The Words of the Pearson Family
I would like to relate some of my experiences which relate to my finding this wonderful message. For me, the Divine Principles are great truths which have opened doors that lead to a better way of life, or perhaps I should say to the more excellent way of life.
1 am thirty-four years old and I was born in Port Sandy Oregon. I have spent most of my life in Warren, Oregon which is a small farming community twenty-five miles North of Portland. I began my search for God and spiritual truth when I was eleven or twelve years old. I was raised in a Lutheran Church and was very faithful in attending Sunday school and church until I started high school, at which time I lost interest in church. In searching for a closer understanding with God which the Lutheran Church could not, offer me. During my high school days there was little harmony between my father and mother; consequently, I felt a lack of love and security.
My search for God continued, and I shed many tears of frustration and repentance Trying to find Him. To really find God became the motivation of my life. The scripture "Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things will be added unto you" kept coming to my mind.
In the summer of 1950, during Billy Graham's Portland Crusade, I attended many of his meetings. He spoke with great fervor and a thundering voice, warning of the coming judgment. At his last meeting he spoke of the days Sodom and Gomorrah in relation to the twentieth century judgment which will come to America if we, as a nation, do not repent and turn to God. In closing the meeting he asked those who needed God to raise their hand for prayer. I raised my hand and I went forward to accept Christ in the best way I knew how. I believe that there must have been at least five hundred who went forward that, day. There was a great hush over the audience and God's spirit spoke to many in the crowd of twenty-four or twenty-five thousand people. I believe that this crusade was: the peak, spiritually for the people of Portland. People were talking about God in schools, factories, and on the streets. Since 1950, the spiritual life of the city has been declining. The only hops for America is through an acceptance of the true message of the Second Advent in the hearts and minds of the people.
In the orthodox teachings, I was told that the earth would be destroyed by fire and that there is a literal hell of fire for those who are outside of Christ. This did not seem logical to me. I wondered how God could destroy such a beautiful creation and I wondered how He could send people who had never heard of Jesus Christ: to a hell of fire. I did not realize that in two or three years I would find the answers to these and many other questions.
About this time I began to learn about the spirit world from a Christian lady who was like a second mother to me. She told me that she sometimes could see the spirits. (Later this helped me to understand the true meaning of resurrection). This wonderful lady told me that sometimes she would see beautiful angels. A few months before her death she told me she felt that God was keeping her on the earth for some special purpose. I sincerely believe that God used this Christian lady to prepare my heart to receive the Divine Principles. This lady, Mrs. Marie Nelson, died about six months before I found the Principles.
I first came into contact with the Principles through a man named John Schmidli, who is the owner of a motel near St. Helens, Oregon. Later, on the fortieth birthday of our Master, his house became the first officially dedicated chapel in the United States. It is the United Chapel of St. Helens.
One evening I stopped by his motel. He was very much excited about a man he had met in a Portland church. John said that this man was spiritually a very great man -- even greater than Billy Graham. John also said that this man had told him that the Garden of Eden was going to be restored. (I was later to find that God is restoring the original sinless condition of mankind, not the physical restoration, of the original Garden of Eden. I must admit that I was very skeptical, but I was also very curious. I decided that I would like to meet this man, I was wondering what kind of a man John had found and what strange religion he believed.
The first time I saw Mr. Kim I was surprised. My spirit sensed that he really had something, but I was also somewhat afraid. I had been indoctrinated through the orthodox church to beware of false prophets. (Since coming so an understanding of this message I know that most of the religious leaders in the orthodox churches will be the false prophets because they will be alienating God's chosen saints from following this message.) Mr. Kim told me that God is restoring the number 4 foundation and that God would not allow a single man or woman into the number one Kingdom of Heaven. How strange this seemed to my own way of thinking. I became confused because my mind was clouded with the orthodox teachings. Often I would disagree with what he told me. But although I would sometimes disagree, I was very impressed with his excellent Bible background.
Mr. Kim was patient, sincere, and he always manifested God's love. He was firm and unchangeable. At times it was necessary for him to chastise me because Satan would try to invade my mind with doubt and fear.
I believe that the easiest portion of the Principles for me to accept was the failure of John the Baptist in his mission. This made the mission of Jesus Christ logical for me. I also found the "Fall of Man" to be logical, although it was a revolutionary truth. Mr. Kim urged me to study the Divine Principles at least three times. I had doubts about certain truths, but as I read and studied the Principles, new truths were revealed to me. Sometimes my heart would thrill to this new truth as I could digest it. What a wonderful plan God has for His children.
As I continued studying the Principles, everything began to fall into place. I struggled with some parts of the Principles -- especially the fact that Jesus of Nazareth was not coming back to earth and that the fire judgment means word judgment.
As I look back, I thank God for His great mercy in choosing a wretch like myself, and for having the patience to not let me go.
Despite the opposition I have received from many Christians, I still feel compelled to win them. Many Christians are narrow minded, lack a true loving heart, and some are even hypocrites; but still there are God's loving children within the orthodox church want a closer walk with their Creator.
I was once told how our beloved Master's heart was sad because the words of the New Testament will prevent the Christians from accepting this new truth. This is a remarkable parallel to Jesus' day when the Jewish people held to the literal word of the Old Testament, even when Jesus announced His Messiahship.
I especially remember one dream that I had about our Master, I was in a park with a group of people who were listening to Master. Suddenly He looked at me with compassion. I will never forget His sacred eyes which shined with understanding and love. Only the true Son of God could manifest Himself in this way. His look seemed to go into my very being, and He surely could see what was good and what was bad in my heart.
Before coming to the Principles and the truth of our Master, I felt that my life was destined to be full of struggle and frustration. Now I know that some of life's richest blessings are promised to me.
I am thankful that God has sent Mr. Kim to America, and I am grateful to have found this "jewel" of incalculable price.
In spite of the struggle to keep out of Satan's accusation, I feel God's love. I also feel new confidence and hope. I know that I have the hope of becoming a new creature in Christ in the truest sense of the word. I also have the opportunity of helping others find the way by showing them a loving heart and telling them of the More Excellent Way to life through our Beloved Master and the Heavenly Father.
Vernon Pearson, Boise, Idaho.