Written by TJS Founder, Jim Bryson
After a long journey, The Joseph School is opening!
God has taken us many places and taught us many lessons over the past five years, but he has been faithful. On September 21st, The Joseph School will open its doors to 30 Haitian children!
These children will begin an educational process rarely available in Haiti. Each will receive a world-class education focusing on academics, leadership, service and discipleship that will prepare them to lead and love their country. Simply being chosen as the first class of The Joseph School, they are already leaders preparing the way for the thousands to come behind them. After five years of work, planning, travel and praying, opening day is almost here.
Getting to this point has been a story of God’s provision.
We accepted the vision for The Joseph School in the fall of 2010. First, God took us to Thomazeau where we met Bobbie and Lourdie Toussaint. We came to love them and the children at their orphanage, Children of Hope.
Bobbie and Lourdie loved The Joseph School vision and wanted to help. In 2013, they took us to Lourdie’s hometown of Lascahobas on Haiti’s Central Plateau where Lourdie offered to give The Joseph School land to establish the school.
In the spring of 2014, The Joseph School Board of Directors began praying for God to open The Joseph School in 18 months, September of 2015. Immediately, things became difficult. That summer, our ownership of the land was challenged and became mired in the Haitian legal system. We were forced to stop development while the legal process ground to a halt.
Even so, we kept praying not knowing how God would answer. In the fall of 2015, we asked our supporters to pray with us. People prayed. In April, we upped the ante again. We asked our email group to fast one meal on the 15 th of the month from April to September and pray for God to open The Joseph School in September. The week that email went out, God moved.
Jean Bildad Michel is a Haitian citizen completing his education at Cumberland University. In mid-April, he walked into my office and said, “I want to do something meaningful to help my country. I believe in the mission of The Joseph School. I believe God is calling me to help and I think I can make it happen in September.” I was stunned. After many discussions and much prayer, The Joseph School Board of Directors voted in May to send Bildad to spend the summer in Haiti preparing to open school in September.
Bildad returned to his hometown of Cabaret to prepare for opening a school. The Lord blessed him with volunteers and friends who helped him make the preparations. The City of Cabaret pledged to give The Joseph School about 40 acres of land. Bildad was able to rent a large house that would serve as a school and as a guesthouse for visitors. He found talented teachers who can help with the school’s founding. God blessed him greatly.
On August 11 at 8:11 a.m. the Board of Directors of The Joseph School voted to open in September, 2015. Right on time! God answered our prayers from the last 18 months. He did not need a lot of time to start a school. He waited until the time was right.
The journey has been long and the path has not been straight. But God has been with us all the way. As we make final preparations for the long-anticipated opening, we know God will continue to be with us in the months and years ahead. We are more convinced than ever that The Joseph School vision is his calling. We are grateful for his faithfulness.
Thank you for your faithfulness in this journey as well. It has not been easy. The path has not always been clear. But we have arrived on the threshold of opening. This time is made all the more exciting by the difficulties overcome to get us here.
I’m looking forward to sharing more about The Joseph School in the exciting days that lie ahead. Please continue praying.
God answers prayers…and it may not be in the way we expect.
Bondye Bon. God is good.