Legendary Testimony: Former Female Bandit Tastes God’s Grace After Following Christ
By CCD contributor: Wen Yi , February 06, 2018 00:02 AM
A touching and legendary story circulates among older-generation Christians in a church of Henan.
In 1915, a girl was born into a poor peasant family in Henan named Li Shulian. Different from other girls since childhood, Li loved to move rather than to keep still. At seven or eight, she was fond of bouncing, grappling, and brandishing swords and spears.She was able to shoot two Mauser C96 pistols simultaneously at 16 or 17, with high accuracy.
Some Chinese people were forced to be bandits or local tyrants from the 19th century to the early the 20th century when wars brought distress and disasters everywhere in China
At around 20, Li joined a bandit group with hundreds of members active in the Central Plains. For her great skills, cleverness, and discretion, she was voted as the head. The gangsters pillaged villages and locals.
In the late 1940s, the Communist Party took power and launched a movement to suppress bandits and local tyrants. As a result, the bandit group fell apart and Li and her members concealed their real names and ran away. It wasn't until the late 1950s that the movement nearly came to an end. Li and her members used their connections to obtain new identities as farmers. They migrated to a county dozens of kilometers away from their hometown for work.
Soon after, she married a farmer whose surname was also Li with the help of a matchmaker at about the age of 50. Her family life started.
At that time, two Christians in her husband's village felt moved to share the gospel with her, saying that out of love for men, God sent His one and only son to the world and Jesus died on the cross to bear the burden of people's sins and was resurrected on the third day and ascended to heaven. Hearing the good news that those who believed could receive forgiveness of their sins and enjoy eternal life in Heaven, Li immediately converted to Christianity and her husband also prayed to accept Jesus.
Her life changed enormously after converting. She regarded every believer as one part of the church body and even more than her relatives. There were always things for her to talk about with other Christians. She was never absent from singing hymns and prayers in church services. Because her church didn't have a facility, she offered her house as a gathering place. Her family became the host family.
Two years after their conversion, Li and her husband adopted a girl who brought lots of joy and happiness to their family. Owing to her infertility, she treated the girl like her own child and fulfilled the duty of a mother. Meanwhile, she felt happiness as a mother. In 1980, they adopted a teenager who ran away from home because of long-term domestic abuse.
They never dreamed that a barren couple could have a son and a daughter.They gave praise and glory to God. Over a decade later, the adoptive son had a boy.
In her older years, her faith and love remained the same as ever. Her faithfulness and devotion won universal acclaim and the church grew steadily. Pushing 80, she transferred the service of host family to her son and daughter-in-law. Then she devoted herself to prayer.
On a morning of a winter in 2001, she bowed down at the head of her bed and prayed. In the prayer, her soul returned to paradise peacefully. Before her death, there was no suffering of diseases or signal. She was on her knees and didn't fall down.
After she died, God kept giving grace to the family. Her bright grandson got into a university and found a job after graduation. He married a Christian. I attended their wedding ceremony and witnessed that their marriage was blessed by God.
- Translated by Karen Luo
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