The Words of the McLackand Family
2nd SET FR Condition Reflections
Moonwha McLackand, Friedericke Stocklein, Carlina Ichijo, Theresa Heil, Sigfrid Ostberg, Janina Dubisz, Patrick Hanna
January 1, 2007
Honestly, I dont know where to start reflecting. These last 2 months have been a really intense period in my life- I dont think I ever had an opportunity to give so much and so unconditionally. To do things I also felt I could never do and just wouldnt be good at. Starting with external things like co-driving and reading maps, to having deeper sharings and helping people open their hearts. God guided me to learn new aspects about myself, because I had to be Mom, Dad, elder sister, friend, spiritual leader, teacher, manager, nutritionist, psychologist, entertainer, nurse- and a few more&Almost feel like I learned the most out of the 7 people team. I felt somehow I was there chosen for the 6 people, to somehow take care of 6 of Gods precious children. I felt trusted in some ways. I had to also learn to trust myself and my own judgment. Often I would say or do things according to inspiration, and later recognize Gods hand in that or how it affected, helped or challenged someone.
I am also grateful to have learned how to deal with all these kinds of characters, and I feel stronger to embrace more kinds of people, not just to accept, but to understand and love. Its beautiful to forget about yourself because you are so busy taking care of everyone else. Its nice the team could also learn from me, you know, most of them want to be a team leader someday-so I had to keep a good standard so that they can even raise the bar. In the end it was more of a family then a team really. Many times, I felt my relationship with God also improved- as I had to spontaneously make decisions and ask God for guidance and support.
My prayers are now more spontaneous and simple, in the last week during HDH, I wrote down "prayers are the voice of the heart". So actually, if you speak from your heart to anyone, even God, its a prayer. Originally, speech should have been like prayer or vice versa; when we can freely communicate with the heart. Eventually thats what its like in spirit world I guess. Anyway, thank you for all your support, trust, love and attention. I really couldnt have done it alone. Vertical alignment is so, so important- to sustain spiritual life. I want to be alive forever.
My internal goal for the 2nd condition was to "Be Gods child", which to me means to first be able to receive all the love that he has for me. Sometimes there is so much blocking us or limiting us from feeling his love. And it also means to personalize my relationship- once you really feel he is your father, you automatically want to do your best; so that he can be proud of you. You want to represent and inherit his principles and his way of life. Through this Father-Daughter relationship I could also reflect upon my relationship to my dad and my whole family. For FR Its so important to know who you are and sometimes people looked at me in a way that I dont like them to see me, I felt judged and misunderstood. But its really hard to learn that you always can come back to God and feel like his child.
The other part of my condition Goal was "&and make God a reality". Especially when I fundraised in shops and went Blitzing, it was a breakthrough, when I started to make only God my reality. All the people that are looking at me and maybe laugh at me or are annoyed, it all doesnt count, its not real, it doesnt come from there true heart; its just the culture of selfish love and I dont want this to be my reality. But maybe the greater challenge for me was houses, because it can be very lonely when people arent at home and you are on your own with thousands of thoughts in your head & Suddenly your enemy is more inside yourself; staying focused and believing in it. Some days I didnt feel fulfilled or inspired, but then God became reality for me through seeing my brothers and sisters relationships to him. They are thinking about him so deeply. Sometimes I felt really ashamed that I didnt appreciate and realize that they are Gods children and reflect him. This became one of my favorite parts of the day, listening to their reports after fundraising and also their prayers when you go together on a run&
What I also started to learn, is to find my own joy in doing things and to be convinced about my victories, to take ownership over my own growth! The best feeling ever is to find your joy in serving others and going beyond yourself! What I still need to maintain is to be independent from what I receive, to find my conviction and joy in doing things unconditionally. And to always be myself, be true and honest, otherwise there wont be any purpose in what youre doing&
At first, I felt really nervous about FR because I had never done houses before and also being the only American on SET made me proud and a bit uncomfortable. This is because I didnt know anybody at all and being surrounded by people who could speak German and I couldnt, then I felt a bit left out of conversations sometimes, but I tried hard to bear with it. After a while though, I didnt mind and Ive learned a little so its all good.
Anyway, FR I guess was really good because I was experiencing the same things that my parents did and my sister. Of course, sometimes I struggled a little and I wanted very much to give up and go home to my family, but I knew in my heart that I couldnt and I knew that FR was still filled up with experiences that I still yet had to experience. In the end, I was glad that I stuck it out. For me personally, being with the team was really awkward at first because I didnt know everyone that well. For a while, I felt like there was this large gap separating me from the team because everyone was older than I was and from different backgrounds, thus it was difficult to connect at first. After my 18th birthday and also during the course of the 1st condition it got better and I felt more level with everyone. My other big improvement was in prayer because after a while I would just tell God how I was feeling right at the moment and treating God like a best friend, and just telling him my fears and worries. In that way, I was building my relationship with God. God was kinda like a diary so to speak.
I remember a few really cool experiences I had that touched me in some way. For example, my internal goal one day was treat God as my best friend and that day, when I spoke to one lady, I felt like God was standing next to me and really supporting me somehow. It was like I had this feeling of total peace and serenity. Ive never felt so peaceful or calm in my life. I also felt like anything could happen and I wouldnt mind at all. This one day, my goal was to be grateful, and this one lady rejected me very strongly and afterwards, I tried to be happy about it but I couldnt and then I started sobbing. But I was practicing my goal because I was grateful to Know that was what God went through too, but on an astronomical scale.
The things I learned are too numerous to count but Ill mention a few. I learned how to just be myself more, be more confident, and to humbly take advice from the brothers in my team. I feel that they gave so much and I want to give something back but Im not sure how. I hope to just in general learn even more, Im not quite sure what; but when I do Ill let you know.
For me it was a really good and valuable experience to be in the same team through 2 conditions. The main point I learnt was that everybody is so different. Our team goal was to find God and our self. For me to find God, my image of God in my own little me, was not so challenging, but to find God for my brother/sister right next to me can be seen so differently, it makes me ask the question- so who is God?. It makes me realize that to grasp God finally you must be able to grasp humanity.
My personal goal of this condition was to deepen my relationship with God. Standing now at the end of this condition I ask myself- have I succeeded? Didnt I get more confused about who God actually is? I think the picture I have in mind now might not be completely defined yet and it might seem even more unclear because I got rid of some images I guess; but this understanding, this picture has become wider.
The thing I struggled with most through this condition was definitely myself. To describe all the details would take far too long, so Ill try to summarize shortly: I have an ideal of myself, a goal I want to reach and when Im not able to just easily live up to this image, I get quite frustrated with myself. I know I need to improve myself by loving myself. Might sound bad, but we treat others the way we treat our self. Its hard to summarize, but basically its always about having harmony in myself in order to bring harmony to others. Woow, so many things Ive learned, and so much more still to go.
I can say that I had a quite good start because on the first day I decided that I wanted to have a good beginning and also I was in my favorite area (city). So the first run of this condition was really nice and I could enjoy it, but the second run was tougher because then I did houses and apartments. But in the first week I could overcome my struggle of apartments because I really wanted to and also forced myself. The second week was the best week of the whole FR condition, in that week I decided to invest more, and was also determined and serious about FR. I was also really determined to reach our team goal. In that week I motivated and prepared myself in the prayer after morning service; I always said to God that Im happy to work together with him and to meet his lovely children. I really wanted to feel him and to relate with him. I had really nice runs in that week and could experience God, also the atmosphere was so nice and I was really looking forward to meet the person who would open the next door.
I could also realize that you always have to start somehow every day new and invest new in every single day. There was one run when I had at the beginning negative thoughts, like: its raining, I have to go up the hills and the houses are also not so close to each other, and so on&So thats why I guess the first three houses rejected me, then I decided not to go on like this and also I didnt want to stay in a bad mood. So I created or changed my mood and thought that God would pull me up the hills. From that moment on, everything changed and I had an amazing run. I guess that was also the best run of the condition. When the run was over, I really was somehow sad to leave this lovely atmosphere.
Then I got injured. It was sometimes tougher not to go FR then to go. Sometimes I was depressed and frustrated. But I was really happy that my team leader was always there to lift me up. I think without him I wouldnt have survived those two weeks. He also gave me a really good book- with the heart of a father. I could gain so much out of this book and could relate more to True Father; I guess I could never relate to him that much. Also to spend lots of time with my team leader was really nice and I could see how much he did for us and how he could see the team and every single person from the point of view of a leader somehow. Usually you just see your own struggles and so I also had time to reflect lots about my team members, but also of myself and FR. Even if I was not FR, I could gain a lot out of that time.
I still have a lot to learn or change. The most important things are to unite with my central figure; that means to not complain so much and just accept what he says, and in general to overcome my fallen natures.
What to say? The very least I can say is that this time has been very interesting. First of all, FR is a bit special since you are in many ways cut off from ordinary or normative life. You come to live in some kind of reality marble or even marble reality. I would like to refer to this phenomenon as something close to living in an otherworld (the other side of the moon, existence within bubble). You are positioned somewhere in the desert and have to perform very unusual and strange tasks that you normally would never think on. You live and work in the middle of society but do not actually partake. This is a very interesting thought.
With that in mind I would like to continue on to a slightly different topic. Basically, this FR time is the first big chunk of the SET year, and so I would like to compare these months to the rest of the year. One conclusion I arrive at, and I do believe it is not that far from the truth, is that if FR is the living in an Otherworld, then many of the other activities, e.g. witnessing and the three month period, are closer to living in World (everyday life, what is shown on the surface, normativity). You find yourself in a state closer to what you will experience when you get back home.
In that sense I would like to see this time as some kind of preparation for the rest of the year. You may acquire a certain set of skills or improve in certain fields, but all of it is not necessarily directly applicable to everyday life. You create a foundation, internally and externally, for the rest of the year.
I believe that I actually had quite a lot of time to think and formulate different thoughts. For this I am very grateful. I shall not say that I am much of a master FRer, but I think I could gain a bunch. That would be in fields such as confidence, way of thought and method of work.
I mean, I always find it difficult to pinpoint exactly defining moments that have lasting impact, so Ill just talk about it all as a cumulative process. Generally I just feel stronger and more ready to embrace the coming challenges of this year. If I were too brave I might even claim to be more attuned and aligned, but Ill just state that I have in some sense and respect attained a clearer mind. Feels good.
Im not really sure what to write. So, I shall just end by saying that this is a great way to begin the year, this empowered by the Dae Mo Nim event, which I had the possibility to join in Budapest. It was really fantastic to have the opportunity whilst being in this program.
Thank you for everything.
The 2nd condition was different from the first one because we changed from Holland to Austria. Ja. I was very happy that we didnt change the teams for the next condition because I really felt the team could have done so many things better and so I personally was grateful to see the 2nd condition also as a 2nd chance to unite more with the team.
Due to the new circumstance we had- speaking German instead of Dutch (German is my native language), It was more challenging for me because I felt strange saying my line in German and could understand everything that the people said. Yes. I have to admit I really stuck too much to Holland and compared. So I think the first week was really tough and I felt uncomfortable going fundraising. Also Silvia Onni asked us again to give morning service but I felt so bad because I couldnt find a topic and I cannot express myself; so people would not get my point because I cannot find it while I am speaking. So I didnt give any. Naja. However, on the last week I gave one; but this is maybe something I want to improve and learn- how to give something from the heart which can help people to grow.
Well. So after a certain time of FR I didnt even realize anymore that I spoke German and it was ok. But in general, FR was somehow more usual but also more challenging. At the end it was so hard to persevere the day. There was so much pressure (I dont know why and from where it came. Especially in the last week I struggled so much going out FR. So now, when I look back somehow I feel victorious because even though it was so hard I persevered and did it.
So what else can I say that I had a really nice team. Everyday there were some interesting discussions about churchie stuff. I cant explain it, but it was so nice having had all these brothers in the team with the discussions and the sisters who never stopped laughing because of so many things. I am going to miss them all. But this family stays in my heart.
The 2nd condition provided a new level of challenges for myself. Fundraising in the small towns was really beautiful and liberating (but a crazy amount of Polizei crawled everywhere). I think my external difficulties arose from my method, so after trying to communicate more I felt far more empowered and confident to meet the people of Austria.
From a more internal viewpoint, I felt I was able to be honest and somehow dependable, and stable in my understanding of fundraising. I also felt I could be real and genuine in my approach to the people and keep my dignity and honor. I had many special experiences with the people of Austria, and am always amazed by the kindness and trust of strangers-it is hard to write them down but such experiences always assure me of the internal nature of fundraising and make me want to pass on such love to others.
I always felt confident that regardless of my experiences I could strengthen myself with each day of fundraising; especially in regards to my internal goal for the condition: to improve my relationship with God. It was special to feel the fire in my belly but I was disappointed I could not make my peak goal; I could again learn that if I really wanted to I could have achieved my goal, but that I had sacrificed earlier opportunities which made the difference between achieving my goal or not. I saw that FR, your effort etc. is really a test of reliability, integrity and honesty and I feel that it can be applied to real life situations which I will encounter straight after and even whilst writing this reflection.
Fundraising is the restoration of all things and a real opportunity to practice mind and body unity, living for greater good, ownership and dreaming big etc.-I am clear on that, and it is empowering to be in control of yourself. I knew why I was doing it- and was challenged a lot. I can say I had many precious times alone (with God), times when I felt strong and part of a great tradition and the providence, and times I felt weak and pathetic-but when I would fight for what I believe in and claim some victory. But, the most resounding experiences are those ones when you know what you want and why you want it; you do your part and you know that God, the spirit world and the people will conspire to help you achieve it.
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