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I grew up in a Christian household going to church every Sunday with my family.  However, when I was younger, I used to hate going to church - the services felt like an eternity and I was terrified of the pastor. In going to church every Sunday, I would hear the church terms, “you must be saved” or “you must be born-again” to go to heaven. I thought being saved meant that you go to church, you do not lie or steal, and you pretty much be a good person. In October 2020, I kept seeing this YouTube video pop up in my recommendations and one day the video just auto-played. It was a video about the gospel.  In the video, a guy asked the question “Do you think that you are a good person?” I responded, “Yes.” Then he went through the 10 Commandments and I realized I was not a good  person and that if I were to die, I would deserve to go straight to Hell. So, for the rest of that day, I watched more videos about God and the Bible.   Later that night I prayed and surrendered my life to Christ. After getting saved I began reading the Bible every day. I was like a sponge, I just wanted to learn more and more about God. I also really wanted to share the gospel with the people I knew but I was too fearful.

     When I came to USF in the summer of 2022 I met Chris Baker and we started meeting for a Bible study. Through the Bible study, I realized that it is important to be joined to a local body of believers. I quickly got involved with Cornerstone and even became a member at the end of that summer. Since getting  involved, I have been learning a lot about God’s word, learning how to live a life of faith, as well as being taught how to share the gospel. Cornerstone helped me to be bold in my Christian life. I have been able to go around campus and share the gospel with people, I have been able to lead Bible studies, go on a mission trip, and the Lord has used me to lead other people to Christ.

     What has happened in this past year with Cornerstone, I would have never          expected to happen. I have gotten to see God move and work in the life of my sister and her husband (who was a former Muslim). They both recently put their trust in Jesus! Also, in this past year, I believe the Lord has called me into full time ministry work as well. Praise the Lord!!           ~Matthew



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