Liberty alumnus and current online student sees God’s hand at work with opening of new elementary school in Asia – Liberty News - Freelance Rack

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Saturday, July 4, 2020

Liberty alumnus and current online student sees God’s hand at work with opening of new elementary school in Asia – Liberty News


Liberty alumnus and current online student sees God’s hand at work with opening of new elementary school in Asia

July 3, 2020 : By Jacob Couch/Liberty University News Service

When he was a Liberty University student in the early 2000s, Joshua* (’04) knew that someday he would reach the unreached across the world with the Gospel.

Now, after a fulfilling career in the U.S. military, he and his family have been faithfully serving the Lord for five years in Asia in the heart of the 10/40 window — the region with the world’s most unreached nations for the Gospel.

“When we first arrived in 2015, we started sharing the Gospel with unreached people,” Joshua said. “The same year, we realized God’s vision to start an excellent Christian school in this strategic region for unreached missions. Christian education provides a strong foundation for all knowledge and opens doors for making disciples among the unreached — even Jesus and His disciples went to biblical schools as children.”

Last year, they opened the Christian Academy elementary school and campus church, where Joshua serves as the school’s principal and pastor while his wife, Bernice, serves as the lead teacher and vice principal.

Joshua has been enrolled in Liberty University Online Programs while overseas and will complete his Education Specialist in Curriculum & Instruction degree this summer. He is also pursuing his Ph.D. in Education through Liberty.

The new school is currently for preschool through fifth grade. The present building serves as both the school and staff quarters, with plans for a future expansion project for over 1,000 K-12 students.

“Currently, we live on the school campus in the school building,” Joshua said. “As a family, we sleep under our mosquito nets every night, endure daily power outages, and all the other conditions experienced in a developing region.”

A few years ago, the couple began the nonprofit Christian Academy & Lighthouse to support the project. Based in the U.S., the organization receives donations to assist with school mission projects and the Lighthouse Orphan Scholarship for orphan students.

“If you can disciple young people for Jesus, it has an incredible transformation for God’s Kingdom,” Joshua said. “According to research, about 80% of people born again in Christ are between 4 to 14 years old.” Citing Matthew 19:14, he added: “Truly the Kingdom of God belongs to children.”

Joshua, originally from Tallahassee, Fla., said his own Christian school had much influence on his life.

“By the grace of God, I was born again in Christ at 8 years old,” he said. “After going to a Christian school starting in third grade, I began to hear the Gospel and study the Bible. I had great Christian teachers and mentors. I realized that I am a sinner in need of a Savior and that our Lord Jesus Christ is the only Way to eternal life.”

In high school, Joshua received a full-tuition academic scholarship to attend any public university in Florida, but he prayerfully decided to serve God and Country first in the U.S. Navy. He enlisted after graduation and served in a flying squadron on the flight deck of an aircraft carrier. He was only 19 when he received his first overseas deployment to a combat zone.

Working on the flight deck of an aircraft carrier is one of the most dangerous jobs in the world, Joshua said. “Flight deck operations are 24/7 in extreme temperatures and all weather conditions requiring the best from our courageous U.S. Sailors and Marines. These challenging deployments and travels around the world was great preparation for the unreached mission fields.”

During his final year on active duty, Joshua requested a short leave to visit Liberty University’s College For a Weekend.

“I heard of Liberty back in high school and decided to take a visit,” Joshua said. “I loved the spirit at Liberty and could sense there was something exciting happening at Liberty for God’s Kingdom.”

He enrolled for the 2002 Fall Semester. During his time as a Liberty student, he learned about the 10/40 window.

“I was praying about serving in Christian ministry in the U.S., but during my second year as a Resident Assistant (RA) on campus, I started studying unreached people groups, and God opened my eyes about the unreached people of Asia,” Joshua said.

He graduated with his bachelor’s in religion and became the first person in his immediate family to earn a college degree.

He then enrolled in seminary in North Carolina, where he met Bernice.

Joshua’s 20 years of Christian international ministry experience has included many short-term mission trips around the world. He holds a master’s degree from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, a master’s certificate in human resources from Villanova University, and an MBA with a graduate certificate in finance from Colorado State University.

Joshua earned his commission as a U.S. Air Force officer in 2008 and was stationed in Louisiana. He led hundreds of airmen in aircraft flight operations, aviation maintenance, logistics, engineering, and deployments, managed billions of dollars in assets, and stood up a new nuclear major command. In his final military post, he taught as an assistant professor in aerospace studies at NC State University and served as director of the recruiting and marketing program.

Upon completion of his military career, he and his family sold their possessions in America, received prayers from a local church, and moved to serve God’s Kingdom in Asia.

“The Liberty family will always have a special place in our hearts and in our prayers,” Joshua said. “Please keep the Christian Academy & Lighthouse uplifted in prayer as we continue to joyfully declare God’s glory among all nations.”

 

*Last name is being withheld for security reasons

 

 



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