November 1st 2008, Chungpadong Church, Seoul, Korea
See, God does test our faith in our life, He absolutely does, but when we make it through, we will be stronger. We then will have more self-esteem, more confidence, we’ll be able to overcome the next obstacle with more fortitude and strength. … to have that kind of confidence in your own self, but then to extend it to others, to be able to un-handicap another mind, another heart, another low self-esteem and bring that to a higher self-esteem.
Yeon Ah Nim’s Welcoming Remarks:
Good afternoon, brothers and sisters. (Good afternoon!)
Last thursday was the 49th True Children’s Day. True Father said that True Children’s Day is the day that fallen people should praise the most. On the foundation of True Parents’ coming, True Father could finally restore the position of true children in front of God.
Today we are really happy and honored to have all of you here with us in this sanctuary and for those who are joining with us via internet, we are welcoming you as well.
Welcome brothers and welcome sisters!
Hyung Jin Nim’s Welcoming Remarks:
Welcome brothers and sisters on this beautiful Saturday. It’s autumn! It’s autumn! Give it up for autumn! (Applause) We love autumn.
Brothers and sisters, today we are going to share from Cheong Seong Gyeong Pg. 1479. In the section on ‘original human nature and true lifestyle’, Father says, “Loving minds always try to sacrifice, to concede and to give and give again. Even if you perform the most generous act of all and then check with your loving mind, it would answer, ‘You need to do more.’ ”
In our life of faith, in our life of frienship, in our life of encouraging and helping each other, this really rings true with all of us. There are times when we need to help others, to really encourage others, help them get up and get through a certain obstacle. And during those times we sometimes may feel depleted ourselves. But at times if we can be that support to that person – maybe that person was sent to you, maybe that person is just a passerby – but if we can do that for that person, for that community, etc.. we can make a lasting impact on eternal lives.
Father is always telling us to remember this heart, this heart of generosity, one of the main principles of every religion, we can see. And so, Father is asking us also to practice that kind of generous heart, a loving mind, really being able to practice to live for others, to share with others, etc..
Brothers and sisters, before we start service, it is always so important to remember who we are and whose we are. It is so important that we see ourselves from the right perspective, and that is to see ourselves as every day getting more victorious, more illuminated, more filled with peace, being able to shed brighter and brighter light for this world and for our communities.
It’s always important to be able to visualize ourselves improving, visualize ourselves getting better, getting to higher levels of school, academics, work and studies, whatever we are putting our minds at. It’s always so important to see and envision our future in a positive way, to know that that will come to pass and to walk that course.
Brothers and sisters, let us always remember – when we look at ourselves from a principle perspective – that humankind originally had that incredible value, that cosmic value, unique value, divine value, that identity and the purpose, the purpose to truly be able to be equal partners with Almighty God. And that is an awsome purpose, awsome task!
In our lives today what does that mean? That means really be able to bring God joy in our lives, bring other people joy, helping others reach that potential of truly being valuable, filled with identity, filled with purpose and to share that with other people as well.
Brothers and sisters, we invite you to service today, not just to watch and observe, but to be participators today. Let’s really step up from observing and we want to participate. Let’s sing with the songs, pray with the prayers and be able to listen and share when we are sharing the words.
Brothers and sisters, once again, welcome to service. Beautiful Saturday and it’s kicking our weekend off for our 7 services that are up and coming. Brothers and sisters, we always love to kick it off with you guys and give it an international flavor with that international sound from Tworivers choir. Brothers and sisters, let’s give it up for Tworivers choir, brothers and sisters! (Applause) Welcome once again.
Hyung Jin Nim’s Words and Prayer after Meditation Practice:
Wherever we may go, wherever our lives may take us, and how our lives may transform and change, let us know that, just as the seasons turn, there’s always beautiful horizons up ahead. Let us know that, although in our lives we may be going through certain obstacles or certain seasons, that they do not last forever and that True Parents and God are walking with us the whole way.
Let’s gather our hearts in prayer:
Heavenly Father, thank You for this day that You have blessed upon us. Father, we are here standing in this beautiful sanctuary on this beautiful autumn day not with just the brothers and sisters here gathered in this sanctuary but, Father, extended in a spiritual sanctuary that crosses the entire globe.
Father, we have brothers and sisters joining us from all over the world, participating here, Father, praying and offering prayers and songs of praise to You. Father, we pray that Your abundant blessing and fortune may be bestowed upon these families, that You may be with them, that You may bless them with great health, Father, that You may bless them with happiness in their lives, that You may bless them with satisfaction in their families, Father, that You may bless them with peace in their homes, that You may bless them to be wise and, Father, truly be able to live for the sake of others, in their communities, in their churches, Father, in the world that they live in.
Father, let us grow, let us mature, Father, let us be the people that You envision for us to become. Let us truly actualize the plans which You have prepared and, Father, let us truly bring to fruition so much sincerity and devotion that You have offered before.
Thank You so much. We are grateful for this day, and we offer this from the beginning. Father, we pray that You may be with us and that You may receive our prayers and sincerity today. Thank You so much.
We pray once again with grateful hearts, in the name of Moon Hyung Jin Kajeong (family), member of a central blessed family, together with all blessed central families, together in our names, Aju!
Hyung Jin Nim’s interesting story:
Before we start words, we always like to start with something a little interesting, just a little interesting… And it being Halloween time, somebody sent me this one along.
There was the story about two men walking home after a Halloween party. And they decided to take a shortcut through the cemetary, just for a little fun. And right in the middle of the cemetery in the dark night, they were startled by a tap-tap-tapping noise, coming from the misty shadows. Trembling with fear, they found an old man, with a hammer and chisel, chipping away at one of the tombstones. “Holy cow, Mister,” one of them said after catching his breath, “you scared us half to death! We thought you were a ghost. What are you doing here so late at night?” That old man then replied, “Those fools they misspelled my name!” (Laughter) Ooh, you didn’t get it today, huh! Oh! Happy Halloween anyway! (Laughter). I thought it was interesting! (Laughter) OK brothers and sisters.
Hyung Jin Nim’s sermon:
Today I’d like to talk to you about the overcoming power of faith. You know, brothers and sisters, in order to live the blessed life, we must be able to overcome obstacles and challenges and many many archangels that will be in our paths.
Too many people get stuck in life when they hit a big challenge, or when a big confrontation comes their way, “Oh this is too big for me! I’ll never make it through this. This is way too insurmountable. I’m never going to make it through.” But we have to remember that God and True Parents put us through challenges for a purpose. It is said, that our test will be our test-imony and we will be able to be victorious in our lives.
Throughout the course of history, after each age, new technologies were being developed. In the bronze age a new technology, the technology of metal, was invented, or shaping metal. And here humans learned to wield the power of metal to create weapons and place them above even the strongest animals, the lions and tigers etc. The sword and those kinds of weapons were heated by beating a lump of metal into a fine weapon, and the sword was then used in two ways, one to protect one’s family from enemies, animals, or other types of threats, or two, to conquer and destroy life.
It’s the same with us in our own life. God will sometimes put us through the fire and hammer us, not to punish us and not to hurt us, but to strengthen and shape us into things that can become protectors, into those kinds of beautiful swords that can become protectors.
Depending on how we get through these challenges, we can either become a protector or a destroyer. And too many people give up during the fire and hammering process, and become frail swords that can easily break during a real confrontation in life, during a real difficulty that hits them. Others get through the firing process but turn bitter and hateful and make it a point to slay other people’s passion and vision for life.
Let’s not be this type of swords, brothers and sisters. We must be the protecting and life giving swords, that can give and get our families through the battles that we will encounter in our lives, and bring them to safety.
You know, last week we had a service for all the handicapped children of Korea and their families that got together here in the sanctuary. And I shared with them a story that a mum once shared with me. She has an handicapped child and she told me this, “You know,” she said, “there is the reality of being handicapped physically. My child is physically handicapped. But there is also the worst reality of being handicapped in the mind, and even worse than that is the worst thing, and that is handicapping other people’s minds.”
We can handicap our minds by telling ourselves negative things, “I”m so bad, I’m so ugly, I’m incompetent. I have handicapped children because I’m such an evil person or because my ancestors did evil. I’ve got no future. It does not get any better than this. This obstacle is too great, it is unsurmountable.” When we start talking like this, we start handicapping our minds.
And I declared to them on that day when I shared with them the story, “I liberate you from these self-destructive thoughts, in the name of God and True Parents.” I did it kind of as a joke, but then the onnis (elder sisters) just started breaking down. The onnis there, the mums, started just crying so much, and I was very moved at that time. I told them, “You know, in our life – this is what that mother told me – you will find what you will seek. If you focus on negative points about ourselves, if we focus on negative points about our children, if we focus on negative points about our life, that is exactly what we will find.”
It’s kind of like this: in this room, there’s a couple of pink shirts, and let’s all find the pink-shirt people, quickly. Let’s find the people with the pink shirts, one, two, three, go ahead, find the pink shirt people. OK, you found them. Brothers and sisters, why is it that within a couple of seconds you found the pink-shirt people? It’s very simple! Whatever we seek we will find. The pink shirts came very quickly into your mind, into your eyes, into your vision. But the other colors, you almost did not see. You were focused on finding pink shirts and that is exactly what you found.
See, I mentioned to them, “I never really understood why women buy these magnifying mirrors and look at themselves in the magnifying mirrors. If you focus on a wrinkle, you’re going to find a wrinkle. But if you use a magnifying mirror and you focus on a wrinkle, you’re going to find a big magnified wrinkle.”
It’s kind of like that: Whenever we focus on one thing we’re going to find the next. We’re going to find the next wrinkle, we’re going to find the next unsatisfactory thing about ourselves etc. And to them I again joked and I said, “I liberate you from the power of magnifying mirrors in the name of True Parents,” and they didn’t cry at that point, they laughed. And I was very happy.
Brothers and sisters, it’s so imoortant to realize that we are a team. I tried to share with them, “Parents, it’s important that with your children you are a team. These are your team members.” We are all team members in our church community. We must be able to realize that. We must support and encourage each other, empower each other to be able to make it through the challenges in our lives, to truly be able to have VIP in our lives.
See, God does test our faith in our life, He absolutely does, but when we make it through, we will be stronger. We then will have more self-esteem, more confidence, we’ll be able to overcome the next obstacle with more fortitude and strength. You see, it’s so important to have that kind of confidence in your own self, but then to extend it to others, to be able to un-handicap another mind, another heart, another low self-esteem and bring that to a higher self-esteem. That means helping others live the blessed live, that is truly actualizing the blessed life.
You know, research shows that geese that travel thousands of miles together in flocks, they call out dozens and dozens of time per minute as they fly. And research shows that there’s many different types of calls that the geese do. One type of call says, “I’m hungry”, another type of call says, “I’m sleepy”.
But what the researchers found is, that when the geese are flying and when they are calling out their sound, they are not saying, “Mommy I’m hungry” or “I want to take a nap.” What are they saying? Those geese are saying something like, “Hi team, go go go, you can do it, you can do it!”| They are calling out like this. Do you see, the geese doing it? They are doing it. According to research that’s exactly what the geese are doing. They are encouraging each other constantly.
We’re going to do a quick exercise. Brothers and sisters, let’s make a pair with the person next to you and give 12 praises. Let’s give the person right next to you 12 praises. We have to do it in less than a minute, because the geese can do a hundred in a minute, so we got to beat the geese. Let’s do 12 in one minute. Ready, go! 12 praises, come on! (Brothers and sisters do this exercise loudly)
Were we victorious? Did we do it? (Yes) Give it up for everybody in this sanctuary, brothers and sisters, give it up.. (Enthusiastic applause) What happened? What happened? I am up here on the platform watching all of you and there was a dead silence when I was talking up til now and all of a sudden I told you to become geese, and I asked you to give somebody a praise, 12 praises. All of a sudden the Holy Spirit just came down. All of you guys were screaming and shouting and happy.
What happened? There is tremendous energy in encouragement. There is tremendous energy when we tell each other, “We can do it. We are part of a team. You have the talent to be able to do it, you have the ability. God has given you the skills to be able to overcome this task. You can make it through this!” When we are able to support each other like this, there is profound energy there, and you felt it right now.
You see, praising and encouraging each other, helping each other, team members together, to make it through the obstacles that we are facing as a team, that is one of the keys about living the blessed life and helping others live the blessd life.
You know, here at the HQ church and now in our entire Unification family we have an enormous goal, 210 000 member Unification Temple of God, New Jerusalem, here in the fatherland of Korea. On October 12th Father announced it, and this will be the first providential priority of our entire UC world family.
And the UC family will be tested. Our faith will be tested. The results will be released for all to see and all will be tested, not by any person, not anybody will be judging each other, but our community, the history of our movement will draw a judgement upon us. We will be like the 2nd Gen. Will we be like the 2nd Gen that followed Joshua and Caleb into the promised land and then forgot to build the Temple, falling into secularity and faithlessness?
Or on the World Temple will there only be the names of our Japanese brothers and sisters, or will the other nations step up? Will Korea step us, will the other nations step up and be able to create our Vatican and Mecca for our tradition?
You see, as Father gave us this huge providential mission, I as the international president, have an obligation to share this with you, not only in the sanctuary but across the world. It is an enormous challenge, but here in Korea, for the very first time in Korean church history, as we are developing and growing the church, moving towards this goal, we actually see a totally different phenomenon.
We see this challenge, given by True Parents, not as a burden, but we see it as a blessing from True Parents. It’s the first time in the history of the church when Father has moved the focus, the main providential mission, into church building, into building community.
Japan has been shedding blood sweat and tears for our entire movement, subsidizing every single mission, every single business, every single community. America, Europe, every single community, has been subsidized by our Japanese brothers and sisters.
We can really step up and show the to the world movement and especially to Japan that we are being responsible in this new age. We are here to help Japan, help our brothers and sisters, who have burdened this incredible, immense weight, for the last 50 years, and it is time for the other nations to step up, to be leaders and owners of the Unification tradition, not only be free riders of the tradition.
This is truly a test of faith. Like my brother says, “Who will put their action where their mouth is? Who will invest in the Unificationism? Who will have faith in our future?” This is going to be revealed for all to see. But we will absolutely succeed in this task. That is 100% guaranteed. We will not be attacked, shamed and persecuted as a movement for ever. We’re going to stop that trend. Now is the time to step up to the world stage as a movement, and we are moving towards that.
But I guarantee, brothers and sisters, there is going to be fire. There is absolutely going to be fire! In Korea now, as we move towards the building of this sanctuary, we will be attacked by fundamentalist Christianity. Absolutely we will be attacked. They will totally oppose this. They will demo in front of the site, calling Jesus’ name, but we will not fight them. We will not fight them, we will not curse them. We will love them and we will be open to the media who have become our friends.
We will have world level VVIPs coming to our service, like former Costa Rican president Carazo, who met the head of Congress, who came to service, gave the sermon, just a couple of weeks ago. He met the head of Congress, met the Seoul city major, and supported outright the necessity of a world interreligious Peace Temple. We will show that the Unification Temple is good for the country and that it’s good for the world, that interreligious unity and peace will be the example that the world needs, and that this Temple will be the Mecca for tens of thousands of people.
The more fundamentalist Christians attack us, the more we will be supported by the other citizens of the nation and the more God will bless this Temple. We will not fight persecution with persecution, but we will fight persecution with wisdom, with faith, with truth and with unending hard work.
You see, we already see here in Korea the spiritual world moving. We have 10 ministers on our Korean team. One of the ministers came to me just the other day and told me that just a couple of days ago a lady contacted him. She is the head of a Christian prayer organization, and she contacted him. She said, “You know what! I had a strange dream, a revelation the other day that, in the nation of Korea, there needs to be a Temple of God.” The way she translated it in Korean it’s like “a Temple of the Deity,” that kind of thing. “And then I had a dream that I need to talk to you, Reverend.”
So that particular minister communicated to her, “Wait a minute, the Unification Movement is now going to prepare to build a world sanctuary.” And she literally did a back flip. He told me that she told him that a Taoist priest – a Taoist person living in the mountains who has this long beard, he’s a Taoist practitioner and priest – he came down the mountain to tell her to go and meet this particular minister. He said, “Go to her, the Unification church is doing something. Go to them and help them!”
When we saw that, the minister was totally shocked. He saw that the spiritual world is moving, that our brothers and sisters in the spiritual world are moving to try to help really to actualize this task that True Father has given to us. And when we see this we know that we are moving together, both in the spirit and in the world, and both in heart and in mind and in body.
You know, brothers and sisters, what can we learn today? When we are flying together on our path of faith we must do like those geese. We must constantly support and empower each other. We have a great challenge to overcome, a huge challenge to overcome, as a movement. It is to build our Mecca, our Vatican, or the world Unification Peace Temple, and that is while True Parents are here. That is not when they are not here. Just like those Israelites who followed the 2nd Gen into Canaan, they had to create that substantial, direct object of faith through which the people could be educated and through which their heritage could be communicated forever. That was not done, and we saw the providential picture, 2000 years providential delay.
We also know that during this major providential project we will be attacked. I will personally be attacked. I know this because we are already on the media. Kook Jin Nim Hyung as well, he will also be attacked; he is also on the media. We are on the front line. We are totally committed to making this happen, even despite those attacks.
And it is so important that whenever we are moving in this phase in our life, whenever we are facing difficulty as a movement, especially at this time, to truly show the world movement that we are not just sort of observers of the faith, free riders of the faith, that we will not quickly lose our faith when nobody here is to encourage us, but that we are here not to profit off the Japanese brothers and sisters. We are here to be owners of our tradition, our faith and our heritage. We are here to continue to make our faith grow and develop.
And Kook Jin Hyung, myself, our entire ministerial team, our chedan team, our jappe team, our world mission team, we are completely focused on making and offering this victory up to True Parents. And this is without a doubt. I truly pray that all the people, all the nations of the world, will truly be able – and I am not only talking about Unificationists, there are already people who are not Unificationists who are being able to support, like President Corazo – (will) be able to contribute to the success and that our names will truly be displayed for all generations to come in the world Unification Temple of God.
See, it is so important that, in this time, we overcome this obstacle, these upcoming months, these upcoming years when we will be under fire, we will be under attack by other religious traditions, and we will be getting opposition by them. I heard of a young blessed child, just a young person, maybe 8 years old, and just by the fact that he said, “I am a Unificationist” he received criticism, and he received persecution in his 3rd grade class.
We have to be able to move our tradition out of that type of persecution stage, out of that stage so that we can easily say, “I am a Unificationist”, and do it with pride and not be persecuted. I want to see the day when our children, when our grandchildren, can easily say, “I am a Unificationist and we have a beautiful tradition. You should come and see our tradition” and then not being persecuted by anyone. Everybody will say, “That’s fantastic; let me go see what you are doing.”
In this Temple we truly will be able to actualize what Father has taught us. We are here to unify North and South Korea. We are here to make peace and unity among the religions, we are here to substantialize that, here in the Temple, the sanctuary of God.
And let us overcome our obstacles and these upcoming obstacles with strength, confidence and faith. The faith comes from within ourselves, our community, our movement, and our church believers. Is our church going to be believers and actionizers or are we going to be free riders for the rest of our existence? That is the true question and the test of faith that is coming up ahead
Brothers and sisters, it is so important that, as we move through our obstacles in life, and even on a personal level or on the community level, that we are able to support each other, move through these things, and after we do pass these hurtles, we will absolutely see new horizons, new doors opening, and we will see our Unification tradition, not in the shadows, not hidden in shame, or hidden in obscurity, but being able to be proudly displayed as a proud tradition and a beautiful heritage.
Brothers and sisters, if we truly move forward with this kind of strength, and not only with this kind of faith but with the action that follows, we will be able to find ourselves and our communities with more victory, more illumination and more peace and we will live the blessed life and extend that blessing to others. Brothers and sisters, if you accept this message, let’s give the glory back to God and True Parents. (Applause)
Hyung Jin Nim’s words and prayer after the final meditation practice:
Let us always move with the fortune of God and True Parents on our side, knowing that we can overcome every obstacle in our path.
Let us join our hearts in prayer:
Heavenly Father, thank You for this day that You have blessed upon us. Father, we are so grateful that we are able to be here sharing time with You today. Father, we pray that You may bestow and instil within us great courage, Father, that You may instil within us great determination and perseverance.
Father, right now True Father has challenged the entire movement. He is asking us to step up and bring the Unification tradition to the world stage. Heavenly Father, let us truly be able to overcome this obstacle, this impediment, that we may truly be victorious in the eyes of history, and Father, while True Parents are here, that we will be able to serve our tradition for the rest of eternity.
Father, it has been up until now that 50 years our brothers and sisters in Japan have burdened every single mission country in this world, without exclusion (exception), and we have all benefited off of their sweat and their tears. There is no country in comparison that has contributed to the providence like Japan. Father, we pray that Japan may reduce this burden and, Father, that we as other nations may step up, and not just be takers, but, Father, we may not be free riders of the Unification tradition, but, Father, we may be contributors, builders, Father, we may be supporters of the Unification tradition.
Father, let us move through this test of faith, this true act of courage and let us liberate our brothers and sisters who have been, Father, in the fire in Japan for 50+ years. It is now time, in the age of liberation, it is our mission to be able to not only give them the burden and responsibility. Father, let us also step up, let our other nations also participate and let each and every family shine before this world.
Father, we truly hope that this eternal Peace Temple, the Unification Temple, that will last forever in this world, will be the symbolic representation of our entire tradition, that, Father, will bring us to the world stage as a Unification movement, and that, Father, we will be able to show that the prophecies that have been made in the Principle, can come true, and that while True Parents were alive, we did begin.
Father, we pray that we may be those actualizers, those people who can truly move beyond receiving from Your goodness, receiving Your grace and being those who can give and share Your grace.
Father, we pray that we may be the people that can truly pass through this seemingly unsurmountable task, but, Father, we know we will, we absolutely will do it. Father, here in our teams in HQ church, in every single team that we are connected to in Korea, we will hang our lives on the line, and we will accomplish this task for You. And Father, even if it is the case that we will be personally attacted by other religious traditions who do not understand the mission of interreligious unity, who do not understand the mission of True Parents, we will still succeed despite that.
Father, we pray that You may be with us through the next couple of years, that You may be with us as we move towards 2013 and as we truly will be able to offer this in front of heaven and earth.
Father, right now, finally our movement has a vision that is clear, that is numerical, Father, that can be visualized. And we pray that we cannot only do projects that increase our social persona or image but that from now on, as True Parents have given us this blessing to invest in our church community, (that from now on) we may invest to build the Unification tradition and bring it to worldwide acceptance, That is our task, and we are willing to go to the end for that.
Father, we thank You that You have given us that blessing, and, Father, that we can be participants in this age. I am truly grateful, from the bottom of my heart, Father, we truly are here for You. We are here to accomplish this task, and we absolutely shall offer this before True Parents while they are on earth.
Thank You so much. We pray these things here with all the blessed central families who are joining with us together. Let us truly create this victory for True Parents. We pray these things in our own names as blessed central families, Aju! (Aju!)
Transcribed by: Beatrice Clyburn
Edited by: Rev. Bruno Klotz