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From Michael Kruger: A Forgotten Fact about the Earliest Christian Movement

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In Moana, the Disney film, a young girl from a Polynesian island faces a common struggle to discover who she is and her calling in life. After exploring hidden caves on the island, she discovers a fleet of boats, and realizes that her people were originally voyagers, always looking to move forward rather than backwards. This reveals a different identity for the people of the island, which allows Moana to embrace her new journey with determination.

This core message of the film can be seen in the early Christian movement, as Christians sought to evangelize and expand the movement through traveling. This was made possible through the advancements of Roman roads, and missionaries traveled extensively with the intention of promoting their writings and connecting with one another. Hospitality was key for these traveling Christians, not just to provide a place to rest, but to stay connected and flourish.

This message of the film and early Christian movement can have an impact in our Christian lives today. By recognizing that we are voyagers, Christians need not attain to Executive Platinum traveler mile status in order to be considered faithful and godly. But, it does mean that believers must be a people on the move, looking for ways to spread and advance the kingdom. This could be done virtually, or walking down the street. It also means that connecting and networking with one another is important for survival, as physical presence really matters.

In the past few years, this has been especially true and the impact of social media on human connection has made it even more difficult to be present with one another. In the early Christian movement, however, they knew the importance of being with one another, and would travel long distances to do so. Having these connections with each other can help fuel the movement while being a source of encouragement and accountability.

The film Moana and the early Christian movement both testify to the importance of being voyagers and traveling to promote the gospel. This message is pertinent to Christians today, as it emphasizes the value of looking to the past and remembering what we are as believers. Through intentional growth and connections with one another, Christians can embrace their identity and continue to spread the gospel by being people on the move.
Here is a brief excerpt from Kruger's Article:
The lovable Disney film Moana, tells the story of a young girl who lives on a Polynesian island and is the daughter of the chief. Like many fathers, the chief is overly protective of his daughter, and also of the people he rules.As a result, the people of Moana’s village are in a bit of a rut. They are rather uninspired and somewhat in-grown, not sure of their purpose or destiny. And Moana feels the same unrest. The core of the movie catalogs her struggle to discover her identity and calling.But here’s the key. While she is curious about what her future should be, her breakthrough comes when she begins to consider the past. One night she expl...

You can read the full article here