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  • Adrian Despres | Columbia International University
    observation of several classes we could tell that God s Word was taught with reverence His Spirit was present and active in the classroom Though we didn t have much money at the time we knew I needed to study at CIU I m grateful for God s provision in allowing me to continue my education at CIU because God used the professors knowledge of the Bible to change and influence me spiritually I gained a deeper understanding of the Bible in my classes and a sharpened sense of God s call on my life During my first semester at CIU my mentor CIU President Emeritus Robertson McQuilkin grabbed my arm and told me that I should be an evangelist Surprised at first I was hesitant but the next morning I heard the Lord say the same thing louder and clearer Twenty years later I am still preaching The classes I took at CIU were invaluable to my ministry training I learned how to correctly study and interpret the Bible as well as how to communicate it with both passion and integrity God has used the passion He has given me to make an impact for His kingdom in 18

    Original URL path: http://www.ciu.edu/impactstories/adrian-despres (2016-01-26)
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  • Daniel Blomberg | Columbia International University
    to freely live out their faith I specialize in constitutional law with a focus on freedom of religion My focus is on defending religious freedom cases because religious freedom is both a natural right true faith cannot be compelled by the state one s standing before God being a matter between the man and his Creator and an essential ingredient of a successful and free civil society Hearts have to be changed before hands will truly turn from evil to good and only God s grace can change hearts If our country becomes hostile to that grace we ll all suffer in a variety of ways Thus keeping the door open for the spread of the gospel is key to protecting our families and our fellow citizens A lot of legal work and especially constitutional law is basically hermeneutics I spend a lot of time analyzing what a text means and what its authors intended Unlike the Bible the American legal system is faulty and subject to changes but I still have to understand it in order to help my clients Thus CIU s outstanding teaching on how to interpret Scripture has been a tremendous help as I interpret human

    Original URL path: http://www.ciu.edu/impactstories/daniel-blomberg (2016-01-26)
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  • John Weaver | Columbia International University
    programs leadership and skills development Studying at CIU was like a dream come true for me I didn t grow up in a Christian home and my parents are divorced However I sensed God s call to full time Christian work and therefore wanted to pursue graduate studies to better equip myself for ministry After completing my master s degree in Intercultural Studies in May 1998 I was so inspired to declare His glory among unreached people groups that I missed the graduation ceremony to go on a survey trip throughout Central Asia For me the two week vision trip turned into a long term commitment to share God s love among those who have never heard the Good News My favorite place in Central Asia is Afghanistan I have so many memorable experiences such as sharing the Christmas Story while implementing Afghanistan s first Samaritan s Purse Operation Christmas Child shoebox distribution just months after 9 11 watching the Jesus Film with many first time viewers seeing Afghans read or hear the Word of God for the very first time witnessing the transforming power of the gospel and gathering in house groups to worship the Messiah However one of the greatest events of my life in Afghanistan was a Christian wedding my own Yes in God s sovereign plan I met my wife in Afghanistan God allowed us to have several local Afghan style celebrations and joyous wedding ceremonies where thousands of our Afghan friends heard the Good News of our Father s love in their own language Looking back my time at CIU was paramount to helping me confirm God s call on my life and further develop God s passion for unreached people groups God loves Afghans and it is a privilege to work among them I

    Original URL path: http://www.ciu.edu/impactstories/john-weaver (2016-01-26)
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  • Edafe Emamezi | Columbia International University
    our church grow tremendously But I was exhausted I was pouring myself into many different ministries church planting discipleship evangelism and many other commitments I knew I needed to be trained to train others who could assist in the work I was doing That s when I began looking for a seminary in the United States and after visiting CIU I knew it was the place for me CIU really gave me a heart for God The instruction I received touched me at a deep level and professors who invested in me played a foundational role in shaping who I am today I left CIU with a heart for the unreached people in Nigeria As a bishop of the Church of Nigeria I have the opportunity to train leaders ordain clergy and send missionaries Over 40 churches have been planted as God has multiplied the ministry He entrusted to me God is doing amazing things in Nigeria even in the midst of strife Governmental issues political unrest and Muslim fundamentalists all cause problems for the Church It is difficult not to retaliate but God has reminded me of the responsibility I have to love my enemies and He is using

    Original URL path: http://www.ciu.edu/impactstories/edafe-emamezi (2016-01-26)
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  • Laura Story | Columbia International University
    the singer and songwriter never imagined attending CIU or serving the Lord in public ministry But since her graduation from the CIU Music program in 2003 it is clear that God has orchestrated her steps Now a well known name in the Christian music industry Story won a Grammy in 2012 as well as three Dove Awards from the Gospel Music Association Though she is no stranger to success Story says the spotlight pushes her to depend on the Lord at a deeper level The greater honor than receiving any award is that God can use me Story said My motivation for ministry isn t the awards I believe God has called me to this and enables me to do it Story refers to her ministry a wild ride She continues to write music that blends corporate and personal worship anthems as she believes both are essential for the Church I like writing for both personal and corporate settings because I believe Sunday morning should be an extension of the other six days Story explains Story never dreamed of having such a unique platform for serving the Lord She credits CIU with helping her understand and apply Scripture to her

    Original URL path: http://www.ciu.edu/impactstories/laura-story (2016-01-26)
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  • Lauren Hight | Columbia International University
    a high school teacher Since the education program prepares graduates for teaching through the eighth grade level I began to apply for teaching positions in elementary schools after graduating from CIU with an education degree So when I was offered a job to teach high school Spanish I was taken by surprise I quickly discovered that God wanted to use me in a way I had never even considered I did my student teaching in Guadalajara Mexico and returned with a love for the Spanish language and Hispanic culture When given the opportunity to teach at Wesleyan Christian Academy I thought I was just going to be an average Spanish teacher Excited as I was to teach Spanish I hadn t connected how the ability to speak Spanish one of the most common languages worldwide could open doors of ministry for my students Throughout my first year of teaching the Lord has helped me to realize that learning Spanish can equip my students to share Christ with Spanish speaking people Once my students realized the value of knowing another language God has given them a passion to learn and has reshaped how I view my job What I am doing

    Original URL path: http://www.ciu.edu/impactstories/lauren-hight (2016-01-26)
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  • Paul Young | Columbia International University
    University helped me get what I wanted out of life and that was to not waste it Because of the lessons I learned and the skills I developed at CIU God was able to draw me into the ministry As a sophomore in college I began to incorporate my passion for preaching with my love for drawing What began as part of a required outreach is now called Chalk Art Ministry and was birthed and fanned into flame at CIU Now I give chalk talks in the churches prisons and schools of South Africa Drawing while I m speaking grabs the listeners attention and illustrates powerful spiritual truths it also aids the audience in remembering what was taught South African public schools among the most dangerous in the world are filled with chaos and violence Yet God continues to open doors for me to preach using chalk art He is using me to preach the uncompromised gospel as one principal put it and lives are being radically transformed by it I have seen suicidal students realize that life has meaning and purpose because of Christ Broken families have been restored by the power of forgiveness But most importantly children and

    Original URL path: http://www.ciu.edu/impactstories/paul-young (2016-01-26)
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  • Reeves Cannon | Columbia International University
    International University I was hesitant at first but I could not escape God s leading in my life Since then I have learned that His ways are always best though not always easy It was during my time at CIU that I learned the importance of the Word of God and how to minister to people in various contexts Through various ministry opportunities at CIU I grew to love the Lord and recognize the power of His Word a power that is unaffected by culture The skills I acquired at CIU have been invaluable to my work as director of counseling at the Church at Sandhurst One thing I have learned at Sandhurst is that everyone has a story Because of my education at CIU I am equipped to truly listen and to speak the truth of God s Word with grace and compassion I am reminded of one young man in particular that I counseled who was full of hurt and anger His story unfortunately like many others in our world today was one of a broken family financial struggle and the absence of a full time father figure His anger was intense and overbearing at times I often

    Original URL path: http://www.ciu.edu/impactstories/reeves-cannon (2016-01-26)
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