REVEREND SUN MYUNG MOON
LET US THANK GOD
May 29, 1977
Belvedere, New York
Translator - Bo Hi Pak
Through the Divine Principle we learn that even though our actual
stature is small compared to the entire universe, we indeed represent
the entire universe. Man's life derives from the life source of the
universe; the universe exists because of man and man's history is
comparable to the history of the universe.
God created the entire universe with man as the model. Even though men
commonly believe in evolution, evolution is only a resultant
observation of the creation. The universe is not a random, arbitrary
result of undirected forces. God planned out His creation from the
most primitive to the most supreme forms of life. He had a definite
plan from the very beginning, and knowing what kind of man He wanted
to create as the ultimate glory of His creation, God planned the rest
of the universe accordingly.
From the very beginning, a purpose preceded each creation. There are
two kinds of purpose, internal and external, and subsequently man has
one purpose for his physical body and another purpose for his internal
man or mind. Together these two purposes pursue one common goal. God
wanted His creation to have the two aspects of spiritual and physical,
which would not contradict but harmonize with each other. This was
God's original plan, and His effort is reflected throughout all the
different aspects of human nature. For instance, men and women have
been constantly striving toward one common goal. Why should people as
different as men and women try to unite around one central purpose?
All existence was preceded by one common purpose,
around which everything wants to unite
Without being preceded by a common purpose which could unite both
physical and spiritual energies around a common goal, evolution could
never operate. It is our understanding, therefore, that before
progress can ever take place, two types of energy must already exist
which seek to sustain one common purpose. Through this mutual attempt
by each to harmonize with the other, the value of their common goal
becomes much higher.
The primitive levels of existence seem to have randomly evolved into
higher, more complex beings, but some goal must have influenced them
to go in that direction. Evolution itself cannot create a higher goal
for the development of the world. Instead the direction of development
must be derived from a certain goal or purpose which precedes
existence itself. All of creation comes under this principle, and man
is no exception. However, man differs from the rest of creation in
that he has the built-in energy to progress by his own creative
efforts. We are born to progress and to elevate our own value by
pursuing higher and higher goals.
No man or woman wants to be alone or to stand still. Instead, we try
to involve ourselves in something in order to be part of a higher
purpose and goal. All of man's literature and art, for example, are
expressions of man trying to harmonize himself with his external
surroundings. Each of us has this basic desire to harmonize with those
around us and to bring about something greater than our
moment-to-moment existence. Through having a certain direction we want
to harmonize with each other and to ultimately achieve a goal of
higher value than ourselves. This principle affects all the created
beings in this universe. The theory of evolution describes only one
small aspect of interaction in a very complex universe.
It is a fundamental principle that interaction can never occur when
there is only one entity. There must be at least two elements in order
for interaction to occur, and furthermore, the separate elements must
seek some common benefit by their relationship. Otherwise, there will
be no harmony in their give and take. Men and women strive to become
one because they see that by doing so they each can derive some common
benefit. If oneness is pursued for mutual benefit, then a mutual
purpose must also exist. Everything has two basic features, existence
and direction, and there is mutuality in every aspect of human
Communists do not acknowledge that an inherent direction and goal
preceded the universe, and their theories do not touch upon the
fundamental basics of interaction. Instead, communists use dialectical
materialism to justify the actions of the Communist Party, applying a
false theory of spontaneous change to explain how miraculous results
can be expected from a communist state. There is actually no such
thing as a miracle in this universe. There must be a cause and
direction for everything. From man's perspective a certain action may
seem sudden or miraculous, but viewed from a larger perspective it is
apparent that no such thing is possible.
Has basic human nature evolved through history? Nowadays men and women
love each other, but what about men and women who existed thousands of
years ago? Would their love have been different from ours today, or
was their impulse to seek harmony and the fulfillment of a goal as
intense as ours?
Why should creation stop at the level of man? Why haven't sudden total
changes in species occurred recently? More and more complex animals
appeared throughout the ages, but no creature has appeared which is
more highly developed than man. Creation seems to have stopped with
man. Do you think that happened because man shouted out, "We are
perfectly happy, God. You can stop right here"? Since creation
developed up to the level of man and then stopped, then we must
conclude that there is a universal will and consciousness which
preexisted man, and which had already planned the entire creation to
conclude at the level of man.
Even if we select one small aspect of creation, such as man's eyes, no
scientist and none of man's theories, such as dialectical materialism,
can fully explain its functioning. We in the Unification Church are
destined to fight against the false ideology of communism in the
future, but in order to win over it we must clearly understand the
true purpose and direction of creation. This is what will disprove
The whole dispute boils down to one simple question: Which came about
first, matter or consciousness? Communism states that matter came
first, while most people in the free world think that consciousness
preceded matter. Where did the matter to construct an eyeball come
from? What influenced matter to form eyes? Why does the nose on your
face remain still, while your eyes blink frequently? If there is no
consciousness or reason behind that phenomenon then why do your eyes
blink at all? Do they move at random?
Your eyes move from left to right and up and down because they want to
fulfill their purpose of providing vision. When you go out on a dusty,
windy day much dust blows up your nose, but it still does not move. In
the same situation, however, your eyes blink many times each minute.
Why the difference? There is a reason and purpose behind it, namely
that if your eyes became dry then they could not function. Your
eyebrows are not on your face by accident but to help protect the
eyes. Everything works out to have a certain purpose.
Could eyes have known ahead of time that they would need protection
from dust and wind when they came into the world? No eye could know in
advance what kind of world it would have to cope with, and. thus
prepare in advance. However, instead of understanding that each
creation has an internal cause, dialectical materialism states that
everything just happened to occur the way we see it.
There must be some universal consciousness which existed before the
eye, and which planned out how the eye would cope with the atmosphere
and dust. Which came first then, matter or consciousness? Everything
has a reason to exist which was planned out by some universal mind,
and nothing under the sun exists on a whim or at random. This concept
is the fundamental difference between our ideology and communism. My
purpose is not to dwell on this subject this morning, but I want this
point to be clear before going on to my main subject.
Only through love can man relate everything
to his desire for a higher purpose
Why was man born? Someone planned ahead of time that man would be the
supreme creature in all creation, having the supreme purpose,
direction and goal in all tie universe. In studying our own lives it
becomes evident that everything we do is for the purpose of receiving
some benefit. You did not come here this morning, for example, in
order to lose something but to gain something, even though it is
Are you now receiving something from me? Why isn't it good to sleep
when I am giving a sermon? The simple explanation is that by dozing
instead of listening you are losing something. Sleeping at this time
is a waste of your energy, of the universal energy, and of my energy.
The position of leader is a very fearsome one. If I had no inspiration
to give you then after two or three sermons you would see that there
was nothing to gain by being here and you would not come. However, if
you are benefited and inspired to a higher level after coming here,
then you smile from ear to ear as you leave.
Why is love good? It is only through love that we can relate
everything to a higher purpose. Every one of you sitting here has the
built-in nature to want to reach higher levels and higher value by
pursuing higher goals. Each day you want to be more righteous than the
day before. In addition, you feel, "T want to succeed and become a
center of attention. I want to be respected for giving much benefit to
the world." Where did you get such an idea? If everyone happens to
feel that way then the theory of evolution might be correct. However,
that particular ideal will never "evolve" into something else.
Nothing can change that constant ideal. If you received electric
shocks, would it be possible to move that thought out of you? Would an
atomic bomb change that human idea? Why not? No matter what happens to
you, you will always return to that same direction and purpose. If you
are whirled around until you are completely dizzy you will still
resume that direction. Even if you are pushed down or beaten, some
power within you will always bring you back to that certain posture.
The magnetic forces of the North and South Poles form the standard for
all navigation. If the electrical fields of the two poles changed at
random every day, what would happen to men at sea and in the air? Can
the world make orderly progress if everything happens at random? There
are many forces trying to influence you toward a certain direction,
but some internal power pulls you right back. In spite of this fact,
communism denies all these basic human traits, saying, "Men must be
re-made and totally revolutionized; they must be turned around once
and for all."
Throughout this century communists have been "revolutionizing" men to
live within communistic cultures, but if the Iron and Bamboo Curtains
and the Berlin Wall suddenly did not exist, do you think any of the
citizens in those countries would want to continue living under those
systems? No matter how much people are indoctrinated, in the depths of
their hearts they know that communism contradicts basic human nature
as well as the basic nature of God. Any ideology that denies the
basic, original nature of man will not last.
For what can we be thankful to God?
My topic is, "Let Us Thank God." Why can we be thankful to God? First
of all, we have been given the power to interact and become harmonized
with the cosmos. Man's universal desire to be harmonized with one
another is not originally his own concept, but God's. We are in the
objective position, and God is the subject with a greater mind than
ours, a mind which is interacting with our small minds and influencing
us to interact with each other. Intuitively we want to engage in
certain actions and achieve certain results.
It is common for people to think, "Thank heaven," when they receive
some blessing or favor. Most people habitually think in terms of
material rewards, but have you ever been grateful for the built-in,
God-given nature which motivates you to seek happiness in a goal and
purpose? Have you thought about this intangible gift from God? Men and
women want to find happiness by uniting with each other, but are
grateful for this desire only after meeting their mates.
You have ample reason to be thankful to God far before your marriage,
because you have the beautiful nature that seeks to make progress, and
to unite in harmony with all else. Do not neglect being thankful until
your marriage; this nature within your heart that seeks interaction is
reason alone for thanksgiving. Have you been thankful for it?
Older teen-agers automatically turn their heads when someone handsome
or beautiful passes by; some power pulls their eyes in that direction.
Did you ever realize the significance of that energy moving within
you? At a certain age women start to feel some admiration for men and
to pay more attention to them. Have you ever been thankful for that
instinctive energy? You act in that fashion because it is your nature
to parallel the rhythm and direction of the universe.
At a certain age women have the desire to move toward men and men have
the desire to move toward women, responding to the universal energy
which gives them a higher purpose for being together. What are you
going to fulfill by being united? As both parties move toward the
point of harmony and unity by loving each other, a new power to create
is released and new life is born. By thus fulfilling his position as a
representative of God, man will elevate himself to be the lord of
In giving birth to their children, men and women are exercising their
most precious power of creation. A woman's most supreme role is that
of bearing children. Bearing children is not just an ordinary, random
thing; the power and energy of the universe is focused in your own
body to bring about the greatest event in your life. When you women
conceive your children you must realize that the universe is moving
within your womb and making new life. In preparing for your children
you will think vertically high and horizontally wide, linking the
universe and your vision and dream for the future. Most of you have
not had this experience but your time will come. Your age is the age
Through universal energy men and women come toward each other, and in
having a child their dream will become reality. When men and women are
united in their ideal then through their children their love can
become deeper and wider. The love of young people before marriage is
directed horizontally toward each other, but when they have children
their love deepens to become vertical as well, uniting parent and
It is the power of love that unites people both horizontally and
vertically. A startling phenomenon in America is the increasing
divorce rate. However, even parents who seek divorce from each other
will fight over custody of their children. Why don't they just abandon
them instead? Horizontal love can be broken and terminated, but the
vertical line of love is irreplaceable and parents do not want to lose
it. No one wants to separate themselves from God, and through their
vertical love with their children they want to keep themselves within
A husband and wife may come to despise each other and decide to
separate, but no parent can despise his child and want to end the
relationship forever. The wife may become an evil woman and the
husband may become an evil man, but no one wants to curse his own
child. Why are people like that? There is a vertical relation between
heaven and earth and ultimately no one can separate himself from God.
Everyone, whether consciously or unconsciously, recognizes this
vertical longing and wants to secure God's love for themselves.
Without being devoted to your children,
you do not even deserve to be married
Many people deny the past and future, wanting only to live for the
carnal pleasure of the present time. If you truly dwell in eternal
love, however, then your love has the power to harmonize the past,
present and future; in true love there is no such thing as dwelling
only in the present. Love cannot be spoken only in the moment. There
is no such thing as a husband and wife who enjoy life while their
children cry out, or children who are happy while their parents
grieve. The husband and wife of a broken family will cling to their
vertical connection with their children because they know that
ultimately that relationship will bring them life or salvation. Man's
inner nature tells him that he has some hope of salvation by clinging
to the vertical love between God, parents and children.
Have you women ever been thankful that as you reach a certain age your
body developed to enable you to bear children? This is the expression
of the power of God. If you are really thankful to God for His gift of
your body as His temple, then you will never be involved in a tragedy
like divorce. For whom does your body change? Ultimately that change
comes so that you can give birth to children. Your body structure
changes in two areas mainly. Why do you have wider hips than men? God
gave you a large foundation so that when you deliver a child you will
not suffer too much. You have large breasts so you can feed your
Did God give you those features for you to indulge in your own carnal
desires? Ultimately their purpose is for the creation of your
children. The real gifts of God are your children, who are more
important than your body. How many American women are thinking in that
fashion? American women have failed God's test. Shall we re-educate
Do you always know who your real father and mother are? Your parents
are your parents, period. It is impossible for some other person to
become your parent. How many here have parents who are divorced? Even
though you may address your stepmother or stepfather as mother or
father, you know you are not their child and your heart is elsewhere.
Is there anyone who joyfully accepts their stepparent as their real
parent? In Jin told us about one of her classmates whose mother
recently re-married. The girl said, "I never want to call him my
father. I would rather just call him by his name."
The vertical love between parents and their children is closest to
God's love. I want you to realize that you have this mission and
purpose. That is why God gave you the beauty of certain features as
breasts and hips. Ultimately they are not even for your husband, and
their misuse for carnal desire is utterly wrong. If you do not care
about your own child and about his future but only live for your
carnal desires, then God would want you to cut your breasts off
because you would not deserve to have them. After that you might have
the right to ignore your baby. Divorced people who hear these remarks
might feel uncomfortable, but I must tell the truth.
Unification Church members are very fortunate people because they know
the truth. If you do not like your husband or wife then you should not
have children. Your goal is to have good children for the future, and
without that desire you have no right to get married or to live with
your mate. If you use love only to take advantage of someone in
satisfying your carnal desire then you are actually a violator of
Keeping American women happy is an incredible job and American men
have practically no time to think about anything else. After being
divorced many men refuse to get married again, grumbling, "I'll just
have another messy situation. I'm sick and tired of it. No more."
There are many women in America who marry a man just to get his money;
after a divorce the law is such that it favors women and they can
become very rich after divorcing.
Unification Church women, have you ever thought about divorce? You
could certainly do it, couldn't you? Why not? Now you know why;
everything you have, including your own body, is not yours. Even your
love is not for yourself but for the sake of the universe. When you
have a universal mind to embrace a universal purpose and to embrace
God, as you become an older teenager and are sensitive to surrounding
nature you become very sentimental and emotional in your reaction to
the universe. Why are you built that way? It is a sign that you are
maturing in love. God gave you a certain sensitivity which enables you
to relate to the world with love.
Your ultimate source of pride is your love
What can men and women be most proud of? Are diamonds and gold the
things men and women can be proud of in this universe? A woman's
source of pride is her husband, and a man's is his wife. Why is that?
When you are growing up and reaching for maturity you do not
appreciate the sacrificial love of parents. As children, none of us
really appreciated our parent's love. Hyo Jin, for example, is
interested in so many things that sometimes he does not truly
appreciate his parents' tender love. He is showing signs of maturity
though. Sometimes I see him standing in front of the mirror and
studying his face. It is a natural law that he wants to be handsome
and capture the attention of other girls. It shows that when he is
mature and ready to be married that his wife can be proud of him
because he has been making himself attractive.
For eternity a man can be proud of his wife, and for eternity a woman
can be proud of her husband. Nothing else matters in the universe
except your love; ultimately things like knowledge or money do not
matter. When you have someone you can truly be proud of and love with
all your energy then you are a happy person.
Even if you are poverty-stricken and have nothing to eat or drink but
a cup of water, you can be one in flesh with your mate if you can
truly understand and be proud of one another. You may have to sleep
under trees at night, but if you have understanding and pride in each
other then you will dwell in happiness. If you were to ask God what He
would be most proud of in this universe, God would answer, "I am most
proud of men and women who are totally in love and utterly proud of
each other. Their love is the most beautiful possible thing to
behold." Love is the one thing which can make everyone laugh, even the
Each of you is working toward that day when you will be proud of your
husband and wife and want to shout out to the universe in your joy.
With love you can conquer your husband and with your love you can
conquer your wife. Love creates horizontal unity and vertical unity,
and through this love you can even make God your prisoner. Through
love you can conquer and occupy everything. God will become helpless
before your love.
A dog or a tree, anything in the universe which you touch with a
loving heart will appreciate your love. When you look at nature you
should realize that everything is a God-given gift which you can use
to express your love toward your mate. God already knew that you would
have the mind which would want to express your love in the form of a
gift, so He provided the entire universe to you as a gift item. If you
see a little kitten with soft fur, you think, "My wife would like this
Have you ever heard anything like this before? Do you really feel to
your bones, "Yes, the universe should work like that"? This is a
simple, fundamental universal truth. It is a simple yet gigantic
truth, but no one noticed it. I have brought this special truth as a
tremendous gift from God, and without any reservations I am giving it
to you. It is the pride of the Unification Church.
There is nothing in this universe which is unrelated to you. When you
are proud of your wife or husband then the entire universe becomes a
gift item as the tangible expression of your love. That is why the
universe exists. When a married man meets another woman he will notice
how she is similar or different from his wife. He may glance at her,
not because he is attracted to the woman, but because he loves his
wife and is reminded of her. Women will notice a certain man in the
We relate the people we meet to the members of our family. When you
look at an elderly woman you think, "Oh, she is like my grandmother,"
and when you look at younger people you think of your own children or
of your younger brothers and sisters. In that way you expand your
immediate family to include all mankind. If there is a God who has an
ideal then this must be it; this is the only way God could have His
ideal of one family of man spread throughout the world.
What can men and women be proud or. You women who do not yet have
husbands are proud of the men. It is true. Whatever the time of day,
women's minds are occupied by men. Not being a woman, I cannot
completely know your mind, but through the Principle I can see that
your mind would probably be like that. Some women insist, "I don't
ever want to marry." They are the greatest liars under the sun.
Through your mate, then your children and then
your parents you can fully know God's love
Have all of you ever been thankful that you are able to love another
as an expression of God and the universe? A husband and wife together
represent the entire universe. When a wife enters the place where her
husband is she enters not merely as a wife or as an individual, but as
a representative of the universe. Of course, this kind of thinking has
been non-existent in your lives so far because the rest of the world
never thinks in this way.
If a man and woman are dedicated to the universal purpose and
recognize themselves as universal beings then what kind of child would
they have? What can men and women be proud of after each other? Their
sons and daughters. Men and women are proud of each other, but as soon
as they have a family their focus will change from being proud of each
other to being proud of their own children.
Giving your own testimony or hearing someone else's testimony about
what a wonderful husband or wife you have is always uplifting and
everyone around will walk on cloud nine. It never fails. Your pride
centers next on your children. We have to be aware of this basic human
nature when dealing with parents; in order to capture the faith and
good will of a parent the best thing to do is to praise his children.
Even if the parents know your praise is exaggerated they will smile
from ear to ear anyway.
Men and women are proud of each other first and next they are proud of
their children. What comes after that? Thirdly, they are proud of
their parents. After having your own children you will all of a sudden
realize the value of your own parents and be proud of them. It is not
good enough to think you love your parents; not until you have your
own children will you begin to truly understand and appreciate your
This explains the reason that God created man's life to be centered
around the family. God knew that no matter how much we thought we
appreciated and loved Him, we could never truly appreciate and love
Him as our Father until we had our own children. Only by first growing
up as children and then loving as husband and wife and giving birth to
our children could we fully appreciate God as our parent.
Do you think God, as the one true Parent, feels bad that the
realization of the parents' position comes third, with husband and
wife first and children next? God does not mind that He is not fully
understood until man reaches the level of perfection. God does not
want to settle for anything immature or incomplete. Instead He wants
us to grow through the formation and growth levels and then come
together as mature personalities to stand before Him. From this point
of view, no matter how much a husband and wife were in love they would
still be immature and imperfect without having their children. Their
love would be crippled and incomplete.
After receiving love as children and experiencing the conjugal love of
husband and wife you will ultimately come to the realization that the
most wholesome, sacrificial and fundamental love is parental love. In
an ideal life you would fully enjoy and experience all these three
Because the perfection of love is actualized as parental love the
center of a home should be the older people. If grandparents live
there then they should be the center because they are the parents of
the parents. They are the host and hostess of the home and after they
pass away your parents would become the center.
Why should the oldest people be the central people of the universe?
Who is the oldest person in the universe? God is the oldest, and since
He is the center of everything we must follow that tradition.
Following this understanding through, which tradition or culture is
closer to the universal, God-centered culture? Do you American people
feet good when you hear that the Oriental culture is closer? I did not
come to America to import the Oriental culture. That is not my
concern. Externally speaking there is much in the American culture to
be appreciated. Speaking internally of God's tradition and culture,
however, what I am teaching is neither the Oriental tradition nor the
Western tradition, but God's tradition.
It is sad to see American society today with its cruel disregard for
its senior citizens. The other day in Central Park I saw a great many
senior citizens who were sitting idle, watching passing cars and
staring at the trees. I asked one of them, "Are you happy? Where do
you live?" The person answered that he lives in a senior citizens home
and that he is very unhappy. When I asked what would make him happy,
he said he wanted to live and play with his children and
grandchildren, but that they did not live in New York.
How many Americans really care about the old people? When children
reach a certain age they just declare, "I'm free now. Good-bye, it's
my life now." Yet it is not only older people who are ignored in
America. Often parents are so busy with something that they do not
care about their children or pay attention to them. These children are
entirely on their own, feeling lonesome and abandoned.
In the Unification Church, however, we are going to change all of
that. My concern is how to bring the heavenly culture into America's
way of life. I am not speaking only on behalf of senior citizens, but
on behalf of all three levels of parents, husband and wife, and
children. The whole of American culture needs to elevate its outlook.
Externally this nation has already achieved much and made tremendous
contributions to the world; once the heavenly way of life becomes an
integral part of the American culture then America will be heaven.
There are so many things to be thankful to God for. We are thankful
for being men and women, and for being husbands and wives, and for the
blessing of having children. We are thankful to be the instruments of
the creative energy of the universe. If we have truly grateful hearts,
will God be unhappy to look down at us? When you are thankful for
being what you are, the universe and all nature will respond to you in
All of creation, including man, has a
perfected life if it is given for God's purpose
In leading the fishing expeditions at Barrytown, where many hundreds
of carp were caught, I thought very much about the universal principle
of creation being killed to become food for man. Six big turtles lost
their home as we dredged the Barrytown lake to accommodate more carp.
I felt sorry for them and had them put in the Hudson River, thinking,
"You turtles go and live in the wide world."
When I go fishing I send the first fish back to its home. I thought
that even a lowly creature like a carp appreciates love, and when
someone appreciates their purpose for being what they are they even
want to die for that person. In that sense the carp are not a
sacrifice as they give themselves for the person who loves them. This
was God's idea for creation. By being loved and appreciated by the
Unification Church members, all these creatures shall be thankful and
proud of living and dying for the purpose for which they were created.
Love is supreme. Living for love and dying in love always brings
happiness. V,/hen the moment of your death comes you will be smiling
as you think about your love, and it will be your joy at that moment
to be embraced by the one you love.
Suppose someone said, "I understand that Reverend Moon caught a lot of
carp in the Hudson River. I'm sure those fish just curse him as they
die." How would you answer? Before hearing my explanation I'm sure you
would have been confused, but now you know how carp have a perfected
life if they can die for the sake of God's purpose, becoming the flesh
and blood of God-centered people. Is there any more precious cause
carp could pursue? There is the difference of heaven and earth in your
actions depending on how you are motivated.
How does this principle apply to you? If there were a place of death
so honorable in the sight of God that there you could receive His love
without limit, would you consider that to be a very unfortunate,
tragic place, or would you revere it as an honorable place to be? If
you could choose between living forever on earth or dying and finally
receiving God's love, which one would you take?
This principle applies the same way both to a carp and to a man. The
ultimate question we have to ask ourselves then is, "Am I ready to die
for the love of God?" What is your answer? If your answer is yes then
your death is not death. Your flesh and your spirit become the spirit
and flesh of all mankind and of all the universe. When you center your
life on the higher level you will live for eternity.
We are in the midst of the greatest of all educational processes, with
the greatest possible purpose of teaching mankind that each person
must be able to give his life for the sake of love. This is a far more
precious education than ten Ph.D. programs at Harvard.
Why are we gathered together in the Unification Church? We want to
give our lives for the supreme love of the universe, the love of God.
There is no greater education than the education you are receiving
this morning, hearing that everything started out from love, and that
love is the goal and direction for all things. God gave everything in
creation to be gifts of love. When you realize this and live your life
in appreciation of God's love, then you shall be glorious when you go
before the throne of God.
We must be thankful to be born as men and women. In a sense we are the
curators of God's own museum, the universe. Men have built their own
museums, like the National Archives and the Museum of Natural History,
but they are really trivial compared to God's own museum. All museums
of the entire world put together cannot compare to the mystery and
beauty of one living leaf. God created a living, growing museum, not
one which is stagnant and collects dust. But if we can create in our
lives the beauty of the love of God then our museum is truly
When I walk through a museum I see many people who really ponder the
things there and appreciate them, but I often wonder how people can
pay more attention to rocks that are just gathering dust than to God's
museum, which has much more beauty and mystery. If you go to the
riverside and pick up one small grain of sand, can you say how old it
is or what its personal history has been? There is much mystery in a
grain of sand; nobody understands the hidden history of God which it
An oak tree has a history of tens of thousands of years that reaches
from acorn to acorn back to the very first tree. Have you ever asked a
tree, "Where do your leaves come from? Where does your trunk come
from?" What is the source of energy that is derived from the soil?
Where does water come from? Here on the Belvedere grounds there is
dirt from all over the world, from Europe, Asia, Africa. The universe
is contained in even one grain of sand or one small particle of soil.
When you look at yourself you are seeing a universal being, with your
energy, flesh and blood gathered from the same source as the entire
universe. You are truly a microcosm of the universe.
My flesh and blood are formed from food, and since I have traveled to
all six continents and forty different countries I have eaten Asian
food, American food, European food, Indian food and African food. My
physical body is literally universal. My body is a museum because it
is a collection of ingredients from all over the earth.
You can say to God, "I am Your museum piece. I am a microcosm of the
universe and here I stand as a universal person. Are You proud of me?"
God will definitely say, "I certainly am and I'm envious of you in a
way. I'm invisible but you are physical and you can look at yourself
as being universal. That's exactly why I created you."
As people who are indebted, we can only
show our gratitude by giving to others
Where did your life come from originally? Your own parents invested
themselves in you, and nature also gave you the food to make your
flesh and blood and bone. If you were to repay all those to whom you
were indebted you would have nothing left. In addition, you are also
indebted to God who originally gave you life. What do you have left
then? God, your parents and nature invested themselves in you, and
therefore you are a chunk of indebtedness.
The important thing is, have you been grateful for that investment? An
indebted person can be nothing but thankful. God, your parents and
nature will say, "You don't have to give anything back. You keep it
for yourself." What a wonderful gift your life is! Throughout your
entire life you can be thankful. Have you ever thought about that?
Jesus told a story that parallels this, about a cruel man who had been
forgiven a debt he could not pay, but who then threw a man into jail
who was indebted to him. His lord spoke angrily to him for being so
cruel after he himself had received mercy. We have nothing that is
inherently ours; God gave us life unconditionally, without requiring
that any contract be signed or interest paid or any loan paid back
within a certain number of years. The only way we can repay Him or
show our gratitude is by giving to others.
We can say we have parents on three levels; nature is one level of
parent, as well as our physical parents who gave birth to us, and God
is the ultimate parent. We are in the position to be thankful to all
of these parents, and since everything we have does not really belong
to us, we must be ready to give it out at any time, saying, "Nature,
this is from you; my parents, this is yours; Heavenly Father, this is
You may think it is you who walk around, but you are not the one who
makes you walk God is not greedy or trying to take everything back
from you, but God created you for a special purpose and all He wants
is for you to want to live up to that ideal. Until now you were
probably grateful for only the trivial things in your life, but never
thankful for the greatest things for which you are indebted.
How about sunlight? Without it you cannot survive, but how often are
you thankful for it? At Barrytown we are enlarging the pond to
accommodate more carp and the crew doing the work was very impatient
at being hampered by the running water. I thought, "I know it is a
hindrance, but don't be upset because without water nothing could
survive on this planet." How many minutes could you survive without
air? You do not feel any danger because you're so secure, but what
would happen if there was no air anywhere for five minutes?
You may be thankful for trivial things like a can of coke when you are
hot and thirsty, but what about this gift of the universe which God
gave us-the sun's rays, the air, the fresh water, the sea and the
land? Are you thankful that you can be a man or a woman and a husband
or wife, that you can be children and then parents?
Instead of being thankful for all the universal gifts which God has
provided people are many times impatient, cursing nature and cursing
God's work when something interferes with their desires. The
wintertime brings cold weather and people complain about
inconvenience, but nature needs both cold and hot weather. Different
temperatures cause certain changes in the soil, and cause shrinking
and expanding in nature. All things are harmonized and regulated by
By only complaining about the creation we not only offend God but all
of these great gifts. First of all we must be thankful to God; that is
the beginning point of our lives. Then we can talk about being
thankful to our own husband or wife and children and parents. Without
God we could not exist for even one second. This world has become
devoid of thanksgiving to God. Once you broaden your life of
thanksgiving and gratitude to God then you will find that a more
loving relationship between God and yourself will develop.
A wholesome God-centered personality begins with thanksgiving and
deepens to embrace a relationship of love with God. You must think
big! You must be able to embrace the universe and when you look at man
you must see him as a universal being; when you look at nature you
must feel that it is God's masterpiece. That is the kind of
personality God hopes to find in His children, and the Unification
Church must become second to none in that way of life.
When you live in thankfulness here on earth, you can go with love to
God's own dwelling and live there in infinite love for eternity. When
you train yourself through nature to live in gratitude then the
universe will help you grow into a wholesome personality of love so
that you can eventually reach the level of God's glory. This is God's
In our lives we want to find the maximum benefit in the universe and
to develop wholesome personalities, and to one day stand proudly in
the sight of God and to enjoy His eternal love as His children. God
knows when you suffer misfortune or are troubled, but when He sees
that even at the bottom of misery and misfortune you still have room
to be thankful to Him He will shed tears over you. When you overcome
such a test with thanksgiving under any circumstances, you shall be
blessed. You may feel that you are finished and are sinking down to
the valley of death, but as long as you have this way of life you will
never end your life at the bottom of the valley. Instead you will go
over the mount of glory.
The Unification Church is going through a valley of persecution but I
will never grumble or complain to God. We are attracting world
attention by our extraordinary way of life and the whole world is
watching as we go down into this valley.
We are like leading actors and actresses in an exciting movie
spectacular. If the mountain we are crossing were just made of sand
then the movie would not be very exciting, but because the mountain is
rugged and steep, with sheer cliffs, forests and wild animals, it
makes a much more exciting movie. If this were a calm relaxed movie it
would not be memorable, but we are making the people strain forward in
their chairs with the tension of the drama.
The world is our audience and God is watching the stage from the royal
box in the center. I want you to move and inspire God so deeply that
He weeps helplessly. Eventually God will bow down to you saying, "My
son, my daughter, I'm proud of you." What will the rest of the
audience do when God bows down in tears? They will be completely
This is our extraordinary way of life, living for the gigantic goal
and purpose. There is no ending. There is no retirement waiting for
us, only a life that is always more exciting. Are you thankful to be a
member of this exciting team? Raise your hands if you are going to
live in gratitude to God and be sons and daughters of appreciation.
May God bless you. Let us pray.