Qingxin is looking at her second daughter make the bed. Then her daughter looks up at her and says anxiously, “Mom, some of my classmates have got their jobs already. I’ve graduated from college now, but haven’t found a job. Dad is on sick leave and can do nothing for my job hunting. You are more experienced and foresighted than I, so why not give me some advice? What career do you think I should choose to get a promising future?”
Seeing her daughter’s worried and expectant face, Qingxin walks to the bed and sits down. She holds her daughter’s hand and asks her to sit next to her.
Qingxin says to her daughter, “Honey, after you and your elder sister were old enough to go to school, every time you sat for an entrance examination, I was expecting that you would be admitted by a top school, because I thought you would be somebody in life if you graduated from a top school and that I could be benefited, too. Therefore, before your sister graduated, I hurried to spend money seeking personal connections, paving the way for her job hunting. But all my efforts were in vain. Later, your sister found a job accidentally on her own. It was a steady job and she was satisfied with it. So, tell me, what’s the point in spending money and being worried so much?”
Her daughter says nothing, so Qingxin continues, “In my free time, I often think of my past. I was a top student from primary school to senior high school. Those who knew me believed that I would have no problem being admitted by a college. And I worked harder, hoping that I could make it. Unfortunately, I failed in the entrance examination. Later, I became a contract worker in a company. And your father, who even didn’t finish high school, became a civil servant in a special circumstance. See, do people’s fantasies and plans work?
The daughter looks at her mother and shakes her head blankly, yet she is reluctant to accept what her mother has said. She argues, “Full consideration and more efforts would produce better results.”
Looking at her second daughter with a smile, Qingxin shakes her head and says, “We people cannot control our life. Everything is predestined and arranged by God. Come, honey. Read this passage. Perhaps it will remove your worries in job hunting.”
Her daughter looks at her in wonder and with curiosity, “Really? Is there such a book?”
Again, Qingxin smiles at her daughter and nods her head, “Read it and you’ll see.”
The daughter says nothing more. She takes the book and begins to read from the words: “When one leaves one’s parents and becomes independent, the social conditions one faces, and the kind of work and career available to one are both decreed by fate and have nothing to do with one’s parents. Some people choose a good major in college and end up finding a satisfactory job after graduation, making a triumphant first stride in the journey of their lives. Some people learn and master many different skills and yet never find a job that suits them or find their position, much less have a career; at the outset of their life journey they find themselves thwarted at every turn, beset by troubles, their prospects dismal and their lives uncertain. Some people apply themselves diligently to their studies, yet narrowly miss all their chances to receive a higher education, and seem fated never to achieve success, their very first aspiration in the journey of their lives dissolving into thin air. Not knowing[d]whether the road ahead is smooth or rocky, they feel for the first time how full of variables human destiny is, and so regard life with hope and dread. Some people, despite not being very well educated, write books and achieve a measure of fame; some, though almost totally illiterate, make money in business and are thereby able to support themselves…. What occupation one chooses, how one makes a living: do people have any control over whether they make a good choice or a bad choice? Do they accord with their desires and decisions? Most people wish they could work less and earn more, not to toil in the sun and rain, dress well, glow and shine everywhere, tower above others, and bring honor to their ancestors. People’s desires are so perfect, but when people take their first steps in the journey of their lives, they gradually come to realize how imperfect human destiny is, and for the first time they truly grasp the fact that, though one can make bold plans for one’s future, though one may harbor audacious fantasies, no one has the ability or the power to realize his or her own dreams, no one is in a position to control his or her own future. … What occupation one pursues, what one does for a living, and how much wealth one amasses in life are not decided by one’s parents, one’s talents, one’s efforts or one’s ambitions, but are predetermined by the Creator.
“When one reaches maturity, one is able to leave one’s parents and strike out on one’s own, and it is at this point that one truly begins to play one’s own role, that one’s mission in life ceases to be foggy and gradually becomes clear. … Besides birth and childrearing, the parents’ responsibility in a child’s life is simply to provide him or her with a formal environment to grow up in, for nothing except the predestination of the Creator has a bearing on a person’s fate. No one can control what kind of future a person will have; it is predetermined long in advance, and not even one’s parents can change one’s fate. … no one’s parents can stave off one’s fate in life or exert the slightest influence on the role one plays in life. … no one’s parents can assist one in accomplishing one’s mission in life, no one’s relatives can help one assume one’s role in life. How one accomplishes one’s mission and in what kind of living environment one performs one’s role are entirely determined by one’s fate in life. In other words, no other objective conditions can influence the mission of a person, which is predestined by the Creator. All people become mature in their own particular growing-up environments, then gradually, step by step, set off down their own roads in life, fulfill the destinies planned for them by the Creator, naturally, involuntarily entering the vast sea of humanity and assuming their own posts in life, where they begin to fulfill their responsibilities as created beings for the sake of the Creator’s predestination, for the sake of His sovereignty” (“God Himself, the Unique III”).
Finishing reading these words, the daughter glances at the words “God’s newest utterances” in the book. She looks up at her mother with surprise and says, “Mom, you don’t have the same viewpoints as before. Now I know it’s because you have read.” Qingxin nods happily.
The daughter continues, “Mom, these words are really good. Look at those examples in real life. It’s true that no one can decide one’s occupation and that one’s destiny does not accord with his imagination and plans. For example, my classmate’s father is almost illiterate, but he is good at doing business and has two factories. I didn’t understand this before: He can read few words; how could he manage two factories? Now through God’s words I understand that God has predestined him to do business in this life. It doesn’t matter how many words he can read. And I, because my dad is a civil servant and knows accounting, majored in accounting, hoping that my dad could use his social relationships to get me an accounting job when I graduated. But unexpectedly, dad’s health is slipping these years. People nowadays are ‘realistic.’ There’s no friendship when one leaves, not to mention dad’s relationships. Dream and reality are too much different! It seems that you and dad don’t play a decisive role in my job hunting, nor can you help me in my life or career.”
The daughter’s clear brow furrows again. She muses, “Mom, now I know that God has predestined what occupation one chooses and how one makes a living, but how can I know what God has predestined for me? What should I do about my work?”
Qingxin still smiles at her daughter and says, “God has already told us what to do. Let’s take a look at God’s words.” Her daughter nods and watches her flip through several pages.
Qingxin reads, “When people recognize God’s sovereignty over human fate, the smart ones choose to know it and accept it, to bid farewell to the painful days when they tried to build a good life with their own two hands, instead of continuing to struggle against fate and pursue their so-called life goals in their own manner.
“When confronting real-life problems, how should you know and understand God’s authority and His sovereignty? When you do not know how to understand, handle, and experience these problems, what attitude should you adopt to show your intention, your desire, and your reality of submitting to God’s sovereignty and arrangements? First you must learn to wait; then you must learn to seek; then you must learn to submit. ‘Waiting’ means waiting for the time of God, awaiting the people, events, and things that He has arranged for you, waiting for His will to gradually reveal itself to you. ‘Seeking’ means observing and understanding God’s thoughtful intentions for you through the people, events, and things that He has laid out, understanding the truth through them, understanding what humans must accomplish and the ways they must keep, understanding what results God means to achieve in humans and what accomplishments He means to attain in them. ‘Submitting,’ of course, refers to accepting the people, events, and things that God has orchestrated, accepting His sovereignty and, through it, coming to know how the Creator dictates man’s fate, how He supplies man with His life, how He works the truth into man. All things under God’s arrangements and sovereignty obey natural laws, and if you resolve to let God arrange and dictate everything for you, you should learn to wait, you should learn to seek, you should learn to submit. This is the attitude that every person who wants to submit to God’s authority must take, the basic quality that every person who wants to accept God’s sovereignty and arrangements must possess. To hold such an attitude, to possess such a quality, you must work harder; and only thus can you enter into the true reality” (“God Himself, the Unique III”).
Finishing reading God’s words, Qingxin says to her daughter, “Honey, you see, God’s words has told us very clearly that when we recognize our everything is under God’s sovereignty and arrangements, we should be smart people, giving our questions and difficulties over to God’s hands instead of struggling by ourselves. This is the attitude we should take as creatures. Even though now we don’t know what we should do, we can pray for God to guide us to understand His will. God says: ‘All things under God’s arrangements and sovereignty obey natural laws, and if you resolve to let God arrange and dictate everything for you, you should learn to wait, you should learn to seek, you should learn to submit.’ Then we should do as God says. Seek God more and wait for God’s guidance. When we look for a job with this attitude, God will arrange people, events, things, and circumstances to show us what job suits us. We should believe that God has His time for all things. When we know what job suits us most and what job benefits us most, the job is the ordination of God and we should submit. In this way, we are obeying the sovereignty and arrangements of God.”
After listening to God’s words and her mother’s communication, the daughter stops frowning. She remembers that she has wanted to join a company but been uncertain. Now she knows what to do. She says to her mother excitedly, “Mom, I would like to join a company, but I don’t know whether that company suits me or not. I can’t make a decision. I was afraid that you would worry about it, so I didn’t tell you. Now I know that all is in God’s hands. Let’s pray and seek God.”
Qingxin nods at her daughter happily. Her daughter also smiles with relief.
You may be interested in this article: A Christian’s Experience of Hunting Job – Learning to Wait For God’s Perfect Time
d. The original text omits “Not knowing.”
How come we can’t resist the temptation of society’s evil trends? 2 ways teach you to overcome temptation and not to live in sin.
By Hanxiao In this complex society, we have to deal with all kinds of people every day. Each person’s personality, hobbies, habits, temperament, etc. are all different, so in our interactions some conflicts and misunderstandings will inevitably arise. Getting along well with others is not easy—this brings great difficulties to our work and life, and can be physically or mentally damaging to various degrees. Though this is very distressing for many people, they also feel like their hands are tied, and there are quite a few Christians who are no exception. So what exactly should we do to achieve harmony in our interactions? Here we will share simple fellowship on four principles. If our practice is in line with these four principles below, these headache-inducing interpersonal issues will surely be resolved. The first principle of getting along with others is to love each other. The Lord Jesus taught us: “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like to it, You shall love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 22:37–39). It is recorded in Matthew 18:21–22, “Then came Peter to Him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times? Jesus said to him, I say not to you, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven.” From these verses we can see that the Lord requires us to love each other, have a forgiving heart, and be tolerant of others’ mistakes. Since we’re all of different ages, of different calibers, we have different hobbies and backgrounds, plus we all have some weaknesses and shortcomings, if the foundation of our interpersonal relationships is built upon mutual love and we consider things from others’ perspectives, we will encounter fewer conflicts and misunderstandings and will be able to get along well with others. Some people have love for others and a compassionate heart; they love to help others and are able to comfort those who are suffering and experiencing hardships. People like this please God and others are fond of them as well. However, those who lack love for others and always think of their own interests cannot possibly get along well with others. Even if they do have love for others, it is temporary and conditional, and they only help and are tolerant of those who are kind to them and have never hurt them. Once someone hurts them or infringes upon their interests, though they may appear tolerant on the outside, in their heart they are filled with dissatisfaction and hatred. They can’t practice the Lord’s way. They are detested by God and disliked by people. Therefore we should practice the Lord’s words in our interactions, and love others as we love ourselves, as the Lord requires; only then will we be able to interact harmoniously with others. But perhaps there will still be times we’re unable to willingly be tolerant of, patient with, and forgiving of others. What’s required of us in this sort of situation is to pray more to the Lord and ask Him to give us a heart of genuine tolerance and love for others. When we truly rely on the Lord to practice tolerance and patience, our prejudices and dissatisfactions with others in our hearts will gradually disappear. However, there are also principles for loving others as we love ourselves. God does not want us to love others blindly. It’s just like how the Lord Jesus was full of mercy and love toward His believers and followers, while He was full of condemnation and curses for those hypocritical Pharisees who opposed God. The Lord’s different attitudes toward these two kinds of people embody God’s righteous disposition. Therefore, we should treat brothers and sisters who truly believe in God and practice the Lord’s words with great sincerity; we should be loving and helpful. As for Satan’s forces that oppose and condemn God, we should draw clear boundaries and clearly distinguish between love and hate. The second principle of harmonious interactions is to have wisdom. In Matthew 10:16–17, 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. But beware of men: for they will deliver you up to the councils, and they will whip you in their synagogues.” Being wise in interactions with others is an indispensable principle of practice for Christians. This is because among the people that we interact with, there are Christians who pursue the truth, and there are some who belong to enemy forces that oppose God and hate the truth. They are specially sent by Satan to interrupt and disturb God’s work. If they learn of the business of the church or the personal information of brothers and sisters, they will make use of these things to attack, judge and condemn us, or even report us to the police to have us arrested. Therefore, we should have discernment with people like this and employ wisdom with them. In addition, we will inevitably encounter many difficulties in our interactions with others; wisdom is also called for at these times. Being wise is not about saying things contrary to our convictions to deceive others, but is for the sake of benefiting others as well as doing no harm to others, ourselves, or the church. For example, if we are going to do or say something, we must first take the other person’s personality into consideration, and what kind of action or speech will be beneficial to them, and ensure we will not harm them. These are some of the practices of dealing with people with wisdom. Only by behaving this way can we achieve harmony in our interactions. The third principle is to treat others properly. The Lord Jesus said, “And why behold you the mote that is in your brother’s eye, but consider not the beam that is in your own eye? Or how will you say to your brother, Let me pull out the mote out of your eye; and, behold, a beam is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of your own eye; and then shall you see clearly to cast out the mote out of your brother’s eye” (Matthew 7:3–5). When we are in conflict with others, we always feel that the other person is wrong or the problem is with them. In fact, at these times we are living within our satanic disposition of arrogance and self-righteousness; we’re being entirely self-centered and looking down on others. We’re unable to treat others objectively and fairly. This is why we should first resolve our own corrupt dispositions, reflect on and know our own shortcomings and deficiencies, and seek the truth that we should enter into; only then can we treat others properly. If we always fixate our gaze on others’ shortcomings, we will never be able to get along well with anyone. For example, we tend to see our family members’ shortcomings when we spend time with them; we feel like our spouse doesn’t know how to take care of others, they are inconsiderate, the food they make isn’t to our taste, our child is temperamental and hard to discipline, and so on; when we are with our colleagues and friends, we find that one of our colleagues is selfish, another one tends to judge others behind their backs, or some friend likes to take advantage of others, etc. This is often distressing for us because we do not know how to get along with them. In fact, regardless of whether others’ personality and behaviors are compatible with our preferences or not, we should not be prejudiced against them and just treat them however we like. We are all people who have been corrupted by Satan; we ourselves possess quite a few problems just as others do, so how are we qualified in any way to make demands of others? Additionally, God has bestowed different strengths and advantages upon every one of us in the hope that we can absorb the strengths of others to make up for our shortcomings. Only by doing so can we progress more quickly. Once we have this kind of understanding, when others do something that we do not like, we can deny ourselves, not ask too much of others, and not force what we think is right on others. Instead, we can consciously discover others’ strengths and absorb their positive qualities—this is how we can treat others properly. Furthermore, in our actions we should not only think of ourselves, but we should also be considerate toward others, learn to care for others more often, and let others benefit. Only then can we get along well with others. The fourth principle of harmonious interaction with others is to not focus on life philosophies, but instead, focus on establishing a proper relationship with God. In real life, we often use satanic philosophies of life to maintain our relationships with others, such as, “Think before you speak and then talk with reservation,” “One more friend means one more path; one more enemy means one more obstacle,” “Keeping silent on the faults of good friends makes for a long and good friendship,” and so on. When we base our interactions with others on these life philosophies, we curry favor and engage in flattery with others so that we can maintain a good relationship with them. We only talk about their good points and dare not point out their shortcomings; we protect our interpersonal relationships even if it means going against the principles of the truth. The Lord detests this kind of behavior, because what we exalt are Satan’s philosophies, not the Lord’s words. What the Lord requires of us is the ability to have a proper relationship with Him and do everything in accordance with His words, such as being honest people in line with His requirements, and not saying anything false in our interactions or ingratiating ourselves with others. He also requires that when we see brothers and sisters do things that are not in line with or violate the Lord’s teachings, we should help them out of love; we should not be afraid to offend them but instead point out their mistakes and help them resolve their problems. In short, all of our interactions should be established on the foundation of the Lord’s teachings. We should put into practice whatever the Lord requires of us. No matter who we are interacting with, we must be able to directly face the Lord and accept His scrutiny. Only with this kind of practice can we have a proper relationship with the Lord. Once we have a proper relationship with the Lord, our relationships with other people will become proper as well, and then we’ll get along harmoniously with others very naturally. Above are the four principles of practice regarding harmonious interactions with others that we as Christians should enter into. If we are able to frequently put these four principles into practice, many of our difficulties with others will be easily resolved, what we live out will gain the Lord’s praise, and we will become people who bring joy to the Lord. You may be interested in: 4 Principles by Which We Christians Easily Interact With Others How to Get Along With Others Easily 3 Tips for Church Leaders to Help and Support Brothers and Sisters
A must for Christians: 3 paths of practice to help and support brothers and sisters.
Should we set “handsome, beautiful and rich” as our criteria for choosing a partner? As a Christian, how should she choose a good partner? Through seeking, she has found the way of practice.