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By Wang Ting
One nightfall in early summer, vendors in the night market kept hawking all manner of goods. Yet the noises of the night market did not disturb Li Zhen, who was immersed in deep thought and seemed preoccupied. At this time, she felt a sudden pain in her shoulder. And at that moment she came to realize that she had hit a passer-by. After apologizing, she quickly walked to a nearby park, and found a calming place to sit down.
At that moment, Li Zhen was distraught and even at a little loss. In China, believers in God have always been persecuted, and moreover, among them, those who were arrested, sentenced, and jailed are countless. She could not recall which time it was that the police had come to her home and sought information about other leaders and co-workers of the church since Elder Cai in the church was arrested. She simply paid no attention to the danger she would face in believing in God, for she had already decided in her heart to commit her life into the Lord’s hand, to leave everything to the mercy of the Lord, and never to betray Him regardless of what would happen to her. But she did not know how to deal with the problem she faced today. She thought deeply: Thetaught us to be honest. He said, “But let your communication be, Yes, yes; No, no: for whatever is more than these comes of evil” (Matthew 5:37). If I tell the truth to the police, then other leaders and co-workers may be arrested, too. If so, don’t I then become Judas? But if not, I would not be following the Lord’s words. How exactly should I reply to the police? How should I practice the Lord’s words? This problem puzzled her a lot and caused her much pain. She really did not know what to do.
“Sister Li?” The voice interrupted her thoughts. Taking a look, she found it was Zheng Yi, and then she forced a smile. Zheng Yi sat down next to her, and asked with concern: “Has something happened? Did the police come to your home again?” Li Zhen nodded, and immediately said: “Mm, they wanted me to tell them about the situation of other leaders and co-workers in the church. Zheng Yi, in this matter I don’t know how to practice the Lord’s words now. The Lord Jesus said: ‘But let your communication be, Yes, yes; No, no: for whatever is more than these comes of evil’ (Matthew 5:37). So, how should I reply to the police’s questions? If I tell the truth, other leaders and co-workers will be arrested; but if not, I fear that I will offend the Lord by not obeying His words. Alas! I really don’t know how to deal with it.” Listening to Li Zhen’s problem and seeing her painful and helpless look, Zheng Yi cried to the Lord in her heart and ask Him to guide her so that she could help Li Zhen out of her pain. After praying, Zheng Yi said genuinely: “Sister Li, the Lord likes honest people, and also asks us to be an honest person. But we cannot blindly practice being honest. We must be wise and principled.” Hearing Zheng Yi’s reply, Li Zhen looked at her with bewilderment.
Zheng Yi continued speaking: “Sister, the Lord asks us to be honest, which mainly means that we should be honest to God, and should neither cheat nor lie to Him. It can manifest in many aspects, like when we are praying to God, we need to speak the words within our heart and tell Him our true state and difficulties instead of saying nice-sounding words to please Him; like we need to keep all the vows and resolutions that we have made before God; like in all that we do or say, we need to accept God’s observation, never dealing with Him in a perfunctory manner or attempting to cheat Him for the sake of our own interests. … Besides, the Lord Jesus taught us to practice being honest, which also requires us not to cheat our brothers and sisters but to make our words fit the reality. However, as for those who hinder and disturb God’s work or oppose God, this is another matter, and we must be wise in dealing with them.” Li Zhen was giving her attention to Zheng Yi’s fellowship. The Lord Jesus said, ‘Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the middle of wolves: be you therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves’ (Matthew 10:16). Today, believing in God in the atheistic state controlled by the CCP, if we tell the whereabouts of the brothers and sisters to those who oppose God, we will only bring the brothers and sisters into the danger and harm of the CCP and cause losses for the church’s work. It is not in accord with the Lord’s will. Wisdom is a positive thing. So long as what we do and speak are beneficial to the church and protecting the brothers and sisters in the Lord, God will approve it.”
After listening to Zheng Yi’s fellowship, Li Zhen suddenly saw the light and said with laughter: “Thank the Lord! Zheng Yi, I understand your fellowship. That is true, if the brothers and sisters are all arrested, how can they continue toor spread His name? Why didn’t I think of that?” At that time, Zheng Yi knew Li Zhen’s problem was finally resolved, and also laughed happily.
After bidding farewell to Zheng Yi, Li Zhen was mingled with various feelings in her heart on her way back home. She realized: It turns out that the crux of being honest lies in what our intentions in doing things and speaking are, to satisfy ourselves or to satisfy God. If our intentions are to satisfy God, to protect the safety of the brothers and sisters, and benefit the church, then we are using wisdom to walk the perfect way instead of lying or cheating. This is completely in accord with the Lord’s will and is approved by the Lord. She said in her heart: Now, I have a correct path of practice …
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