I was thrown into extreme confusion. I couldn't open my heart to my parents and share my huge secret with them. But neither could I just keep it to myself. I was at a loss over what to do. What was clear was that I had received a special mission from Heaven. It was such a huge and tremendous responsibility, I shuddered in fear to think that I might not be able to handle it on my own. I clung to prayer even more than before, in an attempt to quiet my heart lost in confusion, but even this had no effect. No matter how much I might try, I could not free myself even a moment from the memory of having met Jesus. In an effort to quiet my heart that continued to burst into tears, I composed the following poem:
When I doubt people, I feel pain.
When I judge people, it is unbearable.
When I hate people, there is no value to my existence.
Yet if I believe, I am deceived. If I love, I am betrayed
Suffering and grieving tonight, my head in my hands. Am I wrong?
Yes lam wrong.
Even though we are deceived, still believe, Though we are betrayed, still forgive. Love completely, even those who hate you.
Wipe your tears away and welcome with a smile Those who know nothing but deceit, And those who betray without regret.
O, Master; the pain of loving. Look at my hands. Place your hand on my chest. My heart is bursting, such agony.
But when I love those who acted against me, I brought victory, if you have done the same things, I will give you the Crown of Glory.
My encounter with Jesus changed my life completely. His sorrowful expression was stamped onto my heart as if it had been branded there, and I could not think of anything else. From that day, I immersed myself completely in the Word of God. At times, I was surrounded by endless darkness and filled with such pain that it was difficult to breathe. At other times, my heart was filled with joy, as though I were watching the morning sun rise above the horizon. I experienced a series of days like these, and they led me into a deeper and deeper world of prayer. I embraced new words of truth that Jesus was giving me directly, and
let myself be completely captivated by God. I led a life that was entirely different from before. I had many things to think about, and I gradually became a boy of few words.
Anyone who follows the path of God must pursue their goal with their whole heart and dedication. It is a path that requires tenacity of purpose. I am stubborn by birth, so I have always had plenty of tenacity. I used my God-given tenacity to overcome difficulties and follow the path that had been given me. Anytime I began to waver, I could steady myself by remembering this fact: "I received God's word directly.'; It was not easy, though, to offer up the period of my youth, which would only come once, in order to choose this path. At times, I felt that I would rather avoid the path.
A wise person will place hope in the future and continue to move forward, no matter how difficult the path may become. A foolish person, on the other hand, will throw away his future for the sake of immediate happiness. I, too, at times held foolish thoughts when I was still very young, but in the end I chose the path of the wise person. I gladly offered up my life in order to pursue the path that God desired. I could not have run away if I had tried; this was the only path that I could have chosen.
So why did God call me? Even now, at ninety years of age, I wonder every day why God called me. Of all the people in the world, why did He choose me? It wasn't because I had a particularly good appearance, or outstanding character, or deep conviction. I was just an unremarkable, stubborn and foolish young boy. If God saw something in me, it must have been a heart that sought Him with deep sincerity and my tearful love for Him. Whatever the time or place, love is most important. God was searching for a person who would live with a heart of love and who, when faced with suffering, could cut off that suffering with a knife of love, and this led Him to me. I was a boy in a rural village with nothing to show for myself. Even now, I insist uncompromisingly on staking my life to live by God's love and nothing else.
There was nothing that I could know on my own, so I took all my questions to God. I asked, "God, do You really exist?" and that was how I came to know that He did, in fact, exist. I asked, "God, do You have any cherished desires?" and this was how I came to know that He, too, had cherished desires. I asked Him, "God, do you need me?" and this was how I discovered that He had use for me. On those days when my prayers and dedication connected to Heaven, Jesus appeared to me without fail, and he conveyed to me special messages. If I was earnest in my desire to know something, Jesus would appear with a gentle expression and hand down to me answers of truth. His words were always on the mark, and they struck deep into my bosom like sharp arrows. These were not mere words; they were revelations that opened a new world and teachings on the truth about the creation of the universe. When Jesus spoke, it seemed like a soft breeze, but I took his words into my bosom, and prayed with an earnestness strong enough to uproot a tree. Gradually I came into a realization about the origin of the universe and the principles of the world.
During the summer of that year, I went on a pilgrimage around the country. I had no money. I would go to homes and ask to be fed. If I was
lucky, I might get a ride on a truck. This was how I visited every corner of the country. Everywhere I went my homeland was a crucible of tears. There was no end to the sorrowful sighs of suffering from hungry people. Their baleful lamentations turned to tears that flowed as rivers.
"This wretched history must end as quickly as possible," I told myself. "Our people must not be left to suffer in sorrow and despair. Somehow, I need to find a way to go to Japan and to America so that I can let the world know the greatness of the Korean people."
Through this pilgrimage around the country, I found one more task I needed to accomplish, and I was able to redouble my determination toward my future work.
"I absolutely will save our people and bring God's peace on this earth."
As I clinched my two fists, my mind became solid and I could see clearly the path I had to follow in my life.