ASH WEDNESDAY: HĀ‘AWI HEMOLELE
Contributed by Kahu Kalani Wong, KSM Chaplain
(Reflect on this devotional from Wed., March 1 through Sat., March 4)
Have you ever had anyone do something really special for you? Like totally out-of-the-blue special?
My wife and I went out to dinner one evening at a restaurant located at a hotel. It was an outdoor dining setting and we were seated on the edge of the restaurant, overlooking a pool that bordered the dining area. Beyond that was a walkway.
There was a special event happening at that same venue with the attendees walking along that path to get to their event. In typical Maui style, we recognized a number of people and as they passed us, we exchanged a wave or a nod.
My wife and I enjoyed our evening out and when we were done, I called our waiter over for the bill. He politely informed us that our bill had been paid. We were stunned by this and asked by whom. It was one of those folks who had passed by on the way to the special event.
This kind and totally unexpected gesture went beyond any dreams on our part. We hadn’t done anything to which this person owed us but she felt compelled to honor us with that gift. What an act of kahiau – to give so freely or lavishly with the heart and not with expectation of return, by a person who is so piha i ka lokomaikaʻi.
As special as this kahiau gift was, Ke Akua showed what it means to hāʻawi hemolele – to give all that you have without holding anything back. This was done for all of us when Iesū sacrificed his life by dying on the cross for us. Despite what Iesū meant to Ke Akua, He was willing to give up His keiki hiwahiwa because of this great aloha for us.
Romans 5:8 tells us: “Akā, ua hoʻākāka mai ke Akua i kona aloha iā kākou, no ka mea, i ka wā e hewa ana kākou, make ihola ʻo Kristo no kākou.” – But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
I know that people will do things for you when you’ve been good but not when you’ve been bad but that’s what Iesū did. While we were yet sinners, He died for us. That is true aloha.
This mōhai aloha has promised us eternal life – ke ola mau loa. How do we claim this mōhai aloha?
The Baibala Hemolele tells us that “whosoever believes in Him shall have eternal life.” (John 3:16.) Just believe in Him and that gift is ours. We could have denied that our friend had paid for our dinner and made the waiter take our payment, but it wouldn’t have negated the fact that she had already made payment.
Iesū paid the bill for our sins and in that we can rejoice. Take a moment to reflect on how Ke Akua has showered His hāʻawi hemolele on you, and give Him thanks. If you have not had a chance to recieve this blessing, do so now.
Ke Kau Kalema, the season of Lent, gives us the opportunity to reflect on Jesus’ gift to us – to see what a blessing we have, look at where we messed up when we went against his will and make things right with him by asking for forgiveness.
Over the next several weeks until Easter, various staff from across the Kamehameha ‘ohana will share their manaʻo to help us prepare our hearts and minds during Lent. Use today’s devotional to kick off Lent on Ash Wednesday and enjoy Kanani Franco’s manaʻo for next week’s devotional.
May Ke Akua bless you richly as we journey together to Easter!
E Ke Akua mana loa, hoʻomaikaʻi iā ʻoe for your Keiki Hiwahiwa which was given to us so freely even while we were yet sinners. We recognize the wrong that we have done and ask for your forgiveness. May we take the opportunities during this special time to build our pilina with you. Guide us to live lives that are worthy as your people and help us to celebrate Ke Kau Kalema with renewed faith. Ma ka inoa o Ka Makua, a me ke Keiki a me ka ʻUhane Hemolele. ʻĀmene.
LENT WEEK 1: HE LEADETH ME
Contributed by Kanani Franco, KSM Christian Education Instructor
(Reflect on this devotional from Sun., Mar 5 thorugh Sat., March 11)
Kuʻu Alakaʻi, kuʻu alakaʻi, na Kona lima e paʻa mai,
a Iā ia wau e pili ai, a nāna wau e alakaʻi
He leadeth me, He leadeth me,
By His own hand He leadeth me,
His faithful follower, I will be,
For by His hand He leadeth me
As a young child, hearing this hīmeni being sung in my Ekalesia brought happiness to my soul and a huge smile to my face. Why you might ask? The singing of “Kuʻu Alakaʻi” signified the end to our fast from the night before and the beginning of ʻAi Berena or Holy Communion service, which was immediately followed by a huge breakfast of ʻono local favorites. As I grew older, I developed a deeper understanding of “hoʻokēʻai” or fasting in preparation for ʻAi Berena.
As I reflect on Ke Kau Kalema or the Season of Lent, I am reminded of the verse:
I Korineto 11:28
“E noʻonoʻo ke kanaka iā ia iho, a pēlā ia e ʻai ai i ka berena, a e inu ai hoʻi i ko ke kīʻaha.”
1 Corinthians 11:28
Everyone ought to examine themselves before they eat of the bread and drink from the cup.
Fasting during Lent gives us the opportunity to examine ourselves while reflecting on other areas in our lives that need to be emptied and cleaned out. Am I withholding forgiveness? Is there someone I have wronged? Is Christ a priority in my life, or do I put myself and others before Him?
Many of us may give up a favorite food, watching television or even surfing the Net during this time. The void in our lives that this creates should remind us of the ultimate sacrifice Christ made for us, so during this season of Lent, let us remember to create a space for Ke Akua in our lives and enhance our relationship with Him.
A Iā ia wau e pili ai, a nāna wau e alakaʻi
Ke Akua Hōʻano, Ke Aliʻi o nā aliʻi, Ka Haku o nā haku, we thank You for this season of Lent and the reminder of sacrifice , forgiveness and grace that it brings. Help us to clear out the areas of our lives that are not of You. Instead, fill it with Your love, generosity and compassion. And help us to keep You in the center of all that we do. Ma ka inoa o Ka Haku e Ola Ai - Amene
STRATEGIC PLAN 2020
SP2020 is a five-year strategic plan that will guide Kamehameha Schools from 2015 to 2020. The plan marks a starting point toward KS’ Vision 2040, which envisions success for all Native Hawaiian learners.
This series of Lent devotionals supports Vision 2040 by instilling in haumāna and others the Christian and Hawaiian values embraced by KS’ beloved founder, Princess Bernice Pauahi Bishop.