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[New York] “Okay! Thank you, God!” – Rosena’s Story

“Okay, okay, okay! Thank you, God.”

Boyfriend, music, part-time jobs, volunteer work, yoga, drugs….. I always found myself wanting something more. If I do all of these things, can I possible fill the emptiness inside? Or, do I have to find something more new and more exciting in order to be happy? When I was young, my parents had divorced. My mother granted me anything I wanted after the divorce and as time passed, the things that I wanted soon grew bigger and bigger.

Once I realized I could have anything I desired to have, I started wanting more expensive things. No matter how great the things I possessed were, the empty spot in my heart was never filled, so my mother and I moved to Hawaii, and then to the famous city of New York.

However, because I was not able to find the happiness I was looking for in New York I moved here and there until I decided to move back to New York. As I spent nearly two years trying to get rid of this emptiness, I realized that something was wrong. No matter how hard I tried, things just wouldn’t get better. There was just no use. I felt as if I were completely separated from God.

My age is now 30.

“What’s wrong?” “How can I overcome these situations?” In order to answer these questions, I started to try different things. I tried to get closer to God by reading the bible very diligently and going to church. I got a well-paying job by doing music which I loved so much, and at the same time, I did volunteer work at three different programs. Relying on yoga was something that I did trying to get out of the bad situations I had to encounter. If someone else would get sick, I would think, “It’s because they don’t do yoga.” And I tried for one month straight. However, it all came to an end when I was the one to fall ill.

I’ve been to the Times Square Church in Manhattan, the Tabernacle Church in Brooklyn and several other churches. I don’t remember the book’s exact title, but being connected through some religious book, I even attended the Sabbath Day Church. My spiritual life there was alright, but the book and also the church talked about money and tithes frequently. Despite all of this, I still felt like something was going wrong. I wasn’t happy at all. That was why I kept searching for churches and lived life without satisfaction, lived life just like a sinner.

“Please Come to the Bible Crusade!” One day, I was walking down the street as usual when someone said to me, “Please come to the Bible Crusade.” 『Abraham’s Faith』. I looked up to see a girl wearing a blue shirt, holding something out to me. It was a small booklet titled “Abraham’s Faith.” It was the same booklet that I had seen before, but surprisingly as I started reading, I was able to come out of what was making me miserable so much until now. I started to get curious about this book. Around that time, someone named Quan gave me a call. “Rosena, would you like to come join a bible study?” That was the first time I went to the Manhattan Church to have bible studies.

There was a young man there. He said he was the minister. That day was the very first day I had ever met him, but he told me about himself honestly, just like we had met and had been friends for a good ten years. This allowed me to open my heart and I started to talk about the things that were in my heart as well.

After that, I attended Sunday services there. During the sermon, Pastor said, “Why are you trying to lead yourself?” as he spoke with a loud voice. I was able to reflect on myself and how I had always followed my own foolish thoughts. I continued to attend the pre-bible conference and I was able to find the answers to all the things I was curious about for a long time. That was the day I realized that I was righteous. It was very easy. I didn’t have to do anything. All I did was accept the words pastor gave me. “I don’t have any sin? I don’t even have to try?” “Um…. Okay.” Whenever I had questions, the minister opened the bible. Hebrews chapter 10 verse 17 said, ‘I will remember their sins no more.’ ‘Okay!’ 1st Corinthians chapter 6, verse 11 said, “But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.” “Okay! Wow!! Thank you, God.” That was how I became a righteous person. I didn’t to do anything to earn it. Salvation was something I already had, but that was the moment I accepted it.

If I were to describe my life before receiving salvation, it would be like the song titled, ‘Motherless Child.’ The lyrics saying ‘I feel that I’m always alone and going further from my home’ seemed as if it were my story. Even though I had a mother, I felt as if I was always alone and becoming further and further away from God. However, inside the Lord, my song is ‘Amazing Grace.’

I have God, many brothers and sisters who were leading me home. I have found a haven for my heart, and no longer did I have to go around and look for reasons for my problems. Before, I tried to do everything diligently. I believed in myself and tried to clear all the problems myself. Now, I have completely thrown myself away. God will do all things.

Finally, the bible crusade had come to a start. I listened to the words of Pastor Ock Soo Park and I was very thankful. It was a gift from God, allowing me to rest peacefully. Although I am very busy with work, I always make time to come and listen to the word.

There’s even the Gracias Choir that brings me so much joy along with the word. To me, who has majored in music, the Gracias Choirs’ music is special. When I listen to other music, I usually listen to the pitch and the tempo, but when we listen to the music of the Gracias Choir that is played during the bible crusade, it seems as though God’s voice is reaching our wide open hearts. It is only when you throw away your own thoughts, that you can accept that beautiful melody. Their music is quite different from others’ music. Of course, people are moved by the music. Everyone is soaked into the music and they listen to the word. The call of God will cover all of New York. This is the blessing that the Bible Crusade has given to New York.

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