PDF file: 20211201_Harvest Thanksgiving Service_Drinking from my saucer_Masaaki-sama
Good morning, everyone.
There was quite a bit of rain last night, and I even heard thunder from my home. Today, too, the wind is still strong.
So we find ourselves here with one more month left in the year. I am wondering what kind of year this was for all of you.
Some of you may have had many good things happen, while others may have had quite a few bad things. Maybe most of you had half and half.
Or maybe something terrible happened to you, and you still have to face the problem going into the next year. Or maybe you have been suffering from a certain illness for many years, and you must continue to deal with it from here on too. Or perhaps you’re thinking that no one understands how you feel. Some of you may have come today with those kinds of thoughts.
Whatever the case may be, we are believers in God in one way or another, right? So for all the things that happened this year, we must at least recognize that God was working behind all of it.
Regardless of whether something is, in our eyes, good or bad, we must recognize, “God, You are working behind the scenes.” And we must offer our gratitude to God: “O God, I give thanks to You.” Don’t you think that this is necessary?
God makes various things happen for a reason, regardless of how we look at them. So as long as we are believers in God, we have the responsibility, at the very least, to offer our thanks to God and bring the year to a close, right?
While I bring up the importance of giving thanks, I believe there are differing degrees. For example, it is rather difficult for you to give thanks for bad things, so you only do so for good things. Or there’s the kind where you give thanks for unfavorable situations. Similarly, because you are being nurtured through bad situations, you give thanks for it.
There is an American song, a Christian song, entitled “Drinking from My Saucer.” This is a saucer, as in the saucer of a coffee cup.
To sum up the lyrics, they are about the difficulties of life, and even though there is oftentimes hardship having to do with money or other things, this person is filled with God’s blessings. Well, actually, rather than being filled, he is overflowing with God’s blessings, like coffee overflowing from a cup into its saucer. He can no longer drink from the cup, so he drinks God’s blessings from the saucer.
When I heard this song, the lyrics in it, I thought what great faith this person had. While we are talking about how much we are lacking, this person is talking about how he is drinking God’s blessings from his saucer because it is overflowing from his cup.
Now if we are going to give thanks to God, that is the kind of thanksgiving we, too, must offer to God, don’t you think?
But how do we see our cups? We see them as hardly full, right? We are lacking; we want more to be poured in; why aren’t You giving us more—these are our feelings toward God.
If we really think about it though, God is telling us, at this moment, “Right now, I am filling you up 100 percent” and “You are sufficiently full.”
But aren’t we saying, “It’s not enough. I want more”? We want God to give us more miracles, to make this happen, to make that better, don’t we? So to our eyes, our cups are practically empty, and we want them to be filled.
Were God to see it, He would say, “No, no. My blessing is not only overflowing from your cup, but it is even starting to overflow from your saucer! With how much more can I bless you? I am blessing you with more than enough, right now!”
If that really is the case, if we can accept our current circumstances—“current” as in right now, not five minutes later, an hour later, ten days later, or a year later—if we can accept our current circumstances, say to God, “Ah, God, right now, You sufficiently fill me up. I will fully accept Your blessings that are pouring over into my saucer,” and drink it like so, then I think God will be able to say, “Oh, some space opened up in your saucer so I can pour in a little more.”
But since we are constantly saying God isn’t working in His entirety or we are wanting Him to pour more blessings, there must be something that makes it hard for God to bless us.
So regarding our life circumstances right now, we must first say to God, “You are guiding me toward the best possible circumstances right now.” Then if we say, “I will receive God’s blessings,” and drink from the saucer, I think it is possible for God to say to us, “Then I will give you more.”
Instead of 100 percent accepting our circumstances that we are being given at this very moment, we have thoughts like “God must be sleeping. I doubt He is listening to me.” If we are like that, won’t God say, “At least drink what you have in your saucer first”?
So when I say give thanks, it is not a half-hearted, lukewarm “Thanks.” It is where you say, “You are filling me up to the brim. No, actually, I am overflowing with Your blessings! I will fully accept the circumstances of this moment!” That is the kind of thanksgiving we members of World Church of Messiah must offer to God.
Then the next question that arises within us is this: what God am I talking about? Of course, we call Him by the divine name of “Sushin naru warera no Kami” (Our God, Lord God) or “Sushin naru senzo no Kami” (The God of Our Ancestors, Lord God), right? Until last year, it was “Miroku Oomikami” (Great God of Miroku).
When it comes to names like Miroku or Sushin (Lord God), we may think that it is our own God or only Meishu-sama’s God or maybe a God of Japan. But that’s not true. It was also in today’s hymn:
“The One who possesses the almighty power is God. / He is known to us as Jehovah (Yahweh), / And there is no other God besides Him!”
In his Sacred Word too, Meishu-sama wrote, “This may sound strange to you, but the object of worship for our religion, World Church of Messiah, is the same as that of Christianity. It is God, also called Jehovah or Yahweh.” Everyone, our object of worship is Jehovah or Yahweh, the God of Christianity.
Our divine scroll has Daikomyo (Great Divine Light) written on it, so it may seem like a God from Japan at one glance. But since we worship Jehovah or Yahweh, it is actually fine to say “Jehovah” or “Yahweh” in front of our divine scrolls.
In other words, the One we bow to each morning and evening when we pray is Jehovah. And the service we are holding today is presided by Jehovah.
When you think about it this way, it is huge that Meishu-sama said the God of World Church of Messiah is the God of Christianity, Jehovah. I’ve recently come to think how huge this is.
While Jehovah is the God of Christianity of course, He is also the God of Judaism. He is the God described in the Old Testament and the New Testament. This is the God that we worship.
This means that it is the God who banished Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden; the God who used Abraham and other revered figures, like Moses to part the sea and pass on the ten commandments. There is also the king named David, from whose lineage God made Jesus appear. From there, He gathered Jesus’s twelve disciples and used the missionary Paul. We worship the God who did all those things.
Well, until now, I had a vague sense that we were worshipping Jehovah, as Meishu-sama had spoken about it. But when I think about it afresh, it is a huge matter that we worship this being Jehovah. I’ve been thinking like this recently.
Meishu-sama also uses the very frank expression “one heck of a great being” to describe God, but truly, it is this “one heck of a great being” that is using us, and it is this existence that we worship.
Jehovah is also called the Heavenly Father, right? It is in one of Meishu-sama’s hymns:
“Jesus Christ preached God the Father. / I preach the Lord God. / My followers, know this as I do: / Jesus and I are preaching the same God!”
He is telling us to know, like himself, that the Lord God he speaks about is the same God Jesus called God the Father or Father in Heaven.
For Meishu-sama to take the trouble to compose this kind of hymn means that our awareness on the subject is poor. We seem to think that the Father in Heaven is the God of Christianity and is different from the God of Meishu-sama, which is why Meishu-sama composed that kind of hymn.
Contrary to what you may think, “God” is not a grandiose, overly dramatic matter. To put it simply, He is “Our Dear Dad.” The One who lives in the Daikomyo, Great Divine Light, is Our Dear Dad. The real Dad.
To use an expression like this is actually very humbling. But He is, without a doubt, Our Dad, isn’t He? Can anyone deny this? He is the One who created our very souls, which are far more important than our physical bodies. That’s why we can call Him “Dad.”
Furthermore, in Christianity, the word “Lord” is also used. Jesus is called Lord, and God is called Lord.
When you hear “Lord,” there may be some of you who think this sounds Christian. I don’t know if anyone saw the calligraphy hanging near the entrance of this headquarters today, but the calligraphy that welcomed you is Meishu-sama’s, and it reads, “Glory of the Lord.” The glory of the Lord.
Until today, if someone had said, “I will receive the glory of the Lord” or “Let us receive the glory of the Lord together,” wouldn’t we have felt that they were saying something Christian?
But because Meishu-sama wrote “Glory of the Lord” in his calligraphy, it is quite natural for a follower of Meishu-sama to utter the words “I will receive the glory of the Lord,” isn’t it? I mean, as his followers, it is only natural that we utter the words that Meishu-sama writes in his calligraphies, right?
So if this doesn’t sound right to us, it shows just how different the direction we have been going in is from the direction Meishu-sama was going in. That is why it doesn’t sound right.
But if Meishu-sama did write the calligraphy with the words “Glory of the Lord,” shouldn’t we utter the words, “O God, allow me to receive the glory of the Lord”? For it is Meishu-sama who wrote, “Glory of the Lord.”
“Glory of the Lord.” We don’t really know what it means exactly, but it does have a wonderful sound to it, doesn’t it? The glorious light of the Lord. Even still, have we ever even once tried to say, “I will receive the glory of the Lord”?
So while various things certainly happened throughout this year, who was the one that was using us? Who is the one we should be offering our thanks to? It is to Jehovah, Yahweh, our Heavenly Father, God—the One who manifests the glory of the Lord.
You must understand: this being is truly one heck of an existence. He is a being that goes far beyond our human understanding. So much so that in Judaism, they are fearful of even saying His name.
If we are to give thanks, it is to this great being that we must give thanks.
Suppose you put all your effort into giving thanks to a completely different “God,” an image you created on your own. You won’t be heard. You have to give thanks to the God that Meishu-sama speaks of. If not, no matter how much you give thanks, He won’t listen to you, and Meishu-sama will say that you are offering your thanks in the wrong direction.
So at the year’s end, if you are to give thanks to God for everything that happened this year, I believe you should give thanks for being allowed to have faith and live under that kind of truly great God.
And speaking of December, for us followers of Meishu-sama, there is the 23rd, the day that Meishu-sama was born. Because Meishu-sama was born into this world, we are actually able to meet each other like this today. Because he was born, everything was able to happen, right? Because he was born, we can hold a service like this right now and together, turn our hearts toward God. So December 23 is a day we should celebrate.
And two days after that is December 25, Jesus’s birthday. Currently, the world celebrates this day as Christmas, right? Let alone Christians, all kinds of people all over the world celebrate Christmas, don’t they? There are Christmas lights, decorations, and if you go to department stores, there are giant Christmas trees. The streets become quite lively everywhere.
For us, until now, there was no connection between celebrating Jesus’s birthday and Meishu-sama’s birthday. It ended with “Ah, the world is celebrating Christmas, but we are celebrating Meishu-sama.”
But believe it or not, they were connected. We gradually came to know that Jesus is an important foundation for us. Isn’t that right? That is because Meishu-sama said that World Church of Messiah would work in concert with Christians to advance the salvation of humanity and that we would be the ones who fulfill Jesus’s prophecy.
In the lyrics of the song “Drinking from My Saucer” that I brought up to you a moment ago, there’s a part where he says that he may not have a lot of riches but knowing Jesus makes him rich enough. This would mean that by his sins having been forgiven, he is already content.
We are fully accepting this, did you know that? Because for us too, Jesus is the Lord of Redemption. But we don’t just end there.
Christians say, “My sins have been forgiven. Jesus is to be revered. There is no greater blessing,” and end it there. But for us, there is a next step. Of course, we believe that Jesus is to be revered, God is to be revered, we worship them and believe in them. But not only that. As I just spoke about the extraordinary God a moment ago, His soul itself is within each one of us—and our aim is to become one with that soul and literally become the existence of God. We say we “aim to be a child of God,” but actually, we can also say we “aim to be a god,” too. As Kyoshu-sama once said before, if a child of a human being is a human being, a child of God is a god.
In Christianity, Jesus is the one and only child of God. And while there’s no doubt that the existence of Jesus is truly a great one, we believe that everyone can become Jesus’s equal—a child of God, or a god.
Within us is the soul of God named Messiah. We can become one with that God and become truly great existences. With his own body and being, Meishu-sama showed that to us by being born anew as the Messiah.
So that is our next step, the step that could not be accomplished by Christianity. It is not only that Jesus is great, that this originator of that religion is great, or that God is great from the human point of view. We can become equal existences to God! It is said that Jesus was able to walk on the water, and this is not something impossible for us to do. For God can do anything.
So by coming to know the name of Jesus and that they were forgiven of their sins, Christians truly rejoice and say that they are sufficiently rich, abundantly filled with blessings.
We are able to fully receive that blessing too. But that is not all. God somehow one-sidedly made us know the final and decisive salvation of humanity, the next step of salvation, the second step of salvation. Truly, this is huge. God has richly blessed us beyond our imagination.
Our work, the second step of salvation, is only possible because of the atonement of Jesus. In that sense, it is fine for us to enjoy Christmas and enjoy the town’s festivities and color to our hearts’ content to celebrate the birth of Jesus. Or rather, I say we have the right to do so. So it is fine to meet with your loved ones or to exchange presents with others.
Of course, I don’t want you to simply enjoy the holiday. Truly, it is with the pride and confidence of being the ones who have been made to know this next step of salvation, that I would love for all of you to fully experience and enjoy this Christmas season and all its liveliness.
Meishu-sama said that God prepared Handel’s Messiah for World Church of Messiah, right? If that is the case, then this Christmas season and all the celebrations, liveliness and decorations are of course for Christians, but I think we can say that God made it for us of World Church of Messiah too. With these thoughts in mind, I hope that all of you can enjoy this cheerful season to the fullest.
When I think about it some more, the fact that the birth of Jesus Christ is celebrated throughout Japan—and of course, not only Japan but all over the world—that all of Japan has accepted and celebrates Christmas, is really extraordinary. I mean, Jesus is simply the originator of one religion. For this one person, even schools and the like in Japan have Christmas activities and such.
People celebrate all that precisely because the existence of Jesus actually has something to do with them, isn’t that right? Since they all unconsciously know this, they celebrate Christmas. Even the Japanese, who are for the most part not Christian, have unconsciously embraced Christmas. The Japanese do not even have resistance to marrying in a Christian church.
On the other hand, if you say that you are not going to accept Jesus as the Lord of Redemption or that Meishu-sama is the only Messiah, you would be condemning all Japanese people. You would be condemning all of Japan and all the towns with Christmas decorations.
Those who criticize Kyoshu-sama claim that Meishu-sama is the only Messiah and that they do not accept Jesus as the Redeemer. By doing so, they are condemning all of Japanese society and the whole world where Christmas is celebrated. They must think that this celebration of Christmas is a ridiculous thing.
But we of World Church of Messiah do not think that way, right? While many Japanese have accepted Jesus unconsciously, we consciously accept Jesus as the Lord of Redemption. And we revere him as the one who accomplished the first step of our divine work.
This year, in my greetings, I have spoken several times on the subject of repenting. Recently, regarding this, I realized there is something we have to clear before the year is over.
What is it? When we hear “to repent,” our immediate response might be “I can’t feel deep repentance” or “I’m trying but I can’t.” To say things like this means we are assuming that the thought or feeling to repent comes from human power. Because we think that we can repent by our own will, we say things like “I am still not there yet,” isn’t that so?
Now if we put in enough effort, are we able to repent by human power or not? This is the issue we must clear.
And to put it in a nutshell, by nature, humans have no such power.
But please know, it certainly is very important to try to repent. I am not denying that. I am simply saying that there is something we must not forget.
To receive or to accept—this, too, is important. It is very important to think, “I will receive,” “I will accept.” But if you ask whether or not we have the power to receive or accept by our own will, we actually have no such power.
If we did have that power, it would be a world where that person can receive, this person cannot; I was able to accept, that person could not; that person has repented, this person has not; I’m trying, but I can’t seem to repent.
But from God’s standpoint, it isn’t like that. Never mind receiving—without God’s power, we humans cannot even breathe, talk, stand, walk or anything else for that matter.
And when we hear that, we readily follow with something like “Yes, we humans are certainly puny existences, but we still have value,” right?
If we start saying those kinds of things, do you know how Meishu-sama will respond? I think he would say, as you also heard in today’s Sacred Word, how conceited we are and that we have no shame in what we’re saying.
One of Meishu-sama’s hymns reads:
“Know this everyone. / In God’s eyes, / Humans are smaller than ants!”
So the smallness in God’s eyes here is like how an ant would look to a human, but smaller—this hymn is describing how small of an existence we are.
For someone who has a hard time accepting how small humans are, hearing that they are small like ants may anger them. But at least ants are still visible to the human eye. So to us, God is no doubt a great existence, and if we’re told we’re like ants, we can only reluctantly accept. And then maybe we think at least ants can still do great things when they work together.
But Meishu-sama also wrote in his hymn:
“In Your eyes, O God, / Humans are as small as germs, / No, smaller than that!” [Everyone laughs]
We are no longer perceived by the naked eye! And because we’re like germs, we can only be seen with a microscope. Well, actually, he says we are even smaller than germs.
When we think of Meishu-sama, we imagine someone so great and tend to elevate him so high by our human standards. But look at how humble Meishu-sama is. He is saying that human beings like him are smaller than germs.
I think Meishu-sama was able to be born anew as God’s child precisely because he lowered himself so much before God.
When you hear “to be born anew as God’s child,” you may think that you can only reach that level only after you accumulate many good deeds and elevate yourself. But actually, it’s the opposite. You have to have humbleness—not humbleness toward people but toward God. This is what is required of us. I think this is where we made a big error in our thinking.
I believe God said, “The One who holds all power is I.” In reply, Meishu-sama said, “Yes. It is just as You have said.” Then God asked, “Is your life your own?” Meishu-sama replied, “No. I am smaller than a germ.” To that, God said, “I see. Then I will give you My life.”
This is about Meishu-sama’s faith in God. We must not fail to see the kind of existence Meishu-sama perceived himself to be before God.
In a well-known hymn Meishu-sama wrote, he said:
“Between nation and nation, between people and people, / Conflicts are never-ending. / Who has the authority to end them but God?”
This is one serious hymn. I don’t want you to think this means that you just sit back and do nothing as various conflicts happen before your eyes, simply saying God will end it all. When there is conflict between people, it is saying there is no one else but God who can end it. That is, it cannot be done by human power. This is truly an extraordinary hymn, isn’t it?
Or how about this next hymn:
“How great is the blessing! / We have come to know that / The power to save all of humanity / Comes from the Lord God, / And Him only!”
Until now, I believe we vaguely thought this was a wonderful hymn. But when you think about it more, if God does indeed hold all power, then it would be no fun for us, right?
If God told us, “You have no power to save. The One who holds it is I,” we would be put out, wouldn’t we? But Meishu-sama says, “How great is the blessing!” He is saying what a blessing, what a joy it is to know that he has no power and that all power belongs to God.
I say this posture of Meishu-sama is the exact opposite of our own. We want to be successful, we want to take the credit, we want to earn a reputation. And when something good happens through all our own efforts, we think that this is joy. But for Meishu-sama, joy, the great blessing, is to attribute all power to God.
Now, no matter how much Meishu-sama says these things, these existences called humans are really good at denying the existence of God. No matter how many times Meishu-sama says, “Humans are small,” we are quick to say things like “We humans are small, yes. But put our strength together and we can do great things.”
Of course, we cannot deny the fact that we have to work together to get things done. But in order to avoid recognizing God’s power, we come up with every possible excuse, and in this world, those excuses are usually believed to be good things, like saying we humans are puny existences, but we have value; we can accomplish impressive feats if we all put our strength together.
Now even if we humans steadily progress in the direction we wish and culture advances, Meishu-sama says:
“No matter how much a culture advances, / What happiness is there for humanity without God!”
We feel that the development of culture is our happiness: An amazing smart phone has been made! This has been made! That has been made! Isn’t that right? But Meishu-sama says that that is not happiness for us, for humanity. He says that without God, there is no happiness for humanity.
For a long time, we understood, incorrectly, that when we are happy, God is happy, too. To look upon the happiness of human beings—we thought that this was God’s happiness. This has been our greatest illusion. It is not “Our happiness is God’s happiness.” It is the opposite: God’s happiness is our happiness.
Then what exactly is the happiness of God? Well, He is our true Parent, isn’t He? If so, what more happiness is there for God but for His children to come back to Him? Instead, we say that we can do things with our own power, we can do anything if we join together in strength—we never turn our hearts to God.
But if you are able to say, “O God, all power actually belonged to You,” then that is happiness for God. I believe He would say to us, “Ah, yes, you finally understand.”
And thus, Meishu-sama says in his hymn:
“O God! / When I realized how weak human power is, / Then began Your living soul to rest on my heart!”
Now what does this hymn mean?
If you fight against God and keep saying that humans still have value, God will keep telling you that you are smaller than a germ. But if you admit, “Nothing I have is mine. Even my body’s each and every cell that is smaller than a germ is used by You, God, at Your will. Everything is Yours,” then this time, far from saying you are smaller than a germ, God will say to you, “Everything is yours.”
That is, if God tells you, “You are smaller than a germ,” and you say, “Yes, and never mind that. Everything is Yours, God,” then God will say back to you, “Now everything is yours.”
God will be able to say to you, “These eyes, these ears, this nose, this mouth—I exist within you, and I see, hear, move My hand, work and breathe. All of this is yours.” When you admit that nothing is yours, it turns out to be the complete opposite—everything is yours, as everything is filled with God.
Even so, instead of having God fill Himself in everything of ours, we small human beings have found ourselves groveling and worshipping in front of the great existence we call God. But here, we have to remember one thing. We humans cannot even have hearts of faith by our own power in the first place.
As such, if we give up everything to God, wow, what amazing existences we will be. Never mind germs. We are existences like God.
Until now, we stressed the importance of faith, but if we continue to “work hard” to have faith in a great God, we will remain forever small.
For Meishu-sama to tell us that we are smaller than germs means “Give up already.” Give up doing everything by human power. Some might twist the meaning and say that God does everything anyway, so humans don’t have to do anything anymore. But that’s not it. Make no mistake: you do have to put your best effort into what has been given to you.
In this time’s Church purification too, it seems like we were the ones who made a choice about which way to go. Many of you, I believe mostly members from the former Izunome Church and Toho no Hikari, were forced to decide whether or not to walk with Kyoshu-sama and leave the sacred grounds and the churches that you were familiar with. There is no mistake that your choice was truly a noble one. With that kind of faith brought together, World Church of Messiah was resurrected last year. The name that Meishu-sama chose for his Church was resurrected.
But if God were to describe it, do we on the human side get any credit for all of this?
It is true that we had to overcome various hardships and we chose the path of true faith in Meishu-sama, that is, Kyoshu-sama’s path. We are going forward on a path of glory right now, and God is truly, greatly blessing us. But did it turn out that way because of something that we did? Actually, no. We didn’t do anything.
I mean, it was in today’s Sacred Word. Doesn’t God use everything and everyone freely, at will? Of course He does. That means there is no room for our will to be exercised, for us who are being used. Our will doesn’t exist. It means nothing. There is only the will of God.
So why we are walking on this path right now, we’ll never really know. But at the very least, I would say this: Thousands of years ago, God had already one-sidedly decided that He would resurrect World Church of Messiah in 2020, and regardless of our deeds, He had already decided that He would use us, thus gathering us together. This is all one-sidedly.
On the opposite end, in some cases, if someone thinks that something is wrong with Kyoshu-sama, their thinking cannot be stopped, right? Once God decides to make them think that, it cannot be changed by human power. Again, make no mistake: it doesn’t mean we should stop trying to tell them the truth.
In other words, whether you open your heart to God or do the opposite and stubbornly rebel against Him, human will has no part in it at all. God is the One who makes us have a heart of faith, and He is the One who makes us not have a heart of faith. It was said in one of today’s hymns that we cannot see what lies ahead, not even an inch. So we had better not underestimate God as we really don’t know how He will use us.
So in this next hymn, Meishu-sama says,
“I will create those who fear God and / Keep the right path, / For this is my mission.”
When we hear “the right path,” we think “having proper faith” or “going to church.” But here it says “those who fear God.” That means for us humans not to become arrogant in all the various things that we do. And to say, “This heart that believes in God is not my own. This heart that receives, this heart that repents, it belongs to You, God,” is “the right path.”
When people say “the right path,” it is usually about the people who can repent properly, go to church and pray regularly, or be seriously grateful. But it’s not that. Someone who can attribute all to God is the one who walks the right path. So when he says “the right path,” it means “God’s path.”
I’d also like to add that for the most part, this “to fear God” is something unusual for a Japanese person to say, right? People of Christian and Jewish faiths are familiar with “to fear God” as it is written in the Bible, but for a Japanese, it is unusual.
It is different from what Shintoism refers to as fearing the natural world. The fear Meishu-sama speaks of is fear toward Jehovah God. I think most Japanese people aren’t really thinking that they need to fear Jehovah God or the Heavenly Father.
When I say that we need to fear God, some people readily say to me something like the following: “God is not an existence that we need to fear, for He is love.”
But without the heart to fear God, how can you experience the joy of knowing that God is love, and love only? Without the fear that you might be rejected by God, how can you experience the happiness of being accepted by God? Without the fear that you might not be forgiven even though you repented, how can you feel the jubilation when God tells you, “I forgave you”? Without the fear that you might die and be reduced to nothing, how can you feel the joy of coming into contact with eternal life? Without knowing the despair of loneliness, how can you experience the indescribable joy of knowing that God is with you always?
You have to admit that our faith until today has been so lukewarm! Haven’t we been saying things like “Oh, I like this,” “I don’t like this” or “I don’t feel anything”? But Meishu-sama wants us to grow into ones who can hold true faith in God, isn’t that so?
Yes, it is true that you may not be able to experience things like the utter despair of loneliness easily. But at the very least, you have to admit that your faith until today has been lukewarm. At the very least, you have to want to come into contact with true joy.
It is only because God is so strict and rigorous that He has unimaginable love for us too. What is the point of coming into this world if you don’t seek true happiness, joy and love? We have to stop offering compromised, lukewarm faith to God!
Having said that, we all seek love, don’t we? Every one of us seeks love. A baby, for example, seeks their mother’s or their father’s love for the longest time, and when they get older, they seek love from friends or significant others. If they get married, they seek love from their spouse. If they have children, they wonder if they are loved by their own children. Still further along, they wonder if they will be loved by their grandchildren—as such, we are constantly seeking love. All of humanity, everyone, lives seeking love. We yearn for it.
But let’s say that were not the case. Let’s say you are loved by everyone, and you are fulfilled. Your friends love you, your family loves you and you need nothing more. There is no way you would turn your heart to God, is there?
In other words, the fact that we constantly seek love, that we feel loneliness, that we feel we are unfulfilled, is far from there being a lack of love. In those very moments, truth be told, God is trying to teach us, “There is a love far greater than human love. I want you to know that. At this moment, I am enveloping you with an abundance of love.” That is why we yearn for love. If not and we always think we are fulfilled by love, we will never think about God, will we?
So I think, regardless of what form it takes, for all humanity, every single person, to be seeking love right now is proof that God is enveloping all of humanity, no exceptions, with His overflowing love.
Of course, to think in this way is not easy. After all, it is lonely when you’re lonely. But when the lonely feeling wells up within you, if you can think, “I have been living my life only seeking love of the human world, but actually, God has been making me have these lonely feelings because He wants me to realize His love. What a great blessing this is! I am filled with God’s love!” If you are able to think this way, I think God would be very happy about it.
I mean God is being told by practically all of humanity, all day long, “We are lacking! We don’t have enough!” If just even we, at the very least, can say to God, “We have enough,” I think God would be very happy about that.
Then there is the matter of money too—there’s never enough money, right? Of course, it does not hurt to have as much money as possible. But to have complete abundance of only material things does not ever truly fulfill the heart.
So the next time you think you don’t have enough money or you want a little more, say, “Actually, right now, God, You are blessing me with more than enough. You bless me in abundance.” It may be an invisible abundance, but if you can say this, I believe God would be happy.
And if we don’t say that, we will be saying the same thing five, ten, a hundred, a thousand years from now: “I don’t have enough.” That is for sure. Not enough love, not enough material things, always lacking—we will forever continue to say this.
So you must decide.
When you feel you lack something, when you feel you long for something, it comes down to whether you can offer the following thought to God: O God, I am already abundantly filled with love and material blessings!
If you choose not to offer this kind of thought, you will live your life thinking that it is lacking until the end of your time on earth.
There is only one more month left in the year, so before the new year arrives, I would like for all of you to make a decision and transform the old way of living into the new one. If not, are you going to forever continue on with a life of lacking?
Of course, just making the decision does not necessarily mean that things will concretely change right away. Even if your situation does stay the same, the way you live is completely different from the way you lived before, isn’t that right? Before, you were always lacking, but now, you have everything.
It is if you are able to think in this way that God actually can say to you, “I will give you more of what you really need,” and He may fill you materially too.
God will never bless you with new things until you rejoice in what He has already given you.
We are aiming to be born anew, right? “It is not reincarnation. Rather, I was born anew.” This means we are trying to awaken to a completely different and new life, right? Are you really going to continue with the way you have been living? All humanity lives thinking that they lack something. Are you going to continue living like that from here on too, next year, the year after that, until you die? Or will you totally transform that old way of living into the new one and say to God, “I am abundantly filled with Your blessings”? It is precisely when you have thoughts and feelings of want that you can offer those thoughts and feelings to God.
If you go forward like that, it will of course make God happy, and if God is happy, isn’t our life destined to go well?
Like this, together with all of you, members of World Church of Messiah, I would like to offer the thought to God that we are overflowing with His blessings. We really are, right now. We are filled with the existence known as the Heavenly Father, Jehovah or Yahweh. We are filled with the glory of the Lord, His blessings, His riches, His love and His joy, this very moment.
So if we are all going to offer our gratitude to God at the close of this year, let it be the gratitude for all those things, for the glory of the Lord.
Thank you very much.