Obeying God’s Precepts – Fang Xiaodong’s Story

Fang Xiaodong
Fang Xiaodong

Two people were instrumental in leading me to Christ: my wife and my boss. My wife became a believer before I did. In the beginning she tried to reach out to me by inviting brothers and sisters-in-Christ to our home for fellowship where they would share the Gospel with me. But I did not want to believe. I would try to debate with them about religion, deriving my arguments from the many religious books I had read. However, after my wife had received Christ into her life, I could not deny that her life underwent tremendous changes for the better.

The second Christian person who influenced me greatly was my former boss. His kindness and graciousness were traits I found very rare in the people around me. Because of him, I had a good opinion of Christians, thinking that they are generally “good” people. Later, it was through his invitation to Saturday gatherings at his place that I became more open to Christianity.

Challenges at Work
I work at the Amity Printing Company (APC) but for a period of time I was transferred to the Amity Development Company (ADC). At ADC, the management asked me to be in charge of finance but that was not my area of expertise. The unfamiliar work scope caused me a lot of stress and I eventually fell ill. Then a Christian colleague from work, Ms Xie came to pray for me and I was healed. It was then that I accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior. At first, I was full of faith but as time passed I began to doubt my conversion. I guess it was because of this that God made me experience Him more.

A while later when I was promoted to be Finance Manager, the management was quite pleased with my performance and wanted me to help out in a subsidiary company in another province. I refused at first but my boss kept urging me to go. I became confused, uncertain about what I should do. On the one hand, my wife advised me not to take up the transfer as it was not good for couples to be separated. On the other hand, I felt the pressure from my boss to agree to the move.  Therefore, I started to pray and my faith began to grow. Finally I came to a decision that I would let God lead the way. Incredibly, everything went smoothly from then on when the management stopped giving me pressure. From this incident I regained my faith and started attending a Bible study group and church service with my wife more regularly.

Making a Difference at Work
Nevertheless, I was still experiencing work stress. There were times when I could not sleep well such as the time I was assigned to oversee the construction of the new APC factory. Just like before, I had also no prior work experience in construction. But the management trusted me because I am a Christian. As Christians are viewed to be trustworthy people, they gave me the job. Ever since the construction work took place, I had no peace because there were just too many problems. It was this lack of peace that prompted me to read the Bible more often. I also found peace during church services.

Life is different now than before. Things may look difficult now, but my faith in God tells me that things would be better later. So throughout this project, my spiritual life also jumped a big notch. I learnt not to worry too much. Worrying gives in to the devil’s snares. All I have to do is to pray and read the Bible consistently then I will experience joy in place of stress.

Another trial I experienced while working on this project was temptations. As in every industry, there is corruption. I thank God that I had a Bible on my table to remind me that Christians should not accept bribes. I believe that if I did not have faith, it would be very hard to resist temptation and I would have a lot of struggles. As Christians, we are not to disgrace the name of Jesus with what we do. So when my son did not do well in school, I would tell him that it is better to get poor grades than to cheat in his exams as cheating would tarnish the name of Jesus. As followers of Christ, we should not accept bribes. Construction is one of the most corrupted industries. You can get rich quickly and “get to enjoy life” or you may end up in jail if caught. People would say that I am foolish not to take bribes on the quiet, but I would say that whoever does things in the dark does not belong to the Light, and does not glorify God.

What the Bible Means to Me
The Bible is my source of confidence: whenever I begin to complain about work, I would remember the cross and trust God’s strength and wisdom; whenever I lose my temper at work, I would repent and reflect on my sin; and whenever my workers are lazy, I would urge them to work harder because they are building a Bible-printing factory and God is watching over them. The other aspect I learnt from the Bible is submission: when my boss gives me more work, even though I may be unwilling, God’s laws say I have to obey my authority figures, I will accept the job I disliked the most such as budgeting. Because of this willingness to submit, God gave me more favor with my boss.

Written by Ms Pamela Choo,
for United Bible Societies, China Partnership
From an interview by Mr. Chris Neo, Volunteer with the UBS China Partnership