by God.” Yes. Job didn’t make even the slightest complaint of God in adversity, and he could wait, accept, and obey all of God’s arrangements. Because of his faith in God, he stood testimony for God, comforting God’s heart. Afterward, God appeared and revealed His will to him in the whirlwind, and doubly blessed him. At this thought, I was no longer so worried and helpless. I prayed to God in my heart, “O God! Whether my child can wake up or not, it’s dependent on your time. Whether she will be normal or retarded, and whether the doctor can cure her dull-wittedness, they are all in Your hand. I’m willing to wait and submit to Your arrangement.” Little had I expected that my child finally woke up after two hours of stay in hospital. At that moment, I gave thanks to God in my heart, knowing that this was God’s mercy and protection. My family all gave a sigh of relief.
Given that that child mentioned by the doctor had a brain breakdown after swallowing purgative pills, my family hasted to test my child. Fortunately, she could clearly answer whatever questions we asked, so we all put aside our anxiety. Just then, the doctor came to examine my child. He was astonished at the sight of my child’s improved condition and said, “I never thought that she could wake up so soon.” Seeing all that had happened, I knew that God’s authority was genuinely revealed before my eyes. Everyone’s life or death is controlled in God’s hand, which is absolutely true. I kept thanking God in my heart.
After a while, my child fell asleep again. The doctor told us, “The child is still in an unstable condition. We need a further observation to check the possibility of complications.” Hearing complications, I once again began to be concerned that my child couldn’t wake up from a trance. Looking at my sleeping child and her little face, I made a prayer to God again. Then, God’s word occurred to me, “The heart and spirit of man are held in the hand of God, and all the life of man is beheld in the eyes of God. Regardless of whether or not you believe this, any and all things, living or dead, will shift, change, renew, and disappear according to God’s thoughts. This is how God rules over all things.” God’s word made me realize: All things, living or dead, are in God’s command, including the destiny of us mankind. No one can master or change his own fate. Whether my child can recover or will have complications is controlled by God, not up to anyone of us. I had seen my child wake up for a while, but hardly had I heard the doctor say that there might be complications when I felt worried in my heart. Did I still not have faith in God or believe God’s sovereignty? I prayed to God again in my heart, “O God! I have too little faith in You. I’m blind and ignorant. May You guide me so that I can have true faith and obedience toward You.” After my prayer, I felt securer and less worried. Whether or when my child could wake up, I entrusted her to God’s hand.
Before long, my child woke up. Her eyes looked very bright, and she played and smiled by turns. The several patients in the ward said in great surprise, “What a miracle that your child can wake up! A child in the so-and-so village swallowed medicine for adult and failed to be rescued. Your child is really lucky!” Hearing what they said, I knew it was not my child who was lucky but that it was God who saved my child. Later, after a check-up, there was nothing wrong with my child and everything was all right. Three days later, my child was discharged from hospital. And only one thousand yuan was spent on her treatment. I thought of the child spoken of by the doctor. He, in the same situation with my child, wasn’t cured after one hundred thousand yuan odd was spent, while my child was actually discharged from hospital only after three days. I was really grateful to God for His care and protection.
From this experience, I had a genuine appreciation and understanding of God’s authority and sovereignty; I saw that our lives are all controlled in God’s hand. Through praying time and again, I especially came to know more of Job’s experience in trial than before; with God’s enlightenment, I came to understand His will little by little and was somewhat obedient to Him. This experience has been impressed on my mind. All the glory be to God!
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