Hall of Worship, Atami Sacred Grounds
December 22 and 23, 2014
Congratulations everyone on the Meishu-Sama’s Birthday Service.
In deep awe and fear of God, I say that God, being One with Meishu-Sama, is the One who is the most intimate to us and the One we have to treasure the most.
Within this breath that we are inhaling and exhaling, there resides the breath of God – the breath of the One who lives in eternity and is our true Parent. We can call this breath the breath of the beginning or the source breath.
At the beginning of the Creation, God, through and by this breath, formed us as divine particles, breathed His life, consciousness and soul into us – into our divine particles – and entrusted us with His breath.
When we were in heaven, therefore, we were breathing with this breath of God. In this heaven, we, as divine particles and being one with the breath of God and Meishu-sama, lived and served God.
We who are now on earth still possess this breath of God.
Our ancestors who are alive within us have also been entrusted with this breath of God. All things and all elements of the natural world in heaven and earth that are one with us are sustained by this breath of God and are serving God with all their power.
In 1954, Meishu-sama proclaimed that “a Messiah was born” within him. At this time, Meishu-Sama, I believe, came to the recognition that God was his true Parent and expressed this recognition to God.
God, out of His great mercy, accepted what Meishu-sama expressed to Him, joyfully regarded Meishu-Sama as His child and let Meishu-sama perceive the joy He felt.
In his joy, Meishu-Sama told us on the 5th of June, 1954, that he was like “a new born baby” and that he was “born anew.”
To “be born anew” is to receive and inherit the breath of God with a new breath and the eternal life of God as a new life.
God wishes to acquire us as His children and live with us in heaven.
God led, nurtured and trained Meishu-Sama in order to fulfil this wish of His. Meishu-samais our model; we should follow his footsteps.
Within each one of us, God, our true Parent, and His true child, Meishu-sama, reside.
Remember: we are able to follow Meishu-Sama’s footsteps and try to be born anew as a true child of God only because God and Meishu-Sama reside within us.
On this day of the Meishu-Sama’s birthday service, let us, with God’s permission, receive and inherit the breath and the eternal life of God, and let us praise God with all our heart in the name of Messiah that is one with Meishu-Sama.
I hear that you members of Izunome are striving hard each and every day to meet the goal of “wishing to be born anew as a child of God and aiming to become a pioneer of salvation.”
As many of you know, I visited the Chubu region of Japan this May and the Hokuriku and Kansai region this September and attended the member’s gatherings there. Wherever I went, I was greeted warmly and sincerely by a large group of members and was able to share and reaffirm our passion for Meishu-Sama. The joy I felt during my visits will stay, I am sure, with me for a long time to come.
Meeting with you, I thought of the great blessings we are receiving from God. I thought of how God and Meishu-Sama are always residing at the central point of each one of our consciousnesses, and how the light we are searching for so hard is in fact already shining among each one of us, within each one of us.
What made me the happiest when I visited you was to see that so many of you have advanced to an entirely new phase of faith, practicing something completely new. Following the example of Meishu-Sama, you were trying to return to your internal heaven, your true home. And by so doing, you were surrendering your thoughts to God in the name of Messiah Meishu-Sama – thoughts that you will return to heaven together with everyone you encounter and everything that is connected to you. Not only this, though it is not easy, you were trying to attribute all that happen in your life to God; you were striving to make a conscious effort to acknowledge that within every tiny thing, within trivial matters of your daily life, there exist the workings of God.
Now that I think of all your efforts, I am reminded of the importance of surrendering absolutely everything into the hands of God through Meishu-Sama. It is perhaps easier to surrender our weaknesses to God, whatever they are. But the heart that makes us express gratitude to or pray for others must also be returned into the hands of God. We must not take the credit for being able to express gratitude to and pray for others. Our heart –our mind – belongs to God. In the course of our daily life, we are passing judgment on others as if we have the right to do so, as if we have the power to do so, as if we are God. We must know that God is the only One who has the right to judge. God has forgiven us. He forgave us who have used and still use the heart and mind as if they are ours and were and are passing judgment on others. He forgave us so that we can be purified, be welcomed into heaven and walk the path of being born anew as His child.
We are not on the earth to pass judgment on others.
We are here to serve. We came to the earth to learn what it means to truly serve God who has forgiven all our trespasses.
To serve God is to realize that God is the master of everything.
We are told to express and perform acts of love toward others. When we do something for others out of our altruistic love, we tend to become the master of our own acts. But we should not misunderstand. God is the master of everything. He is the only One who can perform acts of love toward others.
For us humans, no matter how hard we try to think about other people and care for them, there is a limit. Our love is limited; God’s love is unlimited.
I feel that we have forgotten this unchanging truth that love belongs to God. We wrongly assumed that we somehow owned love and were able to use and express it.
Out of His mercy, God forgave such ignorance and selfishness of ours.
We must first admit our shortcomings in that we have been using love as if it is ours and thereby receive, with our own will, God’s forgiveness.
Meishu-Sama lived his life enveloped in the love of God, admitting the truth that love belongs to God. We met Meishu-Sama so that we can live like this, too.
In our daily prayers or before or while we are meeting someone, or at anytime during a day, let us voice out to God:
I have been using love as if it is mine. Please, God, forgive me for this sin. Love belongs to You. Meeting with Meishu-Sama, I was able to know that I am already enveloped in Your love. Not only I but all humanity also is already enveloped in Your love. In the name of Meishu-Sama, I now would like to return love to You.
To admit that God’s love has already encompassed everything is difficult for us as, in human eyes, there still seems to be many problems in the world. But Meishu-Sama admitted this. He admitted that no matter how difficult our life may seem, the love of God has already arrived. Isn’t that why Meishu-Sama was able to perceive that he was born anew as a child of God, even in the midst of suffering from a terrible pain of the brain hemorrhage? Isn’t this attitude of Meishu-Sama the essence of his teaching of “purification”? So admit this. Admit that God’s love has already enveloped all. Without admitting this, you, not God, will become the master of your act of love toward others.
In Johrei too, the master is God, not you.
When we channel Johrei, we take the pose of raising our hand toward the recipient. This pose makes us feel as if we are the ones who perform it. But the truth is that it is in fact God who is taking this pose of channeling Johrei within each one of us. Imagine this. Picture God who, within you, is raising His hand toward you. He wants you to know that He is always purifying you through performing Johrei to you, and that is why you are made to take that pose of channeling Johrei to others – so that you will remember what God is doing for you. Receiving Johrei is the same. You are made to receive Johrei from others so that you will remember how God is always purifying you.
In order not to forget the Johrei of God, I think it is essential to voice out the following words when you channel or receive Johrei:
God, it is in fact You who purifies me and the other person with Your holy hand. It is through Your Johrei that we are welcomed into Your heaven.
Through His Johrei, God is calling you to return to His heaven. So exchanging Johrei is your chance to express your will to God that you would like to be welcomed into His glory.
The Transition from Night to Day has already been accomplished. God unequivocally declared that He forgave the sins of all humanity, that He will welcome all into His heaven and that He will live with us in heaven.
God has already opened His side of the door of heaven.
It is now left to us whether we, with our own free will, will open our side of the door to heaven to meet God and Meishu-Sama face to face. God awaits us – you – patiently at the doorstep.
One of Meishu-Sama’s tanka poems, in English translation, reads:
The divine light has already shone upon us.
I say open up the door of your heart.
You might not know this, but each one of you already carries the key to open up the door to heaven.
This key is the holy name of Messiah. Through Meishu-Sama, we have come to know this name of Messiah.
Now, to use the key, you, with your own will and in the name of Messiah, have to declare that you want to open the door and enter heaven.
If you so wish, say something like the following in the name of Messiah:
God, I thank You for forgiving all my sins and saving me. I thank You for welcoming me, together with all humanity, all ancestors and all nature into Your heaven. I now would like to open the door to Your heaven and return there together with all.
God, forgive me for using Your life, consciousness and soul as mine. Through Meishu-Sama, I now commend them to You. Please use them as Yours. Please use me together with all. I will serve you with the breath You have entrusted to me. May this blessing be shared to all.
If you surrender these thoughts to God and unlock your side of the door to heaven, I believe Meishu-Sama, smiling, awaits you there. And he will embrace you with all his love.
How fortunate we are to be entrusted with the key to heaven – the kingdom of God.
We sow seeds, nurture them to grow, produce fruits and harvest them. In the eyes of God, we are the same – we are like the seeds. We are now being nurtured by God so that we can become the kind of fruits God wishes to harvest.
The year is coming to an end.
At this occasion, let us, in the name of Messiah that is one with Meishu-Sama and together with all humanity, all ancestors and all creations of heaven and earth, thank God that He has been nurturing us throughout this year and hope that we will be able to become the fruits God wishes to take in. Let us also pray with all our heart that the kingdom of God may prosper more and more.
To close, I pray that the coming New Year will be bright and bring each one of you hope, peace and joy.
Thank you very much.