Less than halfway through reading the article “I Have Found a Support,” which was about a mother who lived in pain all day because she was always anxious that something unpleasant would happen to her children or husband when they were not at home. Because I had never had that kind of feeling, I could not quite understand it. Maybe it was because I’m still young, or because I’m happy-go-lucky …
However, thinking about it, many people are living in pain and anxiety in today’s society. Some worry whether their children will get bullied in kindergarten and whether their teachers will treat them nicely. Some worry whether their children will get a good job and a good partner after they grow up. Some worry whether they themselves will die when they get ill. Some worry that after they get old or are dead, their children will be pushed around. Also, every one of us is constantly enmeshed and worried by frequent disasters, the turbulent state of the world, the environmental pollution caused by the development of science, the negative consequences brought by the evil trends of society, and so on. How exactly can we set aside our worries, leave our pain behind, and spend each day calmly?
Li Yan was an example of someone who worried too much about her children and husband, but later she found relief and lived a relaxed and joyful life.
In the Past, She Lived in Anxiety in Unendurable Pain
Li Yan’s husband is a family-centered man, and he treats Li Yan with the utmost care. They have a boy and a girl and a very happy family. Their son cycled to school on his own every day, and only when he reached home on time and said to Li Yan: “Mum! I’m back,” could she finally feel relieved. For a period of time, some students frequently fought on their way home after school, so Li Yan was very worried, scared that her son would be in danger whenever he failed to return home on time. Thus she went to the intersection her son would pass to wait for him again and again, and her worrying heart could not feel at peace until she saw her son.
One day, as Li Yan’s son was not home from school on time, she became very anxious, and so went find one of her son’s classmates to ask her son’s whereabouts. The classmate said: “After school, I saw that he went with someone from another class. I don’t know where he is.” Hearing this, Li Yan got tensed up, thinking: “Where can he be? Will he fight with other kids? A few days before, my neighbor’s son fought with another kid and could not beat him, so he called his elder brother, who stabbed the kid to death with a knife.” Thinking of this made Li Yan break out in a cold sweat. She then thought: “What am I to do? Where can I find him?” She could only walk along the road to school, hoping to see her son while mumbling: “Don’t get into trouble. …” Careful not to blink, Li Yan watched every car and passerby on the road, fearing that she would miss her son. After she walked quite a distance, Li Yan saw a kid not far away cycling as hard as he could who looked like her son. When she looked closely, she found that it was indeed him. That was when her worrying heart finally relaxed. Li Yan quickly called to her son, which made him stop. Then Li Yan went up to him and gave him a hard slap, saying: “Why do you not go home? Where did you go? Do you know how worried I am?” Her son said guiltily: “Mom, I’m sorry. I went to my classmate’s house to do homework.” Seeing that her son felt wronged and guilty, Li Yan felt really bad and hated herself for being too impulsive. Just like this, Li Yan lived in anxiety, pain and annoyance every day, without a single day of peace, which caused her children and husband to suffer with her as well.
Li Yan thought her husband was her support and the backbone of the whole family, and that it would be the end of the world for her family without her husband. That was why she was always worried for her husband when he went out. One time, her husband went to their cousin’s house for dinner, and he was yet to be back in the evening. Li Yan started to think crazy thoughts: “Is it possible that my husband has gotten drunk and fallen on the way back? If so, will he be run over by a car and killed in the dark?” These thoughts caused Li Yan to be so anxious her heart was about to burst. She went out numerous times to see if her husband was returned, but she got disappointed every time. As a result, Li Yan sat on the bed the whole night, afraid that she would not be able to hear her husband’s knocking when he was back.
When it was almost dawn, Li Yan cycled hastily to her cousin’s house. (The distance is about 13 miles.) When she entered the house, her cousin’s wife told her politely: “Your husband was drunk yesterday. Your cousin was afraid that it would be too dangerous for him to cycle back, so asked him to stay for a night. Sorry for making you worried.” Li Yan was finally relieved after hearing her husband was fine. Then she started to worry that her kids, who were still sleeping, would have no breakfast before going to school, so she immediately rushed back home. When Li Yan was on the way to her cousin’s house, she did not feel exhausted because she was so worried about her husband, and it didn’t take her long to get there. But when she was on her way back home, she was very weak, and added to that, she didn’t sleep at all last night, so she cycled back home with exhaustion.
She Started to Change As God’s Words Gave Her Faith
Li Yan finally dragged her exhausted body back home. A neighbor saw her worried and tired face, and so asked with concern: “How come you went out so early in the morning?” Li Yan felt as though she had found someone she could talk to, and then told the neighbor all about her pain.
After hearing what Li Yan said, the neighbor asked Li Yan to go to her house, then took out a book of God’s words and started reading: “From the moment you come crying into this world, you begin to fulfill your duty. Performing your role in God’s plan and in His ordination, you start your life’s journey. Whatever your background, and whatever the journey ahead of you, no one can escape the orchestrations and arrangements of the Heaven, and no one is in control of their own destiny, for only He who rules over all things is capable of such work. Since the day man came into existence, God has ever worked thus, managing the universe, directing the rules of change for all things and the trajectory of their movement. Like all things, man is quietly and unknowingly nourished by the sweetness and rain and dew from God; like all things, man unknowingly lives beneath the orchestration of God’s hand.” “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.”
When Li Yan listened to these words, she felt that they were really good and went straight to her heart. The neighbor told her: “In the past, I was like you. I always worried about my family, and unknowingly thought wild thoughts when encountering something. Later, my elder sister gave me the book of God’s words, and I frequently read it. Only then did I realize that there is a God, the one and only true God in heaven and on earth, who we used to call ‘Heaven.’ He rules and arranges the destiny of each and every one of us. How long we will live, the state of our health, our occupations, our talents, how many kids we will have, are all decreed by God. We must’s authority and sovereignty, and should put our husbands and children into His hands. We could not even rule our own destinies, so what is the use of our worrying about them? It’s because you don’t know God that your life is so hard and exhausting. Believe in God!” After hearing all this, Li Yan felt certain from the bottom of her heart that her neighbor’s words were right, and she also had the desire to read the book of God’s words. She talked with the neighbor awhile and then took the book back home.
The next evening, while Li Yan was cooking dinner, her daughter, who was doing a summer job outside her hometown, called and said: “Mom, I’m scared of staying at this place. I want to go home.” Hearing her daughter sobbing, Li Yan’s heart immediately leapt into her throat, and she asked: “What’s happening?” Her daughter cried and answered: “Some people are bullying me.” Before Li Yan could continue to speak, the phone went dead abruptly. Li Yan was like a cat on a hot tin roof, thinking: “What exactly is going on? My husband is not at home; what can I do now? My daughter is just a young girl, so will she be taken advantage of?” Li Yan was frantic at that moment, and cried as she repeated the words: “What am I to do? What am I to do? …” Just then, she suddenly recalled what the neighbor told her: “God is almighty. No matter what happens, we can pray and rely on God.” Li Yan quickly kneeled and prayed to God, putting her daughter into God’s hands. After praying, Li Yan did not feel as worried and scared as before. She believed that everything is in God’s hands, so is her daughter’s fate, that good fortune or misfortune was controlled by God, that only God could protect her daughter, and that no matter how anxious and worried she was, nothing would be changed.
A while later, the phone rang. It was her daughter, and she said: “Mom, I’m fine now. I’ll be back home tomorrow and tell you everything then. I’ll sleep at an elder sister’s house tonight. Don’t worry!” After getting off the phone, Li Yan kept saying: “Thank God! …”
Her daughter came back on the following afternoon. The moment she saw Li Yan, she cried and hugged her, saying: “Mom, I was scared to death yesterday. When I was at work, I was bullied by a few punks. And I was so frightened that I started to cry. Just then, an elder sister came and said to them: ‘Step away from my sister!’ Those bad guys finally left. Then the elder sister told me to stop working there, or else I would be bullied again. She also let me live with her last night.” Li Yan asked her daughter: “Do you know her?” She replied: “No. It was the first time we had met.” Li Yan said: “Thank God that He saved you. He listened to my prayer and sent her to help you.” Li Yan preached God’s gospel to her daughter, who accepted it willingly.
Later Li Yan read God’s words: “You live under God’s eye, growing up, maturing. During this period, God’s most important task is something that no one ever perceives, something no one knows. God certainly does not tell you about it. So what is this most crucial thing? … From the time you were born all the way up to now, God has carried out much work on you, but He does not give you a blow-by-blow account of everything He’s done. God did not allow you to know, and He did not tell you. However, to man, everything He does is important. To God, it is something He must do. In His heart there is something important He needs to do that far exceeds any of these things. That is, from the time man was born up to now, God must guarantee the safety of them.” “That is because he did not look at whether God would bless him or bring disaster upon him, because he knew that everything is controlled by the hand of God, and that for man to worry is a sign of foolishness, ignorance, and irrationality, of doubt toward the fact of God’s sovereignty over all things, and of not fearing God. Job’s knowledge was precisely what God wanted.” From these words she realized that the lives of her whole family came from God, and that their lives and deaths were presided over by God and weren’t something she could change and control, which were things she had never known before. She genuinely felt that believing in God and following God were great and she seemed to find an effective medicine to treat her anxiety and pain. She started to treasure God’s words, from which she understood that she should learn to seek, obey, rely on and look up to God in all things but not fear, and in this way, she would have a path to walk. After Li Yan started reading God’s words, she clearly felt she was not as tired as before, and that every day was fulfilling and she was full of peace, joy, and free of anxiety, because she knew everything is in the hands of God and that God rules the fate of all mankind.
Nowadays, Believing in God Makes Her So Happy
One evening, when Li Yan was cooking dinner, her husband hurried back home and told her: “Hurry up! We have to go to the hospital!” Hearing this, Li Yan became nervous, and first thought of her son. She thought to herself: “Maybe something bad had happened to my son.” But then she thought: “Everything is in the hands of God. I have God, so I’m not afraid.” Then she asked her husband: “Did our son get into a car accident?” Her husband replied: “Yes. How could you know that?” Li Yan did not answer him. She just prayed to God silently, and felt very much at peace in her heart—this was an experience she had never had before.
After arriving at the hospital, Li Yan saw her son was sitting on a small bed. A doctor asked Li Yan to hold her son while he was getting ready to put stitches in her son’s head. Just then she saw her son’s waxy face and bleeding ears, so she became tensed up. Seeing her son’s condition, the doctor said that her son needed to be admitted to the hospital for treatment straight away and also told her not to let her son fall asleep or move around, or else his condition would get worse. The doctor then began to take her son’s temperature, lift his eyelids to examine his eyes, and give him fluids…. The situation was very critical. When Li Yan saw her husband paced back and forth in front of the bed, terribly anxious and bewildered, she also became scared and started to overthink again. However, God enlightened her to recall His words: “Do not fear, Almighty God of hosts will surely be with you; He has your back and He is your shield.” Li Yan thought: “I have to believe in the sovereignty of God, entrust my son into God’s hands and obey God’s arrangements. Whether he lives or dies is not something the doctor can decide, nor can we parents. Rather, it is in the hands of God. I have to rely on God, entrust my son to God, be rational and keep calm, so as not to fall into Satan’s traps and live in fear again, for only in this way can I fully cooperate with the doctor to save my son.”
At that time, she was much calmer. After being given some treatment, her son woke up the next morning. When her son said: “Mom,” Li Yan was thrilled. At the sight of her son being fine, the doctor was also delighted and said to Li Yan: “It was so close yesterday! No one knew how things would turn out. You are quite strong.” A patient beside her son’s bed said to her husband: “Your wife is calmer than you.”
After Li Yan heard what they had said, she thanked and praised God. She knew in her heart it was God who had changed her, and allowed her to realize how blessed a thing believing in God and knowing the sovereignty and authority of God was. If she had not believed in God or had the guidance of God’s words, she would have become extremely weak. Not only would she have suffered, but she would also have been unable to cooperate with the doctor to rescue her son. If so, her son’s treatment would have been delayed. At that time, she felt that believing in God and knowing God’s almightiness and sovereignty indeed brought her great happiness.
Through her repeated experiences, Li Yan truly appreciated that only God can be her support, that her days were painful and helpless without God, and that it was God’s words that allowed her to put aside her anxieties and thus gain release and freedom in her heart.
She thought back on how she lived in unbearable pain in those days when she was deceived by atheism and didn’t have God within her heart. She could not bear to look back on how helpless and uneasy she had been. She thanked God for bringing her back into God’s family, so that she could enjoy the peace and joy within her soul. She found God, and found something to lean on for the rest of her life. She truly experienced whatsaid: “Come to Me, all you that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28). “For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light” (Matthew 11:30). “Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Jesus” (Philippians 4:6–7).
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