God descended from Heaven, and gave us the ingredient to live a joyous life; be good, and one will have joy and be bad and one will suffer. This is a simple concept. But God also said that true joy is shared joy. We cannot have true joy while others suffer. But how do we share our joy? We can attempt to reason with others; but sometimes due to past knowledge, people will not understand this simple ingredient for a joyous life. We need God’s assistance. God has given us a simple prayer to bring people to our churches or places of worship to share this simple formula for joy. This prayer is called the Joyous Service, which is referred to as the fertilizer or koe in Japanese. Why is it referred to as a fertilizer? The following is the explanation.
God descended from Heaven at a particular time and location as predestined at the time of the origin of mankind. He descended upon a rural farming community heavily dependent on agriculture for their livelihood. God attempted to make it easy for the early followers to spread the teachings, by comparing the harvesting of crops with the number of people coming to our churches to be saved.
In farming, to harvest a crop, one needs a field. If one wants a large harvest, one needs to acquire a large field. It is the same with one’s desire to spread God’s truth. One can build a large church to bring in many people, or a smaller fellowship for a smaller congregation.
In farming, the next step will require the manual labor of planting the seeds, and toiling the soil. This would be the most strenuous and time-consuming stage of harvesting a crop. In attaining new members to our churches, this stage of planting the seeds is when we actually take part in spreading the teachings to others. The process of spreading the truth to others is called hinokishin and requires a tremendous commitment. In the future, advertising on radio, television, Internet, newspaper, and billboards may supplant the door-to-door technique used most often today. This would be like the machines that have replaced manual labor in the planting of the seed stage today.
The farmers need plenty of pure water for the seeds to germinate and the plant to grow in order to produce a large harvest. In the harvesting of new members, the pure water can be compared to a mind that is pure, and without greed, arrogance and self-love. This is a mind that will bring new members to our churches.
After the seeds germinate and the plants erupt, the farmer will need to weed the field, so that the plants grow unencumbered. The weeds tend to compete for the precious water, and nutrients vital for the plants to grow. In the harvesting of new members, these weeds can be compared to the evils of arrogance, greed, and self-love in our minds. We must weed these dusts from our minds so that our minds can be pure like water.
Most farmers know that the secret formula for an abundance of crop is the fertilizer. In the harvesting of new members, God has given us the Joyous Service, which is referred to as the fertilizer. This is a special prayer, which God has given us to bring new members to our churches and fellowships.
In conclusion, to bring new members to our churches, we must:
- build a church or fellowship
- spread God’s truths/hinokishin
- have a pure mind like water by removing greed, arrogance and self love.
- Pray by using the Joyous Service