Chinese Church Voices

Testimony of a Christian Artist

Chinese Church Voices is an occasional column of the ChinaSource Blog providing translations of original writing by Christians in China. The views represented are entirely those of the original author; inclusion in Chinese Church Voices does not imply or equal an endorsement by ChinaSource.

In this interview with the Christian Times, Christian actress Yang Xin opens up about the importance of keeping a pure heart and the value of a loving family as she struggles to live out her faith in a challenging profession. Known for her physical attractiveness, she discusses the nature of what she sees as inner beauty. Through Weibo (the Chinese equivalent of Twitter), Yang Xin frequently shares her testimony with fans and critics alike (an excerpt of which is presented here).

In this anxious and impulsive world, it's hard to find someone who understands gratitude or truly feels happy. In the entertainment world, being able to maintain a pure heart is especially precious. Even so, on the Weibo microblog of Christian artist Yang Xin we often read about how much she thanks God. And it is precisely because of Biblical guidance that Yang Xin can hold on to her beliefs in the chaotic world of entertainment.

Here is something Yang Xin wrote on her Weibo account:

"Thank God, He has heard everyone's prayers! I was afraid of being alone in making films, but He not only has given me an assistant who loves God, but the mother of one of the child actors is also a Sister who fervently seeks God. We pray together several times a day. Last night when we were finished, we video-chatted with my husband, and the four of us prayed together. It was beautiful!"

Someone from Tencent Weibo asked me, "Would you still be thankful if you didn't have any food?" I answered, "Don't worry. My God will never let me go hungry. He said, "I was young and now I am old, yet I have never seen the righteous forsaken or their children begging for bread" (Psalm 37:25). I'm more and more thankful because the Lord who controls the universe chose me, a tiny, insignificant person.

Early in the morning I realized: today we're not filming! My heart was filled with gratitude, because I could finally have a day of rest. God said, "In all things, give thanks." It's wonderful! If you looks at things from a pessimistic perspective, once you start grumbling you won't be able to stop, and this will make your life negative. Dear friends, let each new day begin with thanksgiving!

Through the above Weibo excerpts we see that Yang Xin has a heart that gives thanks in all things. Therefore, she is able to maintain a grateful and joyful heart in the entertainment community, a sub-culture that is full of comparisons and competition. Although the way she conducts herself sometimes seems stupid to non-Christians – love is a stupid concept to start with – she still desires to follow the Lord's teachings in her life.

Trusting the Bible when your faith and profession are at odds

Since she became a believer, the most difficult thing for her as an artist has been the tension between her profession and her faith. During one interview, she admitted, "Actually, my profession and my faith are often incompatible. My job requires me to pay attention to myself; my faith calls me to give attention to others. My job requires me to be high and lofty; my faith calls me to hide myself. My job requires me to be sexy and charming; my faith calls me to be solemn and holy "

"No matter how many people find it impossible to understand what I do or whether they think I'm timid or compromising, after all these years I've come to understand a truth: if I work according to the words of Jesus, I will be blessed. Moreover, I don't know if you've tried to retaliate. If you have, maybe you've been successful, or maybe you've failed. Even if you failed, you probably prepared for a long time, and then all your efforts were wasted. Even if you succeeded, you still have a conscience. After that temporary delight, were you plagued by feelings of emptiness and self-reproach?"

Yang Xin candidly shared what she thinks: "I'm not timid, and I'm not afraid. And it's definitely not that I don't understand the connections and ways of the world. According to Jesus' instructions, I do my best to forgive, to pardon, and to love. If you love others, you won't fear them, you'll have compassion for them. We often pray for others, and truly hope that these hard-hearted people will soon receive the love of our Lord Jesus. Even if we are hurt, we still believe the best. I don't expect them to understand what I do, because only people who have received life from Jesus Christ can understand."Yang Xin is naturally very beautiful, and she has a figure that everyone envies, and many people call her sexy. But she believes that sexy doesn't have to be half-naked. She believes that sexy people should have sensitive, loving hearts. In this impulsive society, a low profile as a plain glass of water is most attractive. This kind of tranquility can't be faked – only a heart that is truly at peace can act this way. It's hard for an elegant woman not to be sexy.

Learning it is more blessed to give than receive through a happy family

In her interview, Yang Xin completely exposed her heart, saying, "I have a good and appropriate feeling about myself, and this isn't because I'm beautiful. I know a lot of beautiful people who feel awkward every day, and their lives are a mess. I think people's level of comfort has nothing to do with their appearance, but has everything to do with whether they feel loved. Fortunately, I have a wonderful family, and they've given me lots of love and support."

Blessed by God, Yang Xin has a happy family. Her husband is a devout, God-loving Christian. Yang Xin also follows God's instruction in her family – the wife should obey her husband. She joyfully shares, "Obeying my husband is a good thing. First, I don't need to take on responsibility. Second, I don't need to think too much. Third, in respecting him, I'll be respected more."

The Bible says, "with the measure you use, it will be measured to you." What this means is people will treat you with the same attitude that with which you treat them. Wang Xin believes that you should trust those around you; if they aren't trustworthy, don't hang around them. So, she trusts the people around her, and is very willing to assign them tasks to do. As a result, a lot of people let their guard down, and are willing to share their hearts with her. This is how she has made so many friends.

The Bible says, it is more blessed to give than to receive. She and her husband deeply believe this. When we give without expecting to receive back, we receive an unbelievable abundance, said Yang Xin.In the entertainment world, many celebrities are Christians. We hope that their lives will also be beautiful testimonies to the Lord.

Original article (and image source): 基督徒艺人杨欣见证:信仰与职业矛盾时靠圣经得胜

Image credit: Snuff Box Painting, by Jonathan, via Flickr

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