By Jin Xin
Outside the window, the sky was somber, and snow still clung to the leafless trees; as the chill wind whistled past, the snowflakes were drifting down with the wind …
Within the rented room, Wenwen’s heart was like the weather of winter—cold and gloomy. Having successively worked for several days, she was sitting motionless on the bed, with a perplexed and depressed look on her face. The working documents, various learning materials, and empty lunch-boxes lay scattered and free on the desk, and the waste papers were thrown everywhere; all of this seemed to be telling her troubles. In order to adjust her state, Wenwen turned on the music; immediately, the happy and pleasant melodies drifted out and filled the room. Yet, she was still agitated and felt sad for her condition. She couldn’t help but sigh: “Well, we all are in the same company and doing the same job, but why is there such a big difference between my colleagues and me?” Then, her thoughts returned to a year before …
Wenwen was an ordinary office worker. A year ago, the company was planning an expansion program, and arranged for her to take charge of the planning and management of the newly added projects. At that time, she was overwhelmed with happiness, feeling that she had finally found the platform to represent herself. Although the new business projects were more difficult and challenging, she didn’t feel any pressure at all. She thought to herself: I have been working in the company for years and am familiar with all aspects of business; moreover, I am young and have some special skill. If I, relying on these favorable conditions, work harder and study assiduously, it won’t be difficult for me to achieve some results. If I can win recognition from leaders and obtain a key position in the company, how bright my prospects will be then! The more she thought, the happier she was.
The weather in early winter was a little cold, but Wenwen was insensible to the cold; rather, she felt wildly enthusiastic. In order to have those projects come into the market as soon as possible, she worked overtime to familiarize herself with the newly added business, leading her colleagues and subordinates to do market research and analysis, coming up with sale programs, promptly revisiting old clients and finding new ones, and expanding the marketing channels. … She seized every opportunity to establish business relations and improve her achievement. After a period of struggle, Wenwen thought that the projects she took charge of would soon be coming to the market and yield big profits, but she had never expected that her months of struggle would come to nothing, like steam vanishing after rising from boiling water. The products she pushed out were left without anybody to care for them; the whole sale programs she meticulously produced ended with failure; and the sales record of each platform was almost stalled at its starting point.
Such results dampened Wenwen’s enthusiasm, causing her a strong feeling of frustration. Yet, she wasn’t going to admit defeat easily. She adjusted her condition and encouraged herself: After all, the projects are new, so they can’t be easily acknowledged by clients, just as the saying goes, “Everything’s hard in the beginning”; but as “Human effort is the decisive factor,” I believe that, relying on my long years of experience and rich professional knowledge, I will finally succeed. Afterward, Wenwen worked more selflessly. To improve her professional skill, she became extremely busy, turning to the Internet for information, buying various kinds of learning materials, and visiting her clients. However, after months of hard work, the result still chilled her—the projects she was responsible for were fairly lackluster. Facing the further blow, Wenwen felt disappointed, helpless, and downhearted. But since there was no turning back, she had no choice but to bite the bullet and continue struggling as always.
Another several months passed by. Wenwen, who wanted to change her fate and fulfill the value of her life, didn’t have the projects make any progress and was demoted to a small position to sort out documents in the end. A losing streak gave Wenwen a heavy blow, making her sad and desperate. She didn’t understand: I am not worse than others, but why is my hard work paid with such defeat? Some of my colleagues don’t work as hard as me but can get higher achievements; some don’t have much professional knowledge or experience, but can take important roles in the company. Why is fate so unfair to me? And why am I so unfortunate?
At that time, Wenwen, like an eagle with its wings broken, no longer had the courage to struggle. She felt her sky was gloomy, her life was grey, and all things she had were dreary. After a year’s struggle, Wenwen went back to square one, and lived a hard life. In order not to delay the work, and to create an opportunity to rise again, she arranged a grueling schedule for herself, and even made a detailed plan for each time period of work. Perhaps it was her “perfect” plans that made the reality seem to be crueler. Every day she wracked her brains to work, but there was little improvement in her performance; as her brain often went blank, she had no idea how to deal with the documents, so that there was always a big backlog of documents to catch up on, and even the daily tasks couldn’t be fulfilled.
The music stopped. It turned out that the last song in the playlist had come to an end. Wenwen returned to her senses all of a sudden, and then her eyes fell upon the waste papers on the floor. Thinking of the unsorted papers and unsolved problems, she sighed softly. Again, she fired up the computer, seeing a video named Unlock the Shackles of the Spirit; then she turned it on, and the clear scenes pictures came in sight.
As the plot went on, the main character’s experience tightly grasped Wenwen’s heart. She thought that she was unfortunate enough, yet there was someone whose circumstance was precisely the same as hers. While watching the main character’s turning point in life, Wenwen’s heavy heart was gradually lightened inside, as if a window had been opened in it. The words of God in the video struck her numb and broken heart. God’s words say: “The fate of man is controlled by the hands of God. You are incapable of controlling yourself: Despite always rushing and busying about for himself, man remains incapable of controlling himself. If you could know your own prospects, if you could control your own fate, would you still be a creature?” “Man walked through the ages with God, yet man knows not that God rules the fate of all things and living beings or how God orchestrates and directs all things. This is something that has eluded man since time immemorial to the present day. As for the reason why, it is not because the ways of God are too elusive, or because the plan of God has yet to be realized, but because the heart and spirit of man are too distant from God. Therefore, even as man follows God, he unknowingly remains in the service of Satan. None actively seek out the footsteps or appearance of God, and none wish to exist in the care and keeping of God. Rather, they are willing to rely on the corrosion of Satan and the evil one in order to adapt to this world and to the rules of life the wicked mankind follows. At this point, the heart and spirit of man are sacrificed to Satan and become its sustenance. Moreover, the human heart and spirit become a place in which Satan can reside and a fitting playground for it. In this way, man unknowingly loses his understanding of the principles of being human, and of the worth and purpose of human existence. The laws from God and the covenant between God and man gradually fade away in man’s heart and man no longer seeks or pays heed to God. As time passes, man no longer understands why God created man, nor does he understand the words that come from the mouth of God or realize all that is from God. Man begins to resist the laws and decrees from God; the heart and spirit of man become deadened…. God loses the man of His original creation, and man loses the root of his beginning. This is the sorrow of this mankind.”
Reading God’s words, Wenwen started to reflect on herself: Who exactly holds sovereignty over the fate of mankind? Is mankind really in control of its own fate? Thinking back, although I accepted God’s kingdom gospel, I, like a glutton for work, have never read God’s words in earnest; what I am thinking about in my daily life is how to improve my performance at work, and how to change my fate by knowledge and my own ability. I have followed my parents’ teachings like “One’s fate is in one’s own hands,” “Let’s build a beautiful homeland with our own two hands,” and “Human effort is the decisive factor,” striving hard for years, and always desiring to use my knowledge and ability to change my fate. But faced with the ironclad fact, I have to admit that I am wrong. At that moment, Wenwen finally bowed her conceited head and from God’s words, she came to understand: My fate is in the hand of God; I’m incapable of controlling my own fate; the dictums that I have always lived by, actually are lies and fallacies used by Satan to corrupt and beguile people. Satan uses them to control me, making me cast off God’s sovereignty and arrangement, stray from and betray God; its purpose is to make me live under its domain and be ravaged and harmed by it at will. I was created by God, so I should submit to the Creator’s sovereignty and arrangement over my fate, and live according to the life course destined by the Creator. But deeply deceived by Satan, I couldn’t see clearly the fact that God rules the fate of man but took Satan’s fallacies as treasures, so that with my ambition and desires growing, I struggled against God’s sovereignty based on my own ability, hoping in vain to break away from it; thus I end up living in the deception and affliction of Satan. Under the guidance of God’s words, Wenwen saw through Satan’s sinister motive and despicable purpose, finding the root of her suffering.
Wenwen constantly watched the video, with her heart greatly enlightened and moved. She saw more of God’s words: “When one does not comprehend fate, when one does not understand God’s sovereignty, when one gropes forward willfully, staggering and tottering, through the fog, the journey is too difficult, too heartbreaking. So 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 one has no God, when one cannot see Him, when one cannot clearly recognize God’s sovereignty, every day is meaningless, worthless, miserable. Wherever one is, whatever one’s job is, one’s means of living and the pursuit of one’s goals bring one nothing but endless heartbreak and irrelievable suffering, such that one cannot bear to look back. Only when one accepts the Creator’s sovereignty, submits to His orchestrations and arrangements, and seeks true human life, will one gradually break free from all heartbreak and suffering, shake off all the emptiness of life.”
God’s words destroyed the fortress deep in her heart, tears blurring her sight. Scene after scene of her stubborn struggle against fate and repeated failures clearly appeared in front of her: She was born poor. She wasn’t resigned to staying in the village and living a hard life as her parents, so she made up her mind to study hard to walk out of the countryside. However, she didn’t take the college entrance exam because her father suddenly got a serious illness. Then she dropped out of school and returned home, working to support her family. Afterward, not reconciling herself to fate, she got into a technical school while working, wishing to change her life course by knowledge again. Nevertheless, as many of her fellow-villagers settled down in the city, she still wandered without a home. Countless times had she wept bitterly; countless times had she sighed deeply, and countless times had she felt sad to the extreme; only she herself knew the hardships and heartbreak behind her struggle. God’s words, encompassing a thorough understanding of mankind and His comforting and expectations of mankind, warmed her heart. It turned out that when she stubbornly struggled against fate based on Satan’s wrong life rules, God didn’t lay her aside; instead, He guided her with His words to pull her feet out of the mire, and let her come back before Him, so that she could submit to the Creator’s sovereignty and arrangement over her fate, and live out a meaningful life.
Wenwen was deeply moved by God’s love. She couldn’t help bursting into tears and knelt down before God: “Oh, God! I’m wrong. Without the guidance of Your words, it’s too difficult and too heartbreaking for me to live. Now, I am willing to deliver my whole life into Your hands, and submit to Your sovereignty and arrangement over my fate.” The fantastic thing was that when Wenwen prayed to and relied on God, she felt the presence and care of God. Then something suddenly dawned on her, and she finally figured out the solution to the problem which had been bothering her. At that moment, Wenwen was immersed in happiness and couldn’t help but weep for joy, not only because the problem had been solved, but because she received the guidance of God, and felt long-awaited peace and assurance deep in her heart.
Outside the window, the wind disappeared unknowingly; the sun was high in the sky, and a ray of bright sunshine streamed through the window. Wenwen raised her head to look up to the sun, and at that moment, she felt warm inside, for she knew that the winter was going and the spring would be here soon.
All the glory be to God!
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