Rev. Yeon Ah Nim’s Sermon: “The Joy of Repentance”

February 13, 2011,  Cheon Bok Gung, Yongsan Seoul Korea

A Special Korean Sermon by Rev. Yeon Ah Nim during the 2:00pm Service and was translated in English by Korean 2nd Gen named Cho Yeasook before the Holy Spirit Healing Service started.

I’m honored to be able to offer a sermon, after successfully closing the Cheonbok Festival.

Today, I would like to talk about “the joy of repentance.” The International President asked me to give a testimony and I hope today’s sermon will help you understand the International President’s message.

He said “we are all sinners before God and True Parents.” No matter how strictly we followed the Church laws, we are all sinners before True Parents. He also said the reason why we can stand before God and True Parents is not because we followed the laws.

What is our response when we hear this?

Sure we know, but isn’t there a better way to express this? Such as, we still have fallen nature…

We believe that we did nothing that evil to be told that we are ‘sinners’. We even think that this is not fair. After all, aren’t we attending the service faithfully now?

I’m not here talk about the types of sin, or its theological validity. I’m here to think about why he emphasizes that we are all sinners. Let’s all look back seriously how we think about our behavior in daily life. Also, I’d like to talk about the meaning of repentance that he is referring to.

One day, I read an interview of a Christian minister in the newspaper. He said, “Even when I become 100 years old, or have attended God my entire life, tomorrow I can still turn out to be a Judas. So I keep praying.. and am careful about myself.” This reminds us the importance of being as humble as the minister.

The Holy Spirit Healing Service helped me to truly realize and repent that I am a sinner.

My Testimony

My parents are a 777 blessed family. My dad was short and small, so my mom said “yes” only on the third time True Parents asked her if she wanted to get blessed to him or not.

True Parents said, that “a general will be born into this family.” However, three girls, including me were born in a row. When I turned 5, my brother was born. However, he had a mental illness. He is now an adult, but he has the mind of a 5-year old.

One day, other kids shaved off his hair and eyebrows with a knife. Another time, he spent one month’s living expenses my mother had saved, in one day at a game room. This was the total opposite of True Parent’s prediction. I resented Father for saying we’ll have a general in our family when we actually were so unfortunate.

I thought “Why do I try to be good? Why have I tried so hard to lead a good life? Because I’m stupid? I have many problems inside me, but am I a hypocrite? Because I was born into the Church and don’t know anything else? Am I afraid to go out into the world? Is it because I’m stupid?”

These questions bothered me even up to today. But I found an answer in the International President’s sermon during a Holy Spirit Healing Service.

What is Sin? Sin is hurting God and True Parents. The reason why we shouldn’t sin is because we don’t want to hurt God and True Parents. We don’t necessarily get a ticket to heaven by trying to be nice and live a good life, but this is how we show that we love God and True Parents.

Then I realized that it is worth trying to live a good life. I thought “I want to return joy to God through my life. From now on, I want to be truly happy and live in a good way.” I could repent and admit that I am indeed a sinner. Tears rolled down my face.

Then, it hit me as I realized all of a sudden…should only a son be a general? I should become a woman general before God and True Parents!

It is easy to think that Sin is a negative, old-fashioned word. To confess that “I am a sinner” also sounds as if I dislike and deny everything about myself. The International President knows very well that the word, ‘sinner’ is a heavy word with a historical burden.

True, we do not want to admit being a sinner. But let’s go beyond it, and reflect on ourselves and take away the spotlight from us. And give that spotlight to True Parents who paid redemption 8 times and feel the joy of repentance. The International President wants us to be filled with God and True Parents’ love and blessing.

Even as a second gen. who followed the church laws with no original sin, I was freed and felt the Holy Spirit was with me when I confessed that I’m a sinner through Holy Spirit Healing Service.

If we start to believe that we are no longer sinners, it is hard to feel God’s blessing. The moment we start to think that we have reached completion, that we have done enough, our deeds are not God’s but Satan’s. So the International President talked about two types of sinners.  The first type commits all kinds of sins, and the second type follows all the laws and becomes arrogant. Because both are centered on the self.  This is something God and True Parents are not able to forgive, that is, when we become arrogant.

The Holy Spirit Healing Service is not a magical cure-all. People cannot be brought to repent right away. But, I believe that if you do it consistently for a period of time, God and the Holy Spirit will be with you.

The new year of the Heavenly Calendar has begun. True Parents have given us the new motto.  We ought to start our year by truly repenting before God and True Parents, so that we can start to build a better future.

We must repent truly before the LSA who went the way of the cross, the way of the seven deaths for us. When we are freed from our greed and from our own selves, God and True Parents will be able to come into our hearts.

Then by the Foundation Day of 2013, we can become good children who will return more glory and joy. I wish all of us can repent before God and True Parents and truly feel the full joy of liberation. I offer all glory to God and True Parents. Aju!  —–

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