A NORMAL LIVING YET MIRACULOUS
The title of this chapter, “The Miraculously Normal Living in the New Way,” is based on the divine revelation of the Bible that we may have a living that breathes in God. Breathing is something too ordinary and too normal, not outstanding in any way, yet it is miraculous. We human beings can have God, not merely to be our outward help and support, but to enter into us to be our life and supply. This is truly an amazing fact. We all know that the most needful and most available thing to us is air. A person can live without eating or drinking for a few days, but he will be finished if he does not breathe for even a few minutes. Air is too precious, too needful. It costs nothing to buy and is available everywhere. This physical air signifies a spiritual thing; God is our real air. How simple it is for us to get air. In the same way, it is also simple for us to have God. Although it is simple to have God, yet it is miraculous that God enters into man to be his life and life supply.
I would like to point out one thing to you. The Christian life that we have is one that is normal, without one bit of peculiarity, yet it is also miraculous; it is a story of the Triune God living within us. In Philippians 4:12 the Apostle Paul testified, saying, “I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound; in everything and in all things I have learned the secret both to be filled and to hunger, both to abound and to be in want.” This word indicates that Paul had been poor, and he had been rich. When he was poor, he knew how to handle it; when he was rich, he also knew how to handle it. In my whole life, it has not been easy for me to see one person who really knows how to be in poverty and also how to be in abundance. Conversely, I saw many who could do well in poverty, yet when they became rich, they did not do so well. However, a Christian’s normal living should be one that is fitting in every situation and every place; to a certain point, he is neither poor nor rich. In the process of his entire human living, Paul had learned the secret in everything. His secret is mentioned in the following verse, where he says, “I can do all things in Him who empowers me” (v. 13). The secret of our normal Christian life is a person, Christ Himself.
Today all the ones seated here are working brothers and sisters. I also have worked before; I know the difficulties of working. There are all kinds of pressures and all kinds of temptations. It is really not easy for the working ones to overcome. For this reason, I would like to fellowship two things with you. First, when Christians are suffering, having a difficult time, it is easier for them to depend on the Lord; however, when they are successful and are taking it easy, it becomes difficult for them. You need to know that during difficult times, there are not that many defeated Christians; during easy times, there are not many Christians who can stand, either. Second, the rarest and the most honorable Christians are those who can handle poverty as well as abundance. Not only so, they can handle the situation to a point that they are neither poor nor rich. For a Christian to maintain himself as neither poor nor rich is an exceptional matter.
Most of the working young people after graduating from school give their everything to struggle and endeavor to establish their families and their professions in order to prepare for their future. Everyone wants to be rich and live a life in abundance. Not only would they like to have comfortable houses, but also fancy automobiles. I am not here encouraging you to be rich; neither am I advising you to remain in the same position you are in now. I desire that you always practice to live a normal Christian life. This kind of life is neither poor nor rich, neither suffering nor comfortable. The Bible shows us that the living of the man created by God is one that has obligation, responsibility, duty, and enjoyment. His obligation, responsibility, and duty are for his existence, and his existence should be a kind of enjoyment. When a person is so poor, it is hard for him to have any enjoyment, but when a person becomes rich, neither does he necessarily have the real enjoyment. When you eat too well or dress too meticulously, you will nevertheless be troubled. There are some who if they have a lot of money, will spend it indiscriminately. This not only damages that person, but also others. It not only damages his own morality, but also the atmosphere of society. We Christians are not like this. We learn to live a life that is neither poor nor rich. We are content with being clothed and fed. We also enjoy the material living in a simple, quiet, comfortable, worry free, and trouble free manner. We are blessed ourselves, and it is beneficial to others.
(Messages Given to the Working Saints, Chapter 4, by Witness Lee)