Recently I went to Hawaii with my daughter. I on a business trip, she for a pleasure/photography trip. The weather was gorgeous, the scenery spectacular and the people very friendly and kind. My friend/boss/host gave us a great deal of background and history and culture of the islands and it was quite fascinating. My daughter and I were able to visit local attractions that express the uniqueness of island heritage. Here is where I found things very interesting.
Hawaii is a very spiritual culture, but the native spiritualism is not Christian. Yes, 150 years ago many of the islanders embraced Christianity through the influence and evangelism of the first missionaries, along with the first time their language was put to print. But the native culture that is shown is not Christian.
There is, however, beauty in the search for truth and the pursuit of God.
It made me think of the Amy Grant song, “Better Than a Hallelujah.” That to God, our true seeking heart, broken before Him, even in the midst of our mess, is beautiful. However, I know that when man doesn’t find Jehovah through Jesus, he begins to create god in his image, and that seems to be a great deal of what happened in the Polynesian culture. The dance, the drums, the colors, the flowers — all of this beauty is to give praise and honor to the God they do not know. And so, in the beauty there is great sorrow – to me.
I found myself longing to speak the freedom of the gospel to all those around me. To shout out that their bonds can be broken and they can finally be liberated to worship that which the depths of their heart are longing for. And so I pray. From thousands of miles away, I pray for those who follow the oral traditions of their ancestors yet walk in darkness. In the midst of the beauty of God that surrounds them, they are still cloaked in darkness.
Join me today, as I pray for the non-Christian people of Hawaii. May their hearts be open to the revelation of Jesus to bring light and truth into their searching hearts.