"I'm so grateful for the grace of God, as suffering is His dressed-up blessing," said a female Christian surnamed Wu whose mother-in-law strived to believe in Jesus.
After the National Day in 2020, Wu’s 70-year-old mother-in-law suddenly suffered a stroke due to high blood lipids, and her right hand and feet could not move at all. The mother-in-law’s daughter was too busy with her work to take care of her. As the other daughter-in-law did not care for her at all, the burden fell on Wu, which lasted four months.
Living in a rural village in central China’s Hunan Province, Wu had to dry the rice during the autumn harvest, as well as take her mother-in-law in for an injection and cook for her parents-in-law. During that period she would get up at 4 am to pray and read the Bible for an hour and a half, sharing the light of the Bible with other believers before then starting a busy day.
"God gives me strength for the task of taking care of the sick, which is very tiring... This experience made me understand why God's children should draw near to God first and then to people every day," Wu shared.
Seeing Wu busy with her work alone, the neighbors around her complained on her behalf, but she did not grumble. While taking care of her mother-in-law, she always happily sang hymns, believing that it was her duty to take care of her aging parents.
"The Bible also teaches Christians to honor their parents, which is an essential quality of Christians, " she added.
Her mother-in-law was kind at heart, but her words always hurt people, so her other daughter-in-laws was unwilling to take care of her. Even before having the responsibility of her mother-in-law, Wu tried her best to see the advantages of the elderly and to be considerate of her difficulties. When hurt by her mother-in-law, she meditated on Jesus’ teaching to Peter of forgiving seventy-seven times, singing the hymn True Meaning of Love to encourage herself.
Her mother-in-law recovered quickly under her good care. One day at lunch, she suddenly asked Wu for a Bible with larger characters, saying that she would read it every day if in good spirits and attend church gatherings when she could walk.
Wu was overjoyed to hear this. "I am so happy, as I know that this is the work of God's Holy Spirit. God’s good joy is found in all things."
It was not easy for the old woman to believe in the Lord, as she had constantly been worshipping idols, even though her father-in-law had been a Christian for twenty years. Although she tolerated their faith in Jesus, she also insisted on placing her belief in Buddhism.
Wu said that her mother-in-law changed her heart at the memorial ceremony of her mother, who rested in the arms of God at the beginning of 2020. Wu told her that her mother had only died physically but her soul had gone to heaven, which her mother-in-law didn't believe. Wu said that her mother's body was soft, not as rigid as those dead non-Christians. On the day of the funeral, the mother-in-law touched her face and her hands, which were really soft but cold.
After that, she began to believe in Jesus, stating that she would not burn joss paper money near a grave afterward.
Four months after her stroke, thanks to the care of Wu, her mother-in-law had mostly recovered, and people that met her after the recovery period could barely tell that she had suffered a stroke at all. Now, this old woman with several years’ education insisted on reading the Bible every day and attending church services on Sundays. If she didn't understand a word, she listened to an audio Bible. She said that God really loved her and that the more she read, the more she loved it.
As a result of this, Wu now had a closer relationship with her mother-in-law, who told others that she could not recover without Wu’s meticulous care. Sister Wu's husband also thanked her for the meritorious service.
Looking back on her conversion to the Lord, Wu sighed, "I finally understand the meaning of using life to influence life. As children of God, we should love and move others with our acts, so that people around us can see Lord Jesus’ love in us."
- Translated by Abigail Wu