Let me start off with a few things about myself. I am a first generation American who is primarily Filipino, Spanish and Hungarian. With that said, I am a woman of color, who frankly, looks all white. I was born and raised on the North Shore of O’ahu, but currently live in the mainland.
Now, let me tell you a little bit about Hawai’i, because I’m sure you don’t know much about it since it’s only given like, a paragraph of recognition in our history books. The Ancient Hawaiians traveled by canoe for thousands of miles using only the stars to navigate and found themselves in the Hawaiian Islands. They settled and their culture spread throughout the mountains and shores.
In 1778, Captain Cook “discovered” the islands, despite the thriving population residing there (he can be compared to Christopher Columbus). In the 1830s, the Sugar Industry was introduced, bringing a diverse range of immigrants from China, the Philippines, Japan and many other countries to work on the plantations, creating the diverse and ethnic population that makes up the islands today. In the 1890s, Queen Lili’uokalani (lily-oo-oh-kah-lah-nee) was imprisoned in an upstairs bedroom of her palace and soon after, the monarchy was overthrown. Hawai’i became a state in the 1950s.
With all of that said, we can now discuss an issue that I have realized needs to be addressed.
Since I moved to the mainland, I have had many encounters where people assure me that I am Hawaiian, despite my rebuttals that I am definitely not. The conversation usually goes something like this:
Them: “So you’re from Hawaii, are you Native Hawaiian?”
Me: “Oh no, I’m Filipino, Hungarian and Spanish.”
Them: “No, I mean, were you born and raised there?”
Me: “Yeah, but I’m not Hawaiian.”
Them: “Yeah you are. It’s the same thing.”
No, it is most definitely not the same thing. If you were in Japan and saw a white person or any person not of Japanese descent, would you ask if they were Japanese simply because they lived there?
No, you wouldn’t because you should know that residency does not equate descent. Sure, you might be curious and ask, but if they told you they weren’t Japanese, you wouldn’t try to convince them that they are. As I mentioned, Hawaii’s population is made up of a ton of immigrants, and just because someone’s family may have been there for generations, they are still not Hawaiian unless they actually have Hawaiian blood.
Not only do people assume that I am Hawaiian simply because I am from there, but they will continuously say that I look Hawaiian even if they have no idea what someone of Hawaiian descent looks like. Hawaiians are people of color, as are many of those who reside in the islands. However, as I previously mentioned, I do not look like a person of color even though I am, so why would you associate me, a seemingly full white person, to be Hawaiian? It makes no sense.
There are many things wrong with choosing to misidentify an individual or a group of people.
One, is that by you convincing yourself that I am something that I am not, you are diminishing who I am, and how I identify myself.
Second, you are creating an illusion based upon your own desires of who Hawaiians as a people are.
Third, by using me specifically, you are whitewashing the image of an entire race. I could go on, but there is not enough time in the world to name them all.
Their culture has been reduced to leis, aloha shirts, surfing, and tiki torches. Aloha has become a household word used by people who have no understanding of what Aloha truly means. Girls go as hula dancers in an effort to show skin on Halloween without any second thought. Please stop. We cannot continue to misidentify, appropriate and basically erase Hawaiian culture, just as has been done to the Native Americans.
Hawaiians have already been stripped of their land. I will not allow them to be stripped of their identity as well.
A Prayer for Loneliness
Heavenly, Most Loving, Gracious Father, we come before you to humbly ask that you comfort us in our moments of loneliness, that you be our shelter in the midst of the storm, that you walk beside us every step of the way.
Lord, at times we feel so alone, crying out for attention, in desperation, looking for some sort of acknowledgement from a single soul. Remind us that you are always there, right at our side, whenever we call.
No matter the time, the hour, the situation, Oh Lord, you have promised to never leave us nor forsake us.
Deuteronomy 31:6 Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”
Psalm 23:4 Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.
Forsaken by loved ones
Lord, there are times we think we can turn to loved ones and friends in our time of need, but they forsake us.
Oh Lord, you alone know what we are going through. Sometimes we vocalize our thoughts but no one understands.
There are many times we cry out to people to listen, when we need a friend, but they hardly ever take the time to show compassion.
Strength to carry on
Give us strength, dear God, to carry on when we are down and out and have no one to turn to. Let us always remember that You are our friend and our companion in our time of need.
God, let us feel the Holy Spirit as He comforts us. Help us to realize that You are the only one we need, especially in times of trials.
1 Peter 5:7 Casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.
Psalm 28:7 The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and he helps me. My heart leaps for joy, and with my song I praise him.
What a friend we have!
What a friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear. What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer.
Touch the hearts of the people who feel lonely today, Oh Father. The ones who are broken-hearted. Those who are bullied. The ones who have everything and everyone around them but they still feel alone.
People who have lost loved ones, and have no families, the single parent. Dear God, reach out to all of them.
Father, guide us as we pray for strength to fight against the feeling of loneliness and depression, help them all to experience peace, love and joy in these difficult times, in the mighty name of Jesus we pray… AMEN!
Psalm 147:3 He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.
Uninvited: Living Loved When You Feel Less Than, Left Out, and Lonely
The enemy wants us to feel rejected, left out, lonely. He speaks lies into our lives, such that we lose our purpose, he cripples our courage. and dismantles our dreams. In Uninvited, Lysa shares her own deeply personal experiences with rejection—from the incredibly painful childhood abandonment by her father to the perceived judgment of the perfectly toned woman one elliptical over. With biblical depth, gut-honest vulnerability, and refreshing wit, Lysa helps readers: Release the desire to fall apart or control the actions of others by embracing God-honoring ways to process their hurt. Know exactly what to pray for the next ten days to steady their soul and restore their confidence. GET YOUR COPY NOW
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Loneliness is a feeling that can overwhelm us whether we live in a remote area or in a crowded city. Sadly, loneliness can exist in relationships with two people living under the same roof. There can be a gulf of hurt, anger and resentment so wide that feelings of loneliness and isolation fill that gulf.
If you are feeling alone, know that you are not alone. God created us to have a relationship with us.
The disciples felt alone as Jesus told them that he had to leave them. To assure them that they weren’t alone, he said, “I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.” John 14:18
Jesus went on to say, in John 16:32 and 33, “I am not alone, because the Father is with me. These things I have spoken unto you, that in me you might have peace. In the world you shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.”
Here is a prayer to help you feel God’s presence, right here, right now.
A Prayer for Loneliness
Dear Gracious and Loving God,
Help me to feel your presence.
My heart aches and I feel so alone.
I miss a human touch, someone to take my hand or give me a hug.
I long for someone to tell me everything will be alright.
Please send your Comforter to me and take this loneliness away.
Help me instead of feeling empty, to feel full of the love you have for me.
Help me to know in my heart and remember that according to your Word; I am never alone because you are with me.
Your love and peace is with me, right now, in this moment. I feel it and I am not alone.
Loneliness can be a spiritual invitation to find peace in the solitude of the heart.
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Step-by-Step Guided Meditations to
Experience God’s Peace and Presence and to
Let Go and Let God
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