Federal Relations

Bright Spots in Home Schooling

December 12, 2003  

Joshua Carden, Esq., Attorney for Alliance Defense Fund

Joshua Carden, Esq.,
Attorney for Alliance Defense Fund

"I have longed for your salvation, O Lord, and your law is my delight." - Psalm 119:174

Joshua Carden first dreamed of becoming a lawyer at age nine. "My parents were friends with lawyers like Shelby Sharpe, Michael Farris, and Jordan Lorence. Those men became legal heroes to me." Josh told HSLDA's Bright Spots. He realized this dream in 2002 when he graduated from Regent University School of Law with his Juris Doctorate before sitting for the Arizona bar exam.

Josh's education began very early in life, "my parents decided to homeschool any kids they had. I was born in 1974 and in her 'ignorance' my mom taught me to read at age three… I was homeschooled until college." Josh received his Bachelor of Arts in Political Science at Dallas Baptist University before heading on to graduate school.

"I feel that homeschooling helped prepare me for the wide variety of experiences I've had in education and in work. Flexibility has been important to my life. Also, my parents took the opportunity to repeatedly emphasize character and the things of God during my homeschooling, those things will always be beneficial!" Josh said before adding, "As much as I appreciate the way homeschooling prepared me for what I do now, I always want people to remember that homeschooling is not salvation. It is a means, not an end unto itself. Homeschooling is wonderful, but like anything else it can be perverted if it is not pervaded by Christ."

Josh now works as a litigation staff attorney for the Alliance Defense Fund in Phoenix, Arizona. The Alliance Defense Fund (or ADF) is a Christian legal organization that defends traditional family values, religious freedom, and the sanctity of human life. ADF works with other groups to keep the door open for the gospel in America. Although ADF is involved with a variety of issues; Josh said he focuses the most on cases where state universities violate the rights of Christian students.

As a Christian homeschool graduate turned lawyer Josh is impacting the culture. "I'm part of the war for the culture - the antithesis between the 'city of God' and the 'city of man' so eloquently traced through history by St. Augustine. My job is to use my faith, my training, etc., to help fulfill the Great Commission, both directly through evangelism and indirectly by protecting our rights to evangelize."

When not practicing law Josh enjoys spending time playing the piano. Friends find it particularly amusing to see him play upside-down. On a serious note, future goals for Josh include passing his second bar exam, Texas in February 2004, winning a case before the Supreme Court, and even one day becoming President of the United States. But also on a broader scale, Josh would like to see ADF's long term goals accomplished: 1. Keeping the door open for the spread of the Gospel, and 2. Reclaiming the legal system for Christ.

Click here for more information about the Alliance Defense Fund.

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