We had a meaningful and joyful worship service on Sunday. We welcomed Steve Sparks and Norma Doctor Sparks into our church membership. (There are a few others planning to join later in the fall as well!) We collected over $500 for the “Neighbors in Need” special mission offering for the United Church of Christ. We celebrated World Communion Sunday, with special emphasis during the service on our abundant world.
In my message, I talked about this beautiful and amazing world in which we live. In traditional Hawaiian culture, people were aware of the abundance of these islands but also knew that the resources were limited, so they only took what was needed for family and community. When the chiefs, with the help of the priests, saw that any resources were getting low, they would declare “kapu” on them, thus forbidding anyone from taking any more. These practices were part of a larger worldview of stewardship and respect for the Earth and her waters. Today, it seems that the mentality is to acquire as much as you have room for, and when you run out of room then build or rent space to store even more.
Jesus talked a lot about abundance and life, believing that abundant life is found in love, generosity and joy—and definitely not in acquiring more and more and more…. In Luke, chapter 12, he said to the crowd,
Be on your guard against all kinds of greed;for one’s life does not consistin the abundance of possessions.
Jesus wanted people to have abundant life while they experienced God’s abundant love as they lived on this abundant planet. Apparently, it was a temptation way back then to give all of this up in order to acquire possessions. My prayer is that we would all truly live abundantly by focussing on the things that Jesus focussed on, including generosity and joy!
Click HERE to see Sunday’s message by Kahu Akana. You may see the Koloa Union Church YouTube channel to see many of his past messages and subscribe in order be notified when a new message is posted. Please share these videos with friends and invite them to church. Please feel free to “Like” any of the videos you see and share them on social media, such as Facebook, so that others will notice them.
“A Message from Kahu Alan Akana” is provided most weeks by the Kahu (Pastor) of Koloa Union Church, an Open & Affirming (ONA) congregation of the United Church of Christ (UCC), a member of the Kauai Association and Hawaii Conference.