Research into my ancestory had revealed interesting information. Other people have also gleaned information about their families from documents and certificates located from the archives. Some have thrilled to the revelation of their history, while others wished they had not undertaken to delve into the past. The Bible itself has the "begats" and gives an insight into the generations of biblical times.
Before we sought any information concerning my family's generations, I felt I was a nobody. I was much loved at home but I had heard the stories of our people's past from my family relatives and elders. Our people successfully completed the primary purpose of establishing the sugarcane industry. Then the authorities took steps to end further recruitment of Pacific islanders and to return all those living in Australia to their homeland.
There are always the dauntless who seek to counteract such policies. A number of families--including mine--succeeded in gaining exemption from being deported. However, the attitude was to alienate them from popular areas, education, medical help and employment, resulting in a lack of finance to survive; and thus began the process of elimination.
Fortunately, not all of the community complied. So often God uses the most unlikely characters to fulfil His purposes. Religion was introduced and accepted by most of our people. By accepting the Creator God, they acknowledged that God has brought good out of their misfortunes.
We knew little about our island forefathers. During the 1970s, relatives made contact with our family from the Pacific. We found we had royal blood in the island culture. Proven identity and acceptance into their community was to have the knowledge of specific song, sung in the local dialect, with their unique handshake. My 80-year-old great-aunt, whose parents had been "black
birded," took the challenge. She visited the homeland, undertook the requirement and was accepted as the descendant of their family, who had been taken more than a century earlier.
Somebody took away our royal status but through the discovery of our family lineage we did belong somewhere. We were unacceptable to this society but God had other plans.
God used a humble lay preacher to carry the Adventist gospel message to the Australian South Sea islanders. I often wonder, Could God ever use me to accomplish His purposes with all my imperfections, lack of talent or influence? He isn't only looking for people who have those characteristics of perfection, talent and influence--but for those who are willing to obey and follow Him. The King of the universe sent His royal son, Jesus Christ, to come and reclaim me through his sacrifice on the cruel cross of Calvary. Long ago, even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes. His unchanging plan has always been to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. And this gave him great pleasure. Ephesians 1:4, 5. Kay Fatnowna is retired and lives in Mackay, Queensland.
This story is used with permission from Signs Publishing Company. More of these stories can be found in these collections: Ordinary People—Extraordinary God, Ordinary People—Faithful God, and Ordinary People—Generous God