I read an essay “Everyone Has Four Wives” in a magazine.
“A rich businessman had four wives. The fourth wife was his favorite, and he always gave her the best enjoyment; the third wife was his pride so he was always worried that she would run away with another man; the second wife was his bosom friend whom he would talk things over with whenever he encountered problems; the first wife was his faithful partner, yet he always neglected her.
“When the rich man was about to leave the world, he called his four wives around him and asked who would leave with him. The fourth wife refused him heartlessly and then walked off; the third wife told him she would marry another man after he died; the second wife said she would only send him to the graveyard; only his first wife was willing to accompany him.
“Actually, each of us has ‘four wives.’ The fourth one refers to the flesh; the third one reputation, power and wealth; the second one the relative and friend; the first one the soul.”
After reading this essay, I couldn’t help but feel overcome with emotion: These “four wives”—flesh, reputation, power and wealth, relative and friend, and soul—accompany us throughout our life and they never leave us no matter what. However, no matter how well we take care of our flesh, no matter how much fame and gain and wealth we obtain or how great our power is, and no matter how close our relatives and friends are to us, when we are near the end of our lives, we will discover that none of them truly belongs to us. We all know that only our souls belong to ourselves and that without a soul man is just a shell of person and has nothing, but no one tries to enrich his soul, care about his soul’s desire and ease the loneliness deep within his soul when he possesses the precious life. Instead, we try desperately to seek those empty things—the flesh, fame and gain, power and wealth. Just like that rich businessman. He took great care of his three wives and gave them his all, but none of them could keep him company to the very end.
I saw God’s words saying, “One exhausts a lifetime’s worth of energy fighting against fate, spends all of one’s time bustling about trying to feed one’s family and shuttling back and forth between wealth and status. The things that people treasure are family, money, and fame; they view these as the most valuable things in life. All people complain about their fates, yet still they push to the back of their minds the questions that it is most imperative to examine and understand: why man is alive, how man should live, what the value and meaning of life is. … Only when people are about to let go of this world do they realize that the things they spent their lives pursuing are nothing but fleeting clouds, none of which they can hold onto, none of which they can take with them, none of which can exempt them from death, none of which can provide company or consolation to a lonely soul on its way back; and least of all, none of which can give a person salvation, allow them to transcend death. … Though the various survival skills that people spend their lives mastering can offer an abundance of material comforts, they never bring one’s heart true peace and consolation, but instead make people constantly lose their direction, have difficulty controlling themselves, miss every opportunity to learn the meaning of life; and they create an undercurrent of trouble about how to properly face death. In this way, people’s lives are ruined” (“God Himself, the Unique III”). After reading God’s words, I realized that the rich businessman’s entire life was the same as what God’s words revealed. When he was alive, he had neglected the need of the soul and had never sought the source of the loneliness in the depths of his soul, but had always pursued the flesh, wealth and status. Only when near death did he realize that money, reputation, power and the enjoyment of the flesh were nothing but fleeting clouds, and that only his soul belonged to himself. When we are alive, we all constantly struggle and seek to satisfy all the desires of the flesh, yet when we are facing death, we will discover that what we enjoyed is empty and that we didn’t cherish the opportunity God had given us to experience life. At that moment, we will sigh and say: How meaningless my life is! Unfortunately, the rich man didn’t discover this secret until he was about to die. Isn’t it too late to awaken by then?
In today’s world, there are lots of people just like the rich businessman. Then, will they not meet the same end as him? God’s words say, “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, yet still reluctant to close their eyes, and they steel themselves to drag out an ignoble existence in this world, sacks of flesh with no sense of their own souls. 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. … 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” (“The Sighing of the Almighty”). Nowadays, all of mankind has been thoroughly corrupted by Satan and is living in the evil trends of the world that they can’t extricate themselves from. Therefore, all humanity is in great pain and longs for the appearance of the Savior. In order to save mankind, God is incarnated again amongst man to express the truth and perform His judgment and cleansing work of. He reveals the actual fact of Satan’s corruption of mankind and expresses His righteous disposition. Through the judgment of God’s words, we all know our corruption, and fall down before God. Enjoying His words, we have seen the appearance of the Creator, the Almighty. We are living before God and look at things according to God’s words, and our views on things, and our views on life and values have changed. In the past, we pursued fame, profit, status, wealth and pleasures of the world; now, we pursue the truth and seek to live out a true human likeness. Only when we are able to obey and worship God can our life be meaningful and valuable, and our spirits will be set free and released.
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