Most of us have probably grown up knowing someone who was a Christian, whether it’s a family member, a friend, or that neighbor who goes to church around the block. But for a lot of people, they have never met a Christian in their life. Grace International School parents Josh and Joanna Cook met these people for the first time when they began going on short-term mission trips and realized the need for international Christian workers in Asia. “Meeting students who had never met a Christian before opened our eyes to the reality that many around the world have no access to the Gospel,” says Josh. “The Lord put it on our hearts to be sent as ones who would bring the Gospel to those who had never heard.”
The Cooks served in East Asia for several years, but after being unable to return due to COVID-19, the Lord led them to serve with Cru in Thailand. They wear a few different hats with Cru and get to be a part of overseeing short-term mission teams coming to campuses in Thailand, training interns and new staff in campus ministry and leadership skills, and evangelism at Chiang Mai University. They are especially passionate about building confidence in ministry skills such as evangelism. Recently, the Cooks have had the opportunity to train an intern in an evangelism tool that is great for starting conversations with others about their worldview. After training this intern, he went on to train a Thai intern. The Thai intern then went on to train a Korean student who was on a mission trip in Thailand. “It was a wonderful example of training one person well and seeing that multiply to mobilize many others to share their faith,” Josh says excitedly.
With their ministry keeping them busy, the Cooks are grateful that their children can attend Grace International School. “GIS has given us the ability to be more fully involved in ministry together while not needing to balance homeschooling at the same time,” Joanna says. It is because of GIS that international Christian workers such as the Cooks are enabled to train young people so that they may be equipped with the skills to bring others to Christ.