We experience the love of parents over us. Our parents kiss us on the cheek, embrace us and console us in times of sadness. We have experienced these things but not to the full extent, and not in the true sense, because every sensation can come in its f ullest degree only from God. What we have experienced in the world apart from God is not from God, but dominated by Satan. Have you ever stopped to think who it was who made the first smile in the whole world, the first laughter in the whole world? Of course, there were Adam and Eve, who could have been joyful if it were not for the fall, but who was the one to be joyful at the time of the human fall? Satan. Not God. Satan was happy after he took away God's sovereignty over man and was able to have all mankind under his dominion. The smile of Satan, the laughter of Satan was horrible when he took control of man. Following the fall, history proceeded for the most part in accordance with Satan's will. Our forefathers worked and did things in such a way that they pleased Satan more often than they pleased God.
If you really felt that, if you seriously considered that horrible reality, you would be almost choked by it. You would want to abandon this world, to fly away to another world. Do we have an inch of land that we can claim as our own, as God's children, where we can be joyful and happy? We don't have such a place. Though we might want to leave this earth, we have to restore it to its original condition.
If we leave the world as it is, we may as well hope that God will not come and abide in this world with us. You should feel like stopping Him from coming to this dark world. If you are really the children of God, you will feel that way, because everythi ng is opposite from His desire.
God, however, on His part, always wanted to come and abide with us, helping us, saving us, but we men of sin, we children of disobedience, have prevented God from loving us and living with us. How sad God's heart has been! If there were a single man, wh o in the place of all mankind would sacrifice himself to save the world, to erase the sin of other people, desiring to be a victim for the sake of God, would God be pleased with him or not? In that case, would He have rejected that man or said to him, "Y ou are one of them; you are a stained, sinful man. I don't like to look at you. I don't want you to help me in any way"? Would God have said a thing like that? As lofty and pure as God may be, He needs someone to help Him in His restoring the world. So God would be grateful to have found that kind of man, and He would ask that man to do certain things for Him. But to find such a man has been very difficult.
What if that man would say to God, "I've sacrificed myself for your cause; you must recognize me," insisting that God would acknowledge him? How would God feel? Man is so greedy. We want to have things more than we have earned. But if that person of c entral mission were thinking that way, saying those things to God, if I were God, I would tell him, "Oh, now you have proven that you are also of the Satanic tribe. I don't want to have you." God must have felt that way toward such people.
Don't you remember, when Jesus prayed in Gethsemane, "If it be possible, if it be possible, let this bitter cup pass from me. Nevertheless, not as I will but as Thou wilt." If Jesus had not included in his prayer, "Not as I will but as Thou wilt," God co uld never have accepted him. That is the secret of being God's son. It is to be utterly obedient to God's will. Only in this way can you make God happy.
In the world of evil, there is only one road for God to go. That's the road of sacrifice made by the man of sin who is willing to get rid of whatever he has in order to receive God. How do you feel after hearing that? Sad, serious? You are here ready to receive God, but God wants you to sacrifice yourself even before being told to do so. That's what kind of person God would want you to be, because He wants you to surpass the standard of fallen men. Because of that His heart is sad. Unless you are r eady to sacrifice yourself before you are told to do it, God cannot come to you. If you live like that, God will be proud of you before Satan. Unless we do that, there is no way for us to restore God's authority and dignity as His children.
You must make a hopeful prayer to God, "Oh, Father, I don't want to be a foolish child, to be unwise. I want to know your heart. I am here ready to sacrifice myself, so why don't you come and abide with me." For that prayer, God will be proud of you.
And you can even pray this: "Father, I will be responsible to restore this world, and I can do it, believe me. You don't have to come and help me. I don't want you to come to this world of suffering to help me. You stay there and watch me." With that k ind of prayer you can console God's heart. Then how would God respond? He would tell you, "I am coming. I must come and help you. Even if you want to stop me from coming, I have to be with you. I want to be with you, right in the midst of darkness." God would say that to you. Then when you are pursuing your mission, ready to fight your way through all difficulties, you will suddenly find that God is already there before you, having prepared everything for you and paved the way ahead of you.
God is the God of love, of parental heart. In that case, if you were God, wouldn't you do the same for your children? When you live like that with God, you become the greatest of His sons, since you have moved your Parent's heart. You will have restore d God's dignity, and He will be proud of you.
I have thought and thought and finally found that this is the only way for the sons of filial piety to please God. You will be grateful that God has come to earth because of you. You will be able to make God happy, warm and proud. And you will be proud of each other and satisfied with yourselves.
I imagine all of you pray hard. Hungry or full, satisfied or dissatisfied, you are always praying hard to God. But the degree of your fervor will decide how much your prayers will be answered. In praying, too, your attitudes will differ from one anothe r.
I am sure, when you pray to God, there are some who are confident that their prayers will be answered. But some of you think, "I want to do so much for Him, but first He has to answer my prayer." God would not want You to change the way you are praying j ust to suit Him. However, He would want to have you pray harder and more earnestly. When you pray, it is something like this: Suppose that God is looking in this direction, and your voice comes praying so hard and diligently. His concern will be drawn to answer your prayer. God is looking closely at every one of you, and He will find that someone without even praying is doing things in such a way that his prayer is already answered. Then God's attention will be drawn to that person.
If He has two children, and one is praying so hard even though he was not told to pray, and the other is only reluctantly praying after being told, to whom would God be drawn? I don't think there is anyone among you who does not know the answer.
Suppose there is one child who would nod to his father after being told to do something. But there is another child who on his own initiative has already found out something and would come to his father and ask whether of not what he had discovered was t rue. Which of the two would delight the father more? Again, one child may be aware of what is happening around his father, but another child is so anxious to become involved in his father's world that the first thing in the morning the child would think , "Is Father up? What are his plans for today? " To which would the father's heart be drawn?
There may be still another child who can't help but wake his father up because he has thoughts of some wonderful plans himself. He would knock at his father's door or just rush into his room and wake him. But the father would still love that child.
If you were in the position of the father, would you love a child who just clings to you for 24 hours without even letting you sleep? If you are loving and concerned about your father, even if you irritate him and even if you prevent him from doing anyth ing else, he is forced to be concerned with you and love you in return. The same thing is true with God, our heavenly Father.
I am going to tell you a story about my son, Hyojin. He is a very active boy. He runs so fast that he trips over things. One day he fell and skinned his legs, and I found them swollen and bleeding. He was such a tiny boy. I asked him, "Does it hurt y ou?" He was bleeding, but he told me, "It doesn't hurt. I'm all right." I have never forgotten that scene. Instead of crying, the boy comforted his father.
Among God's children who are working hardest there are two kinds. Some would want to serve God because they are anxious to be loved by Him. They are contented and satisfied to enjoy the Father's love. But other children are worried about their Father's cause and know He is eager to reach out and find other children. Such a person would tell God that since He has lost so many children, he wants to bring them back to Him. Would you say, "Father, wait for me. Even though I may be away from you doing th is work for a while, don't worry about me"? If you went out in search of your lost brothers and worked very hard and didn't return to your Father for a long period, would your Father be discontented with you? It is clear that God would love you more if you are the child who would want to go out in search of the lost brothers and sisters and bring them home.
Suppose the child working to restore the lost children would even die at the front-line, would the Father be angry because His son had disobeyed Him? He would be so proud of him. He would cherish the heart of that child and love him all the more. So yo u should do things without being told to do them and without complaint. You must be more serious than He is about carrying out what He has in mind.
The Father's love and patience are with the child who is always ready to help Him in any way possible, and who would go anywhere for the sake of the great task to be carried out. He would long to have that son around to take care of His children and grea t-grandchildren. In that way His love would be multiplied through this person.
There are various types of heart. Some fathers would tell their children, "You must love me and no one else, and you must serve me and no one else because I am your father." But there are other fathers who would tell their sons, "Instead of loving me and doing things like this for me, why don't you go around and do things for others, because I love them as much as I do you." That kind of father is the real father. When you are unwilling to sacrifice yourself, if this father would drive you out even to d eath for the sake of his many other children, that father is the true father.
After you have finished your work here on earth, when you go to the next world, if 'You tell God that you would not want to go to Heaven but would stay in hell to help the people there, then God would bring Heaven down to you for you to live in. Don't yo u think He would do that? Then if you would insist on His letting you live in the lowest society, He would smile and say to you, "Son, you are a very smart boy." In that case, even though you were not obedient to God, He would still be proud of you. You would be an example of utter goodness.
He would tell you someday, "You don't have to go out to society. When did I tell you had to go out and witness to the people? Why don't you stay here and rest?" If you would object and protest and finally go out to society, would He punish you? God, in trying to save the whole of mankind, would want you to have this attitude. He would want you to desire to be this kind of Christian.
That's why in the Bible we read many paradoxical things. In one place you are taught to love your Father with all your heart, all your might, all your sincerity. That's the first commandment of God. Later we are told to love our neighbors as ourselves. Taken together, these commands seem paradoxical, but if they both are carried out, you can win the whole world.
When God tells you to love Him more than anyone else, it means that He wants you to carry out. His will at all costs. So it is natural for you to love your neighbors and to love your brothers and sisters as you would yourself. If you are to resemble yo ur Father, would you love just one person who will satisfy your personal aims, or would you love all the people of the world for His sake? God loves the great combination of all people - including the people of the past and future generations. The broad er the scope of your battle is, the more you are loved by the heavenly Father.
If you want to come to the position to be loved by your Father, your relationship to the world will change. Suppose you pass by the scene of an accident where someone has been injured. You would feel so sympathetic, as though that person were someone ve ry near to you, and you would like to help him in any way possible. You would want to tell the people standing around also to be sympathetic. If the other bystanders are only watching and doing nothing, you would be so anxious, as if that person were yo ur own child. You would put him into your car and rush him to the hospital yourself.
Or you may meet a wonderful person who is accomplishing great things in the world. You would want to talk with him and encourage him. You would be grateful to God that you had met such a good person, and you would want to be associated with that person and get to know him heart-to-heart. You would feel like placing yourself in the position of the parent to that person, and you would want to endure for him; you would pray to God that what he had done would be received by Him, that his sins and the sins of his ancestors would be forgiven. You would feel one in heart with him, in joy and in sorrow.
You should love the world in such a way that you would ask God to bless a prosperous country all the more and guide it to become the leading nation of the world: "I want to see you being joyful over this prosperous country after having poured out so many blessings here." On the other hand, if you see a poor people in an underdeveloped and underprivileged nation, you should feel the zeal swelling up in your heart to make that nation see the sunshine some day. You would want to elevate the standard of livi ng in that nation, because you hate to see your Father in anguish over the suffering in that nation. You would be eager to make it equal to other nations. You would desire these things without reservation.
Then, what must our desire be? Our desire is to become the children of God, doing everything in His place before His orders. Our desire is to become the kind of people the sinful history of mankind has never seen before.
Would God want you to laugh and be happy before He made you happy? if you have had the experience of raising children, you know the answer well. Suppose a father and mother quarrel with each other and are so unhappy, never laughing or smiling. They are in a terrible mood, but their children, innocent ones, would come to them, smiling, laughing and dancing about trying to make their parents laugh. Wouldn't they laugh? Even though you may want to stay in a bad mood, to remain angry, when you look at you r children who are trying to make you happy, your heart will burst into laughter.
Which is better - to have your children unhappy and to try to soothe their hearts, even when they are sad because they know you are burdened, or to have your children want to make you happy? Wouldn't you like to have children who will try to cheer you up ? Our desire is to become that sort of children to God.
In order to be that way, first, you must be doing things before you are ordered to. Second, you must be so aggressive that you want to act by yourself, even without the help of your Father. You will tell Him: "Father, please stay where you are. I will be responsible. I will do my part. Please wait until I can return this accomplishment to you. I am doing this for your sake and for the sake of my brothers and sisters whom you love dearly." The third thing is, as I just said, you must desire to do thi ngs for the sake of your brothers and sisters all over the world because they are equally loved by God. If you feel that way, you are His restored children whom God loves the most. He would praise you, and He would like to give you anything. He would b e proud of you.
When He gives praise and everything good, you may say: "Father, now that you have given all this happiness and these blessings to me, they are mine, aren't they? " He would tell you, "Of course they are yours." Then you can do anything you like with them . You would want to give all your blessings out to other people, thinking, "Let all that I have received belong to my brothers." God would be happy with you.
If you do this, you will be the sons and daughters of filial piety to God. He lost His love, His happiness, His peace and His whole creation because of the human fall. Therefore, you will want to return to Him through others the absolute happiness, love , and ideal He has given you.
If you take that position, you can attract the heart of the heavenly Father. You can have the true love of God in your possession, and that is the core of everything. If He found that kind of son empty-handed after having given out all that he had, the Father would tell him, "I am yours. You can have me." With this in mind, you can interpret the whole Bible.
If you would walk your path in this manner, God will turn to you to be with you. You can meet Him wherever you are. However low the place where you are situated, your Father's attention will be focused on you there. The kingdom of God in which He takes delight will be right there in your heart wherever you are.
You must be keenly aware of the fact that you are not born for yourself. You are born for the sake of the whole world; you are living for the sake of the whole world; you are ready to die for the sake of the whole world. If you live this idea to the ful lest extent, then you will already be carrying out what your Father wants you to do. Then the whole creation will want to belong to you, and God Himself will be yours. Even if you didn't want them, all things would volunteer to come to you and belong to you.
When you feel, "I am born out of my Father, and I am already a part of Him, and I want to be with Him and do everything for Him forever," then you are already in the position to be loved by Him and to inherit from Him. Even when you die, you know that yo u will live in the other world in spirit, and He will love you all the more.
Then what would you lack?
If you are in that position to be always with your Father in spirit, then you are going to live with Him wherever you are, all through eternity. So asleep or awake, whatever you are doing, don't ever think that you are alone. You are always with your Fa ther, and your Father is always with you.
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