My dear American Friends:
One of the recommendations I suggest to my children is "TO TALK TO GOD BEFORE WE TALK TO ANYBODY ELSE." When they get up in the morning, I suggest, before you complain, before you argue with someone, talk to God. (Early in the morning, we are usually touchy, especially when you are living with many others like our children). And our children have been trying to do that (maybe not all of my children), and our Home has become a lot brighter. The other day, as I was talking to the children about prayers, one child suggested that we think of someone nice and thank God. And I thought that it was a good idea. Another child suggested that we think of something nice about some people we hate. And I thought that it was a great idea TO START A DAY HAPPY! Frankly, I have some great people whom I do not like at all. If I keep thinking about their bad things, it will only make my day miserable. How I thank the child who made those great suggestions.
Some of the people I thank God everyday are our dorm mothers. They are not really mothers, they are more like big sisters and they are in charge of 10 to 15 children. They live with the children 24 hours a day. They have their own problems and yet they need to deal with problems of at least ten other children. If their children are the babies, they may have to spend all day in the toilet, helping them and teaching them to use toilets and washing diapers etc. And it's not easy for young unmarried girls. (Our dorm mothers are not usually married - old misses. They feel that they can not concentrate on our children if they are married, because they are so busy that they don't have time to date men). But they are wonderful workers. One of them keep their toilet so clean and beautiful that sometimes, I take the guests to the TOILET FOR SIGHTSEEING.
I was reading a Greek Bible the other day and I found that the Greek work "diakonia" is often used as other names for Christian workers. It is often translated as "deacon", but really according to the Bible, every Christian is a "deacon." And "diakonia" means something like "through dust." There are some great jobs for the Christians, but the most important job is to clean the dust of the world, like a dust-cloth, like wash-rag, like a mop. In fact, my prayer since that day, has been "God, MAKE ME A MOP OF THIS WORLD."
March is the season for graduation. Our Christian University graduated 125 servants of the Lord. Also I jump around everyday for the graduation of our children, as eight of our children graduated the High Schools, 1 graduated Jr. Highs and 5 graduated Elementary School and 3 graduated Kindergarten. Even though I can not go to their schools often, I always try to attend their graduation ceremonies. Because for our children, many of whom were dying in the streets by hunger etc., graduations of the schools are almost God's miracles. Korean schools, other than Colleges and Kindergartens, do not use gowns for their graduations, but I feel like giving them gowns and even crowns. After all, all the lives of our children are miracles. We usually give them bouquets, take pictures and go to eat noodles. Actually, we celebrate most of our special occasions with noodles wishing for NOODLE-LONG LIVES.
In March, even if we don't buy flowers, we have plenty of flowers in our back yard. It starts with azalea, forsythia, and cherry blossoms. Even when we don't have flowers in our back yard, we have plenty of flowers inside... all MY CHILDREN ARE BEAUTIFUL FLOWERS. No matter how cold and windy outside, my children are always warm and smiling! Their smiles always melt my problems and make me to thank God! They say that I look much younger for a man of 76 (I have just gained one more, not only my birthday, but also Lunar New Year's day just passed), perhaps it's because I live among many bouquets of flowers.
Yours because of Calvary,
YOON KWON CHAE
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