Lives Changed

Our stories have power. When we tell of the great things Jesus has done for us and in us, we are dropping truth grenades on the enemy’s head. Soldiers on the frontlines, these folks are IN.

Damany Abernathy


MAN CAMP Veteran

“I went to the first MAN CAMP. I had absolutely no desire to go. It was February. It was cold. I didn’t want to crap in the woods. My friend asked me to go and even lead a group. My wife thought it would be good for me. I’m not great at saying no to people so, I thought, I guess I’m going. But I was not excited. If I had not been leading a team, I would have pulled out.

Once we arrived, it was sort of a group of guys just doing their thing in the woods, like chopping down trees, having solitude, building fires. It was fun, but the game changer for me was going to the M*A*S*H (prayer) tent. I’ve never been the type to ask someone to pray for me so it seemed weird, but I just felt this itch like I had to go.

I asked a couple of M*A*S*H guys to pray for me. They began to pray and asking me questions. The next thing I knew, I was uncovering issues with my father. I had no relationship with him, yet the hatred I had for him was infesting all areas of my life. I realized that while I had no earthly father, I had a heavenly dad that loved me, valued me and is always with me. I received Jesus at that moment. I felt lighter, my spirit was refreshed.

Fast Forward to BRAVE journey, I knew that my brave step was to forgive my father. I had not seen or spoken to him in twenty years. I wrote him a letter declaring that I forgave him, because this is what happens when you make Jesus your king. A week later, I received a letter. It was unbelievable. My father wrote to me, explaining that he also had given his life to Jesus. God had promised him that this day of forgiveness would come. Soon, we were reunited. We hugged and cried, while shaking our heads in awe over what God had done.

Onto MAN CAMP XXL: I found myself on the M*A*S*H team. I was intimidated. My friend said to me, ‘you may not know all the Bible verses or the perfect prayers. But what you can offer these people is your story. This is your chance to dial in deeper to God.’ He was right. Every time I prayed for someone, I felt like I was pouring out and filling up at the same time. I’m no counselor, but God spoke through me. It was even better than my first MAN CAMP. I wanted these guys to know that Jesus is my homeboy. He loves us so much. That doesn’t mean much until you start digging into your life and discovering what’s wrong. If anyone ever questions whether or not they should go to MAN CAMP, the answer is yes. Why? Because God is there.” I give because I believe in what God is doing at Crossroads, like MAN CAMP. Putting money toward buying land means investing in the people that will use it. Who wouldn’t want to do that?

Beverly Grant

City Leader

Crossroads Volunteer

“I grew up in segregated west Tennessee. My parents were one generation from sharecroppers. We were very poor. My father passed away when I was ten. I was the youngest of ten children and my mother taught me to be very budget conscious. At a young age, I decided that my life would be different. I came to know Jesus my senior year in college. At twenty years old, I learned that tithing honors God and blesses others, but most of all it blessed me. I wanted to be a giver, and I wanted God to change my heart regarding material desires for myself.

So my desire to advance the work of the Kingdom stems out of a desire to bless others. My career blossomed more than I ever dreamed. I retired as a Vice President at P&G and now have a consulting business that I enjoy. But my heart and greatest priority has always been to give. I just believe that the blessing you receive from giving to others is far greater than any blessing you can give yourself.

Throughout my life, I have made choices like living below my means and avoiding debt. Most lenders advise 35% of pre-tax income for a mortgage, property tax and insurance. But I felt God leading me to stay at 25% or less of after-tax income. Instead of living in a Homearama home and wearing designer clothes, I want to be able to give extravagantly. Disciplines like these have allowed me to consistently give at least 20% of pre-tax income to the Kingdom. The joy that giving brings me is better than any handbag or mansion ever could.

Because of my career, I have moved a lot. When I returned to Cincinnati in 2013, I had hoped to find a new church home. I decided to try Crossroads and I was deeply impacted by Go Cincinnati. The way God uses Crossroads to mobilize people to serve others is phenomenal. I’m excited about the way Crossroads is called to give and empower others. I have been praying for God to give me an opportunity to make a difference in the city. And then, I’M IN came up. This community not only believes they can flip the city, but also through God, they can change the world. It’s where I want to be, it’s where I want to give, it’s what I want to support.”

Matt Regnold

Recent UC Grad

Crossroads Uptown Volunteer

“My friends and I decided to try church and started going to Crossroads Oakley. We’d come as often as we could, given it was kind of hard in our college environment of packed schedules and no transportation.

The vibe from Crossroads Oakley was exciting, completely different, and so inviting. You couldn’t not sit down and not take what they were giving you at heart. It started to feel like home. Then I heard the five marks of a man in the New Man series. Before that, I thought I was a good person, on the right track. But that series taught me that The Bible has a clear set of guidelines, and I felt motivated to move forward and closer to God.

My friends and I started to wonder about Clifton. What if we could bring this experience to students? We knew firsthand that proximity was the issue for students because they’re not as mobile as the rest of the city. When the opportunity came to have Crossroads Uptown at Bogarts, it felt weird, but at the same time so perfect. To walk there on Sundays is just so different. You have the closeness of community and you have people that are exploring God, maybe for the first time, in this dark, dirty bar that they may have just left the night before.

We started dreaming about transforming Old St. George. Crossroads Uptown at Old St. George is where we can take hold of the city, reaching this core group of people that never walked in a church before. Or maybe were hurt, or God never seemed to be an option for them because they were told not to believe He is real. But God will completely change that because Crossroads Uptown’s presence will be approachable, in the neighborhood, and reflect a student’s life view. I’m all in. And I give my time and my money to this place because I believe we can honestly take the city and flip it. That’s scary. Scary in an awesome way because I don’t know what that looks like. But I think it will start with Old St. George.”

Lizanne Milton

Lives in England

Hoping for an app

“I live in a tiny village in England. I visit my sister in Cincinnati twice a year, and attend Crossroads with her every chance I get. But I watch the message online every week. Crossroads offers a lifeline to a message that impacts me. I receive something from God and am encouraged. So often the Crossroads topic covers exactly what we’re discussing in our church group back home. The women are all ages, and some are not very open to watching an online message from some place faraway. However, you can’t believe how often what we’re discussing in our home group is exactly what Chuck or Brian just talked about. So I feel equipped to speak about the topic in a new way with the sweet ladies in my group.

Livestreaming would be wonderful because then I could see the clips you are showing. Currently, my sister sweetly sends me the YouTube clips so I can better understand the illustration. Crossroads speaks so honestly in a language that’s relatable. I truly believe God is doing something, and I really want to share it. My heart is that the young people in England would be open to it. So many of them are turning to other things these days and Crossroads speaks in a language that they understand.

Many times I’ve heard Crossroads say, ‘changing our city, changing the world.’ And what I always want to call out is ‘Yes! And we’re out here in the world! We’re with you. We want to help. We need an app.’”

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