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The Most Happiest Time When Our Souls Are Breathing Alive

  • Nation | Japan
  • Date | March 26, 2010
“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age” (Mt 28:19-20).

ⓒ 2010 WATV
God’s words always remind us of the world mission. In the past, however, we just had a vague dream for it, and in actuality we hesitated to set a certain goal or plan for it.

God didn’t rebuke these foolish children, but rather He prepared the way of blessing for us with abundant love. In other words, God granted us a gracious opportunity to realize the mission of this age through the ten-day mission trip to Osaka, Japan.

Japan is a neighboring country of Korea, and the appearance of its people and their atmosphere are similar to those of Koreans. When we arrived in Osaka, we didn’t feel like we were abroad. With a somewhat calm attitude, we visited the Osaka Church and had some time to talk with the missionary.

“You probably have a preconception that it is difficult to preach the gospel in Japan, don’t you? Can I ask what makes you think so?”

When the missionary asked us the question, we felt ashamed of ourselves; actually, we had all secretly thought that the gospel work in Japan might be more difficult than in any other country.

Japan is called the “country of the gods,” and as the name shows, Japanese people worship many gods. Japan was often likened to wet firewood because it was hard to set the fire of the gospel in Japan; and some described the country as the second Rome or Egypt. So, when we thought about preaching overseas, we excluded Japan and looked for other countries. This time, however, we decided to take the mission trip to Japan because we all had opportunities to learn Japanese; some of us majored in the Japanese language at university, and others learned the language while working for companies dealing with a Japan-related business.

As we couldn’t say anything, the missionary said to us,
“There’s only one reason; it’s because the gospel workers don’t come here.”

At that moment, we felt like something struck us on the back of our heads. Come to think of it, the fact that the Japanese worship many gods shouldn’t be a reason for the gospel to be preached slowly. In Korea, where many folk beliefs such as Confucianism and Buddhism had been handed down from generation to generation, the work of the gospel became very prosperous; and the gracious news of the gospel was continuously being conveyed even from Catholic and Hindu countries. In short, the success of the gospel does not depend on the situation but on our faith toward God Elohim and our will for the gospel. Unfortunately, in Japan there were not many workers who had such firm faith and will.

It was time for us to become the workers for the gospel in Japan. Although we were small in number, compared with other short-term mission teams, and were also weak physically, we believed that Mother would help us. Arming ourselves firmly with faith, we started to preach the gospel.

Firstly, we met a brother who God had prepared. He was a Japanese man whom a member of our team had been acquainted with for business. He returned to Japan, leaving his clothes in Korea, and asked the brother to send his clothes to Japan. Around then, our short-term mission trip to Osaka was fixed, so the brother made an appointment to hand it to him personally.

Thinking that God surely arranged for us to meet, we delivered the words of truth to him as we handed his clothes to him. He showed much interest in the Word and accepted the truth willingly, and was reborn as a child of God. He said that he was going to visit Korea for business soon, and promised to visit the New Jerusalem Temple then.

Since we were able to meet a precious soul on the first day we arrived in Osaka, we were buoyant with the expectation that God would allow us to bear much more fruit. Even though the weather was very sultry and sweaty, we preached the gospel more earnestly than ever before. Since we knew our weaknesses, we prayed every moment—while walking or preaching.

People were kind to us, and they listened to what we had to say, without showing an uncomfortable look even though they were sweating a lot as we were. But that was it. They finally shook their heads no, saying, “Even though the Bible is fact and your message is true, what does it matter to me?”

Most Japanese people believe in Buddhism or Shinto—an ancient indigenous religion of Japan, characterized by veneration of nature spirits and ancestors. Probably because of this religious background, many people regard the Bible merely as a religious book for foreigners. Some of them don’t even know the existence of God or the Bible.

We were heartbroken. Many people in Korea had heard about the truth once at least, but the Japanese knew nothing about it. They listened attentively to the word of God but didn’t accept it with their heart; it made us even more distressed.

As things didn’t fulfill our expectations, we became disheartened. We got exhausted easily in the hot weather; our bags felt very heavy, and our legs felt weak. Several times a day, we felt like resting. Being so weary in body and mind, we delivered the truth about Heavenly Mother, and finally we all burst into tears. It was not because we were tired, but because we realized that our Heavenly Father and Mother walked the sacrificial path which was a thousand times more rough and difficult than ours.

Heavenly Father came to this earth and cultivated the barren land for the gospel of the new covenant alone, and Heavenly Mother prays for Her children even at this moment, forgetting to sleep or rest. We were suffering for our own sins, but Father and Mother sacrificed and endured sufferings only for us, Their children. However, we were very weak; even though we were finally on the spot of the world mission which we had wanted to join so much, we didn’t preach fervently just because we were tired. We felt so sorry toward Father and Mother. Then we put our minds together and decided to preach the gospel more earnestly, being grateful for being able to follow the path of Father and Mother, no matter how tired we were.

Surprisingly enough, from that time on, God allowed us to bear fruit continu-ously—precious souls like jewels who had been waiting for the truth.

Among them, there was a sister who had always longed to enter the kingdom of heaven. When we first met her, she listened attentively to us in order to know what the truth—the way to heaven—is. As soon as she received the promise of a new life, she called us “sister, brother” and rejoiced so much. She was scheduled to have an operation the next day. She gave thanks to God, saying, “I could’ve been in big trouble if I hadn’t met you today. I worried a lot about my operation, but now I think I don’t need to worry any more.”

We realize that fruit is a gift of grace freely given by God. There was nothing we did ourselves; we thought we were working for the gospel, but whenever we felt tired and frustrated, we wanted to give up. Then how can we say that we did something? We just followed the path of love and sacrifice Father and Mother had walked, and surely there was a blessing from God—which was a fruit.

We were joyful every day because a new life was born day after day. The happiest thing was that every member of the Osaka Zion bore fruit.

Most members live over an hour away from Zion, and it is not easy for them to come to Zion because of the high cost of transportation. However, hearing the news that a short-term mission team was coming, even the members, who had been unable to positively participate in the gospel work because of their health or other problems, came all the way to preach together with us. Although they had received God less than a year ago, they preached the gospel confidently and earnestly, not even taking a break for a cup of water. They always served us first and took care of us.

As those beautiful members all bore fruit, we were more joyful than when we bore fruit. Some of them bore fruit for the first time, which doubled our joy and thankfulness.

It is known that Japan guarantees freedom of religion, but in actuality it is hard for the members in Japan to keep faith because of many obstacles. Even in this situation, the local members stand firm in their faith with a yearning for Father and Mother; some of them hold worship services alone because they live so far away from Zion.

The members shed tears when they just hear the word “Mother.” Even though they want to see Mother in person, they can’t, and even if they hear Her words, they can’t understand directly, so their yearning for Mother is beyond description. Their affection for Zion is also very special. Compared to Korean Churches, it is a small temple. However, they truly regard their Zion as precious, thinking that it is a holy place where God dwells. Just like Daniel who longed for Jerusalem, the Japanese members have an ardent love towards Mother and Zion.

In Korea, we were able to easily go to Zion near our homes and to see Mother face to face very often; and we were also able to directly listen to the words of life from Mother through various Church events. We didn’t really know how blessed we were, but just lived a habitual life of faith. However, the members in Japan concentrated on preaching God’s word because it was the only way they could feel the breath of Father and Mother. Seeing them, we felt ashamed of ourselves, and deeply realized that the kingdom of heaven was forcefully being advanced.

Through the members of the Osaka Zion, God awakened our sleeping faith, and also reminded us of our “first love” that we had when we first met Father and Mother and were filled with gratitude and joy even for a small thing. We pledged ourselves to restore our first love and pure mind like those of the Osaka Zion members, and to start the race of gospel again.

For the first few days after we arrived in Osaka, we were so nervous that we couldn’t sleep well, and we couldn’t eat well, either, because we bore no fruit. However, we didn’t stop preaching the gospel. Although we had a very hard time, we never gave up, so we could realize how great Father and Mother’s love and sacrifice were and could also experience the true joy of bearing good fruit.

To our shame, we had never preached the gospel so earnestly like this before. We came to know the reason why we couldn’t bear sufficient fruit of the gospel and why our faith was at a standstill. That was because we didn’t preach the gospel with all our heart and strength as we did in Osaka. The reason God allowed us to lead many souls to salvation during our short-term mission trip was not because we were overseas but because we were so earnest to deliver a soul. I believe that if we do the gospel work with the same attitude in Korea as well, God will surely bestow great blessings on us.

ⓒ 2010 WATV
Now we understand why God has emphasized the importance of preaching. When we didn’t preach, we could hardly understand the love of Father and Mother with our hearts no matter how much we heard about it. However, as we preached the Word more and more, Their love and sacrifice were engraved deep in our hearts, and we felt our sleeping souls being awakened. Even though we couldn’t see the fruit of the gospel right away, we were happy and thankful just for the fact that we were able to preach.

So, every moment during our ten-day mission trip was full of joy and thankfulness; we could feel our souls breathing alive and the invisible power of the Holy Spirit working.

God wants all human beings to be saved. However, there are still many people who don’t know such a deep love of God around the world, especially in Japan.

On our last day in Osaka, we went up to an observation deck where we could see the whole city. As the missionary pointed the place where we preached the gospel, we were really surprised; it was only a small part of the vast city. ‘If many gospel works with untiring zeal to preach God’s love volunteer to come here, the gospel would quickly be spread all over Osaka and throughout Japan.’ Thinking that, we keenly felt the necessity of many volunteering workers. Then we said to ourselves, ‘We ourselves should come here again.’

This short-term mission trip was a great blessing and grace from Father and Mother. We cannot thank God enough for allowing us to join the short-term mission trip. Moreover, God has made us much stronger both physically and spiritually, and helped us engrave the love and sacrifice of Father and Mother deep in our hearts. For this we are truly thankful to Elohim. Through the ten-day trip, we’ve clearly realized what the happiest thing in our life is and what we have to do.

Now we are planning to go abroad again. We know that while we are in Korea, we should also make unceasing efforts to preach the gospel, continuously fostering our faith and studying foreign languages. By doing so, we will go out to the world without hesitation and lead the souls, who haven’t yet heard the good news of salvation, to Zion.
"Mother, here am I. Send me!"
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