About JWI

What are we all about?

In an era where information has become more readily available to us than ever before, mankind has come to value knowledge above all else. Universities and colleges around the world provide seekers with facts and figures in incredible detail about every imaginable subject. But for many, this accumulation of knowledge will fall far short of what is truly needed to live an effective life in the kingdom of God, as information allows one to know without always affecting what one does or more importantly who one is.

What is desperately needed then is not more knowledge based training, but rather a wisdom based curriculum that focuses less on the assimilation of facts, and more on the practical outworking of what it means to be a Disciple of Jesus Christ. A program designed for those who know they want to serve the Lord but lack the discernment, focus, spiritual and personal discipline, or life experience to exercise real wisdom in everyday situations. It is with this great need recognized then, that Hume Ministries is pleased to provide the Joshua Wilderness Institute.

Whether doing vocational ministry in the Dominican Republic, sharing the gospel with strangers on the streets of Hollywood, or working with deaf children in Mexico each trip provides an opportunity for students to apply what they have learned in classes. True Biblical discipleship moves beyond the concept stage. The mission of Joshua moves from theory to practice as students experience service, culture, and the very place the Bible was written about.

Mission Statement

Our mission statement at Joshua, “Transforming the Life Effectiveness of God’s People” is simple. But the process by which this mission is realized is anything but. Utilizing a combination of theology, Bible study skills, philosophy and worldview training, evangelism, character development, personal life skills, and monthly mission trips, we endeavor to expose students to life, guide them to discern God’s will, and cultivate a spiritual passion and calling. Ultimately though, it is not our programming or passion that transforms these students. It is God Himself responding to the individual cry of each one who has purposefully set this time aside to be transformed. The sole motivation for attendance should be life effectiveness, through an increase in wisdom. When students come with that singular goal in mind, each one takes home a measure of transformation proportional to his or her individual drive and desire to be more like Christ.

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Cruce, Libro, et Atro

This Benedictine motto from the 9th century also serves as the philosophical foundation of our training at the Joshua Wilderness Institute. Cruce, Libro, et Atro literally means “the cross, the book, and the plow.” It emphasizes the necessity of personal balance in faith, knowledge, and work ethic for the disciple. Faith “without deeds” is dead as it says in James, while faith without knowledge is unsustainable. Similarly, Christian activity motivated by anything other than faith and God’s glory is wasted, and work ethic alone, separated from knowledge is not only dangerous, but directionless. It is only when one learns to synchronize Biblical faith, the acquisition of knowledge, and the service of God and others that life effectiveness truly becomes attainable. The institute provides the necessary tools and means for attaining just such a balance.

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Core Values

The Joshua Wilderness Institute is founded upon 15 core values which direct all of our curriculum development, disciplinary action, instructor choices, and student/faculty coaching.

  • Instilling an urgency for discovering one’s calling and central purpose for life. (Ephesians 4:1)
  • Creating a hunger to know and understand God. (Jeremiah 9:23,24)
  • Prompting the student to identify and evaluate their personal philosophy of life and assist them in developing a Godly worldview. (Philippians 4:8; Titus 1:9)
  • Developing a passion for God’s guidance and instruction and seeking to recognize the lessons and truths hidden in all of life. (Proverbs 25:2; Psalms 19)
  • Challenging the student to develop convictions, which result in a person of moral and ethical character. (Numbers 13:30; Daniel 1:8)
  • Teaching the life skills necessary for effective practical living. Covering stewardship, financial, environmental, and time management, relationships, conflict resolution, etc. (Ecclesiastes 10:10)
  • Insisting that the student live a disciplined life, in thought, word, deed, and attitude; which includes making of beds, rising early, devotions, staying in shape, extra curricular reading, orderliness, denying self, and seeing others as more important than yourself. (1 Timothy 4:7-8)
  • Cultivating a desire to live a life of holiness. Striving for Honesty, Purity, and Integrity in every area of life. (Psalms 15; Leviticus 11:44)
  • Building critical thinking skills, and equipping their hearts and minds for living in a relativistic age, able to decipher truth and communicate clearly and compellingly to others. (I Peter 3:15)
  • Urging the student to live a life of contentment, finding the pleasures in all of life and being peaceful in it. (Philippians 4:11-13)
  • Leading the student to live a life of humility, seeing themselves as God sees them. This humble spirit allows one to be teachable in all of life’s circumstances. (Psalm 25:9)
  • Assisting the student to discover their talents and giftedness, to be used with confidence in accordance with the purpose God has set before them. (I Corinthians 10:31)
  • Establishing a solid foundation of Biblical truth, teaching scripture as the ultimate authority, with an emphasis on the Old Testament and the study of Theology. (2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:20-21)
  • Awakening the student to God’s abiding presence and their need to abide with Him. (John 14, 15:4-10; Psalms 15:1)
  • Challenging students to love others and reproduce disciples through lives that not only evangelize in word and tongue, but in action and in truth. (I John 3:18; I Peter 2:12)

Meet the Staff

The Joshua Wilderness Institute staff absolutely love the Lord, Joshua and investing in the students who attend.

Bob Plouffe

Director

Bob was born and raised in central Massachusetts, just east of our Hume New England campus. Immediately following high school graduation, he left for the United States Air Force where he ended up serving a 25-year career spanning many states and career opportunities. After retiring from military life, Bob sensed a calling into full-time ministry. This calling brought him and his family to Hume Lake where he joined the team in the summer of 2003. Over the span of his Hume Lake career, Bob held such positions as Grant Writer, Development Manager, Marketing Director, and finally Human Resources Director where he’s served since 2008. Associated with the Joshua Wilderness Institute (JWI) just a few years after its inception, Bob has become very familiar with the JWI program and its underpinnings. He understands and respects the roots of the program and supports its ideologies. The Plouffe family supported the JWI mentor program as “Pause” parents for eight years. Additionally, Bob accompanied the Joshua team on an Israel trip in 2010. In 2011, his son, Calen (now 25), graduated from JWI in the class of 2011. After graduation, Calen majored in Kinesiology at California Baptist University graduating in 2014. He is now a firefighter for Pasadena, CA. Calen is married to Kamee Clevenger, a school teacher, and they reside in Rancho Cucamonga, CA. Bob’s wife, Debbie, is the 1st – 2nd Grade teacher for the Hume Lake Charter School and has been since their arrival in 2003. Bob and Debbie also have a daughter, Kayla (22), who also graduated from California Baptist University with a degree in Graphic Design and Photography. Kayla travels the globe shooting for different companies as a free-lance photographer. She resides in Newport Beach, CA. When Bob’s not driving a desk, you’ll find him outside either hiking, cycling, sketching, painting or reading stretched out in his hammock!

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Rachel Savage

Associate Director

Rachel is originally from Fresno, CA. She grew up coming to Hume as a second home and she worked on summer staff over the years. Hume was always a place of key moments in her journey as a disciple of Jesus. In 2013, she earned a Master of Arts in Biblical Studies from Fresno Pacific University. After that, she taught biblical literature and interpretation courses at Fresno Pacific. Her favorite courses to teach were on wisdom literature, Matthew, the minor prophets, and Psalms. Rachel deeply enjoys mentoring and discipling college-age students and she is passionate about biblical literacy and cross-cultural mission and ministry. She recently married Jason Savage, who also works at Hume Lake. They share passion for ministry, and a love of languages and the outdoors.

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Courtney Berry

Administrator

Courtney grew up in Morgan Hill, CA and in 2013 graduated from Moody Bible Institute in Chicago with a double major in Biblical Studies and Children’s Ministry. During college, Courtney was a young women’s small group leader at Harvest Bible Chapel. During her Senior year, she joined the Harvest Bible Chapel staff as the Children’s Ministry Coordinator. In 2014, she moved to Hume, CA and attended the Joshua Wilderness Institute. After spending a life enriching year at Joshua, she moved to Maui to work at Hope Chapel as a Children’s Ministry Intern. She is now ready for her next adventure and is excited to serve on the Joshua Staff. A few of her favorite things include: journaling, teaching God’s Word, reading biographies, hammocking, and working with kids. She is looking forward to helping Joshua students foster an uncommon community that is characterized by authenticity, grace, mutual respect, and love.

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Samantha Littlefield

Female Resident Director

Samantha grew up in Turlock, California and graduated from California State University, Stanislaus with a degree in Liberal Studies. She has been in love with Hume Lake ever since first attending Winter Camp in 8th grade. Samantha spent three summers working at Wildwood, and ventured to Hume New England for a summer after her college graduation. She spent a year on the island of Maui working with High School students and most recently worked with Speaker Hospitality at IF:Gathering in Austin, Texas. Samantha loves sushi, coffee, queso and shave ice. Most days, you can find her reading a good book, walking around the lake, processing through life with friends, or chasing the sunset. Samantha is excited to work at Joshua because she gets to be a part of a program that impacted her relationship with the Lord in deep ways. She can’t wait to do life with the residents over this next year – she is excited and expectant in how the Lord will move!

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Seth Lawton

male Resident Director

Seth was born in Show Low Arizona, and raised in Phoenix (the Valley of the Sun). After graduating high school and spending years working at Prescott Pines Christian Camp, Seth moved to San Diego. While in college Seth worked three summers at Hume Lake as a High Adventure Guide. In May 2016, he graduated with a Bachelors Degree in Biblical Studies with an emphasis in Youth Ministry from THE San Diego Christian College. Seth moved up to Hume Lake and worked with Activities for a year and spent his fourth summer working in Wildwood Camp. Other positions he’s held were Jr High Pastor, Jr High/High School Intern, and Spiritual Life Leader while at SDCC. He’s very excited to disciple and shepherd young men in the Joshua Wilderness program. In his off-time you will find him writing, drinking coffee, rock climbing, camping, road tripping, and occasionally working on cars. Some of his favorite foods are any breakfast food, pizza, and tacos (occasionally steak and shrimp).

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Tucker Horton

Media Coordinator

Tucker grew up in Thousand Oaks, CA and fell in love with Hume Lake in high school as a Ponderosa camper. After having an amazing experience attending the Joshua Wilderness Institute, he worked three summers at Hume in different positions before being hired on full time in 2014. He loves diving into God’s word, encouraging others towards Christ, and has been leading high school small groups for the past six years. Tucker has a huge passion for camping ministry, photography, and travel and can usually be found out adventuring with friends or playing music. Tucker is stoked to see how God will move in the students this year and is honored to play a small role in advancing His kingdom.

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Amy Northrop

Chef

Amy Northrop is most recently from Los Angeles, but grew up in Mexico with her missionary parents. She has served in the Hume Lake Food Service Department for the past six years. She graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Hospitality Management from Cal Poly Pomona, and has an Associate’s Degree in Culinary Arts from Los Angeles Mission College. Amy is passionate about camp ministry, family, and food. In her free time, she enjoys quilting, playing board games, and spending quality time with friends and family. She also enjoys teaching people to cook. She is excited to use her talents in the kitchen and to love on the Joshua students this next year!

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