Hello, Brothers and Sisters of Spiritual Q&A!
I have a difficulty and I’d like to seek your advice. I’m tightly bound to my family and can never let my children go, which causes me to lead a very tiring life. My eldest daughter-in-law had just given birth to a baby and I need to look after her. My younger son is old enough, but he hasn’t started a family. Moreover, we borrowed money and bought an apartment for him and now we have to repay the bank loan every month. Having these things on my mind all day long, I often cannot quiet my heart in order to reador pray. Even though I have prayed to the Lord, I receive no release in the spirit. Every evening, when I come back home, I feel extremely exhausted both physically and mentally. Sometimes I’m so tired that I suffer a headache and even feel that my life has no meaning. The Lord once said: “Come to me, all you that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. … For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light” (Matthew 11:28-30). I believe that the word of the Lord is faithful. And I also want to act in accordance with His word, put these worries and troubles aside, and live a free and liberated life. How come I can’t put it into practice but live even more and more tiredly?
Hello, Sister Baijie!
We understand your situation thoroughly, for each of us had different sufferings. Before we can live by the Lord’s word, it can be said that we are all bound and troubled by the family entanglements. It is like a net enmeshing us so that our hearts are always occupied and controlled by it. It is really miserable. Thesaid: “Come to me, all you that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. … For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light” (Matthew 11:28-30). We believe that the Lord’s word is faithful, but why can’t we gain true release even though we prayed to God and relied on Him? To answer this question, let’s read a passage of word.
This is what a book says: “Though man allows God to look within his heart, this does not mean that he is capable of obeying the orchestrations and arrangements of God, nor that he has left his fate and prospects and his all under the control of God. Thus, regardless of the oaths you make to God or your attitude toward Him, in God’s eyes your heart is still closed to Him, for you only allow God to look upon your heart but do not permit Him to control it. In other words, you have not given your heart to God at all, and only speak nice-sounding words for God to hear…. Which is to say, God has the right to observe, but He does not have the right to control. In the subjective consciousness of man, man does not want or intend to leave himself to the mercy of God. Not only has man closed himself off to God, but there are even people who think of ways to wrap up their hearts, using smooth talk and flattery to create a false impression and gain the trust of God, and concealing their true face out of sight from God. Their aim in not allowing God to see is to not allow God to perceive how they really are. They do not want to give their hearts to God, but to keep them for themselves. The subtext of this is that what man does and what he wants is all planned, calculated, and decided by man himself; he does not require the participation or intervention of God, much less does he need the orchestrations and arrangements of God. Thus, whether in regard to the commands of God, His commission, or the requirements that God makes of man, man’s decisions are based on his own intentions and interests, on his own state and circumstances at the time. Man always uses the knowledge and insights that he is familiar with, and his own intellect, to judge and select the path he should take, and does not allow the interference or control of God. This is the heart of man that God sees” (“God’s Work, God’s Disposition, and God Himself II”).
These words are very true. Though we pray to God, we never really intend to leave our life completely under His control. Instead, we want to rely on our own abilities to arrange and plan for our children’s life. We always try to plan and decide everything by ourselves, and often expect that the course of events will conform to our thoughts and imaginations. However, only God can rule the fate of each and every one of us, because only He is possessed of such power and authority. We are just creations and have no authority or power to control the fate of ourselves or others. So naturally, we feel distressed, worried, and lost when we don’t attain our goals after putting in a lot of effort or the results of things are not in line with our notions and imaginations.
In fact, if we really want to entrust our difficulties to God, we must truly give our hearts to God, accept, and obey His sovereignty and arrangement over our lives and fates.
Here is a passage we would like to share with you. We think it gives us a path of practice. It says: “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”).
As a created being, we should learn to wait, seek, and submit through the people, events, and things we encounter every day. This is the behavioral principle for us Christians, and it is also most able to illustrate whether we have true obedience and reverence for God. In the process of practice, we’ll have some knowledge of how God rules over and supplies all things, and see that the more the people, events, and things we encounter are incompatible with our conceptions, the more it contains God’s good purpose. It is through these people, events, and things that God wants to test our faith in Him and see whether we have His place in our hearts. He wants to test whether we can willfully do what we like and whether we try to change the life and even the fate of our family and ourselves with our own two hands. And the result of the test is: When the course of events is disagreeable to us, we’ll live in pain and distress, feeling that our life is full of untoward things and disappointments, and even live in silent resistance and complaint toward the Lord. Outwardly, we say nothing, while in our hearts, we misunderstand the Lord and complain about why He doesn’t bless us so that we can live easily and comfortably since we have believed in Him. Little do we know that it is not that the Lord doesn’t bless us. Actually, it is because we don’t believe in or submit to God’s sovereignty, that we can’t give our prospect and fate to God or submit to His orchestrations and arrangements. If we have no true faith in the Lord, then we cannot sincerely come before the Lord, much less can we receive the comfort and satisfaction that comes from having the Lord with us. When we find that we indeed have failed to practice truth to satisfy God, it will impel us to examine our relationship with God and inspire us to seek God’s will and practice truth. Today, you wrote to us to pour out your distress of living in pain and confusion and to actively seek God’s will. We believe that under the guidance of God and His words, and through our communication, you’ll have a deeper understanding of God, see how God rules over our destiny and supplies our needs, and how He reveals to us the pain caused by us changing our fate with our own hands, and see it is all because we don’t like the truth and don’t give our hearts to God. After realizing these things, you will understand God’s earnest intention in His arranging such an environment for you, and also find a proper way of practice. If you, when fulfilling your responsibility and obligation as a mother, can let God lead your everyday life, and learn to let nature take its course and act according to, He will surely help you out of troubles and worries. May God lead you and enable you to receive release and freedom soon and live in His light. Amen!
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