Treasure in the world

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“I once saw your footprints along with mine when I was fortunate? How come I
only see my own footprints now I’m broke and penniless?”

Treasure in the World

God replied: “When you’re lost and weary, I carry you on my back. The footprints you see are mine, not yours.”


The witness went through trials and hard times of seeing her son critically ill
and her husband pass away in 1986 from lung cancer. The following words describe how she walked in the shadow of the valley with her husband of 40 years and her encouragement that inspired him to face death bravely in his last days.

My son in critical condition

In 1984 my son was hospitalized for internal bleeding. Three days in a coma, his
life was at stake because the bleeding could not be stopped, leaving only 50
percent chance of survival for him. My heart was heavily burdened, and I was
lost in fear and uncertainty. Quite to my surprise, this near-death experience
of my son changed the rest of my life.

Overwhelming love for my son

Time passes every day, but who can prolong theirs for a split second?

My husband and I were brought up in big, well-known families. My grandfather was  a high-ranking official of the Qing Dynasty, so I had six grandmothers. My
grandfather on my mother’s side was a doctor of Western
medicine, and my mother was a gynaecologist. My father was Chief Secretary of Tax Bureau of  Cigarette and Liquor Products. I was attending the boarding school of Guangzhou  True Light Institute and commuted in private steamboat, which was quite  extravagant then. We had family and relatives holding important positions in  political, commercial, and military sectors.

In the past decades, we had experienced various stormy days of social change and  turmoil and managed to remain stable. But now, as my beloved son was fighting  for his life, I was consumed with the overwhelming maternal love. This strong  affection came to me like heavy floods that rendered any material treasure in  this world trivial and insignificant.

Absence from a social gathering

My husband was a business man, and we had a scheduled social gathering that
night. I was not in the mood at all. After my husband left, I was possessed
with unspeakable fear in the unbearable quietness around me. On my way back from  the hospital, I purposely took the bus and walked home by a short-cut because I  wanted to somehow alleviate my painful restlessness.

Limits of mighty dollar

Wealth is a powerful tool, and I felt so in those years. It could humble a noble
man and enslave a free soul, making life all the more colourful. But at this
moment, I saw its limits. All pleasure and enjoyment is vanity. Could I buy back
my son’s life with money?

Lost and hopeless

I was buried in numerous thoughts during this long dark night.

Gold, stocks, and tips for big-time horse riders … what use do they have for me
now? I used to indulge myself in betting on horses, playing mahjong, and
traveling to different countries, but I couldn’t make time for church, not even
to be chauffeured in Rolls-Royce. At this fearful night, I was led to the church.

It wouldn’t be a surprise if you didn’t believe in gods and ghosts. But you can
never underestimate Christians’prayers. Sitting in the last pew and hoping to
kill some of the sad time, I was at this church filled with strangers away from
the glamorous social functions, where well-dressed people mingle over businesses and choice wines. What I didn’t expect to hear was the piercing words from the  pulpit that depicted my own situation so aptly.

Every word was addressing my weaknesses in the days of self-indulgence in
pleasure and ostensible happy times.  I even wondered if the pastor knew my
presence and had prepared the fitting sermon for me alone. Otherwise,
how  could he sound so perceptive? Or was it because Jesus was there to call me and  help me?

A family of doctors

My mother and her parents were all devoted Christians who practiced medicine to  save lives. And my husband and I had received Jesus as our saviour years before.   However, we were carried away with the floating life for over 37 years and never took our faith seriously.

Touched to tears by grace

The pastor finished the sermon with a prayer. I couldn’t help stepping up to the
pulpit to tell him, “Please pray for my son who is in critical condition at the
hospital, and I’m deeply worried and anxious.”

After getting the name of my son, the pastor started to pray. Only a few words
had been uttered in the prayer before I was touched by the Holy Spirit and
opened my mouth to pray in front of hundreds of people. I prayed in tears.

Sorrows expressed

I was in my fifties then, but my innermost feelings were like those of a naughty
kid, who was picked on by the father with severe punishment. I was slapped awake  and poured my sorrows onto the Lord.

Lost child would not beg the father unless starved; people normally turn to God
in despair. My heart melted like a burning candle, and I confessed my heart-felt
emotions to Jesus for 50 minutes.

Comforted in peace

I got peace knowing that the loving and merciful Jesus would surely take over my
burden and save my son from the dark valley. His name is Jesus. He is here to
save people from their sins, from the evil power and its sting of death.

That night, my daughter was anxiously awaiting me at home, wondering if
something had happened to me. Seeing me return with visible joy, she asked in
jest if I had found money somewhere. Much more joyful than getting money, I
replied and recounted the wonderful experience at church to her.

My son’s life was saved, and it didn’t take long for him to fully recover
and get back to work. The following year, he received Jesus and was baptized.
After this miraculous experience, I retreated to Hawaii for a vacation and
traveled to other places in the U.S. I needed time to relax. During my travel,
I had the opportunity to deeply contemplate on life and faith and realized the
omnipresence of Jesus in our life and death. I strengthened my faith in the
ever-lasting creator that we can only experience in faith and spirit.  I had a
more clear discernment of the value of my life – it lies not in the abundance of
wealth, but rather in the holy spiritual realm of life.

I took much lightly what used to bring me pleasure and fun – cigarettes, mahjong
and horse games; I was drawn to a spiritual power deeper in my heart, which gave me true encouragement and hope.

The death of my beloved husband

The beginning of 1986 was another unforgettable period of saddest time for me.
My husband of 48 years was diagnosed with lung cancer, and he passed away in a
short two months. What an unbearable blow to me and my family! But his faith and  trust in the Lord in his last days, the peace he maintained, and the peace we
were allowed to experience with him — all this was simply beyond words. Later,
my eldest daughter received Jesus as a direct result of this experience.

Floating fortunes

My husband was raised in a well-known big family. After graduating from St. Paul  Middle School of Hong Kong, he went to Burma to run business. He was a confident  man with great perseverance and courage. He risked his life during the Anti- Japanese War to manage goods transportation on the dangerous roads between China and Burma, making money hand over fist.

When he withdrew from this business, he had to transfer gold bricks home in big
boxes. In spite of some ups and downs, he was after all an established business
man. He had success when he was young, he was ambitious and self-conceited, but  Jesus won him over. After tests and diagnosis at the hospital, he cast
everything onto the Lord Jesus. He trusted him.

He was 66 years into a life of successes obtained through his own business
prowess, but how could a man prolong a moment of his life through calculations
and worries? Who would have known before entering the hospital that this was
going to be the last moment? Now he realized that his days were numbered and
managed his frail body to sign off some important documents. He had fought in
the business world throughout his life and weathered severe storms, but now he
could not even find strength to sign a few documents.

Human intelligence and treasures of this world – are they really always helpful?

Last moments

In the last peaceful days of his life, he earnestly asked the brothers of the
church to pray for him. One day, he laughed with great faith and raised his
thumb, saying, “I defeated Satan.”

Our whole family prayed on our knees. In the last moments, he often said, “I’m
leaving, I’m leaving!” I said, “Okay, you leave, but make sure you see Jesus.”

He held the Bible tightly and shed his last tears. No one knew the road of death
ahead! I held back tears and comforted him: “Don’t be afraid, Jesus is with

Last trip

It’s a blessing to have Jesus with you on your last trip in this world. With the
help of the Lord, I handled matters after his death with ease. A nurse said to
me, “I’ve seen many people leaving this world with heart-broken families crying
out loud in despair. But you seemed calm. I know you have peace because you’re
Christians.” Christians sleep; Christians don’t die. It’s see-you-again, not
farewell forever. I had peace in mind.

The Lord says that we will suffer in this world, but in Him we can have peace.
My husband took a part of me when he passed away. My emotional loss is apparent . When he was alive, I often joked with him saying he could not leave me behind; he often replied that men would be outlived by women, so he would surely leave  before me.  I used to often imagine the loneliness once we were set apart. What would life be like once I had no one to rely on? But blessed is I who have Jesus.

Grace in hardship

Thank the Lord for taking care of his children. Life is long with sufferings;
the world is torn in wars and separations; things are not foreseeable. But true
believers have little fear but much faith. Loneliness has not reduced my inner
peace. Although my son and daughter are busy with work and can’t keep me company, I fear night no more. Instead, I often call out to the Lord. I’m able to
maintain my daily peace and joy without even taking sleeping pills.

Not that I have no sorrow in heart, but the Bible says, “O LORD, there is no one
but you who can help the weak when they are vastly outnumbered. Help us, O LORD  our God, for we rely on you …” (2 Chronicles 14:11).

The Lord’s saving grace has taken my soul and given strength that is sufficient
for my needs.

The Bible says, “But we have this treasure in clay jars, so that the extra-
ordinary power belongs to God and does not come from us. We are experiencing
trouble on every side, but are not crushed; we are perplexed, but not driven to
despair; we are persecuted, but not abandoned; we are knocked down, but not
destroyed” (2 Corinthians 4: 7-9).

Life is short with joy and sorrow, union and departure. All is to come is
inevitable. Even families and good friends are living in different places, and
only the Lord accompanies me in my life journey. He is my good friend who is
always present. Even though I was richly clothed and dined before, there was
never a moment of real satisfaction. It’s Jesus that has led me to experience
the real joy money can’t buy. “Do not be anxious about anything. Instead, in
every situation, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, tell your
requests to God” (Philippians 4:6).

What you can buy with money is not real treasure for it does not last. Now my
joy is a lasting and unchanging joy, because the Lord has placed in my heart the
real treasure.

If you want to have this invaluable treasure, why don’t you pray to the Lord,
“Our Lord Jesus Christ, I ask you to forgive my sins so I can receive you in my
heart. I want you to be my treasure in my journey in this world.”

   Dear friends:

   It’s my heart-felt hope that my words will help you seek our Lord’s saving
   grace. If you’d like to know more about Jesus and his ministries, please contact
   local Christian churches for more information.

* Copyright © ArkChannel and the authors *

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