Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Where God guides...

...He provides. This is a quote from the book "God Guides" by Mary Geegh. Our friends Scott and Lisa gave us this book a few years ago, and since reading it, this quote often pops in and out of my mind. Lately it has been popping up more frequently.

**This post was written a couple weeks ago. I'll be posting some other stuff from "back then" as well. Just so no one is confused!

When Darin and I were first married, we headed to South Africa to visit some friends that were volunteering at a children's home north of Pretoria. We both loved being there and even briefly talked about going back to volunteer with this same organization. After 3 weeks of playing with babies, meeting wonderful new friends and seeing some amazing sights, we came back home to Michigan and settled into life.

A couple years later, the company Darin worked for wanted to start up a business in South Africa. Darin was able to go back over on a few different occasions to help seek out different opportunities and make some business connections. In 2006, when Tyson was 2 and Jori was just a few months old, I was able to travel with him for 3 weeks without the kids. Once again we had a wonderful time (even though we missed our sweet babies in Michigan!) and were able to renew past relationships and see even more of this amazing country.

In 2008, our whole family had the opportunity to live in South Africa for 10 weeks. You can read about the great adventures we had right here (then you can decide if you want to read the rest of the entries from those ten weeks!) we had an amazing time. Our kids flourished, our marriage was the best it's ever been, Darin and I both felt like we were being called to stay in Africa. We even made an offer on a lodge, but after a few ups and downs and wondering if this was really going to happen, we wound up right back in Michigan, living our little life in Hudsonville.

Only this little life seemed like right where we were supposed to be. We both were getting more involved in our church, Tyson was doing great in school, both kids had made some very special friends and it just seemed like everything was working as it should. I finally felt content with my lot in life, something that I had LONG struggled with!

Fast forward to April 2010. We are living our beautiful life, enjoying being a part of a few different "communities", Darin was at a new job that he absolutely loved and then we get an email from an acquaintance in South Africa. This man was going to be opening up a new business and was looking for a partner. Darin waited a few days, then sent an email to get some more information. This continued for a couple weeks. Then by mid-May we are starting to pull together funds to actually buy into this new business. We sign papers-a business contract-and then things just keep moving forward from there.

Now it is the end of August and on September 1 our house will be officially on the market. I have been busy cleaning the house for the realtor, sorting through stuff for our upcoming moving sale, trying to decide what to bring along with us to South Africa and what to store at Darin's parents house. Our kids don't know. Yet. We are planning on telling them on August 30th, just a couple days before the For Sale sign goes up in the yard. I am hoping that this conversation goes well, but I also know that there could be tears and lots of fears and I am not sure if I'll be able to handle that!

In some ways it has been hard keeping our plans under wraps these last few months, but I am thankful that we have been able to enjoy one last summer here in Hudsonville without a lot of questions and comments about our future plans. I am glad that things are going to be more out in the open now as it is going to be a huge change that will probably be consuming my thoughts and probably this blog as well!

As of right now, our plan is to move sometime in January. That could very well change, so I am trying not to get myself too set on any particular time frame. We are excited to share more about what we plan on doing once we're there, and we also look forward to seeing what God will do with us!


Anonymous said...

Praying for you all, we're so proud of who you have become as parents, as individuals and as a family. And now as you close this chapter in your lives and move to a different and exciting new way of life, may God give you strength for each new day, with all the decisions that still have to be made and peace in knowing that you are following God's plan for your lives at this time of life! Love to you all! Mom Fey

Sarah said...

Wow! How exciting! Or are you more nervous?

Victoria Haveman said...

WOW! How amazing! So are you going to be working with kids again or is Darin doing this business? I'm so excited for you guys, I'll be praying for you all.

Anonymous said...

Jonna and Darin...i am so happy for you and your family. What an exciting oppurtunity for you!! I can't wait to read about your adventures with Mama Catherine again. I will continue to pray for you as you sell and make adjustments in your lives!!
Love, Heidi

pjvs said...

Remember where God guides... HE provides. Somehow when He guides we need to get in step with HIM-not ahead-not too far behind but walking right next to Him. You will feel His hand on your back, His arms around your shoulders and the little ones on His shoulders. Just hold His hand as He is holding yours. One step at a time-accept all the help you are offered and let God lead. Know we are praying and loving Mom

Anonymous said...

Yah for you and your sweet little family... kelsey is already planning our trip to see you... hmm. might be awhile so stay put.. xoxo laurie

retha said...

There will still be a white Christmas- I think. Everywhere in the USA snows in my opinion. Then very welcome in the lovely hot African bush. How far north will you be? Or it is fine I'll wait for you to tell your story as you get it out I'll see.

Anonymous said...

I loved reading the last few entries on your blog... I've been a bit behind lately. :) Hope it went well telling the kids and that they are excited about going. Know that you and your family continues to be in our prayers as you go through this emotional process of selling your home, moving to a different country, and getting settled and adjusted. Keep trusting in the Lord and he will be holding your hand every step of the way. Love you! Tami