Things we could all learn from Hawaii

As we are packing up the last few boxes and parting with the little bit of our remaining furniture, I have been thinking a lot about all I will miss here in Hawaii. So, I am writing this post more for myself than for you, about all the things I don’t want to forget, about the things that make Hawaii so special.

  1. When someone greets you or parts from your company, they will hug you and kiss you on the cheek. This is probably my favorite thing, except when I accidentally moved my head to the wrong side and kissed a lady in my bible study on the lips. People, when you give other people actual full hugs and kiss them, you can’t help but make friends. You are up in their space, their up in yours. It breaks barriers, forces you to be more present with people in a conversation because at any moment they could leave and come in for the kiss. You must be alert! Very little, if ever, do we actually touch each other. I think when we touch each other we sort of acknowledge them as a person and their presence. Anyways, hug someone.
  2. Potlucks. In Hawaii, you very rarely go to a meal at someone’s house without bringing a dish. Though some people might not like that they are always needing to bring something, I love it. Everyone pitches in, you eat some of the craziest combinations of food and their is such a sense of community when your eating it. It starts conversations about peoples favorite dishes, their nationality, their culture, their families. Plus, it is insane how expensive it is to live here so everyone acknowledges that they need everyone else around them to make it.. which leads me to my next point
  3. Everyone is just trying to make it. There is no pretending, no keeping up with the jones. Everyone here needs their friends, family and church community to stay afloat. You need the potlucks because you cant afford to have all your friends over and provide all the food. You need everyone to help watch your kids, so you can work. There is no pressure to have this killer house and nice clothes and pretty things. One, we live on an island so you are limited where you can shop and two, everyone is broke. It is so much easier to accept life. I’m less stressed about having my house a certain way or my kids dressed a certain way. Hawaii is all about people actually DOING life together.
  4. You address your elders by calling them Auntie or Uncle. First, I love the respect it teaches everyone for those older than themselves. Second, it creates a sense of family and community. The people you meet here actually, in fact, become family. You are either from here and everyone you see is really your family or you’re a transplant, have no family here so you are creating a new one. It never ceases to amaze me when I run into people I know here. Random but in Colorado I thought I knew a decent amount of people, I frequented a lot of the same places and I never really saw anyone I knew. I ran into the one person I know from the North Shore, halfway up a mountain the other day. I have ran into at least 1 if not 3 people every time I have gone to Waikiki. People, this is the tourist hub, you have no idea how many people are squished in their and I have somehow found people I know there. You become instant friends with most people here and you help each other out. We acknowledge that we need each other to survive here and want to be apart of other peoples lives.
  5. Driving with aloha. Ok, there are some things that drive me bonkers about driving here but for the most part it is glorious. Around our whole town, including the highway the speed limit is like 35. Everyone goes a bit faster but it is NOT a speedway here. Driving in California is like competing in the Indy 500. You can’t even blink or someone will cut you off and then possibly trying and flip you off for it. Here, if someone turns by you or gets over in front of you or sometimes even looks at you, you get a shaka. It is funny because some people just  drive however they want and use the shaka as a way to get out of obeying traffic laws though. People here actually stop and let other cars pull out of the grocery store parking lot or back out of their drive way. You just slow down here, there is no need to drive 90 to the library.

There is a lot more I could say but I must get back to life. All this is to say, I love Hawaii. I love the people here. I love that we (my Hawaiian family) acknowledge that life is just better when we do it together. When we help each other out not because we get something in return but simply because they are human. We take care of each other out here. We, as a family are going to have to work so hard to bring this style of life to California. Not all of it will work, probably the kissing people on the cheek part but Im going to try and bring some Aloha to California.

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Course Correction

“God does not tell you what He is going to do— He reveals to you who He is.” Oswald Chambers

Sorry it has been so long since our last update, we have been busy to say the least.  We have been plugging away in our voluntary position with overseeing the Onelove windward satellite campus and In January I (Erik) started on the ground floor for a brand new Green Energy company focusing on LED retrofits for small businesses which gave me the availability to volunteer at the satellite church and also provide then earning potential enough to cover our bills. It May not seem like much in one long run on sentence but it has been all encompassing.

We received word about the last week of March that the lawsuit that chased us to Hawaii was finally over and that I had been acquitted of all charges which remains great news however the financial debt accrued for the necessary legal representation only further increased our monthly financial responsibilities.

On the heels of this great news proceeded the difficult reality that although the Green Energy gig should eventually produce revenue, I have at this point spent more time, gas, and $ than I have earned. Although a staff position was offered from our church in an effort to assist us financially we did not have peace about accepting the position nor would it be enough to be my only source of income to cover our monthly commitments. And although I passed the pre-qualification testing for an operator position with the Chevron refinery on Island, the position would consist of a rotational 12 hour tower (2 weeks of days then 2 weeks of nights) plus an hour commute each direction AND they were not hiring until June, We were faced with the fact that we are broke and we no longer have the financial means to keep searching for a job. We prayerfully came to the conclusion that our time here in Hawaii has come to an end.

This decision has not been an easy one to make as it has been wrought with second guessing, some doubt, some confusion, some fear, some guilt, but no despair as we ultimately rest in the fact that the Lord is large and in charge, He still sits upon His throne, the Sun has continued to rise and fall, and we are not the same people that we were when we began this journey towards Hawaii nearly 2 years ago. Truly the quote above sings true for us, and for once (being the naturally control freaks we are) we can rest in not knowing how or what or when or why but Simply WHO our God is – and that is enough for us to rejoice and take courage for whatever, wherever, He has in store for us.

The council and support from our church and the leadership upon hearing the news has been so graciously received and everyone has been quick to dispel any guilt, fear, worry, or doubts that we have in any way failed them or God in choosing/needing/having to move on from Hawaii and for that we are thankful!

We do not know what the Lord has in store for this satellite campus but we know He is a loving Father and ultimately is more concerned for it and its welfare than we could even imagine.

Throughout our time in Hawaii we have experientially learned the Lord’s daily provision, the sweetness of contentment in Him and His provision, His faithfulness, and that He is our end all says all. Not a church, not a location, not a ministry, not a job. The single most important thing in our lives is that we would know Him, know His faithfulness, and Trust Him wholly for He is trustworthy.

So, we are flying back to Folsom, CA on April 30th where the initial plan is to move in with Sarah’s mom and give it a go in the Sacramento area to spend some much needed time with Sarah’s side of the family. We stayed in Folsom for a month on our way out to Hawaii and really liked the area.

I have been applying to Green Energy (LED sales) jobs as well as any Business Development/sales jobs in the Sacramento area and we are honestly excited about finding out what He has in store for us. We are not foolish enough to think that all will be well in returning to the mainland or “Home” as so many are quick to quip for we have no house, job, nor golden goose egg to return to. We are simply continuing this journey of faith in a new state.

We thank you all for your prayer, support, friendship and we would love any and all prayer as we tie things up here and break new ground in Folsom May 1st.

Lastly, the truth also remains and resounds ever true in the verse the Lord specifically gave us when we began this Hawaii adventure:

“And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those that are called according to His purpose.”  Romans 8:28

You will be missed OneLove friends & family. Look out, Folsom – here we come.

~ The Jonsgaard’s

 

Update!

Only have a second for a quick update but we wanted to let you all know that we are doing great! The Lord has supplied for our every need thus far and the body of Christ here has been coming alongside us so wonderfully blessing us with food and provisions! The Lord even worked a miracle and literally increased what we had calculated to be our last $500 dollars to nearly 5 times that amount!! There is no logical explanation, it is simply a miracle.

We are moving out of our current rental officially on Monday and will be moving in with a beautiful family (one of 3 actually) that opened their homes and hearts to us. The plan is to move into the church parsonage March 1st and the campus oversight at the church is in full swing with our couples bible study kicking off tomorrow night where an astounding 17 couples have signed up to attend!!! We are stoked and  The lords faithful and abundant provision.

We are safe, we are alive, we are blessed by His faithfulness.

Love The Jonsgaard’s

3 Liters of water

When I (Erik) was in college I went backpacking with a friend at the Canyon Lands National Park in UT and the ‘Maze District’ to be more specific. The maze district is exactly as it sounds, an incredible labyrinth of rock that stretches for miles (at least that is how I remember it). We actually didn’t go into the maze for fear of getting lost, but we instead chose to stay in more open country; ‘Ernie’s Country. Ernie’s Country was a beautiful desert landscape and was said to be for ‘Experienced Hikers Only’ due to the lack of natural water sources. We were told at the ranger station that there were 2 springs from which we could refill our supply and were shown general locations on a map of their whereabouts. We brought 7 or 8 liters each (roughly 2 gallons each) which was enough for 2 days of conservative use for drinking, cooking, cleaning, etc. and off we went! One minor detail was over looked, the ranger failed to tell us that the ‘Springs’ were man made consisting of a tube set into the rock which then ran to a 50 gallon drum ON TOP of the plateaus. Since we thought them to be natural springs and guessed that the water would naturally pool at the lowest point we descended deeper and deeper into the canyon never finding the springs. After 2 days of hiking we found ourselves at the lowest point in the canyon (If I remember correctly about 20+ miles away from where we started) and out of water.

We were able to filter water from the Colorado river (a shallow, settled side pool actually) but the Colorado in these parts is known to be silty and a few cross bones shy of poisonous. We were able to get about 3 litters before clogging my filter and even after boiling the filtered water it stank so bad we threw iodine tablets and Gatorade powder into the mix to slam it down!

We were faced with a choice: Stay put in the cycle of diminishing returns ironically camping within 20 feet of roaring torrents of uselessness OR take what we had, PRAY FOR THE BEST, and shoot to make it back to my truck (20+ miles away) where I had left 2 gallons of water. If we were able to get out in 2 days we would be dehydrated but alive. The ending to the story is obvious as I sit here and type; we made it out alive.

In the same way that we were faced with the scary reality in UT; that the #1 essential to survival [ WATER ] was nearly gone with no means with which to secure enough for sustained survival, we now find ourselves in somewhat of the same place. Except that we are down to our final 3 liters of money, with no job to get more and by all appearances if we stay here we will perish… OK, not really perish (like what really could have happened in UT) but financially perish.

WE ARE NOT ASKING FOR MONEY. We are asking for your prayer and support. We have considered sending out support letters but struggle to ask for funds which will only perhaps delay what may end up being the inevitable. I mean, haven’t we all heard it and stated it a million times?! ” Where God guides, He __________.”

We thank you for your prayers and ask that you remember to pray for us this weekend. We debated on whether to write now at all, or to wait and see what happens, but we wanted to give everyone a chance to lift us up and to also witness in real time His plan for our lives unfolding. I have not secured employment that pays enough to even begin to cover our living expenses ( I started picking up hours in a restaurant that is owned by a great family from OneLove today but the earnings are unfortunately not enough to sustain us.) We are hoping and praying for a miracle as I still have a few jobs that I have applied to that I have yet to hear back about, but even still, it would be a stretch to start a job and get paid enough (quick enough) to pay our bills.

Although we have living arrangements secured for March 1st at an incredibly low rent, without a job, we cannot afford the rent there either and regardless, if the job situation does not change, we would not make enough to afford rent AND/OR all the other pesky essentials to survival like food, electricity, gas, health insurance, etc. AND there is that tiny matter of where to stay for the 3 weeks we would have after we move out of our rental by the 6th of Feb. 

We maintain that even if our time in Hawaii is truly coming to an end that we have sought with all that we have to obey the Lord’s leading. As hard as it is to fight the emotions and the faint whispers mocking that we have failed in some way, we choose instead to be reminded of all the incredible things the Lord has done in bringing us to Hawaii. We have been changed. We are not the same people as we were when we began this journey. We are so much more appreciative for what we have. We have reprioritized what really matters this side of eternity. We have learned the incredible value of friends and family even from a distance. We have experienced the Lord’s ‘daily bread’ and His miraculous peace in spite of turbulent circumstances. We have learned our incredible need of Him and His spirit, His leading, His presence, His filling, His enabling, His sustaining, HIS EVERYTHING that can so easily be overlooked or put on the shelf in times of auto pilot.

We are not saying we have made up our minds. We are not saying we are moving back to the mainland simply because at this time too soon to make those decisions. We are simply asking for you to join with us and pray for His will to be done and for Him to open and shut doors. And we are asking for prayer that whatever His decision is, that we will accept it, have peace, and continue to trust Him with the next chapter of walking by faith.

SO – standby, we will update how we proceed when we know how to proceed. We love you all and cannot thank you all enough for your prayers and support!

Love,

The Jonsgaard’s

 

The Ugly underside to a leap of faith

“Life is but a Weaving” (the Tapestry Poem)

“My life is but a weaving
Between my God and me.
I cannot choose the colors
He weaveth steadily.

Oft’ times He weaveth sorrow;
And I in foolish pride
Forget He sees the upper
And I the underside.

Not ’til the loom is silent
And the shuttles cease to fly
Will God unroll the canvas
And reveal the reason why.

The dark threads are as needful
In the weaver’s skillful hand
As the threads of gold and silver
In the pattern He has planned

He knows, He loves, He cares;
Nothing this truth can dim.
He gives the very best to those
Who leave the choice to Him.”
―     Corrie ten Boom

What a beautifully written poem; but how painful, exhausting and frustrating to be living it with only the underside in view. Sorry it has been so long since our last update – we have been struggling to find the motivation to a.) Write an update at all & b.) Have anything of value to say! In a nutshell, we feel like we are entrenched deep within the mire of the second verse of this poem and I (Erik) will be the first to admit that I have fallen victim to the truth therein “And I in foolish Pride forget that He sees the upper and I the underside.”

Life here in Hawaii HAS BEEN ANYTHING BUT EASY. The difficulties are many, the battles are daily, and it seems that every task is wrought with mishap and hurdles of ever increasing size; we are tired, we are scared, we are frustrated, and we are at the end of ourselves.

SO – what has transpired since we last updated? My job at ALTRES did not work out – long story short, I was not the right person for the job and it was not the right job for me and my decision to quit on DEC. 9th I’m sure came as a relief to them instead of them having to come up with a better reason to lay me off. We have also since been blessed with the responsibility of being the ‘Campus Overseers’ for OneLove Ministries Windward satellite Campus in Kailua, HI. WE ARE STOKED and believe amidst all the confusion that this is the reason the Lord brought us to HI. At this time the church is not in a position to bring us on staff and thus the position is merely voluntary at this point but as the overseers there is a small parsonage on the church grounds that will eventually be made available for us to move into around March 2014 for a significantly reduced rent from what we currently pay. However, this too is a challenging situation as the church is in the midst of a custody battle over the church property and there are some  law suits in full swing from one of the previous church staffers which has only served to delay, confuse, and challenge forward progress as the satellite campus. Furthermore, Law suits seem to be in this year as we find ourselves up to our eye balls in debt from a ongoing lawsuit of our own of which I can say no further other than the obvious; It SUCKETH and it has been a learning experience we (and our creditors) will not soon forget!

I have also experienced something that has been equally challenging to every physical set back listed above and that is the realization that as far as the corporate world is concerned; I apparently have nothing of value to offer as my resume and experience is not firmly set upon collegiate pillars of excellence and an MBA. Furthermore (as I learned in my short time with the staffing agency) I am the exact opposite of a strong candidate in the Hawaiian market based on my lack of degree, lack  of island experience, and my resume apparently shows that I job hop to frequently! Furthermore there is a sad disparity between the offered wages (stupid low) compared to the cost of living (stupid high) that is in HI.  Lastly, the sting of my time with ALTRES will not subside until DEC. 2014 as a condition to hire (yes, even for the 90 day trial period for which I was hired) I had to sign a 1 year non-compete with them and thus working for any other staffing agency is not possible until then.

Therefore, as I sit and type this on nearly the last day of 2013 the outlook from every human cell in our bodies is bleak and our return to the mainland seems inevitable. We have turned in our 30 day notice on our current rental as we do not have the reserves to pay for any more than 1 more month here (and our current reserves, Praise Jesus, have come from several amazing and faithful friends & family members that have so graciously and freely given to us – which is a whole other ball of wax to humbly accept). I am hoping to connect with the Senior Pastor of OneLove today to try and work through the details of the parsonage that is said to be available in March but regardless the hurdles remain : 1.) Where are we to live after we move out of our current rental at the end of January? 2.) We are still financially responsible for the small monthly fortune of this rental until new tenants take over the lease 3.) Happy thoughts don’t pay the bills and regardless I have run out of those and instead need a job! 4.) If the law suit continues much longer or if an unfavorable verdict is the outcome we may have to pick up the bankruptcy for dummies book to determine what chapter to file for.

How we wish we were a better example of His sustaining Grace like perhaps those that have gone before us like Isobel Kuhn or Hudson Taylor; able to graciously and with such class and stride draft elegant life changing quotes to go down in history as the centipedes eat us alive (PTL no real centipede scares for weeks now, only a constant and ever increasing wood ant infestation through out the house) BUT apparently we are too fleshly minded and carnal to so joyously take pleasure in the greater work that the Lord is doing in our lives.

And yet – we KNOW God knows what He is doing. We KNOW non of this has taken Him by surprise. We BELIEVE He will sort this all out [this – meaning stay in HI or return to the mainland as either would require miracles]. We PRAY that through our transparency others would not be discouraged from taking steps of faith and trusting the LORD as we would do this all over again in a heart beat because regardless of how we feel about the difficulties of life we know we were bought at the precious price of the blood of our savior Jesus Christ and even if he slay us we will hope in and praise Him (Job 13:15 lose paraphrase). We are learning that we are somewhere on the misty flats between the American Dream Christianity and the oh so challenging struggle that is the walk of faith and to be honest we long for the ease and comforts of our previous life. Unfortunately for our flesh that little thing about  “Picking up our cross and following Him daily” leaves not an inch of room for anything other than death to ourselves and the pursuit of Him. Fortunately for our character God is more concerned with it than the comforts for which we moan and groan for.

Death is ugly. Death is stinky. Death is raw. Death is no fun at all – and yet, we take solace in this:

“We are hard pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed. always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body. For we who live are always delivered to death for Jesus’ sake, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. So then death is working in us, but life in you. ” 2 Corinthians 4:8-12

Truly if anything good comes from our leap of faith here in HI I attest that all Glory will be unto God as we in our own strength & ability have nothing to offer.

We love an miss you all and will try to be better about posting about what the next step is.

Sincerely,

The Jonsgaard’s

Unashamed faith

For the last 4 days I have been reading the same Psalm over and over. It has become the thing I cling to, when in the face of adversity, I want to panic and question how God will work things out. Will we have enough to pay our bills? Will the kids get bit by a centipede? Will we ever find community here? Can I really homeschool? Should I get a job? What about our plans for adoption? Do we want to have another baby? – (I am letting you in to the craziness of my mind. I think about all these things, every day and at the same time.) The whole Psalm is speaking into our situation but there are a few verses that I find myself repeating this:

Psalm 34:4-5, ” I sought the Lord and He heard me, and delivered me from all my fears and they looked to Him and were radiant, and their faces were not ashamed. Psalm 34:8-10, “Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good; Blessed is the man who trusts in Him! Oh, fear the Lord, you His saints! There is no want to those who fear Him. The young lions lack and suffer hunger; but those who seek the Lord shall not lack any good thing.”

I dwell on verse 5 mostly. Their faces were radiant and they were not ashamed. They were not ashamed because they trusted in the Lord. The trusted His character, His Word, His promises, His faithfulness, His guidance, His provision, His mercy, His goodness, His redemption, His salvation. Hebrews 11:6 says that without faith, it is impossible to please Him. He who comes to Him must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder for those that diligently seek Him. So right now when we are still figuring stuff out and we think about second guessing some of Gods provision, I am choosing to let my face radiate. To choose to rest in Gods leading and provision and trust Him. I, we, honor Him when we trust. When we walk in faith, when we acknowledge that everything about Him is so much greater than ourselves. His understanding, His provision, His planning, His wisdom, His foresight, His goodness, His love. I truly have to remind myself of these verses frequently, moment to moment, most days that what He is asking me to do right now is trust. I can do that, I can trust in a God who has shown Himself faithful in everyway.

Continue to lift us up, when you think of us. We have had a few great days recently where we have had a normal day, back in our groove but the enemy is always lurking. I still feel I am one centipede sighting away from feeling defeated but God sent me a gentle but loud reminder a few days ago. As I was crying about the constant state of alert I always feel I am in, I got my latest letter from Voice of the Martyrs. They were asking for prayer for a church where more than 80 people were killed and 100 injured as they left their church. I realized that I need to hush up. These beautiful believers live in constant fear of their lives. They literally know what it is like to live on alert, to watch every step. Yet, they persevere despite the enemies best efforts. They flourish in the heat of the enemy. I guess I am making a proclamation to myself here that I will not let myself feel overcome by these bugs, that the enemy has no foothold over me in this. I don’t want to be so weak that I would so easily want to turn back on all this, something I see that the Lord has knit in my very being, from such a young age because of bugs. I feel so lame thinking back on all my pleas for deliverance from them, though I am still going to go and shake out my sheets when I am done typing this 🙂

On a different note, we are doing good. Being here now is far different than when I was here as a single, college student. Most of the time, it doesn’t even seem like the same place, then every once in a while I drive by something familiar and relive a great memory. I am shocked at how well Erik is adjusting, a further testament to God calling us here. The boys are thriving. We live on a hill with several other people, all close to each others dwellings and the people right across the way have three kids and the boys are in heaven. Owen can’t believe he can have a friend and we don’t have to drive anywhere. I am getting plugged into a homeschool group over here and looking into a few co-ops as well. Cole is like a superstar. Every time we go to the beach, all the Japanese tourist can’t stop waving at him, snapping his picture. They are so sweet, one lady gave me a stack of paper plates as a thank you for letting her sit with us for a minute and take a picture with Cole. We are blessed! Pray with us for vision for the next step. What God wants us to invest our lives in over here. There are so many people groups and religions, so many unreached people. We pray God would give such clarity. That we could set our eyes and focus upon it, so that we don’t lose heart. Thank you for praying for us!

Sarah

5 Cent Update

It has been a while since our last update and much has transpired. I sit writing this from atop a beautiful new couch we probably should not have purchased ( the sweet cheap couch we rolled the dice on from habitat for humanity apparently came from the cat with a hyper active bladder habitat) in our war zone of a living room littered with the contents of as many boxes of our shipment as we could open. The event was filled with all the excitement of Christmas morning as we ransacked box after box to discover anew our precious possessions we have been eagerly waiting for.

All we can do is sing His praises as The Lord has shown up for us in such a big way around every turn. There have been countless situations where we have been able to witness the Lord do amazing things to include a wonderful rental in Kaneohe, a great job for me (Erik – I start Tuesday), a family car for a great deal, my car made it over, our stuff was delivered today, and we are all feeling much better! Writing this list doesn’t even do what The Lord has done any justice because there are intricacies of each situation where we can so clearly see the Lords hand. I am learning in a big way, that The Lord is so big and amazing that He somehow has everything set in motion for His will. We can either fight against it, try to do what we please and face the friction that comes with self will, or we can surrender every moment to Him and His leading – even the frustrating things. For example, we rented a U-haul truck for a few days to try and find some used furniture (ps, to anyone ever moving to Oahu, we HIGHLY suggest bringing EVERYTHING or simply enough money and directions to the nearest Ashley’s furniture store and save yourself the time and headache) and I wanted to return it today but we ended up keeping it. Well the movers showed up with too big of a truck to ascend mount Wayland that we live nearly on top of and we ended up making a few smaller trips with our rental truck instead of the movers having to figure something else out to charge me more!

not trying to be hyper spiritual, but we have seen he Lord do so many amazing things that it is changing the way that I look at situations that don’t necessarily go according to my plan which has a tendency to frustrate and mildly anger me 🙂 – instead, I am now starting to think and ask The Lord when something doesn’t go the way I plan what The Lord is doing and has in mind. It is a freeing and faith building and a cool new development for sure.

All in all we are good. very Good and I wanted to update our friends and family and proclaim the Lords goodness and faithfulness to us.

We love and miss you all and i still want to write more in part 2 of the challenges of this adventure and share some of the incredible highs and lows we have experienced daily and share the affects thereof.

Be blessed. Thank you Lord!

PEACE OUT

Da Jonsgaard’s

Progress Report

I, Sarah, will try and keep it brief as I am manning the kids on my own right now because ERIK is at a job interview right now. We got approved for a rental in Kaneohe a few days ago and we sign all the paperwork today. We are stoked and anxious all at the same time. We have no idea what Gods plan is for us here, how He will provide for our finances so we have to fully trust that God is directing every step. That every part of our rental fulfills all the needs we know nothing about. 

I feel like I have been pretty withdrawn since we got here. There is so much to take in. We have been living out of suitcases, managing life and living in other peoples places for almost two monthes. every aspect of our lives has been unknown, planning for a life where most of our questions are unanswered. The question of if and when I get a job weigh heavily on my mind, mostly at 3in the morning. Adjusting to a life where people look different, speak differently, the food is different and way more expensive, housing is very different than the resort Hawaii people know. all of it is in my face every second, as I am tripping over the suitcase for the 100th time and the kids are swinging from the ceiling because they long for more ocean time and some consistency. 

In all of this, I have never doubted Gods call for our family. I struggle with laying down the things I think I need and want but I always find God knows best. We thought we really wanted this one rental here. We sent a friend to look at it, filled out the application and called a lot to follow up. It never panned out and we were clueless why it was taking over a week to hear back. We got here and realized the commute would have been a nightmare so we told them we were no longer interested. Gods provision again. So as I look forward with great expectation. To the day when Hawaii looks and feels like home, when I know the best and worst times to go to Costco, when my kids have friends, when we have our rhythm. Right now I will wrestle with my will, of giving up what I think would be our best and trust because He is faithful and we see it everyday. we are blessed to be here in Hawaii, to be reassured that God has a calling on our lives, to be one step closer to what He has for us but I just want to be honest. We are posting beautiful pictures on social media sites and I am sure it may leave some longing or jealous. Never the intention. There is a lot of hard stuff going on behind the scene you can’t see but God is working all things together for our good Romans 8:28. Aloha

Oahu or bust! ( take 2 )

Aloha friends and family! A quick status update for you all – but 1st a quote that sums up our situation beautifully :

“When any child of God decides to step out in absolute obedience to do the will of a God, there will be frantic effort by the powers of darkness to block him. Obstacles will spring up to hinder and discourage that one. The possibility of obedience will seem more and more hopeless. When things are the blackest and most discouraging is the very time not to give up.” Isobel Kuhn

We are blessed and stressed and clinging more so than resting in His promises that He has this all worked out. Today has been a good day as far as our moral is concerned but we certainly ride that roller coaster daily and even moment by moment of hopeful highs and desperate lows. We attest to Psalm 27:13 “I would have lost heart if I did not believe that I would see the goodness of The Lord in the land of the living.” It is perhaps the same sort of belief that was had by the father of the possessed kid in Mark 9 – “I believe, but help my unbelief!”

By the ministering of the Holy Spirit I’m sure, we always get back to the place of knowing with the utmost certainty that although we don’t know how or when, we are convinced and fully believe this is exactly what we are supposed to be doing. In these moments of absolute certainty we find rest.

As of this very moment we are waiting to hear the results of our application for a 6 month rental on the North Shore which by all appearances (pics and through a friends eyes) will fit the bill. this is our first experience being on the Receiving end of the “Island time” mentality over which we have no control. The rental market is CrAzY in HI right now and we are typically 1 of 10+ inquirers on every rental thus far. We have booked a great priced vacation rental for a week and have more rental options we are already scheduled to view once we get on island.

Also, I (ERIK) have my 1st job interview lined up for Wednesday the 16th with a staffing agency on Island so we are stoked about that! No clue if they will pay what we have budgeted for let alone if I will be the right fit for it but an interview is exciting news!

We are so grateful for all of your prayers and moral support and pray that this leap of faith pleases our Lord and encourages & strengthens others’ faith to Trust Him fully. This is not a fool hearty battle cry to spin the globe, thump a finger, and LEAP! But rather to seek Him whole heartedly and if He says to go or stay or do anything, no matter what the cost, to trust and Obey!

We love you all, covet your prayers and look forward to having some hindsight views and praise reports to share soon.

Walking by faith,

The Jonsgaard’s

Aloha.

So our super huge announcement is that we have moved from our beautiful, beloved Colorado and are in transition to Oahu, Hawaii. Yes, Oahu, Hawaii. We are almost as shocked as you are. We are the last people who I would expect to take such a huge step of faith but we are convinced that God is calling us to something.

I wanted to share a little bit of our story about how we got to this point because I could always use the reminder and we hope it blesses someone else and encourages them in the faithfulness of God.

I, Sarah, have been going to Hawaii almost all of my life. Most of my memories as a child, involve spending time with my grandparents at their home in Maui and falling in love with the land and people of Hawaii. In my first semester at bible college I felt a very strong, clear promting that I should apply to go to Oahu for my second semester. I was accepted and spent an incredible semester and summer learning, experiencing the island and interning at a new church plant for One Love Church. I was only supposed to spend the semester but God had something else in store. I was listening to one of my teachers give a lecture and they mentioned they had a bad knee. At break, without giving it a second thought, I just got up and walked quite a long ways to find a tall chair for him to lecture from. It is going to sound weird but it was truly the Lord directing stuff b/c my teacher happened to be a Pastor on the island for a church plant. After class was over, he asked me if I wanted to move in with him and his wife for the summer and intern doing youth ministry. After the summer was over, I was hooked but I was determined to get back to the main campus of the bible college so that I could stay on track to graduate on time.

I went back to school and applied for a job to work with Youth for Christ in Oahu, Hawaii. I was convinced that I would be back, living there as soon as I was done with college. Hawaii was permanetley apart of me. My desire to be back with the people, the ministry,the community, burned within me. Long story short, God brought Erik into my life and it wasn’t time for me to go back.

I have spent 9 years praying for God to remove the burden I have felt or for Him to move us. I always felt peace but never a yes or a no. All this time Erik was not interested. He was well aware that if we had an impossible list, Hawaii was on it.

Finally, after three failed attempts to buy a home over the course of 5 years we felt confident that God was moving us on from Colorado but Hawaii was not on our radar. We actually threw our name in a hat to move to Texas! A few months later the Lord started giving us Romans 8:28, “For we know that all things work together for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purposes.”We were really scratching our heads about why the Lord was giving this verse to us but we kept seeking Him. I don’t even remember how we started to consider Hawaii but we prayed about it, mostly me :).The Lord did some crazy orchestrating but one day I heard Erik mention this book by Hudson Taylor and I tucked it away in my heart because I am addicted to missionary biographies, seriously they are my thing. I tried to order the book the next day, couldn’t find it so I ordered what I thought could be the book. No joke this book came in the mail and sealed the deal for us. If you ever want to know if God speaks, He does. I ordered this random book that I had no idea about and it showed up exactly when we need it the most. So back up a bit. The night before this book arrives, Erik and I are laying in bed freaking out. At this point, we are pretty convinced that God is calling us to Hawaii and the weight of it hits us. We are dumb if we leave Eriks amazing job, our friends, our family, our church, our conveniences, sell most of our stuff etc.  I silently sat there and thought I had made the wrong choice in desiring this move for the last 9 years, like I was the one to blame. Ok so the book shows up and on the cover it says our verse, Romans 8:28- Hello people, what are the odds! And just in case we needed more assurance from Him, in huge bold letters across the back of the book it says,”He will provide for your every need.” I kid you not. We were convinced.

The Lord has continued to lead us, remind us of Romans 8:28 and comfort us through the loss of our former life. It has been a very long, difficult road up to this point but we are so confident in Gods calling. Erik was told by a pastor that better are the consequences of obedience, than the consequences of disobedience. It has been a great reminder!

So I write this from California, where the boys and I ar staying with my mom while Erik is back in Colorado tying up things with his job. We have obviously moved out of our home, sold most of our belongings, shipped the rest, left friends, left family and have been living under the radar and out of suitcases for the last month. In two weeks we will arrive in Oahu and that is where the story pauses. We have no jobs lined up, no housing, and we aren’t sure what God has in store for ministry. We do know that we will be going to One love Church, where I attended 9 years ago. I am so amazed at the story that God has been weaving for so long, all the small things that seemed confusing, random and insignificant at the time but now,I see it better, I see more of the bogger picture. I am in awe of what God has done and can only imagine what lies ahead. We covet your prayers in this season. We will post more regularly on the blog to keep everyone updated about our life and send out prayers cards to anyone who wants one. Email me at proverbs3five@hotmail.com with your address and I will send you one.

Thank you to all those who knew our secret and kept it that way, thank you for those of you who have prayed for us and over our family through this transition, thank you for those of you who bought our stuff and thank you to those of you who are helping us look for housing and jobs in Oahu.