No. 15

Dear brothers and sister,

Happy Ahn Shi Il. I hope you have a good week ahead of you. I want to report to you. As we all experience, reporting is not always an easy thing to do. However, if we don’t communicate regularly with the people in our life we end up as an island, and that will always be our own doing, not someone else’s. It’s all the more ironic if we live on an island, as you and I do.

As it is over a month since I wrote any communication, please forgive me for missing out a lot of stuff.

Attending the 7 day Divine Principle workshop in September reminded me to always try to be a beginner in my attitude towards learning. I went originally to take some notes from the power point slides so that I can use them more effectively. I also wanted to support what I think is an important project which David Hanna is developing through the education department. However, I realised eventually that actually I was mainly there to participate and to go through my own spiritual journey, which is what happens when we actively listen to God’s word. It helped me to take a better look at myself. If you would like to go there is another 7 days just before Christmas (15th Dec- 21st Dec.)It is different.

I have been keeping my commitment to the small group study program some of us hold in our HQs in Lancaster Gate. We study a chapter of Hyung Jin Nim’s new book each week, practice the exercises that he outlines, and then discuss our progress. The advantage that regular study brings is that it allows us to start applying what we learn in our daily life. And if we do that with other people,  we are able to create fellowship in our life: a social experience where we hear God’s gentle voice, and feel his warm embrace.

Last week at Sunday Service I realised how if we don’t have other structures and processes established for our community Sunday can become a hub for all information. I have been researching what Hyung Jin Nim is doing and discussing and planning with our regional pastors how we can establish small group programs where we can share our faith with each other, and also with friends, and neighbours, colleagues, etc. Would you like to feel the church coming back into your home? If not then it is probably good to get out and visit other people’s places of worship. Either way it is important to experience fellowship in our life.

I had my interfaith rebirth experience recently when I was invited to give a talk at the UCL interfaith society, which was pioneered by some of our recent CARP students. Talking to the new society president, who is a Hindu, we found out we went to the same school many years ago, well at least many years ago for me. I had a power point that I had used in Paraguay and many of the ideas were sourced from a talk my genius Muslim friend, Zishan, had given at a Faithlink weekend. I hadn’t realised he had also been invited to speak on this occasion. As I got to speak first I warned everyone that any content that Zishan gave which repeated what I had just said was probably originally from him. What a great way to compliment a friend!

Over all I would like to report one key lesson from the last month or so: I am realising what I am good at and where I experience confidence. I am also much more aware of many areas in which I am weak, lacking, and not confident.  Both these matters are down to things like my character, my experience, my aptitude, etc. But most of all I am grateful for the ability to become more aware and the opportunity that awareness gives me to grow. Thank you to all of you for your kind words when I meet you, your understanding, and encouragement. It is an honour to be part of your community.

I would like to say quite a lot to you about November 22nd. But I will try to do that next time, hopefully v soon. Take care, and God bless you.

Simon

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About simoncooper

working at 43LG church community in West London

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