Yesterday, famed pianist Professor Xu held a piano concert under the title “Movement of Life” at the North Hall of the Christianity Mission in Hong Kong on November 27 at 7:30 pm.. The concert’s sole pianist Professor Xu Lujia delivered a touching testimony. Professor Xu testified about how he has received grace from God throughout his life. Though Professor Xu endured suffering most people couldn’t overcome, his suffering by grace gave glory to God. During the concert, Professor Xu started his testimony with a humorous tale. Though his life was full of suffering, it was also filled with joy, wonder, and glory.
In the beginning, Professor Xu shared the experience of becoming a man of God at the age of three. One day, he was playing with his parents around a lake. He accidentally fell into the lake. His parents were scared and could not help. Then they prayed to God. At that moment, through the power of God, a miraculous thing happened. A strong wind from the south blew him away from the center of lake to the shore. God had given him his life back. Hence, he immediately accepted Jesus as his savior.
As a young man growing up in China, Professors Xu couldn’t afford piano lessons. Miraculously, he was able learn piano for five years free of charge thanks to the will of God. He had a friend who regularly attended piano lessons but disliked like it. Then the friend asked Professor Xu to attend the class in his place to avoid punishment from the instructor. That was how Professor Xu learned piano for free. Though the instructor eventually found out what had happened, he continued teaching Professor Xu for free because he felt that the young men possessed a natural talent. That was the story of how Professor Xu entered into the art community through learning the piano.
Moreover, how Professor Xu gained admission into the Xun Lu College of Literature is another source of amazement. Though he entered under probation for being Christian, he was able to attend school for two years whereas most students only received no less than one year and a half of education.
However, life as a pianist was difficult for Professor Xu because of his identity as a Christian and a pastor’s son. Here, Professor Xu shared experiences of three instances when he had fallen in the eyes of God. The first time he fell was when filling out the application form for college. He had followed his classmates in writing the word “professional” for his father’s occupation. When an advisor had earlier pointed out that his father was a pastor, he told him that pastors were characterized under “bad men.” So, Professor Xu dishonestly filled out “professional” instead of “bad men” for his father occupation.
The second time, Professor Xu fell happened during his time in the Xun Lu College of Literature. Since the college was under the military, students had to eat at once when ordered. However, when Professor Xu was a little boy, he lived by a motto that was “Pray and then eat. Without prayer, don’t eat”. Therefore, he had to pray with his eyes opened during eating time.
The third time he fell was because he hadn’t accepted himself as a sinner. Professor Xu said, “At the time, I thought since I was the son of a pastor and I never lied, then I was not a sinner.” However, when the state selected him to be a foreign student, he rejected Christianity and broke up the relationship with his father. “I turned away from Jesus out of desire for fame and self-gain. Finally, he was allowed to go abroad. So he realized, “I have a lot of sin.” Then he prayed, “Oh Lord, I am a sinner for rejecting you in front of many people. Lord, you said, ‘Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.’ Therefore, I will give my burden to you, please forgive me.”
Professor Xu shared his experiences of holding onto his religion during the Chinese Cultural Revolution. Although he had suffered a lot physically, he had never given up his religion. He had been horribly beaten during the time. However, he was able to recover from this pain rapidly. While sharing his story of suffering, Professor Xu was only able to keep the atmosphere light and joyful with his humor. He commented, “Don’t worry! God won’t make you worry. The only thing that should make you worried is if your spirit is going to hell.”
Despite enduring great suffering during the Cultural Revolution, Professor Xu only brought up the small things he had to worry about during the chaos of the times. “Once I had my nails pulled out, and me hands developed agnail. And someone unfamiliar with dentistry extracted the wrong tooth, but I recovered after two weeks. It is amazing by the grace of God.” He shared that since hands were very precious to a pianist he almost despaired during the time his hands went into agnail. So he prayed, “God, please protects my hands by sending a doctor.” What resulted? He bundled his hands up with some cloth and medication. And his hands recovered day by day through praying every day. Later, he found the bone didn’t break when he checked the X-Ray. “God cured my hands.” He is still proud of his hands, and often calls audiences to look at his hands, “Although I am more that 70 years old, the skin on my hands is still tender.
Because Professor Xu’s hands were cured so quickly, one of his friends became a Christian. The friend had not believes in God before despite the many testimonies Professor Xu gave. When he witnessed the amazing things happening in Professor Xu’s life, the friend finally said, “I will trust your God from now on.” He also asked Professor Xu to show him the Bible. Then Professor Xu gave him a handwritten copy of the book of “Matthew.”
During the concert, Professor Xu said, “Although the grace of God is unlimited, it doesn’t work if people don’t take it. I am praying for God with graceful hands which had been deformed.” He played two songs, which are “Cloud Chases the Moon” and “Spring Scenery, Flower, and Moonlight”. The first one was written by Er Nie. He told us that this song made him think about the Hebrews 12:1, as it was written, “therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses.” The other music is from Tan Dynasty, which expresses spirit of Chinese. He said, “I hope Chinese will bring back the gospel to Jerusalem” and “Please pray for peace of Mainland China and Taiwan, and the world.”