Change

Jang Ye-jin from Ansan, Korea

2491 Views

I’ve been attending the Church of God ever since I was in my mother’s womb. This means that I’ve been a member of the Church of God since birth.

It was when I was in middle school that I started growing in my faith, not depending leaning on my mother’s faith. As I met many friends in school who had different religions from mine, I started wondering, ‘What truth can lead me to the kingdom of heaven?’

It didn’t take long for my question to be answered. As I studied the Bible diligently in Zion, I was able to understand the truth of the new covenant clearly.

However, my life of faith was put on hold when I was in high school. I loved hanging out with my friends, and it ruined the balance of my life. I neglected studying and often came home late at night. I barely maintained my relationship with God by attending worship once in a while.

It was a belated stormy period of adolescence. Whenever I was with some cool friends, I became so overconfident that I acted emotionally and enjoyed each moment without much thought. I didn’t care about my family’s concern for me.

But I wasn’t happy the whole time. For some reason, something pricked my conscience whenever I did something as I pleased. After having some fun with my friends, I always felt empty in my heart. Of course, I knew what kind of signal it was; God came across my mind whenever that happened.

However, I wasn’t courageous enough to change my lifestyle. I was scared that I might be left out by my friends if I acted differently from them. I felt guiltier day by day.

Then something happened at the end of my teens; my relationship with my friends got hurt all of a sudden because of a small misunderstanding. This gave me a chance to make new friends and study hard.

It seemed that my long period of wandering was coming to an end, but it became tougher after I graduated. As I became twenty years old, breaking away during my school years became a privilege that I could enjoy as an adult.

Whenever I had inner conflicts and regrets in the face of many temptations that made me neglect God’s will, my conscience said that I shouldn’t do that as a child of God, just like when I was in high school.

Since my childhood, I’d had such faith, though it wasn’t solid. Although I didn’t keep every service, the blessing of attending worship never ceased. It became a string connecting my soul with God, and I believe that the string held me at important moments. However, it wasn’t enough for me to completely come out of the yoke of wandering.

Around that time, the young adults and students got together very often to prepare for the First New Song Festival. I too went to Zion more often.

I had a great time to practice the New Songs with the brothers and sisters of similar age. I felt good whenever I thought of the value of the New Songs which only God’s children can sing. I also liked to hear the touching and beautiful stories from the brothers and sisters whenever we gathered. I felt as if something good was rising in my heart whenever I was on my way home after the gathering.

Around the time when my soul was finally getting peace back, the autumn feasts began. The feasts felt totally different from those I had kept until then. It was not only because the feasts came when I started to feel spiritual joy little by little. What affected me more was the encouraging message that Heavenly Mother gave during the Feast of Tabernacles Preaching Festival. When I heard Mother’s message, I was reminded of all the sins I committed when I was still immature.

Mother was always there, watching me with a broken heart, when I was wasting my time doing what I wanted to do. As I thought how heartbroken Mother must have been when She was watching me, tears of repentance ran down my face.

‘How hard it must’ve been for Mother!’

I was the most immature child who had sinned in heaven and was still breaking Mother’s heart on the earth. However, Mother constantly gave me strength and courage to help me feel the joy of heaven, though She already sacrificed Herself and endured so many storms for such a long time.

Since I caused Mother too much concern, I wanted to help Her with all my heart from then on. After making up my mind to take burdens off from Mother by participating in the gospel work which pleases God, I put all my efforts into the preaching festival.

I preached together with the brothers and sisters, trying to save every second, and God blessed me with abundant fruit. I witnessed how happy the lonely souls became when they met the Zion members, and sometimes I bore fruit consecutively in the morning, in the afternoon, and in the evening.

Although it was a short time, I diligently preached the good news of the kingdom of heaven without any rest until my two feet were swollen. Each and every soul that paid attention to God’s word looked very precious. During the festival, I was thankful that I was able to fathom Mother’s heart even a little bit.

The year of 2015 ended while the joy of preaching festival was still lingering. Now, as a university student, I study the word of God hard to shine the light of the truth on campus, and I also go to Zion diligently in order not to wander again like before.

Seeing how hard I try to live a godly life according to God’s will by going to Zion every day, my mother was moved to tears. My dad who is not good at expressing his feelings says, “My daughter is the best!” and he is happy to have a good daughter back. My older sister seems to feel awkward about my change. My older brother, who joined the military when I was giving everybody a hard time, got discharged this year, and I guess my change is unbelievable for him because he keeps praising God’s power.

My family members, who worried about me who was disoriented, now compliment each other and give thanks to God whenever they open their mouths. By preaching Heavenly Mother together with my father and mother, I have led a soul who loves the truth to Zion. I believe that my family has experienced the fulfillment of Heavenly Mother’s words that everything goes well when the young adults’ gospel work goes well.

Overwhelming joy overflows every day. I ponder over the will of God who woke me up from a deep sleep and let me go through changes and feel the joy of the gospel work. I believe it’s God’s will for me to understand that nothing is impossible with God.

There were things that I had hesitated to do at the thought that I might only hide God’s glory due to my previous behavior. However, while depending on God and asking Him for help, I was able to do those things. Confessing my faith to my friends for the first time was one of them. Unlike my concern, my friends showed favorable responses. One of them, who came to Zion a few times, even took a picture of the Church of God building she found while walking in the street, and sent it to me with a message saying, “This is your church, right? It’s beautiful!”

Another friend told her friend that our church received the Korea Presidential Group Citation, and another friend asked me to invite her to our church when there’s an event. I’m already excited about inviting them to Zion one by one. Since God is with me, I believe everything will go smoothly.

Of course, there are many things that I want to do and I need to do. However, what I truly want to do first is to be reborn as the most pleasing instrument of the gospel, appropriate for Heavenly Mother to use. I pray that the spiritual abundance that I received from Mother will spread further and further to reach the end of the earth. The change that started from one person hasn’t finished yet.