The Words of In Jin Moon from 2009

Life of Unselfishness

In Jin Moon
July 12, 2009
Manhattan Center New York City

Good morning, brothers and sisters. How is everyone? I’m delighted to see all of you again this Sunday. Did everyone recover from the Independence Day weekend? A lot of hot dogs and hamburgers, I assume.

Here at the Manhattan Center we had a great holiday celebration together with our True Parents. We were so happy to have them here together with us, and then to send our True Parents back to Korea, with our True Father leaving us with the memorable twist of his hips was just so wonderful to see. Even at the ripe old age of 90 he still knows how to have a great time and how to really celebrate life with his children and with brothers and sisters.

Being his daughter, and of course biased in my affection for my father, I could not help but be so moved to see him again here in New York. When Chris Alan sang this morning about being in the New York state of mind, I very much remembered the smile and the kiss that my father planted on my mothers’ cheek before he left. And to see such a loving couple truly appreciating each other, even after having gone through so many things in their lives -- the good and the bad, the difficult and the joyous -- in that millisecond when my dad’s lips pressed against my mother’s cheek, you felt this incredible surge of energy. I’m sure it was not just True Mother and the audience feeling a great deal of love, but everybody who witnessed this picture of a loving couple. I’m sure it was an inspiration to you, just as it has been an inspiration to me.

So many times our Heavenly Parent gives us these wonderful images of love, just as we witnessed in the image of my father and mother giving each other a kiss. But many times when we look around, all we need to do is step outside into New York City and we realize that the beauty of the blue sky sometimes is juxtaposed against the sadness of life, such as watching a homeless person sleeping in a corner of the street. When you go walking through the city, you sometimes ask yourself why there’s so much beauty but there’s also so much pain and ugliness in the world. And of course if you know the Bible, or you know the Principle, you realize that God created the universe because he wanted to experience and actualize love with a true object. So he created this wonderful thing called the universe. He gave us almost everything that we need. Just to make things really delightful, he created his son and daughter Adam and Eve.

He wished upon them all the things that every parent wishes for their children. He wanted them to grow up in beauty, in truth, and in love, and hopefully one day establish a wonderful ideal family where they can truly appreciate each other as sons and daughters of God, and love and cherish each other as men and women of God. And together create this wonderful thing called an ideal family, and be well on our way to building this wonderful thing called family -- children and grandchildren. This is what our Heavenly Parent wanted when they first created Adam and Eve.

We know that Adam and Eve unfortunately messed up. Because they messed up, the history of humankind has been a history of restoration, through which God, through his infinite and eternal and unchanging love for his children, wanted to restore them to the state before the Fall. He wanted them to be the perfect embodiment of this quality called true love, to become a perfect man and woman so that they would be ready when the time came and our heavenly Parent said, now it is time to take the next step, to enter into matrimony and honor each other as husband and wife. Then they would have been well on their way to accomplishing the three blessings that God bestowed upon mankind.

See, when we talk about Adam and Eve having made this big mistake, and Adam and Eve falling away from God, what are we talking about? Did Adam and Eve simply trip and fall in the garden? Did they skin their knees, and that’s why humankind has been engaged in this providential history of restoration? Or could it have been something a little more grave than that?

We know one thing, and that is that love is probably the most powerful force in the universe. The reason why it’s the most powerful force in the universe is because it has the power to create as well as the power to destroy. God, the Heavenly Parent, wishing all of these glorious things for his children, prepared the Garden of Eden with everything that they could possibly want, but put in the middle of the garden the Tree of Life and the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil and told them, “Do not eat of the fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.”

When I was much younger and read the Bible or heard the Principle, I thought, that’s really awful for a parent to do, to bake this incredible cake smack in the middle of the living room and say, kids, now you need to wait and take that bit of icing when Mom and Dad give you permission. But don’t touch it.

When I was a child I visualized myself circling that chocolate cake like a shark ready to bite into its prey. I thought, why would God do that to a child? We are his children and he loves us so much, he loves us infinitely. Why would he put such an incredible temptation smack in the middle of the living room and say, don’t touch it until I tell you to?

Then I got a little older and became a mother myself. I realized that what the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil symbolized was the sexual love of Eve, and the Tree of Life symbolically represented Adam in his perfected state. If the Fall did not occur, he would have been the Tree of Life; all the descendants could graft onto the heavenly olive branch and we’d all become one family, truly united in the spirit of the Lord and understanding the importance of true life, true love, and true lineage.

But we know that the Fall took place during Adam and Eve’s growth stage. Teenagers go through their growth stage when the most important thing to do is to be absolutely united with their parents. The parents may tell the child, “Do not eat that chocolate cake now; it is a visual manifestation of what will be the real thing on your wedding day. Please wait for your wedding day.” Or they might say to a teenager, “Please wait to get a driver’s license before you go behind the wheel.” The responsibility and the freedom to drive are awesome. Driving not only takes you from Point A to Point B, but if you are not properly disciplined in understanding the mechanics of the vehicle, in understanding how things work in the car, then the vehicle can cause harm to someone else. So something that’s really wonderful at helping us through life can actually be a deadly weapon. Parents understand this.

The Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil and the Tree of Life symbolized Eve and Adam in the Garden of Eden and all the things they were to be. Our Heavenly Parent was just simply asking them to trust in him, to obey, and to wait. This was something that the teenage Adam and Eve were not able to fulfill.

We know that there was another person in the garden. Through the Bible and through the Principle we know that Eve was tempted by the serpent, or Lucifer. Many times I wondered why Eve would be tempted by this angel, Lucifer. Maybe back in the garden days, Lucifer was somebody who looked like Jeremy Irons, somebody coolly aloof yet extremely intriguing. Jeremy Irons is a wonderful actor and comes off with an air of sophistication, of knowing everything. Women are wowed by this man. Maybe Lucifer was like that.

Maybe our Heavenly Parent asked Lucifer to take care of his children, maybe teach them math, maybe English, maybe Korean, maybe Japanese. Maybe he placed the beautiful children in Lucifer’s care, and Lucifer, being so proud at this opportunity to teach God’s children, felt empowered that God loved and trusted him to take care of God’s most precious children.

But probably as time went on and Adam and Eve grew up, they might have become nerdy kids of elementary-school age. Maybe Eve had pigtails and freckles, wore thick glasses, and wasn’t much to look at. But as the years went on, maybe she went off for a summer vacation to the Fiji Islands but then came back at 16 or 17. This girl that Lucifer never looked at as other than a student, a girl with pigtails, suddenly looked like a woman to him, beautiful and enticing.

My father talks about how evil is the emergence of selfishness into the world. When you’re enticed by something, the way Lucifer was enticed by Eve, you want to have it for yourself. Lucifer knew that God entrusted Adam and Eve in his care and that he was supposed to take care of them, educate them, and bring them up into the proper roles so that he could truly serve them as a great friend and adviser, just as he was an adviser to God.

But Lucifer started to feel that Eve was so beautiful. How is it that she was meant for somebody immature like Adam? Maybe Lucifer was like Indiana Jones. I love the scene in the movie when Indiana walks in to teach a class in archeology and all the students in his class are women. There is an adoring fan sitting right in his line of sight, and every time he turned in her direction she would close her eyes. On her eyelids she had written, “I Love You.” Then she would look at him. Then she would close her eyes, and then look at him again.

Maybe Lucifer was beginning to realize that not only did he find Eve attractive but also that Eve was looking around and seeing this immature Adam who was too busy with his barbells, too interested in his biceps, working out to the music of Nine Inch Nails, Bon Jovie, or Aerosmith, not really paying attention to Eve as a woman. But Lucifer on the other hand was looking at her as a brilliant diamond. Maybe Eve was thinking, “Ooh, I have this incredible teacher’s attention. Maybe there’s something about me.” In this way these two started hanging out together, appreciating each other.

When God positions you as a teacher, you have a certain responsibility to bring up the young ones and make them better than you, truly serving them with an unselfish heart and unselfish love. Instead of trying to possess what you’ve created, you want it to fly high, above and beyond yourself, better than you are.

But I think Lucifer found it very difficult to let go. He wanted to possess Eve for himself. He probably looked at Adam working out busily with his barbells. Women usually mature faster than men, thinking of things of the heart or the mind when many times the boys are still thinking about how to make themselves stronger and faster. Eve probably did not find Adam that interesting, but she found Lucifer very interesting.

So Lucifer should have been in the position of a true teacher and adviser and said, “Look, Eve, you’re really beautiful and wonderful, and you’re so educated and cultured, and I could go on and on, but you are not meant for me.” If he could have helped direct her affection toward the person she was betrothed to, to be blessed with and create a family with, then none of this would have happened. We would not have had the big Oops of humankind and this continual historical process of restoration.

But Lucifer could not help himself, so he took what did not belong to him. He took something that he should have taken care of. Instead of loving it in a sacrificial, unconditional, and joyful way, the way of true love, he took it for his selfish greed and engaged in a sexual relationship with Eve. Eve, after having this relationship with Lucifer, realized what she had done and thought, “Oh, I was supposed to wait for Adam, for my husband.” Out of the fear of her guilty conscience, she seduced Adam. We know clearly from the Divine Principle that we desire to multiply evil when we know we’re doing something wrong. When you’re doing something wrong, nobody likes to do it alone. But if you have a partner in crime, somehow it’s better, right? So when you’re a teenager and want to break open the liquor cabinet at your friend’s parents’ house and taste what alcohol is like, it’s much better when you have a couple of friends with you, right?

In this instance, when Eve realized what happened, she was experiencing this feeling of wanting to multiply evil, fear, and guilt. She wanted Adam in the picture, too. Instead of saying, “Adam, I made a great mistake. Is there something you can do to help me?” and maybe going to the Heavenly Parent together, talking about it, and working out a plan for restoration, she took it upon herself and seduced Adam.

I sometimes wonder if Adam had been mature enough and strong enough to turn to Eve and say, “Look, you’re beautiful, but I know what you’re doing. What you’re trying to do is not right. Let’s go to our Heavenly Parent,” if he had taken responsibility, maybe the history of humankind would have been different. But we know that Adam was seduced and did not take the responsibility of saying, “Maybe we should seek our Heavenly Parent’s guidance.” Instead he fell into a sexual relationship with Eve. Therefore, the Fall occurred. In their act of disobedience, in their inability to wait for something truly precious, they lost something that was God’s first intention when he created the garden -- to see the first family realized.

So ever since the Fall, God has been raising up his champions. Two thousand years ago we had Jesus Christ, the Tree of Life, whom the people were supposed to graft onto, honor, and work with him to spread the good news that it was time to create ideal families. But we know that Jesus was not able to fulfill his mission, which was to create an ideal family. He was crucified before he even had a chance. And that’s why the Bible refers to Jesus having to come again.

So here we are, 2,000 years later, and we have our True Parents with us. What do we mean by True Parents? What that term means is we have the first man and woman standing in the position as the perfected Adam and Eve, to truly carry forth the lineage that God wanted so much to realize substantially on earth and thereby start building ideal families that will become the cornerstone of an ideal world. This is what our Heavenly Parent wanted. But we know that because of the Fall, all this went awry. Our True Parents and many great leaders of history and of religions had to go through incredible suffering and difficulty to get to where we are.

Jesus brought the good news; 2,000 years, later our True Parents have brought the breaking news. The breaking news is that the Second Coming is here. He is walking and breathing with us, and it is time to live our lives unselfishly, for the sake of others, again.

If we say that a lot of the suffering in this world comes from selfishness, how do we live a life that’s not selfish? The wonderful thing about our Heavenly Parent is he created this beautiful universe for us. He created 95 percent of everything that we need to become perfected men and women in our lifetime. But there’s this wonderful thing called free will. Our Heavenly Parent gave us five-percent responsibility. So instead of the Heavenly Parent programming us like robots, pushing buttons, and saying, “Okay, In Jin, beep, beep, beep; now you’re a perfect woman,” doing that to every one of us so we’re basically robotic sons and daughters, what he wanted instead was to say, “Look, I’m preparing this incredible world for you, but I want you to choose me. I want you to choose to love me, your Heavenly Parent.”

It’s the act of choosing that makes the end result truly beautiful. When God is asking us to choose a life of unselfishness, he’s asking several things of us. Many of us are very accomplished professionals, scholars, artists, and entertainers like the ones we saw here this morning. But if we just concentrate on what we are, meaning how we are defined by our careers and the type of things we do, and we don’t concentrate on who we are, that we are sons and daughters of God, then we can get lost very quickly in the open, stormy sea of life as we go about our daily business.

But when we have the clear anchor of God in our lives, holding our ship in the right position, then we can have the added freedom to really enjoy our life, knowing that no matter where we go, we are always anchored in our love for our Heavenly Parent.

When we’re faced with all these different options in our day-to-day living, one of the things that really helps in terms of choosing the unselfish way versus the selfish way is to always concentrate on God. I Peter 1:13 says, “Gird the loins of the mind,” reminding us to put mind over body. We need to discipline our mind from constantly wandering. We need to refocus it on our heavenly parent and on God. When we refocus our energies and our understanding of our life on God, we realize that we’re not here just to be whatever we want to be, but we’re here with a certain purpose, to substantiate God’s original purpose of creation.

When we concentrate on God’s original purpose of creation, then our life becomes very clear. We know exactly what we need to do. We know that we should be good people; we know that we should be sacrificial people; we know that we should be the kind of people who go the extra mile to take care of another person.

When we choose to concentrate on God, then it leads us to the second point, which is to keep our faith strong with God. It’s this faith that’s going to help us navigate through life. In James 1:7 - 8, the Bible says that the double-minded man is forever unstable in all his ways. He can never accomplish or receive what he wants from the Lord. Such a man is always vacillating between faith and doubt, and many times doubt leads to disbelief.

The word doubt is made by the letters for do and out. Implicit in the word doubt is a reminder from our Heavenly Parent to do the right thing, to live a good life. But when we “out” the “do” that we’re supposed to be, it’s like kicking out what God has asked us to be, which is his sons and daughters. When we kick out the meaning or the purpose of what we are supposed to be, it can only lead us to disbelief. When we come upon disbelief, that’s when we suffer; that’s when we’re lost.

I’ve often talked about being lost as meaning that we become like lonely orphans, forever seeking and searching for the truth of their own reality. That’s what it means to be lost. So when you’re constantly engaged in back-and-forth fascination between “shall I believe or shall I doubt,” the Bible teaches us to not be double-minded. Be absolutely clear in knowing who you are. Then you can go forth as God’s sons and daughters.

Then that leads us to the other point, which is, not only should we have a concept of what we want to be, not only should we have faith in what we want to be or what we are, but the third point is that we need to actualize this unselfishness in our daily life. Again, the Bible teaches us in James 1:22, “Be doers of the word, not just hearers.” You can come to all the wonderful sermons here at Lovin’ Life Ministry, and I am always happy to see you, but if you only come to listen, then you’re missing something. The wonderful thing about our life is God is giving us this incredible role to play and do our part. So God is asking us not just to listen, not just to learn, but participate, do, and live.

When you start doing good things, you become suddenly inspired because in the act of taking care of another person, in the act of living for the sake of others, you realize your true value. You are a divine human being who was put upon this earth to be an agent of change. Instead of waiting for the world’s politicians and religious leaders to change the world, you have all you need to be that agent of change, to tap into that divinity within by exercising the power of true love, the circuitry of true love. If you’re plugged into the Lord, plugged into the Heavenly Parent, you become a brilliant light bulb that casts the light of love onto the world. This is what God wants from all his sons and daughters.

When I think about my daily life, how I want to live my life today, how I choose the selfish way or the unselfish way, these are the points that I like to remind myself of: Concentrate on God, concentrate on faith, and concentrate on actualizing all that you believe and all that you know. Then step by step, day by day, you’re adding a building block of a magnificent mansion where you can invite God as a member of your family to come in and enjoy everything that you build together, which is a loving family.

One of the phenomenal things about our movement is that we’re not homogeneous -- we’re not just Koreans here, not just Japanese here, not just Spanish. We have all different races and religions represented here. With each faith and with each race and culture comes the delicious gift of myths and stories told over and over again.

One of my favorite stories that I like to share with all of you is a story of a woodcutter and a heavenly angel. Of all the folktales I tell my children, this happens to be my husband’s favorite. A hard-working woodcutter went up to the mountains every day cutting wood, bringing it down and selling it to take care of his mother and his family. On a day like any other he went to the mountain and started chopping wood, stacking it here and there. Suddenly a deer ran up to him and asked, “Please help me. Please hide me. There is a hunter trying to kill me. Could you please hide me?”

So the woodcutter was first amazed that the deer spoke to him, but he agreed and hid the deer among the wood shavings that had piled up. A few minutes later a burly, mean-looking hunter approached and demanded, “Which way did the deer go?” The woodcutter said, “That way,” and off the hunter went. Then the deer came out and said, “Thank you so much for saving my life. How can I repay you? What can I do? Is there a wish you would like me to grant for you?” The woodcutter said, “There’s only one thing that I want in my life. I just want to be a happy man with a happy family. I want to have a beautiful wife. That’s all I want.”

So the deer looked at the woodcutter and said, “If a happy home is what you want, you need a wonderful wife. Let me tell you where you need to go.” The deer told him that in a few weeks heavenly angels would descend to bathe in a pond at the mountaintop. He said “They take off their heavenly robes, to which their wings are attached. So take one of the heavenly robes and hide it. Then you find the angel that cannot fly back up to heaven, and she will be your wife.”

The woodcutter thought that was a good plan, so he decked himself out in spy gear and monitored the pond day in and day out. Lo and behold, one evening the sky opened up, and in the sparkling light came the most beautiful maidens he had ever seen. They took off their heavenly robes and dove into the pond, delighting in the water, playing and having a great time. Then something called them back to heaven. Off they all went, looking for their heavenly robes, and they flew back up into the heavens.

But because the woodcutter took one of the robes with the wings attached, there was one angel who had nowhere to go. She was crying and crying, “How can I go back up to heaven?” The woodcutter told her, “I have your wings and I have your robe, so you must now become my wife.” So he took this angel and made her into his wife. Over the years they had three children.

One of the things that the deer told him earlier was, “Do not give the wings back to the angel until she has four children because then she will not be able to carry all of them into heaven. She might grab one child here [in one arm], one child there [in the other arm], but four is too difficult. So wait until the fourth child.” But after the third child the woodcutter realized, “My wife is everything that I could have wished for. She’s beautiful; she’s a fantastic cook, an incredible sewer, housekeeper, and mother.” She turned lovingly to him and said, “Dear husband, I miss my home so much. Can you just show me my robe? Can I just see my wings?” She asked him so lovingly and pleadingly that he could not resist. So he took the heavenly robe out to show her.

Then she quickly put on the robe, grabbed one child here, grabbed the second one there, grabbed the third one between her thighs, and off she flew into the heavens. The woodcutter was incredibly devastated. He thought, “I had everything -- a wonderful home, three children with this incredible angel. One minute she was here, but now she’s gone.” Then he remembered what the deer had told him: Wait until you have four children.

Then he started crying and crying and didn’t know what to do. So he returned to the mountains, came upon the deer, and told the deer what happened. The deer said, “Why didn’t you listen? What did I tell you? Let me tell you another thing. Because of what you did, the heavenly angels no longer come down to bathe in the pond. But every once in a while they do send a bucket down to get the water and take it back up to heaven.”

The woodcutter said, that sounds like a very good plan. So he waited and waited for the bucket to come down. When it finally came down, he quickly got in, and off he went into heaven. Then he realized he could see God, his Heavenly Parent, and he saw his angel wife with his children. There was an incredible reunion of sorts in heaven. But instead of being happy and grateful about what he found again, he started feeling like he was missing something. He wanted to go back home. He wanted to go visit his mother and see how she was doing.

So when it was time for the bucket to go down to bring up the pond water again, he rode down. This time the king sent with him a heavenly dragon, so he stepped off and rode the heavenly dragon to his house. Heavenly Parent told him, “You can go visit your mother, but under no circumstances should you ever get off the heavenly dragon. If your feet touch the ground, you will never be able to come back up to heaven.” The woodcutter said, yes, yes. But in the excitement of the moment he was so pleased to see his mother, and his mother was so pleased to see him. She said, “Wait, you cannot go because I made your favorite squash soup. Let me get it for you in the kitchen.”

He waited, atop the dragon, and out came the mother with this very fine bowl of steaming squash soup that he loved so much. She gave it to him, but it was too hot so he rested it on the dragon’s back. The dragon squealed and snorted and bucked him off onto the ground. He realized what a grave mistake he had made, that he could never go back up to heaven to see his wife and children again. He cried day in and day out, and passed away years later.

On the mound of his grave, Koreans believe his spirit was somehow transferred into a rooster. That’s why the rooster crows at the beginning of each sunrise: He’s longing to see his beloved, longing to see something that he lost.

This story is interesting, but of course every story has a moral lesson to be learned. I like to share this with my boys. This is what happens when you try to take something that really doesn’t belong to you, like the way the woodcutter took the angel to be his wife, when she really didn’t belong to him. When you’re spying upon a woman bathing, you’re being a peeping Tom, so it’s a good lesson to not be a peeping Tom because this is the heavenly masterpiece that God created for somebody else. So respect what your eyes behold.

But also it’s a reminder that when you base your relationship on a secret, as when the woodcutter would never tell the angel where her heavenly robes were hidden, his little secret that he held, sooner or later it comes to light, whether a year, three years, within a lifetime. Usually it leads to a life of regret.

Here he was, urgently and ardently hanging onto this incredible secret, his way to possess this woman by hiding her heavenly robes, yet he still succumbed to the power of love. When his wife was so beseechingly asking him in a loving way, he could not resist. He took what was not his to begin with, so it had to be returned back up to heaven one way or another.

This is a tale of a very selfish man. Nowhere in this tale do you learn what the angel was feeling, what she must have been going through after this man had taken away her heavenly robe and her wings. Nobody knows what she suffered being married to this man, realizing she could never go back home. Nobody hears the voice of the other in this story.

When we hear the story of the woodcutter, we’re seeing him having taken this wonderful wife for granted. He took, he possessed, he married, he had children, and he took for granted. He thought, “After all these years, I don’t have to worry about her any more. Where can she go?” And for those of you who were here last week, you remember that my husband said to me, “Where can you go? You’re my eternal mate; you’re stuck with me.” This kind of thinking makes the wife want to fly away.

My husband loves to tell the children this story because he likes to make the point that the woodcutter was stupid. The deer told him, “Wait until the fourth child.” In his estimation of things, I’m his angel, so he’s saying, “See, I have five children. I had five of you, so she’s got nowhere to go.” He thinks I am firmly anchored by my children.

But you see, if you are thinking that your wife is so firmly anchored by the children, or if your wife is thinking that you are so firmly anchored by the children that you don’t take care of your husband or your wife, one of these days your spouse is going to put back on his or her heavenly robe and fly off into the high heaven.

This is a wonderful story to remind us that if we live a selfish life, although it looks like we’re getting everything we want -- he hid, he spied, he was a peeping Tom, he caught his angel, he hid the heavenly robe, and he made her his wife, the mother of his children -- it looks pretty much like he was a very successful family man, he got everything he wanted. But when you take things for granted, you forget the value of the other person. You forget the value of the life that you were given by our Heavenly Parent, and in that way you forget to take delight, you forget to be grateful, and you can very quickly be washed away to sea, feeling incredibly lost. You don’t know where to go, you don’t know where your North Star is because you’ve lost your connection or your understanding of what you are all about -- and that is that you are an incredibly important and special creation of God. You are his son or daughter. You are everything that he loves, and you are somebody that he wants the best and the greatest things for.

That’s why he gave us so much in this universe. Waking up to a new day is like waking up to a new Monet or a new Picasso. When you study art, you learn that if you try to capture the brilliant hues in the sky, some things you just cannot do. You cannot go from a rosy tint to purple, or rosy pinkish to magenta. Or from brilliant yellow to deep aubergine. It’s next to impossible to do that in painting. That’s the kind of masterpiece God is revealing to us each and every day. It’s showing us a slide show of the magnificence of everything he is about. And then we realize, God wants us to be magnificent and awesome like that. God wants us to become human beings who can channel true love, love that is absolute and unchanging and eternal.

If we realize this each day, we know that we are incredibly blessed. So the only thing that we need to do is to choose to live a life of unselfishness. It’s as simple as that. It’s as simple as deciding in your mind today, “I’m going to live my day unselfishly.”

William Gladstone, the four-time prime minister of Great Britain, is famous for saying that selfishness is the greatest curse of humankind. Rightly so, because it was from selfishness that the Fall occurred. That’s why when we experience selfishness in our lives every day, it’s such a powerful thing, which we can overcome only with consistent discipline of mind over body and actualizing it in our daily life by going beyond ourselves to take care of other people.

Let’s remember the folly of the woodcutter and think about how much he achieved and how much he lost. Let’s consider the simple lessons of life that we can learn from this story, that basically the most important thing is to be grateful, to be thankful each day. If we can start our day with thanks, end our day with thanks, and try our best in between, then I think we’re well on our way.

Brothers and sisters, I am encouraging and inviting all of you to choose to be unselfish today and in the days to come. I’m hoping that as we move on through this incredible journey called life that we can grow in the maturity of true love and in the understanding that God is our heavenly Parent. Don’t you think it’s high time that we live our lives celebrating God so that he, she, and they can truly be happy together with us? Wouldn’t you like that, brothers and sisters?

The sages of history say that goodness is a reward in and of itself, and I very much believe that. When you live a good life, when you live an unselfish life, that becomes a reward in and of itself. So let’s appreciate the small details of our life, let’s appreciate the simple things, and let’s appreciate each other as children of God. If we can come together as a community and in the spirit of one family under God, there is nothing that we cannot accomplish in terms of sharing his and her brilliance with the rest of the world.

God bless, and have a wonderful Sunday. 

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