In some South Koreans' eyes, the Chinese, especially the Chinese women are very tough. They talk loudly and like to manipulate men. We can clearly see that a Chinese tomboy culture has prevailed in recent years. I saw this while talking to a few elementary students from the church one year ago. There were a few girls who told me proudly that boys in their class were afraid of them because of this. Moreover, they often beat the boys.
I was once a cranky kid and God re-shaped me to gradually get rid of many bad habits. I used to believe that my temper would be better as long as I believed in Jesus, or that maybe Christians need to endure no matter what people do to us. However, God taught me deeply through many things.
Once, were many sisters who envied me because I was dating a Christian man with a western education. However, his biggest problem surfaced when all of his disguises were discovered: violence. He would abuse me whenever he felt unhappy regardless of where we were. He didn't care if we were alone or on the street; he would rip my clothes and drag me in the street, and there were even times I lost my shoes because of this. I always chose to bear all this physical or verbal violence. I was convinced that he would change someday if I prayed for and encouraged him with Bible verses. However, years have passed. He didn't change; I did.
Finally, I couldn't stand it anymore so I started quarreling and fighting with him. I would go to the pastor in tears, and she advised me to either break up with or be more patient with him. None is doable for me. In the end, the pastor approached him and asked him to end things with me. After all, I always chose to forgive him when he apologized with tears after hitting me. Breaking up was just so hard for me, but I would accept it if he brought it up. Unfortunately, he didn't want to be the bad guy so he resorted to many things to force me to break up with him.
Despite all this, I still remembered the scripture that we need to forgive people 77 times every day so, I kept putting up with this. Over the years, I realized that my temper became more and more like his and I didn't recognize myself anymore. I felt like a screaming monster.
One day I had a vision on my way home from work: my life ahead was completely dark with only despair and my ex-boyfriend was in it. There was a voice talking to me: "He will leave God in the future and his life will be dark without God. If you choose to be with him, it will be the same for you. Will you leave God?" I replied: "No! God is the cornerstone of my life no matter what, and I would be completely dead without Jesus."
That moment of realization steadied my heart and urged me to send him a breakup message. I believe it was God who gave me a brave heart, since I knew I didn't have one. I spent two years putting myself back together after saying goodbye to that five-year relationship. This heartbreaking lesson was my wake-up call:
If I had said "no" to the abuse from the beginning instead of enduring, maybe I wouldn't have wasted so much time on someone who didn't deserve it. The Holy Bible teaches us to be patient. We need to endure to the end if it is for the sake of the gospel. However, when my life was threatened and I constantly felt like he might kill me, was it really glorifying God? One time he hit me while I was on the phone with my friend. By the time my friends got there after hearing this, the place was already a mess. They were horrified seeing me standing next to shattered glass. They were safer even though they didn't believe in God. If I had died like that, it would not be praising God, I thought.
I also learned several things from my aunt who is a very successful businesswoman:
Women can do better than men in the workplace. Women need to be feminine and cling to their husbands. Women need to constantly encourage their husbands and children. Women need to care for their health and figure for a better state of mind.
I also remember her words in my heart: "Women need to learn to be compassionate instead of enduring. The difference is that one will expand you while the other will hurt you."
When I was young I was a leader among the kids. They all obey me. I always believed that I should have been a boy and would complain to God about being a girl. Now I especially thank God for making me a woman. I can be beautiful, sunny, and calm, or I can sometimes be a little headstrong. I can also talk about political and economic topics with men. Being gentle means independent thinking with character instead of simply having a good temper. It means more than talking softly, but with serenity in the heart and a peaceful spirit instead of being rigid.
The characteristic of women who are created by God is gentleness; therefore, we need to be gentle. Being gentle is a power rather than weakness, evasion, or grudging endurance. This power enables us to be sunny through the storm and gives us courage to keep walking even when facing a low-point in life. Though people throw stones at us, we still have the heart to bear all things with this power.
Translated by Grace Hubl