Chapter 12: My Marriage
Proverbs 12:4a A worthy woman is the crown of her husband,
Proverbs 19:14 House and wealth are an inheritance from fathers, But a prudent wife is from Jehovah.
My wife Deqian Yu, (formal name Yiehua), is the third daughter of my eldest maternal uncle. Her paternal grandfather is the pastor of Fuxing Methodist Church in its early days. Ever since she was young, she grew up in a Christian family. In January of 1937, Brother Stephen Kaung came to Fuxing County seat to preach the gospel, that is when she got clearly saved and baptized into the Lord. Though She and I were cousins, but it was at Brother Stephen Kaung’s gospel preaching meeting where my maternal grandmother introduced us. At that time, she and my younger sister Yufang Lin were both learning medicine in my oldest aunt Hebi Yu’s clinic. Not long after, due to my younger sister’s introduction, with my father officiating, we got engaged.
On January 18, 1938 (Lunar calendar Dingchou year, December 17), I and Sister Deqian Yu got married. After the wedding our feelings for each other were great, but in the first seven years we were mostly separated. In the latter half of 1938, I went to work in Lianchen county in western Fujian, she also has been there to visit me. But very soon, I had to leave Lianchen county to go to work in Sha County, and Ningde. Until 1944, after graduating from Normal School I returned to Fuxing to teach, my life stabilized, then got more time to live together with her. She bore and raised two sons and two daughters for me, maintaining the household was entirely up to her. In the latter half of 1955, the Lord called me to set aside my career to serve Him full time. My family of six lived only by faith, this was not an easy thing forty some years ago, but she can be one with me on this and have no complaints. January 1960, my whole family moved back to Yuxi from the county seat, she and I can join in the labor of the Production team, go out for harsh manual labor every day, often go up to chop wood on the mountain, making clearings, plant vegetables, sell vegetables, suffered a very hard life. Especially when I was imprisoned many times for the Lord, sentenced for many years, the burden of the household she had to hold up alone, she can still obey God’s will. July of 1963, I was imprisoned for the second time, for a prison sentence of ten years, at that time my four children were still young, the chaos of the Cultural Revolution made the environment very tough, but she held on, year after year. October 1973 when I finished my sentence and returned home, she was skinny to the point of being skin and bones, my heart ached for her! Looking back at our marriage life for 62 years, I admit that she truly is a diligent and able housewife.
Spiritually, she also really loved the Lord. For decades, she shared my joys and sorrows, both positively served the Lord within the church. After I was arrested in 1983, she took care of the saints of the Church in Yuxi. At that time the environment was difficult, not allowed to have Lord’s Table in the homes, she and several saints remembered the Lord at the side of the stream at night, under flashlight; at that time the bread and cup of the church were all her responsibility. Though she cannot give messages, but she can use the practical life to supply others, so the brothers and sisters respected her. Those decades, though she experienced many harsh troubles, but she never complained, willing held up her cross to come follow the Lord. In May 1999, the evening of my latest imprisonment, she was already very ill, but she said to me again, “the Lord be with you.” What’s more miraculous, even when she almost completely lost her memory, she can still follow me in humming her favorite hymn, and can recite all the verses in Psalms 23, 103, 131. I really felt that, if the couple were in one accord, then they would become a help in the service; if the couple were not in one accord, then they would become obstacles in the service. I am really grateful of my wife, she is a hardworking, gentle wife, that helped me a lot. Proverbs 19:14 says, “House and wealth are an inheritance from fathers, But a prudent wife is from Jehovah.” It is true, God prepared a good wife for me, I am sincerely grateful of Him.