I was conscious as Dr. Chou Tao Hsiang operated on my eye. I could hear the sound of the operating instruments and Dr. Chou speaking.
My right eye had been in a bad condition for more than three years. I was almost blind. About a year later, I learned that only the transplantation of a cornea could get my sight back to normal. When I told my wife she said nothing, but showed me her savings book. She was illiterate, but from the book, I knew with surprise that she had managed to save about 500 Taiwan dollars after several years of hard work.
"If this is not enough, we'll try to get more," she said, "You are not like me, an illiterate person is blind though he can see. A man who can read needs both eyes."
A month later I entered the hospital. I was extremely lucky. People waited for years before a cornea became available, and I told my wife how thankful I was for making the operation possible.
I was 19 when I married on my parent's orders. In those days marriages were arranged, only by the parents. I had never seen the girl who was to be my wife until the day she was brought to our house. She came with her face covered with a veil. After bowing to heaven and earth, we were led to the bridal bedroom. When at last I lifted her bridal veil, I received a great shock. Her face was much uglier than I had imagined. My dream broke to pieces.
I fled to my mother's room and cried all night. My mother told me that I must accept my fate. She praised my new wife as a kind-hearted, hard working girl. But nothing she said reduced my anger and disappointment. I did not want to share a room with that ugly wife, and I did not speak to her. I stayed at school. When the summer vacation came I refused to go home until my father sent an uncle of mine to fetch me. My mother persuaded me to have a talk with her. "Son, you are being cruel to her," she began. I said angrily, "I wonder how you and father could have made me marry her."
My mother's face grew pale. "She is an extremely good girl, understanding and patient," she continued. "She has been in this house more than six months now, and she works from morning to night in the kitchen and on the farm. She has not said a word of complaint about the way you have treated her. I have not seen her shed a tear. But she has a heart. Do you want her to live like a widow, although she has a husband? Imagine what you would feel like if you were she."
Nothing changed the way I felt. She always kept her face down and spoke softly. When I disagreed she would try to give me a smile of obedience: then she would quickly lower her head again.
In the thirty years of marriage that followed I seldom smiled at my wife, and we never went out together. In fact, I sometimes wished her dead.
Yet my wife proved to have more patience and love than anyone I knew. My income was hardly enough for our daily life. The baby was often ill. When my wife was not looking after the household, she worked with some rich family or helped drag fishing nets with some fishermen, to earn a little extra money.
After my operation I had plenty of time to think, and my thoughts kept returning to my wife. I didn't want the people in the hospital to know that I had an ugly wife. "Mother is making your favorite dishes," Yung, my daughter, said, when she came to fetch me.
As I walked into the house, my wife was coming from the kitchen with a plate of food. "You're back," she said softly, without raising her head.
"Thank you for letting me see," I said.
Standing against the wall with her back toward me, she began to weep. "It is enough to hear you say this," she said between sobs.
Yung came into the room in tears. "Tell him, Mother!" she cried. "Let Father know that you have given the cornea for his eye!" She shook her mother. "Tell him!"
"I only did what I should do," my wife remarked.
I grabbed her by the shoulders, and looked closely at her face. Her left eye was covered with a light brown patch!
"Why? Why did you do it?" I cried, shaking her hard.
"Because you are my husband," she answered. I held her tight. Then I got down and knelt at her feet.
Taken from Native Missionary (abridged)
Oh, how many wonderful lessons can be learned from this true and dramatic experience. However, the greatest thing that this story can teach us is God's great love for and patience in seeking to win sinners for His everlasting kingdom. There was no flaw in Wong's wife. She was blameless, a perfect picture of Solomon's description of "a virtuous woman:for her price is far above rubies. The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her:She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life." In conclusion, Solomon says this: "Beauty is vain:but a woman that feareth the Lord, she shall be praised." (Proverbs 31:10-30).