Hang Loose

On a recent family vacation, we had the opportunity to visit Hawaii. For those who have seen this place, you know how majestic and powerful its beauty is. I love the beach and the ocean. So, for me, Hawaii was a very special treat. One expression there is shaka, or hang loose. Over time, these words have expanded to convey more than just a surfer mindset, but a way of life as well. For some, hanging loose may be a state of mind, but I find my ability to find rest and peace, even when in Hawaii, comes best through my relationship with Christ in three primary ways: 

Faith: We all place our faith in something. For some it’s their money, their power, their position and/or their popularity; and there was a time, I was definitely caught in this trap. However, it’s foolish to place our faith in things that fade, rust, and wither (Psalm 119:37). For these are temporal, but placing our faith in Jesus Christ is rock solid and eternal. 

Hope: What do we hope for and what is the foundation of our hopes? Having our hopes in mere wishes and dreams can leave us discouraged and distressed if things don’t turn out like we planned. However, when our hope is in Christ, we are surrendered to His plans for our life. This allows us to pursue our hopes, dreams and life with a very different goal in mind. For when we surrender and realize outcomes are ultimately in His hands, we gain greater confidence in knowing it’s not all up to us and to begin desiring His hopes, dreams and direction for our lives, rather than just our own (Proverbs 10:28). 

Trust: What can we trust in these days? It can be difficult to be sure. People, the media, and even the government can’t seem to be trusted 100 percent. However, there is hope – God (Psalm 71:1). For He can be trusted forever and for always. He always keeps His Word, always tells the truth and always loves us. He is our only firm foundation.

Application: “Ohana” – Ephesians 2:19
When I was in Hawaii, I learned various Hawaiian words. One of my favorites is Ohana, which means family. This is because my family means so much to me, and I have many hopes and dreams for my family. I also desire to be a great father and a great husband and even though I may fall short of this goal routinely, I know in Christ, He will help me accomplish it and finish well. However, the word also expresses a broader sense of family. This is like our Christian family. For when we visited Hawaii, we also went to church and shared in worship with other body of believers there. We were immediately connected, because of our faith, hope and trust in Jesus, and we were family. So, no matter where any believer in Christ may go, we are never alone, or on our own. We have Him and it’s with Him, I discover true peace nothing can match. For with Him, everything is made better, even my trip to Hawaii.

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