Have Questions? Check out the Global U forum and communicate directly with our team here.
Have Questions? Check out the Global U forum and communicate directly with our team here.
Global U is the product of 12 years of pioneering by the World Race and its partners. In 2006, feeling led by God to raise up a generation of radically committed disciples of Jesus Christ, Seth Barnes founded the World Race. Since then, more than 6,000 have participated. Over time, he and his staff saw that 18-20 year-olds needed a similar opportunity to reach the world in Jesus’ name.
Hundreds have responded to the call. And three years ago, Seth began partnering with colleges like Truett McConnell to offer college credit for their gap year experience. The success of that program showed his team that students were looking for an experience that combined global missions and discipleship with mentoring and apprenticeships.
More recently, Seth and GU co-founder, Josh Owen, asked, “What if we could work with a select group of highly motivated students to invest even more deeply in their discipleship and education?” Global U was the result.
They wanted to stretch the gap year opportunity so that it would become the experience of a lifetime. To do that, they built Global U so that it has these components:
Although our history and experience speaks for itself, we believe the 2019 Global U class will set a precedent that reverberates for years to come.
We believe God is eternally existent in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. We believe in the deity of our Lord Jesus Christ and in His virgin birth, sinless life, miracles, vicarious and atoning death through His shed blood, bodily resurrection, ascension to the right hand of God the Father, and personal return in power and glory. Faith in our Lord Jesus Christ is essential for the salvation of lost and sinful man.
We believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God and is authoritative and infallible in the original writings. (2 Timothy 3:16-17) Scripture is one of the primary means through which we learn who God is, who He has called us to be, and how we can walk out an intimate relationship with Him. It plays an active role in our spiritual growth by helping assess our thoughts and attitudes (Hebrews 4:12), giving us direction (Psalm 119:105), and setting us free (John 8:31-32). We are called to both listen to and heed its commands (James 1:22). Ultimately, we seek to delight ourselves in God’s Word (Psalm 119:16) as a source of life (Matthew 4:4).
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.
— 2 Timothy 3:16-17
Passion for Holiness.
We believe we are called to belong to God—to be set apart, dedicated to Him (1 Peter 2:9), and conformed to Christ’s image (Romans 8:29, Romans 12:1-2). Through the sacrifice of Jesus, we inherit a positional holiness (Hebrews 10:10) and are given the calling to actively pursue holiness (Romans 12:1). Jesus calls His followers to take up their cross, die to themselves, and follow Him (Matthew 16:24). This takes place by walking in step with the Spirit and submitting our passions and desires to His rather than a mere striving for moralistic perfection. He provides the power and produces the fruit if we are willing to submit and follow (Galatians 5:16-25, Romans 8:9-13).
As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.”
— 1 Peter 1:14-16
We believe God has spoken throughout time and continues to speak to His people today (Hebrews 13:8). Here are just a few examples from Scripture: Noah was instructed by God on how to build and fill the ark (Genesis 6:13-21).
Scripture promises if we belong to God we “hear what God says.” (John 8:47). Jesus goes on to tell us He is our good shepherd (John 10:11) and as His sheep, we will be able to follow Jesus because we know His voice (John 10:2-15). Along with Scripture, God has given us His Holy Spirit, the Counselor, to teach us all things and to remind us of what Jesus said (John 14:26). As such, we believe He is still speaking to us today and desires to continue guiding us and giving us direction, just as He has in the past (Galatians 5:16-18).
We know everything we think or hear is not from God, so we test what we hear to assess if it is from the Lord. We use the following list to help us do this:
My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.
— John 10:27
We believe God has gifted all believers with specific gifts to serve both the body of Christ and to expand the Kingdom of God in the world. Paul refers to the spiritual gifts as “the manifestation of the Spirit given for the common good” (1 Corinthians 12:7). They unify the body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12:12-13; Ephesians 4:11-16) and are a manifestation of the presence of God on earth today through His people. It is our desire to see each person utilize their unique gifts and thus contribute to the work of the Kingdom.
There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them… Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good… Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ… If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it. Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.
—1 Corinthians 12:4, 7, 12 & 27
We believe in the present ministry of the Holy Spirit, by whose indwelling we are enabled to live a godly life (Romans 8:13-14). Jesus was anointed with the power of the Holy Spirit (Acts 10:36-38) and as God’s children we also “receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on [us]” (Acts 1:8). We believe the Holy Spirit is supernaturally imparted to us in order to accomplish God’s will on earth, and the primary evidence of the Spirit-filled life is the fruit of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23).
But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.
— Acts 1:8
We believe God has called us to go out into the nations to proclaim His good news (Mark 16:15) and make disciples (Matthew 28:19-20). We are called to be God’s tangible light in a dark world so others would also come to know and glorify Him (Matthew 5:15-16). It is this spiritual fruit that brings glory to God and bears testimony to our discipleship (John 15:8).
As you go, proclaim this message: ‘The kingdom of heaven has come near.’ Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you have received; freely give.”
— Matthew 10:7-8
The church is the expression of Christ’s body on this earth, through His people. 1 Corinthians 12 and Ephesians 4 explain that Jesus has given different gifts to different people within the church, His body, so the body may be built up, support itself, and do the work of discipleship that Jesus left His disciples. Our desire is to see World Race squads journey as the church without walls as they grow and build each other up in love (Ephesians 4:16), spur one another on toward love and good deeds (Hebrews 10:24-25), and make disciples of all nations (Matthew 28:18-20).
We go to those needing ministry rather than expecting them to come to us. We emphasize ministry to the poor, the oppressed, and the hopeless and do this through partnering with the local church.
— James 1:27
We emphasize interdenominationalism and unity of the body of Christ, as such we are ministers of reconciliation. We seek to bring pastors and churches together in ministry. We do not exalt certain gifts, but we understand that the body of Christ needs them all to be balanced.
God has equipped each of us with different functions and gifts (Romans 12:4-5) so that the body of Christ may be built up in love to the full measure of Christ (Ephesians 4:11-13; 16). We understand that the body of Christ needs all of the gifts God has given us and therefore we seek to help each other discover and walk these out (1 Corinthians 12:4-27). Jesus prayed that his disciples would walk in unity and love with each other so that the world would know we are his disciples, and that he was truly sent from the Father (John 17, John 13:35)
Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.
— 1 Corinthians 12:27
As followers of Jesus, we are called to become like Him (Ephesians 5:1-2) and help others to do the same (Matthew 28:18-20). It is through the process of discipleship and the renewing of our minds through Scripture (Romans 12:1-2) we learn to be like Christ (Luke 6:40) and are transformed into His likeness (2 Corinthians 3:18). We then continue His ministry by imparting God’s character, Spirit and truth to others through intentional relationships.
Our desire is that God would use us to raise up a generation of radically committed disciples of Christ and send them out to the nations as we seek to fulfill the Great Commission. We intentionally empower participants to be part of something that matters and partner with the local church. We want to cultivate long-term, global change in people and projects that will continue long after our work is done.
And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable people who will also be qualified to teach others.
— 2 Timothy 2:2
We seek to love one another and therefore be an example of His love to the world around us (John 13:35, Galatians 5:14). We build relationships that are safe, vulnerable, and committed to helping each other grow in our faith (2 Timothy 2:2). Our intention is that our community would become an avenue to reach the nations and facilitate growth in Christ (Acts 2:42-47).
And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
– Hebrews 10:24-25
We believe as Christians we have been set free by the sacrifice of Jesus Christ (Ephesians 3:12). We have been set free from the Old Testament Law (Romans 7:1-6), the power of sin (Romans 6:6-7), the shame of sin (Romans 8:1-2; 1 John 1:9) and the power of Satan (Luke 4:18-19, Ephesians 6:10-20). We are now under grace (Romans 6:11-14) and under the conviction of the Holy Spirit as we walk with Him (Galatians 5:16-18). Ultimately, He will call us to a higher standard of holiness and will enable us to bear the fruit of the Spirit without gratifying the desires of our flesh and continuing to be enslaved to them.
It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.
Throughout Scripture, we see God calling his people to go on a journey of both faith and purpose with Him. On this journey, His people would grow in intimacy with him, become the people God created them to be, and join him in his work, that is, the establishment of his kingdom. Examples include:
We believe God is still calling people to step away from the busyness and trappings of this world to go on kingdom journeys with Him for the same purposes of growing closer to him, being transformed and partnering with him in making disciples of all nations. We see three distinct steps in this journey:
So much of the college experience can be amazing. You can meet your best friends and your professors may connect you to worlds you’d never dreamed of. The networks you connect to may get you started on your career.
But there are downsides too. Our national higher education system has become expensive and politically correct. 70% or more of students lose their faith in college.
We are a group of leaders and parents committed to addressing those shortcomings. We are iconoclasts and dreamers. We begin with a year of intense preparation to bring the kingdom and live as a global citizen. We involve established leaders to coach students to grow body, soul, and spirit.
We dream of an activist spiritual accelerator school for hard-charging disciples of Jesus Christ who will become a Delta force to bring the kingdom to dark places. One that gives emerging adults preparation for life, to become an adult who not only discovers their call but also forms the person and sets them on a plan to live it.
We start with students who have shown themselves successful and are likely to succeed. We use the best teachers and coaches to challenge and encourage them. We create the best classroom environments and field experiences we can in non-American settings (to break down preconceptions and comfort zones and develop them as global citizens).
“It is absurd and anti-life to be part of a system that compels you to sit in confinement with people of exactly the same age and social class. That system effectively cuts you off from the immense diversity of life and the synergy of variety; indeed, it cuts you off from your own past and future, sealing you in a continuous present much the same way television does.” – John Taylor Gotto