Prayer for World Peace & Grand Ancestor Service
Zuiun-kyo Sacred Grounds, Atami
Su no Hikari Kyodan Headquarters Altar Room
August 3-5, 2018
Congratulations, everyone, on the Prayer for World Peace and Grand Ancestor Service!
I am so happy to be able to participate in today’s service together with all of you from Izunome Group and also have the pleasure of being able to meet you up close like this.
Last month, heavy rains in Japan caused extensive damage, especially in the western regions. Just a moment ago at the service, together with everyone, I surrendered to God in the name of Messiah, which is one with Meishu-sama, my prayer that restoration and reconstruction may move forward smoothly and that together with those who were victim to the heavy rains and everyone who was affected by it, we may be welcomed into God’s heaven as ones who have been forgiven and granted eternal life.
This year on May 1, Izunome Group was established. I believe that this would not have been possible without your determination to truly seek Meishu-sama’s will and your courageous decision to overcome many difficulties. I am eternally grateful for your strong will. And on June 15, in the city of Osaka, with members all around the country as well as ministers from overseas gathering, Izunome Group’s Paradise on Earth Service solemnly took place – I cannot forget the deep impression it made on me and the deep emotion I felt. At the Paradise on Earth Service and the membership meetings you invited me to held in each region within the same few months, you warmly welcomed me at each place I visited, and we were able to interact with each other as if we were family.
I would like to seek Meishu-sama’s spirit of trusting God from the very bottom of his heart and devoting himself entirely to serve God. Through seeking Meishu-sama, I would like to be closer to God’s will, even if just a little. Through the recent exchanges with all of you, I am sincerely grateful to see many of you who wish to go forward with me so that we may all get to know the true message Meishu-sama left for us.
I strongly felt that all of you and I are united together with Meishu-sama – we are closely, inseparably tied to each other – and together, we are always being nurtured by God in order to be born anew as His children.
From here on, too, I would like to convey my thoughts and feelings received from God through Meishu-sama to all of you, and also convey all of your thoughts and feelings as my own to God through Meishu-sama.
No matter how much the circumstances of the church we are surrounded by change, no matter how much it is thrown into confusion, I will, together with all of you, go forward with great hope on this path of an entirely new faith and an entirely new life that Meishu-sama has revealed to us.
In deep awe and fear of God, I tell you that the love of God, who is our true Father and the true Parent of our life, is immeasurably wide, high and deep. Out of His love for us, He saves, forgives and welcomes everyone and everything into His heaven.
With this love, God, as the Creator, the Lord of creation, continuously carries out the work of creation, that is, the salvation of humanity. On this day of the Grand Ancestor Service, we must remind ourselves once more that God advances His divine work of saving all humanity through us and through our ancestors who are within us, just as Meishu-sama taught us that “we are the sum total of our ancestors.”
We feel as if we live on our own, as one individual. We feel as if we try to be a better person on our own, suffer, get angry, sadden, and rejoice on our own. We feel as if we serve God on our own. This, however, is not true. Our ancestors are now in the bosom of God, alive and with us. Under God, we are united with our ancestors always.
We and our ancestors did not come into this world to simply perish after fulfilling our mission on earth. Rather, we were born on earth to serve in the eternal divine work of creation and to be newly born as a child of God, a Messiah. In short, we were born on earth to attain eternal life.
Recently, Meishu-sama made me realize one thing. Before, I always had thought that the Practice of Sonen – the practice of surrendering to God various feelings and thoughts that appear in our mind – was the work of saving something that had happened in the past – the salvation of the past. However, I have realized that everything God does is for the future, the salvation of the future. He uses the past, the present and the future to create a new future – this is His work of creation. God is the God of the Future.
The life our ancestors led, the life we are leading now and the life that our descendants are going to lead – all of our lives have been and will be a part of God’s great work of creating a new future. God’s creative power is the power to create a new future and to make all things new. And remember, in heaven, in the world of beginning, God entrusted to us His Future, and we were born on earth carrying it. The Future of God is this: that He forgives each one of us without exception, welcomes us into His heaven, makes us His very own children and lives with us eternally.
Whatever our ancestors did, whatever we did, was all part of this plan of God, the Future of God. Every single moment – past, present and future – God is using all humanity, all ancestors and all nature, without exception, to carry out His task of creating a new future.
Have we not always thought about the future for us and not for God? Our future is not ours but God’s. The future exists for God and not for us. Let us accept this truth with great joy! Let us from now on gladly serve in the creative work of God! And let us call out to God, “I thank You, God! You are using me and all my ancestors for Your Future of making all things new!”
We have forgotten heaven, our true home. We have disregarded the will of God who is our true Father. In ignorance, we destined ourselves to perish, choosing not to repent and inherit the life of God.
But out of His unfailing love for His children and in the name of Messiah, God has forgiven us. Through Meishu-sama, God has informed us that we have our true home – heaven – within each one of us that is full of life, vigor, energy and radiance.
I believe that the revelation Meishu-sama received about the Transition from Night to Day meant the forgiveness of God. For this reason, it is my firm conviction that the Transition from Night to Day was the greatest gospel that humanity has ever received. Through this gospel, which is one with the name of Messiah, we are deemed as forgiven, saved, and living and are permitted to return to God’s kingdom. How fortunate it is that we, within us, have a path to return to our true home – the kingdom of God – through the name of Messiah!
87 years ago, on June 15, 1931, Meishu-sama climbed Mt. Nokogiri and at daybreak, received the revelation about the Transition from Night to Day. 28 people accompanied Meishu-sama at the time, and with Meishu-sama leading, they offered the Amatsu Norito prayer toward the sun that had just risen from the horizon. I would like to tell you: as ones who were one with Meishu-sama through the name of Messiah in the world of beginning, you also were present on the mountain. You, with Meishu-sama, offered your prayer to the sun and received the revelation of the great transition and God’s forgiveness.
The third hymn we sang for today’s Grand Ancestor Service was the following:
I tell you, my people:
Repent and be prepared!
This is how you survive the end of the world with ease.
Meishu-sama is urging us to admit that we are sinful, to repent and accept the pardon of God in the name of Messiah. God knew that every single one of us was going to deny God and become sinful. That is why God, well before creation and in the world of beginning, prepared the name of Messiah for us so that there would be a way back to God’s heaven – our true home – no matter how much we would separate ourselves from God. Not only this, God also sent Meishu-sama to the world and let us recall the name of Messiah through him. How great, deep and unfailing the love of God is!
We must respond to His love and serve in it. For that, we must receive God’s forgiveness that is in the holy name of Messiah. Then, we will be able to take part in God’s creative work of making a new future and making all things new. With Meishu-sama leading us, let us serve God with one heart, unwaveringly.
May the grace, peace and love of God be with you all.