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Up from the Deep Valley 走出幽谷

I accepted Christ in 2004. It was not the first time I heard about Jesus Christ. I was baptized to be a Catholic when I was a baby and I even went to Catholic elementary and middle school. I remember praying to God when I was a little whenever I got into trouble. However, I did not have a personal relationship with Jesus and slowly I drifted away from Him as I came to the United States. I didn’t remember God until I was faced with a very difficult decision in 2004. At that time, I had been dating my boyfriend for five years. My parents hated him and gave me an ultimatum. They told me that if I married him, they would disown me as their daughter. I was torn. I love both my parents and my boyfriend. I did not want to choose. I tried everything in my power to resolve this issue. My friends talked to them and I even got my parents friend to try to convince them, but nothing worked. I was in depression for a long time and the thought of suicide was a daily thought.

At this desperate time, I began to seek God. I told God if He is real, then He can change my parents’ heart. Of course, I was actually pretending I am god when I told God what to do.  In any case, I accepted Christ in April 2004 with full confidence that God will fix my problem. Did God fix my problem? Yes, He did, but not according to my plan. For a week in July, I was woken up by a thought “You must end your relationship with your boyfriend.” I tried to fight that thought, but it returned every morning for seven continuous days. I know this must be from God because this is the last thing I wanted to do. I struggled for several weeks before I painfully ended my relationship with my boyfriend. Yet at that time, I thought to myself, “Since I am moving to East Coast for graduate school next month, God must want me to temporarily terminate my relationship and when I graduate in three years, God will change my parents’ heart.” 

However, God did not change my parents’ heart. Instead He changed my heart. In November, just four months after my temporary break up with my boyfriend, I received a phone call from my boyfriend telling me that he impregnated a woman and asked me whether they should have an abortion or get married. The news broke my heart. On one hand, abortion means I might have a chance to be back with my boyfriend, but on the other hand I know God does not like abortion. With a broken heart, I searched through the bible on the topic of marriage and divorce to see whether there is any chance for me to be reunited with my boyfriend if he does end up marrying the pregnant woman. The bible wrote clearly that if a divorced man or woman married another person, both parities committee adultery. I also read in chapter two of the Purpose Driven Life that all lives, planned or unplanned, are part of God’s plan. At that moment, it became clear to me that God does not want me to be reunited with my boyfriend. I persuaded my boyfriend not to have an abortion. I told him that I would be willing to be that child’s mother. My boyfriend married that woman on my birthday and the child is a beautiful four years old girl today.

I did ask God why things have to unfold in such painful way. Why did He allow my heart to be broken? I did not blame God because I knew He has my best interest in mind, but it was still difficult for me to accept His plan for me. Yet because of this ordeal, I grew closer to God. I also realize how powerless I am and how proud I have been. Since I have always been a very capable person, I rely on my own strength to confront all my challenges in life. Not only did I do well in school, won many scholarships and leadership positions, I was also a good daughter, cooking for the family and taking care of my paralyzed mother when I was sixteen. I thought I was a good person because I love to help others and was always volunteering for community projects. What I did not realized was that in fact all my talents and skills were from God. If He did not grant me my health, opportunities and abilities, I would be nothing and cannot accomplish anything in life. Now, I can live with a thanksgiving heart, knowing that God is blessing me in all my circumstances. My favorite verse in the bible is Romans 8:28 and it says, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” There will be times when our hearts will be broken and there will be trails ahead of us, but God has the ability to turn all these “tragedies” into blessings in our life.

Since I accepted Christ, I have faced other difficulties in life, but now I do not rely on my own power to resolve these issues. Instead, I have learned to embrace them because I know these are all blessings from God to refine me into the woman after His own heart. Each time when I have fallen into the dark valley, God carries me up with His love and it is an exhilarating experience. I encourage all of you to join me to allow God to carry your burden. Whatever your current difficulty is, God, as the creator of the universal, has the ability to help you. All you have to do is to trust Him. May God bless you.