KS Kapālama junior Lilli-Ann Mundon Burgonio and KS Kealapono Literacy Coach Chloe Keane share this week’s devotional.
Kamehameha Schools has created a series of Hawaiian-focused devotionals for Lent, to honor the deep Christian faith of our founder Princess Pauahi. The devotionals were designed to be used by staffers, students and others to celebrate the coming of Easter, so please feel free to share them!
He manaʻo o ka limahana
KS Kealapono Literacy Coach Chloe Keane
You’re not good enough. You’re unwanted. You were a mistake.
These are lies I’ve believed for most of my life and caused me to strive to prove my worth. I tried to perform my way to being loved through academics, sports, work, relationships, people-pleasing – whatever it took. I tried to do it all and had plans for everything. Control and conditional love were ways I coped.
In September of last year, the Lord was really pressing me to surrender. Although on the outside, I may have looked like I had it all together, it was just a facade. I was luhi (exhausted) – really wanting to be freed of the expectations and pressure I placed on myself and others.
I shared my struggle with our kahu (pastor) and his wife, our life-long mentors, and they offered to pray with me.
As soon as we started praying the Lord showed me a picture. It was of a young, wide-eyed couple with a baby. It was my parents. The Lord said, “Your mākua (parents) were not married and you’ve believed you were a mistake.” I sat there and wept.
Until that moment, I didn’t know why I questioned how much I was loved and wanted. I realized the lie of being a mistake was something I had believed since I was in the womb. Then the Lord spoke again, “Your mākua were young and unsure of themselves. Their ʻohana didn’t want them together and they were scared.” My eyes flooded with tears and my heart exploded with aloha (compassion).
Then my mentor asked, “Do you see Jesus?”
Right away, I saw Him. He was embracing the three of us and said, “Regardless of their circumstance, they chose you. Ua koho au iā ʻoe no lāua. I chose you for them. I was with your mākua the whole time. I was with you before you knew it. I knit you in your mother’s womb. And I did that on purpose.”
I cried with tears of celebration. My identity in Iesū Kristo had taken new depth. Ua koho ʻO ia iaʻu.
The next day at church we sang “No Longer a Slave to Fear,” a song I had sang many times before, but on that day, I believed every word: “From my mother's womb, You have chosen me. Love has called my name. I've been born again, into a family. Your blood flows through my veins. I'm no longer a slave to fear. I am a child of God.”
I thank ke Akua for revealing His aloha for me even more. He has intentionally chosen me to be loved by Him. I was created on purpose, for His purpose.
Praying Psalm 139:13-16 with a heart of overwhelming gratitude.
E ka Makualani… You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. Mahalo for making me so wonderfully complex! Kupaianaha nō Kāu hana. Your workmanship is marvelous – how well I know it. You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion, as I was woven together in the dark of the womb. You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed. Mahalo e Iēhova, i ke koho ʻana mai iaʻu. Thank you Lord for choosing me, ma ka inoa o Iesū Kristo, ʻāmene.
I’ve learned to accept that cohesion only comes in God’s truth for me. God has created me so wonderfully and fearlessly that I stand alone. However, that is perfectly great. It is only God who can fully walk with me wholeheartedly. It is He and He alone who can fully love me. The truth only will ever lie in God. My truth can never lay in your heart as it does in mine. However, our truths will only ever be understood by God. For it is only through God that we are fully known and fully loved.