University of the Nations – Kona

This post’s picture is taken at the entry way to the University of the Nations in Kona, Hawaii. The U of N is absolutely an amazing place. Please allow me to explain.

First, there are hundreds of people here year round all seeking to know God better and to learn how to make Him known more. Every quarter, like what is happening this week, hundreds leave campus to go on outreaches and hundreds of new students show up to prepare for other outreaches. I know people who are leaving this week to go to Fiji, the Solomon Islands (where there is no electricity or running water), Guatemala, France, Japan, and I am sure there are other locations of which I am unaware.

Because some are leaving this week, we were blessed to move on campus at the same time. We did not know what all that would entail. Our room is beautiful. It is designed for air flow from the ocean and the mountains behind us and looks something like you might see on the side of a Colorado mountain. We have a small loft and plenty of space for the five of us. It is probably 600 or more square feet. What we didn’t know is that all that is provided in the rooms are beds and chest of drawers. But, here’s what happens when Christians live Christ-like and in community. Today a guy shows up in a truck with a refrigerator and a sofa in the back of his truck. What does he charge for supplying it, bringing it, and helping me move it into our place? Nothing. Just a thank you and a smile. He’s been here before. He told us that his home and his truck were gifts from God and he simply wants to pass all he can on to others.

In addition, there is this incredible little place on campus called the “Boutique.” It’s not a hair salon or anything like that. Instead, it is a place where people in the community of the University of the Nations leave anything they no longer need behind. If there is something in there you need, you can simply take it, for FREE. So, we ventured in today and found towels, dishes, linens, shoes, uniforms for Keaton and Regan (at their preschool they wear uniforms), insect repellant, and so on and so on. I seem to recall that the early churches did similar things. And, please, understand that this isn’t junk. There are perfectly good computer printers, coffee makers, clothing, etc. in the boutique. People simply leave anything behind they can’t take with them on outreaches or back to the mainland or they leave such things behind simply as a gift for someone in more need than they are.

The U of N truly is a remarkable place. Not only are thousands of men, women, and children being trained to share the gospel of Christ, they are also living it out here, sharing with those in need all that they are and have. I’m looking out on the campus from our new home. All is quiet. It’s about 9:45 p.m. Hawaiian time. My kids have finally knocked off and all I hear are the sounds of our box fans increasing our air flow for comfort. We have a beautiful “new” used refrigerator (seriously, the man who gave it to us completely cleaned it up and even repainted it–it looks new) in which we can put milk and ice cream and other “necessities” (smile). We do have some annoying lights right outside our bedside windows, but otherwise we are incredibly blessed.

We are still praying for a vehicle and now hope to obtain a few rugs, a few more towels and sheets, and other odds and ends to make our new home a little more “homey.” Thank you for all of your prayers and love from afar. Know that in this neck of the woods people are genuinely trying to follow the example of Christ, sharing all that they are and have with other brothers and sisters in Christ. We have a lot to learn…

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