I’m a strong-minded person. Since my youth I have established my grand ambitions: I must rise above others and live a life superior to others. Through many years of struggling, now I live in affluence and people around all look up to me. Normally, now that my ambitions have been achieved, I should be pretty happy. Whereas, I feel very empty within and always can’t escape such feeling of suffering. Could you tell me how to shake off my spiritual emptiness?
After reading your message, I have the same feeling as you have. Your question can be said the bafflement of the majority. Over the past years, I lived in emptiness and suffering as you do and felt it was meaningless to be alive. Later, I accepted God’s gospel, and it was from God’s words that I found the root cause of my spiritual emptiness and understood how to live a valuable and meaningful life, and only then did I come out from emptiness and suffering. Now I feel my life is very abundant every day. Below is my experience of how God’s words guided me out of emptiness and suffering. I hope it can bring you some help.
Recalling the Suffering Days of Yester-Year
I was born into a poor family in a rural village. Since my youth I had been resolved to live a life superior to others, to strive to do well for myself, and to win honor for my parents. Through a decade of hard study, I entered into a famous university as I wished. After graduation, I found a fairly good job.
Then, I got married. In order for me and my family to enjoy a better life, I went into business ignoring my family’s dissuasion. After some time’s hard struggling, my business soon started to see some results. Later, as the business and social intercourses grew, I became busy and bustled back and forth in the business world all along. To earn more money, I really racked my brains and tried every possible means. Every day I intrigued against others and scrambled for fame and gain, really feeling weary. When I went back home, my wife, doubtful that I had a mistress outside, was often nasty to me, which made me awfully fed up. By rights, since I had gained fame and fortune, I should feel happy and joyful; but instead, I became more and more perplexed and empty. How on earth could the emptiness and suffering of life be resolved? I had asked many people about it, but no one could give me a correct answer.
Finding the Root Cause of Emptiness
Until later, I accepted God’s work of, and saw the following passage of God’s words: “A world in man’s heart with no place for God is dark, empty without hope. … For without the guidance of God, no matter how much rulers and sociologists wrack their brains to preserve human civilization, it is to no avail. No one can fill the emptiness in man’s heart, for no one can be the life of man, and no social theory can free man from the emptiness with which he is afflicted. Science, knowledge, freedom, democracy, leisure, comfort, these are but a temporary respite. Even with these things, man will inevitably sin and bemoan the injustices of society. These things cannot restrain man’s craving and desire to explore. Because man was made by God and the senseless sacrifices and explorations of man can only lead to more distress. Man will exist in a constant state of fear, will not know how to face the future of mankind, or how to face the path that lies ahead. Man will even come to fear science and knowledge, and fear even more the feeling of emptiness within him. In this world, regardless of whether you live in a free country or one without human rights, you are utterly incapable of escaping the fate of mankind. Whether you are the ruler or the ruled, you are utterly incapable of escaping the desire to explore the fate, mysteries, and destination of mankind. Much less are you capable of escaping the bewildering sense of emptiness. Such phenomena, which are common to all of mankind, are called social phenomena by sociologists, yet no great man can come forth to solve such problems. Man, after all, is man. The position and life of God cannot be replaced by any man. Mankind does not just require a fair society in which everyone is well-fed and is equal and free, but the salvation of God and His provision of life to them. Only when man receives the salvation of God and His provision of life to them can the needs, yearning to explore, and spiritual emptiness of man be resolved.”
God’s words lay bare the root cause of our spiritual emptiness: We were created by God, but under the seduction and corruption of Satan, we departed from God, lost His word’s provision and guidance, and His watch and protection; that is why we are living in emptiness and suffering. Thinking of our whole life, we labor for tasty food, nice clothing, good houses, expensive cars, our own reputation and status, money, and so on. All that we struggle and rush about are for the enjoyments of the flesh. However, our extravagant desires of the flesh and the things that our flesh yearns to obtain belong to a bottomless pit. To bustle about and labor for the flesh is living in hell, without any comfort or enjoyment. Man comes into this world hurriedly, and departs from it in the same way; their lifetime is filled with hopelessness, helplessness, and miserableness, and many of us even sigh with emotion: Living is nothing but suffering. I have a deep personal experience of this. Since we don’t have the truth or know God, we can only live for satisfying our fleshly desires. But when our lives are affluent and our material needs satisfied, we find there is the feeling of emptiness and suffering deep in our heart and that we cannot escape it all the time. This is because God alone is the source of our life and without His guidance, no matter what we do and how much we labor for the flesh, we will be distressed in the end.
The Way to Shake Off Emptiness
Afterward, I saw the following words of God: “For one sees that 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.”
From God’s words I understood: The reason why I lived so empty and miserable a life was because I didn’t come before God and had no knowledge of God’s sovereignty. I had always been trying to build a beautiful homeland with my own two hands, pursuing to distinguish myself and rise above others and to live a superior life. As a result, I was more and more distant from God, more and more empty and distressed. From God’s words I’ve seen my life directions and goals and that if I want to resolve the emptiness and suffering of life, I must bid farewell to my past lifestyle, and come before God to accept His salvation, worshiping Him, listening to His words, gaining the truth from God, and obeying His orchestration and arrangement. Only in this way can I live in peace and assurance, in release and freedom. Today, God expresses the truth just to save us, and guide us to walk the right path of life of pursuing the truth, so that we can live by the truth of God’s words, break free from the bondage of Satan’s dark influence, and turn back to God to be gained by God. Only by living before God and gaining the truth can our spiritual emptiness and suffering be resolved.
Turning Back to God Is True Happiness
Later, through attending gatherings and reading God’s words, I gradually understood some truth, and also performed my duty in the church, feeling very fulfilled within. I saw brothers and sisters of the church lay themselves bare, and there was no intrigue or concealment or deception between them. They were all practicing being honest according to God’s requirements and I felt especially secure together with them. No matter what difficulties or questions I encountered, I would have an open fellowship with them, and they all helped me find the path toward resolution in God’s words. Bit by bit, the depression, emptiness, and suffering in my heart disappeared. I felt truly peaceful and assured in my spirit, and felt that I living this way was truly happy.
Yubin, I’ve finished sharing my experience. I hope it can bring you some help and that from God’s words you can find the right path of life and come out from emptiness and suffering. If you still have some questions, welcome to write to communicate with us. We can rely on God together to resolve them, for the truth God expresses can resolve all our questions. At last, I’d like to share with you a passage of God’s words: “Humanity, having strayed from the Almighty’s provision of life, is ignorant of the purpose of existence, but fears death nonetheless. They are without help or support, … You live in this way, without hope, as do others, without aim. Only the Holy One of legend will save the people who, moaning in the midst of their suffering, long desperately for His arrival. So far, such belief has not been realized in those who lack consciousness. Nevertheless, the people still yearn for it so. The Almighty has mercy on these people who have suffered deeply; at the same time, He is fed up with these people who lack consciousness, as He has had to wait too long for an answer from humanity. He wishes to seek, to seek your heart and your spirit, to bring you water and food and to awaken you, that you may no longer be thirsty and hungry. When you are weary and when you begin to feel something of the bleak desolation of this world, do not be lost, do not cry. Almighty God, the Watcher, will embrace your arrival at any time. He is keeping watch by your side, waiting for you to turn back around. He is waiting for the day you suddenly recover your memory: when you realize that you came from God, that, at some unknown time you lost your direction, at some unknown time you lost consciousness on the road, and at some unknown time acquired a ‘father’; when you realize, furthermore, that the Almighty has always been keeping watch, waiting there a very, very long time for your return.” May God bless you so you can understand from God’s words His earnest intention for us mankind and return into His presence earlier.
Spiritual Q&A: Ding Yu
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