Friday, July 25, 2014

Liberty unites nations

Global Focus Week encourages students to answer the call to the mission field

Together — Students raised the flags of their home countries Feb. 11 to kick off Global Focus Week. Photo credit: Ruth Bibby

Waving flags streamed down the Vines Center steps during convocation Feb. 11, held by students signifying their home nations. Cultural representatives marched through the rows of students with the Revelation Song as their universal cadence.

According to Vice President for Communications Johnnie Moore, the theme of this year’s annual Global Focus Week is “make your degree global.”

“We believe the Great Commission is for people going into the ministry and the marketplace,” Moore said. “It is our responsibility to be concerned about the entire world.”

To help convey that point, Jo Saxton, a representative of the mission organization 3DM, spoke about sharing the Gospel message with the unreached people of the world.

“Every generation of Christians will have to decide how they will respond to the Gospel,” Saxton said. “How will we respond?”

Saxton went on to tell students that Christians are lacking in a passionate spirituality, meaning that most Christians do not pray, read the Bible or love Jesus as intensely as they should. She encouraged students to think of the unreached nations from the perspective of the cross and from the heart of Jesus to increase their devotion to mission work.

Throughout the week, Liberty fostered the idea of the “global degree” by hosting several breakout sessions encouraging students to think more globally. Numerous mission organizations lined the walkways of DeMoss Hall, recruiting potential workers in the mission field.

Familiar special events filled Global Focus Week’s schedule, such as the Children of the World concert and Taste of the Nations.

The Children of the World returned to Liberty on their Rescue Tour in convocation,
and in their own concert Tuesday, Feb. 12.

The young group of 14 praised God and represented their home nations of Nepal, Uganda and the Philippines.

“I simply wanted students to remember Jesus as they performed,” Doreen Nambirwe, a performer from Uganda, said.

Diversity — Students celebrate cultures from around the world. Photo credit: Ruth Bibby

The children’s performance was jubilant but for a serious purpose, Vice President of World Help Noel Brewer Yeatts reminded students in her convocation message.

“You’re gonna be hit over and over again with things that will open your eyes to the needs of the world,” Yeatts said. “Opportunities that you have to get involved, … to restore hope. But I hope that it lasts longer than a week, that it can be something that permeates every area of our life.”

Yeatts urged students to help restore hope by embracing issues such as poverty, disease and slavery.

Students were able to grab a taste of the various cultures represented at Liberty during Taste of the Nations, Wednesday, Feb. 13. More than 20 nations and their signature dishes were present at the event. Multilingual music and aromatic appetizers pervaded the air as students gathered in the new Schilling Center.

Esther Dii had the opportunity to present a portion of her culture as she bore the flag of Papua New Guinea in convocation and served its food at Taste of the Nations.

“It’s great to represent my country,” Dii said. “Global Focus Week is a time where we can share and not be wrapped up in our own little world.”

Liberty’s first graduate, Vernon Brewer, also spoke to students in convocation about the current issues facing the international church. Brewer is the founder and president of World Help.

According to Brewer, World Help is a global outreach program that seeks to make disciples of the unreached people groups and addresses issues like poverty and disease.

Brewer highlighted the nations of India and Syria as ones in dire need of intervention by the church. He challenged students to be deeply committed and get involved.

“We desperately need everyone on the frontlines in every profession and on every corner of the globe,” Brewer said. “Don’t be afraid to pursue the passion and the calling that God has uniquely given you.”

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