Ka Ipu o Lono shares weekly devotionals to provide spiritual enrichment to members of the Kamehameha Schools ‘ohana. For more inspiration, visit the KS “Our faith” website.
Mai hana ʻoukou i kekahi mea me ka
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or
He manaʻo o ke kahu
If there is anything this pandemic has shown us, it’s that we are not alone. We are not alone as we are going through this together, not just here in Hawaiʻi, but all around the world. We are not alone and should be aware of our impact on one another. Before the pandemic, we could do go about without much thought of just how much we impact one another. But now, we must realize that what we do as an individual, has such great impact on others. Therefore, since we are going through this alone, let us truly think in a kākou manner, to know that what we do, touches countless lives. And because of that, sometimes we will need to put aside our own desires for the good of all.
Paul challenges the people of Philipi to do just this, to put the needs of others first before themselves. “Don't push your way to the front; don't sweet-talk your way to the top. Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead. Don’t be obsessed with getting your own advantage. Forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand.” I love that last line, “forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand.”
This thought of putting yourself aside means that we take a step out of our own shoes and see how we are impacting others. Think of an ahupuaʻa. If the person on the top of the mauna or anyone along the way were to look just after their own interest, life further down the way would suffer for it. The wai for the loʻi kalo might be cut off, ruining the harvest which feeds many. Or the runoff from improperly protected soil would impact the reefs so the lawaiʻa would not be able to gather in the iʻa. That was not the way of our people, nor should it be our way today. We need to forget ourselves long enough to lend a helping hand, by following the guidelines by all the medical professionals. Wear a mask, wash your hands frequently, and watch your social distancing. Remember what we do or don’t do, impacts many.
We are also not alone in this – we have each other to get us through. This time would be challenging and frightening if we were alone. But we are not. We have each other to lean on, to understand what we are all going through, since we are all going through this together. Let us kākoʻo (support) one another. Let’s aloha i kekahi i kekahi (love one another).
As we head back to campus or into the community, let us truly take this passage to heart and forget about our own interests so we can put the needs of others first. In doing so, we will be doing the kākou thing and are STRONGER TOGETHER!
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