“Building with Love”
On Sunday, I told the congregation about a moment of epiphany that I had over thirty years ago when I was in seminary. I was taking a class on biblical interpretation, and the professor asked us to turn to 1 Corinthians, chapter 8. He told us that if we could understand the opening verses of the chapter, we would grasp Paul’s entire letter to the Corinthians. I was puzzled as I read verses about meat being sacrificed to idols and whether or not it should be allowed when followers of Jesus gathered to worship and eat together. As the professor taught us in the class, the chapter was really all about love and Paul’s priority to build a community based on love. We also looked at the role of knowledge in the church and the importance that it be used with love as well.

By the end of the class, it occurred to me that a passage that I had skipped over many times actually had a tremendous message in it—a message that was initially hidden for me but very obvious to the first readers and hearers of Paul’s letter. This lesson caused me to read all of Scripture looking for a message, to read it with historical and linguistic context in mind, and to ask myself what it might have to do with today’s church, community and world. This epiphany also taught me to share with others in the church the messages that are often hidden and always, always, to share them with deepest love, which is the material needed for the building of any community.

May you grow in knowledge this week, and may you grow even more in love—by deeply feeling the love of God and others for you…and you for them.

Aloha nui!
Kahu Alan Akana


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“A Message from Kahu Alan Akana” is provided most weeks by Koloa Union Church, an Open & Affirming (ONA) congregation of the United Church of Christ (UCC), a member of the Kauai Association and Hawaii Conference.

To see a video of this week’s worship service, including the message, click HERE. You may see the Koloa Union Church YouTube channel to see previous worship services and many of Kahu’s past messages. You can 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.

You are welcome to join us on Sunday mornings! To see our Sunday morning schedule, click HERE.

Kahu Akana is also an accomplished artist! He specializes in creating vibrant watercolors of the flowers of Hawaii and hosts a Sunday afternoon reception in a gallery at his home, the Smith Memorial Parsonage. He also meets visitors by appointment. Most of the profit from the sales go for the maintenance and upkeep of the parsonage. To see a video about his art and gallery, click HERE. To see the gallery website, click HERE.