The Words of In Jin Moon from 2011
Good morning, Chicago. I am delighted to be with you this beautiful Sunday morning. We are having quite an exciting weekend here. Last night we had a wonderful ballroom social, and I heard it was a great success. Our community came out and celebrated this wonderful time together in Chicago with different ministers and district pastors who have come to take in the fellowship of this weekend, and with the beautiful second-generation who were the highlight of the evening.
As a mother who has five children of her own, I'm always thinking about what we as a family and as a movement can do to inspire these young people to have a vision of what they can be, and what contributions they can make to society that will change their world for the better. I've thought long and hard about this over the years, and I know that our True Parents have also thought about this for many years.
Sun Myung Moon visiting members of the US Congress in the 1970s
When our True Father and Mother came to this great country of America in the early 1970s, Father had a great vision for this country. Father knew that America was providentially prepared to work together with the messiah, to share in the breaking news. Over the years and centuries our Heavenly Parent has blessed this country to be the country of prosperity, not for itself, nor for its own power and glory, but so it can be the agent of change on behalf of the world.
When I was a political science student taking my first introductory course, one of the things that profoundly influenced me was when my professor, on the first day of class, defined what power meant. He said, "Power means the ability to influence." I've thought long and hard about this amazing power to influence.
When Father and Mother talk about the providential responsibility of America, and when I consider how God has blessed this country with tremendous power and prosperity, I've often wondered what America can do to transform the world and usher in a true and meaningful millennium of true love.
I believe Father and Mother were so right in thinking that America has been prepared as that providential country on behalf of the world and, because of that, it has the responsibility to exercise its power, namely, its ability to influence the world. I believe that America is intended to influence the world not with the ideals of capitalism or of superficial living, but instead with inspiration that is true to its own Christian heritage that landed and started on the East Coast of America and allowed the Pilgrims to try their best to build that beautiful city on a hill.
America springs from that profound spiritual and Christian heritage. So we need to tap into that spiritual heritage and understand that without God, power, or the ability to influence, the world has no direction. Being powerful and blessed with so much prosperity is like trying to contain a mass of plutonium. When power is not harnessed, focused, and steadied with a purpose and a mission at hand, it can create horrendous destruction and wreak havoc on anybody who comes near it.
But when the strength of something like plutonium is harnessed, according to a focused vision, with consistent and steady progress and according to a definite purpose and goal, an immense amount of good can be achieved and an immense amount of the right kind of influence can be exerted on the world to effectuate a monumental change, to make this world into a better world than what we have now.
Often people have come up to me and said, "We have so many problems in our world today. We have the problems of family breakdown, of young people not being focused, not being goal-oriented, just wanting to waste their precious lives away." We have so many people who do not value life and who do not value the opportunity through living to give back to God gratitude that we are his and her children. Many people have attempted to answer this question themselves; many have asked fellow pastors and ministers, and they have talked with me at great length: "How do we really inspire these people? How do we get them to want to be better people? We try our best as pastors, we try our best as educators. How do we do that?"
When the band sang earlier, "One World, One Heart," it reminded us all that it doesn't matter where we come from in life, what we want is a safe, loving, and peaceful world for our families, our nation, and our world. We want a place where we as parents can rest assured that if we send our children to public schools, we will not have to battle the horrors of suicide bombers wanting to blow themselves up at school, or have the fear of students being so outraged against society because they feel so fragmented, neglected, and ignored that they decide to take violence into their own hands and cause havoc and destruction by killing their classmates.
What do we do in a situation like this? How do we create this one world and one heart? Over the centuries, different philosophers, thinkers, educators, pastors, and religious leaders have tried to answer to answer the question "How do we go about building this one world, one heart?"
Many of the great thinkers, educators, and teachers have tried to tackle the problem by dealing with the effects in society, with things like teenage pregnancy by giving teens condoms and trying to teach sex education, not realizing that just dealing with the effects is a Band-Aid solution. What we must really do is go back to the root of the problem and address the reasons or the causes as to why we have an epidemic of teenage pregnancy or of suicides.
I was told by one of my friends that every 14 minutes somebody in the world attempts to take his or her own life and every two minutes somebody in the world is being raped. This is the state of our modern world. So how do we go forward in creating the culture and environment in which everybody wants to be a part of that one world, one heart?
The great thing about True Parents is they come as the messiah, as the living paradigm of true love. They are not coming to address the effects of the ills of society by providing a Band-Aid solution; they come to address the root of the problem, starting with the beginning, the human Fall. They come to teach us that we cannot deal with the effects, the ills of society, without addressing the questions about the inner qualities of being a divine, eternal son or daughter of God. We have to inspire the divinity within each and every person as a unique, eternal, and loving son or daughter of God before we can attempt to change the world.
Our True Father and Mother bring a message of profound hope, but they also tell us that we must start from the beginning. We must address the Fall. We must address the questions of why men and women were led astray from God. In like fashion, our True Parents, through these Original Substance of Divine Principle workshops sharing the breaking news with over 3,000 ministers, are inspiring the Christian ministers to go back to the root of what America was all about. America was founded on the love of God, and if we want to address the problems of teenage rebellion, of people not being guided or directed, and of people dealing with so many addictions of all sorts, then we must tap into the divine spirit within. We must start a revolution of heart by moving the spirit.
Our True Father and Mother are saying that we cannot be the agents of change for the world without being an agent of change starting with ourselves, you and me. We as Unificationists and as people of faith know that we are living in an unprecedented time. We are standing at the threshold of a brand-new millennium. Depending on the choices we make today, humankind faces the literal, physical possibility of blowing up our world many times over if we continue to go the way we have gone – thinking only of our self-interests and greed, and thinking only about external power and might.
But we, you and I, fundamentally are spiritual beings, moved and inspired by the spirit. If we understand this, then instead of seeing power as something that controls, maintains, and totally represses the soul to be a certain way, we realize that when the power of divine beings is properly harnessed, focused, and steadied with a guide such as our True Parents, we can have the power not just to influence each other but to influence the world. Likewise, America, as the great nation prepared to exercise the right kind of influence upon the world, has the responsibility to inspire everyone toward greatness and toward a peaceful millennium.
The interesting thing about being a senior pastor is I get to travel all around the world, and one of the things that I've realized is that no matter where you go, you cannot escape Hollywood movies. No matter where you go, you have MTV and VH1. No matter where you go, you can always listen to American music. It's amazing how I can go to Moscow and sing a Rolling Stones song, and everybody sings along! I can go to Nigeria and sing a Janis Joplin tune, and everybody sings along. I can go to Japan and sing a song from Three Doors Down, and everybody sings along.
America has a formidable power over the world in terms of its entertainment culture. A lot of the young people are watching programming like MTV and VH1 with shows like "My Crib" that take them on a tour of all these big singers' mansions, with their superficial wealth, their cars and toys, their swimming pools and Jacuzzis, their women and their men. These young people may be thinking, "I want that. I want to be defined as part of the Millennials, the show-me-the-money generation."
A great deal of influence that goes out to the world is saying, "The only thing you need to do is to use your God-given talent to be successful and do whatever you want." But unfortunately, most entertainers don't realize that when they have the opportunity to become successful, it's because they were given special talent to tap into their creativity, which does not come from them; it comes from God.
Regardless of how astounding your talents are, God put them in your care so that when you come to be successful and in a position to harness that power to influence people around you, you can do so responsibly. But because of our media culture and the insistence on superficiality and money being the end goal of everybody's life, a lot of young people struggle over the meaning and purpose of life. Is anything more important than getting rich and having that mansion, having that car, having the right kind of wife or husband? This is the kind of culture in which the young are growing up.
Our True Parents came to this country and worked with the first-generation not to be addicted to the superficial commercialization of what America has become, but to return to the beginning, to the reason why America was founded and why America was great. Our True Parents were not preaching a message about power and might. They were teaching us, moving us, inspiring us by teaching about true love, that the most important thing is love, that the most exquisite language is love.
All of us were born to love and to be loved. In that way our True Parents inspired your spirit, and that's what made all of you decide to change your lives. I don't know how many brothers and sisters have come to me over the years and said, "I was a 21-year-old Ivy League student, but in college I was hopelessly lost; I did not have a vision, I did not have a goal in life. I was totally disillusioned with my government, disillusioned with my family. I wasn't sure if I wanted to live. But meeting Father and Mother changed my life because they inspired my spirit. They moved my spirit. They allowed me to experience the power of true love, and that's what made me decide to own this decision. This is the reason I decided to become a part of their family and to become God's child."
The Good Book says in Zachariah 4:6, "Not by power nor by might, but by the power of the spirit." It's the power of the spirit that moves and changes all of us. When I thought about this passage, I realized that God is speaking to us as a parent. We have beautiful children. You met some of them yesterday in the Generation Peace choir. Many parents come to me and ask, "What can I do to help harness the talent and strength that my children have, to help them focus and steady their persistence and effort so they can become a great person? Do I have to turn into a strict father who monitors my child 24-7? Do I have to turn into a mother who is like a prison warden, following the child around, saying, "Don't smoke, don't do this, don't do that," so everything is a list of don'ts?
In such a way as that, we are imprisoning our children under our care, our power, and our might. But you know what? Sooner or later, if that's the only thing they experience in a family, then when they leave home to go to college, if their spirit was not moved and they didn't have the opportunity to decide for themselves what kind of human being they want to be, the minute they leave our prison they're going to do whatever they want.
I encourage parents to look at ourselves, to look at our community. We have so many fears as a community because the gift of a child is wonderfully precious. Our children are perfect, pure, angelic beings sent to us by Heavenly Parent, who has put them in our care and is asking us to experience the parental heart that God has for you and me, so that we can understand how valuable we are to God, our Heavenly Parent.
Many of us see the world around us – the school shootings, the violence, the addictions, the destruction – and are consumed with fear of what might happen to our children. We may become so consumed with this fear that we don't realize we're not giving our children the tools to be a healthy, competent, and responsible human being if we are always there, keeping our children in a bubble, under our watchful eye, telling them, "This is the list of things you cannot do."
The Importance of Inspiration Here at Lovin' Life, we are encouraging parents to learn from our mistakes. We've done a great job of uniting with True Parents over the years and for the last 40 or 50 years we have been in the wilderness, fighting for our survival against the winds of persecution, abuse, and misunderstanding that were whirling around our community. We were in battle gear, hunkered down in our trenches, basically saying, "We need to survive somehow."
The mentality of the wilderness years has followed us, even as we transition into the Age of Settlement. This is the time when the mentality of survival must change and transition into a mentality of prosperity. We were meant for greatness. We were meant to love life. We were meant to live a fulfilled and satisfying life, a loving life. A lot of our habits from the wilderness era still travel with us to this day. I have spoken to many parents about the list of things that we have given to our children that they cannot do. But I have said, "In this Age of Settlement, when we must think not just about mere survival but about the prosperity of our family, our community, our society, our nation, and our world, we have to start thinking, 'How do we not just survive, but how do we raise healthy, competent, and responsible young adults?'"
This is the time to shift our thinking from the list of all the things we cannot do, all the things in the life of denial, to something that is much more profound and inspiring. I remember when my children were three and four, and they desperately wanted to go outside and play – in the rain, in the storm, in the snow, it did not matter. But I, being consumed with anxiety and worry about them, would always say, "Please stay in. You cannot go outside today, but why don't we do something else instead?" I would try to inspire them.
But when I told them they could not go outside and play, simply telling them that they could not was not good enough. The more I told them they could not, the more they wanted to go outside. I even got to the point when I was hiding their boots because I didn't want them to go out in the middle of a blizzard. But, guess what, they put on their sandals and still went out!
I watched these little creatures with great fascination. I exercised my might, control, and power over my children by saying, "I am your mommy. You're going to be sick. You cannot go out; you cannot play in the snow; you cannot build a snowman." But I realized the reason they were fighting me so much and working up all these ingenious and creative ways to get out there anyway and do what they wanted to do was because I didn't give them an inspired reason as to why. I didn't move their spirit. I was just telling them what to do. I was telling them what they could not do, but I did not inspire them with all the things that they could do.
That's when I realized an important point about my own life of faith growing up in this movement that is relevant to the first- and second-generation today. I feel that I have a special role to play when it comes to our relationship with first-generation, especially parents. Joining the church, owning up to that decision because you were moved by True Parents, and making that decision for yourself because you had a conversion experience, is vastly different from the experience of somebody who was born into this movement. For those of us born into this movement, everything in a sense was given to us. Everything was given to me. I didn't realize how valuable True Parents were until I decided that they are who they are.
My education was very much like that of many of our second-generation who grew up in this movement. We were given diamonds when we were toddlers and told, "This is a very, very precious stone. This is an incredible thing called true love. Take care of it. Love it. Treasure it." Children who are two or three years old don't know the difference between a crystal and a diamond. You give children something sparkly, and they'll think it's a toy. They don't know how to distinguish between a diamond and a crystal. They will have fun with it. My daughter loved to throw my diamond ring into the toilet. These are the things you realize when you try to give a child something that he or she is not ready for, doesn't fully understand, and is not going to treasure as much as the parent does.
In my life of faith I was brought up to say that True Parents are True Parents. I can recall going to Divine Principle lectures from the moment I could sit down. By the time I got to be an older teenager, I had heard so much of this stuff, so many diamonds had been thrown at me, that I did not realize their value. I had to search and go on a long journey in which I decided to study all the different religions of the world. Then I came to realize that there was something profound in the Divine Principle, in the concept of our True Parents. When my spirit was moved, that's when I decided I wanted to be an eternal daughter of God.
Just as the first-generation had that conversion experience, we have to allow room for our second-, third-, and fourth-generation who are born into the movement to come to a point in their lives when they make their own decision as to who or what they want to be because they have been moved by the spirit. No amount of power or might is going to do the job. We somehow have to reach these young people, move their spirits, and make them inspired to love and to be loved. That is how we change the world.
The Good Book says it's not by power or might, but by the spirit. We all seek to be inspired by each other, by God, and we all seek to be inspired by our True Parents. As the senior pastor, I know that my job is not to cause the congregation to be addicted to me. My job as senior pastor is to empower you with the spirit of God and the spirit of true love, to give you the tools to be a healthy, competent, and responsible human being so that you can go out into the world and make that change, be the agent of change.
If I am a pastor just wanting an audience every Sunday because that is how I get my fix, I would not be doing my job. My job is to live for the sake of others. My job is to raise you and all the brothers and sisters and the children to be the inspired people they were meant to be, to move your spirit so that you can decide what kind of people you want to be.
Likewise, we as parents have to think proactively, and not always react because of our fears of the world, of what might happen to our children. There's an old saying in Korea, "Don't give children money; give them a book. Don't give children food; teach them how to plant and harvest the field. Don't give children money; teach a child the added value of working hard." What this proverb is trying to say is that sometimes out of our love we do too much for our children.
We may imagine one mother, a typical Asian mother, extremely sacrificial, giving herself for her family – for her husband and children. She's your stereotypical Asian mother who never leaves the kitchen but works day and night providing for the family. She cooks, shops, cleans, and does the laundry for the family. She works so hard because her heart is one of love. She wants to serve her children.
But she does her job so well, so persistently and consistently that her children never have the chance to wash dishes, take out the garbage, or do their own laundry. Here she is, consumed with the victim mentality, living a life of denial and misery that she has, in a way, put upon herself. Her heart is pure in that she wants to live for the sake of others, and she is so giving, dying for the sake of others, that she doesn't realize that by her dying she isn't being the proper kind of mother who would raise healthy, competent, and responsible children. She does such a good job of being a servant that she forgets to be a mother. She does such a great job of being a servant that she forgets to be a wife.
This is the situation I come across many times. Instead, this devoted mother needs to realize, "I have four children, and I need to share my responsibility." In the beginning the child is not going to clean up as well as the mother does. A child is not going to iron the shirts as well as the mother does. But with persistence, effort, and dedication, the child will grow up to be better; the child will learn the heart of living for the sake of others; and the child will be grateful for his or her father and mother. The child will also feel competent that he or she can do these things – becoming well versed when it comes to cooking a meal, doing the laundry, and building self-confidence in being a responsible person. That's what creates winners in the end.
Many sociologists and psychologists have studied what makes winners. They have gone to the worst slums in America and the most difficult, violent areas around the world in order to find the single most important thing that allows some kids coming from the worst environments to become great human beings who are agents of change. They have studied why so many kids go astray and so many succumb to the destructive environment in their area
The results are fascinating. As I said earlier, I grew up with a list of things I could not do – I could not date, I could not go out dancing, I could not drink – but nobody told me what I could do. Nobody told me, "You can party all night long, but what does that leave you at the end? Maybe you might want to sacrifice going out every night, but find your God-given talent and passion. You might want to tap into your creativity and find out what you were born for. If you apply yourself, you could be the president of the United States, or Florence Nightingale, or Mahatma Gandhi." Nobody told me these things.
I was consumed with the feeling of being a prisoner in my own home, my own movement, my own society because I had a list of all the things that I could not do. I've often thought, how great it would have been if somebody had told me what I could do – not just telling me the negative, but taking a proactive stand in my life, guiding me and telling me all the things I could do, saying, for instance, that I should save myself as that beautiful gift that we all look forward to for Christmas or a birthday
I would be the first one to say, when somebody gives me a gift, what I want is a beautifully packaged box, and inside I want to find something that's meaningful and precious. And usually the expectation is that it will be something new. If somebody had told me the reason why we wait and prepare ourselves for the Blessing is because we want to give the person that we'll love eternally the greatest we can give, which is the gift of our love – if somebody had told me in that way, it would have been much more inspiring than telling me I cannot date, and I cannot have sex, and I cannot go out with all these people.
Had somebody told me that we wait because we are eternal and divine sons and daughters of God our parent who wishes for all of us is to be eternally happy with somebody who understands how immeasurably valuable and infinitely profound we are, that would have inspired me, and many young men and women, to make the right choices. That special person would be somebody who understands God, our Heavenly Parent, and who understands you and me as precious gifts of love from our Heavenly Parent, something that we need to treasure and to share with a grateful heart.
In thinking about Christmas presents, I think of a relative of mine who is famous for giving Christmas gifts because this person loves to repackage old gifts. The toys that were given to my children were old; they came in the original package but because the box had been opened, it was taped again. When you looked at the toy inside, the tires were worn out and the antenna was missing. This was the kind of Christmas gift that my children did not look forward to. They were hoping, "If I get a gift, I hope it will be brand-new."
Likewise, had somebody told me and the young people that getting somebody precious is like receiving the greatest Christmas or birthday present of our life, I believe that we would have taken the message to heart. We all want to receive a brand-new present. Nobody wants a used present. How wonderful would it be if we can inspire the youth of our movement to want to be a great gift to their future spouse by preserving themselves and working on themselves to be responsible, healthy, and competent human beings. Then, by the time they are called by God and their parents to attend the Blessing, they can be prepared to experience the full magnitude and profundity, and the awesome responsibility that is laid in their care as they move toward the next phase of their lives.
I have realized that in many respects the things I went through as a member of my family are very much the same things that our children are going through right now. This is a time when we must be thinking of how we can move the spirit of these young people. And the way we can move and inspire them is by giving them a clear vision and dream of what they can be and what they can work on, and by telling them that nothing is impossible. It's that kind of a message that moves the spirit, that makes a child want to be the agent of change.
We have a great example in CARP. A young brother named Seijin Tranberg went to college and was totally inspired by the vision that he could be the next president of the United States. He said, "Why not me? I could be the next president of the United States." So he decided not to just go to college and stick his nose in the books but to be an agent of change on his campus. He wanted to be somebody who could exert the right kind of influence on his colleagues, to the student body so they could be inspired catalysts in the world. He went as a proud Unificationist, as a proud Second Generation. He shared his faith freely and naturally, and he talked to the kids about some of the things we're dealing with, especially in Japan.
As you know, I have spoken about this time and time again. We have the issue of faith-breaking in Japan and my brothers and I, starting last year, felt called by God to put an end to the faith-breaking that is taking place there. Japan, as you know, is one of the great superpowers of the world, but it still refuses to understand that we Unificationists, as citizens of that great country, have the right to exercise our religious freedom, to make our own choice in regard to how we want to exercise our faith. Many of our brothers and sisters over the last 30 years have been abducted against their will. This issue of faith-breaking came powerfully to our attention when one of our brothers, Mr. Goto, was released after being held captive by his family and by deprogrammers for 12 years and five months. We're not talking 12 months and five days; we're talking 12 years and five months.
Many brothers and sisters have suffered a similar fate. And many sisters during the time of captivity have suffered not just mental and physical abuse, but also sexual abuse. As a woman I feel an excruciating outrage toward what is being done to our dear sisters in Japan. The government of Japan has to recognize the atrocities that are taking place. If it is professing to be one of the great superpowers, governed under a constitution that was instituted by Gen. Douglas MacArthur after World War II that guarantees religious freedom for all its citizens, then the government of Japan should be assuring that our brothers and sisters are afforded the right to choose.
Our Japanese brothers and sisters chose how they wanted to live their life of faith because they were moved by the spirit. They were moved by our Heavenly Father and Mother. They were moved by our True Parents. They were moved by our community, and they realized that they have a chance here to do something that Jesus Christ did not have a chance to do 2,000 years ago. They realize that this is the time of the breaking news when our True Parents are here. They realize that this is the time when we could make right the Fall of Man by engrafting onto the heavenly lineage and becoming one family under God.
These men and women made their choice because they were moved by the spirit, unlike what people think that it's Reverend Moon's power and might that brainwashes them. No. They were moved by the revolution of true love, by the spirit. They were moved because they recognized a vision that they can substantiate in their lifetime. This is what moves people to greatness.
What the sociologists and psychologists realized is exactly that same thing through their studies of the kids out of the worst slums and the most difficult families who somehow turn out to be winners. A great example is Oprah Winfrey. How does a woman coming from that kind of a background have the desire and the willingness to become what she dreams of? It's because she was tapped by the spirit, with the vision of what she could be.
And when you study these findings of successful kids that manage to rise up from the difficult puddles or muddles of life and become great people, you notice that first and foremost every one of them had one adult in their lives who encouraged them to dream, to have a vision of what they would like to accomplish. It may have been one member of the family, one teacher in a school, one minister that they were fond of – but somehow it was one mentor who encouraged them to dream, to have a vision.
Another component to this winning combination that these studies revealed is that every child who succeeded out of the most difficult financial, emotional, and mental space had a certain level of responsibility that was awarded them. Regardless of how difficult their family situation was, somehow they had a relationship with one person in their lives, who not only encouraged them to dream and to hold onto that dream, but also had absolute belief in them to become great people. Furthermore, that mentor figure had the trust willingness, and wisdom to entrust the child first to take on small responsibilities, and then a little bit at a time, to expand that responsibility as the child would reach and accomplish the short-term goals set by this person.
It wasn't the control or the might that this one person exerted over a child that turned the child to greatness, it was the trust and the belief from that person that allowed the child to also believe in him or herself and have the desire to become a great person. That significant mentor gave to the children the trust that they hadn't received in their families. These were young kids coming from financially difficult homes, broken homes, emotionally distraught homes in which trust was not found.
But this trust to handle appropriate responsibility was what translated into a child feeling marvelously confident – not arrogant, but confident as a person. It taught them by being responsible, that "I can do this. I can take baby steps but I have somebody who trusts me to be responsible, and even though I may mess up every once in a while, this person is entrusting me to be that responsible person." It's the belief, knowing that the other person believes in the child that inspires the child to want to live up to that trust, that relationship, and that responsibility. That was another reason why these children succeeded.
The third reason a child succeeded, these sociologists and psychologists realized, is again the proactive, consistent praise – not flattery, but constructive praise reliably reinforced throughout their relationship – that allowed a child from the most hideous and destructive environment to rise up from the ashes like the great phoenix and soar high like an eagle. This is the power of the spirit that moves amongst you and me.
Can you imagine our brilliance if we would truly be a community looking upon our True Parents as the living paradigm of true love? The fantastic thing about True Father is he doesn't say, "Come and listen to me and be my hostage." He says, "Go out there into the world; be the agent of change. You can be a great person."
And despite our failings along the way, Father gives us huge responsibility. Father gives leaders responsibilities that many times I feel should not be given because we don't deserve it. But Father and Mother infinitely trust. Of course they get hurt along the way, but they continue to trust and believe in that person to be a great person – because that person was born to be a great person. Father continues to give us the responsibility of raising the future of our movement and our world.
As parents we have an immense responsibility, partaking of the building process that will create a new generation of peace: Kids who are inspired about their lives and moved by the spirit, not because we exercise our power and might, and not because we give them a list of all the things that they cannot do, but because we inspire them with all the things that they could do, that they can be, and that they are.
This is the reason why our True Parents are supremely important to us. When I read these findings, I said to myself, "This is what Father teaches us, and this is what he always encourages us to do. He encourages us to have a great role model, to find a good role model in life that you can have a relationship with."
I was so lucky because in my difficult teenage years the principal of one of the schools that I attended for some reason singled me out. When I was graduating from middle school, we had an award not just for academic excellence, but an award for the most gentlemanly boy graduating and the most ladylike girl graduating. Because of this principal I was given this award.
I saw myself as anything but a lady. I was a total tomboy. I did not like skirts. I only wanted to wear pants. I didn't like dolls. I wanted my plane, my tank, my bike. My parents wanted to buy me a beautiful pink bicycle with a flower basket on top and I said, "Absolutely not. I would like a motorcycle." For somebody like me to be given this award was almost like an oxymoron. My perception of myself was as the least ladylike. But just the fact that somebody gave me this award and said, "You are the most ladylike person," made me start thinking, "Is that possible? Is it possible that one day I will wear a dress? Is it possible that I would want to sew or cook?"
But you know, it was this person's belief in me – he must have seen something in me. He's the one who told me when I was 13, "One day you're going to go to Harvard. One day you're going to be a great woman of faith and of life, and you're going to have many people in your life who will love you and you will have a chance to love and be loved." So he made me think of a life that I never really thought about. My parents were always so busy ministering to the brothers and sisters of the world that we felt totally ignored and neglected.
But that one person changed my life because he believed in me. He saw something in me that I myself did not see, and he gave me the kind of responsibilities that could help me to mature and grow. He said, "Look, In Jin, if you want to be great, these are the things you need to do. You have these choices in life, or you can have another set of choices in life. It's your choice, but you can decide." He believed in me and he made me a responsible person. He wasn't afraid to push me out there and say, "There are a lot of temptations out there, but you need to make your own decision, and you are fully capable of making the right choice."
It's that trust that made me want to live up to the trust he had in me. When I made small successes in my life, he encouraged me. He reinforced me with positive reinforcement: "This is great; you are just so ahead of the game. You're going to be phenomenal." He gave me a dream of what I could be.
That's when I realized the power of being a parent. As parents we can exercise power and might, but the most important thing is somehow to develop a relationship with our children so their spirit is moved, and they are put in a situation to decide who they want to be. That's what is going to guarantee whether the child is going to be a winner, a success at life, or somebody who is constantly searching and fighting.
Our job in life as parents is to encourage and constantly reinforce our kids and our community and each other that we can be God's eternal sons and daughters, that we can be a great person. And even if we may not see it for ourselves at the moment, we need to remind each other that Father and Mother, our True Parents, see the divine potential in all of us. But just as a brilliant light bulb cannot be brilliant without an energy source, it's our decision as the potentially brilliant light bulb to plug ourselves into the awesome spirit and power of true love that our True Parents are wishing to share with all of us.
The wonderful thing about our True Parents is that they say, "You guys are our children, but you are not children forever. You guys are parents, too." For many years we prayed in the name of True Parents, and before we came to pray in the name of True Parents, many of us as faithful and devout Christians prayed in the name of Jesus Christ because Jesus Christ was a symbol, a role model of something that we could tap into and have a relationship with. Jesus was somebody who believed in us eternally, forever, and consistently, so we could feel that Jesus trusts us to be responsible. Jesus is constantly reinforcing us through his good message that he wants us to be good people, and so we are.
We Christians prayed in Jesus' name because that was the way we connected to our Heavenly Parent and to our divinity. When we met our True Parents, we prayed in the name of True Parents because we realized that True Parents are a living paradigm of what Jesus wanted to fulfill 2,000 years ago in the form of a man and a woman. For many years we prayed in the name of True Parents.
But what do a father and mother do? As parents, we don't want our children to glorify our name forever and ever. We want our children to be healthy, competent, responsible young adults who are confident in who they are as God's eternal sons and daughters. So you see the transition that we have made into the present state, in which our True Parents, having given us the Blessing and the opportunity to go the journey of creating ideal families, say, "All the foundation has been laid and now you need to start praying in your own name."
Our True Parents come to give each of us our eternal and profound dignity as an eternal son or daughter of God. Father and Mother are saying, "Yes, when you were a child you had to pray in our name because you didn't realize that Heavenly Father, Heavenly Mother was a diamond. You thought they were crystals or something sparkly. You didn't realize who they were so you had to pray in the name of True Parents until you realized what was given to you in terms of your divinity, in terms of your infinite worth, the most precious diamond in the world."
It is truly our True Parents' blessing to empower every one of us as a spiritual being moved by the spirit to find and reclaim our dignity as an eternal son or daughter of God by connecting to the heavenly lineage so we no longer have to be in bondage to sin and the Fall and everything that took place before. But our Heavenly Father and Mother are saying, "Look forward; be proactive; be responsible; be that agent of change; be that eternal son or daughter of God; be that child of great and eternal dignity." This is what our True Parents are asking us to do.
Brothers and sisters, I always say that the job of all of us is not just to teach the Divine Principle, but to understand the magnitude and the gravitas of the time we are living in – the time when we can share in the breaking news of our True Parents ourselves and share the good and breaking news of the Blessing with our fellow man so that we can come together as one family under God.
This is a time when we should not be looking for our personal Jesus. We are the Jesus we're looking for. We are the True Parents we are looking for. This is a time when we should liberate God from thousands and thousands of years of people constantly asking God, "Please exercise your power and might in my life and change my life." How many people have prayed that prayer? I have at times. But this is the time when God is telling us that not by power or might but by the spirit. It's the spirit that runs through us; it's the spirit that is blowing in this Windy City of Chicago.
We have to realize we are the answer. "We are the change that we want to be," as Gandhi said. God has always and will forever be by our side. God is always finding little ways to make sure we feel his love. God always wants to find ways to make us feel his and her love every day. And what God is saying is, "You guys are beautiful. You guys are marvelously powerful because you have been moved by the spirit; you are the agent of change. Imagine what tomorrow can be if you decide today what kind of a person you're going to be."
God is asking us to own the game, own our game. Yes, we are a little bit different, but we are unique, we all are incredible sons and daughters of God and the world is just waiting for our beauty to unfold and shine like a beautiful light bulb unto the world. So if we can realize that God has given us everything we need, and the only thing that we need to do is to harness our strength, focus our vision, and steady our stride so that we are consistent, steadfast, and persistent, there is nothing that we cannot accomplish.
In this beautiful city of Chi-ca-go – she – here is a little bit of the feminine spirit of our True Mother with us today, together with our True Father. The great thing about our True Father is that he always lifts up the she; he is always lifting up his wife. Following their great example, let us unite with our True Parents and understand that our own responsibility as parents to this beautiful Generation Peace gives us a chance to change their lives by becoming the outstanding, proactive role model who encourages a child to have a vision and dream, who believes the child to be responsible, and who constantly reinforces that message with words of love, care, and tenderness. This is what is going to create winners out of our future generation, and it's the future generation that is going to change the world.
So brothers and sisters, just as a rocket has three stages, you First Generation of sacrificial brothers and sisters were like the first stage thrusting into space. The Second Generation will take it that much higher, to a place that we have never seen or experienced before. But if we continue the good work, the Third and Fourth Generations are going to reach the moon and back. The moon that God has placed in our lives through the form of our True Parents is the glorious moon. This moon is telling you and me, "Go out there, be eternal sons and daughters. Be that glorious moon. Cast your brilliant light upon the world and change the world, starting with yourself."
So brothers and sisters, God bless, and thank you.
by Gil Roschuni
One world, one heart; one world, one heart
And one strong love to lead.
One world, one heart; one world, one heart
The light of Truth to set you free.
The lightning flashes across the sky,
To light the path of those who try.
One world, one heart; one world, one heart
And the ancient serpent is thrown down.
One world, one heart; one world, one heart
Can't you hear the trumpet sound.
And many stars fall from the sky,
And they all wonder why.
One world, one heart; one world, one heart
Into the age of fitting in.
One world, one heart; one world, one heart
Bringing the old world to an end.
Can't you hear? Please heed the call.
The call of Love meant for all men.
One world, one heart; one world, one heart
Bringing the old world to an end.
1: And the angel who talked with me came again, and waked me, like a man that is wakened out of his sleep.
2: And he said to me, "What do you see?" I said, "I see, and behold, a lampstand all of gold, with a bowl on the top of it, and seven lamps on it, with seven lips on each of the lamps which are on the top of it.
3: And there are two olive trees by it, one on the right of the bowl and the other on its left."
4: And I said to the angel who talked with me, "What are these, my lord?"
5: Then the angel who talked with me answered me, "Do you not know what these are?" I said, "No, my lord."
6: Then he said to me, "This is the word of the LORD to Zerub'babel: Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the LORD of hosts.
7: What are you, O great mountain? Before Zerub'babel you shall become a plain; and he shall bring forward the top stone amid shouts of `Grace, grace to it!'"
8: Moreover the word of the LORD came to me, saying,
9: "The hands of Zerub'babel have laid the foundation of this house; his hands shall also complete it. Then you will know that the LORD of hosts has sent me to you.
10: For whoever has despised the day of small things shall rejoice, and shall see the plummet in the hand of Zerub'babel. "These seven are the eyes of the LORD, which range through the whole earth."
11: Then I said to him, "What are these two olive trees on the right and the left of the lampstand?"
12: And a second time I said to him, "What are these two branches of the olive trees, which are beside the two golden pipes from which the oil is poured out?"
13: He said to me, "Do you not know what these are?" I said, "No, my lord."
14: Then he said, "These are the two anointed who stand by the Lord of the whole earth."