Cheryl Smith | Testimony up, my dad passed away when I was about 2 years old.  My mom was raising four children, working two and three jobs.  God put other people in my life to take me to church.  It was Mr. & Mrs. Joyner (our landlord), my sister and brother, and my Aunt Judy.  I went to Methodist, Presbyterian and Wesleyan Methodist churches. I was baptized with my brother and sister when I was 10 years old at a Presbyterian church. I didn’t know why I was being baptized; it was what I thought I was supposed to do.

When I graduated from high school, I didn’t go to church; I was more interested in drugs and alcohol – the partying scene.  This was all in Pennsylvania. I then moved to North Carolina in 1985, continuing with the drugs and alcohol.  Romans 3:23 says, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”

I met my husband; we partied a lot and moved in together.  We married and bought a house and continued our ways of drinking, drugs and gambling.  We started to go to a few different churches. God then put people in our life and in January 1993, and I placed my faith in Christ. God has planned it all out for you and me. We were invited to Crossroads Church and attended regularly.  Pastor Jesse Parrish baptized my husband and me at Falls Lake; this showed my love and belief that God sent his Son Jesus Christ to be born of a virgin, lived a sinless life, died a horrible death and was resurrected three days later for my sins -- knowing that I have eternal life in heaven, not in hell.  John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son, that whoever believeth in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

We were then invited to Richland Creek Community Church.  From the first time I went, I knew this was the church.  I have grown so much in my walk with the Lord here at the Creek.  I Peter 2:9 says, “But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.”

God has called me out of the darkness and my life has turned around into His marvelous light. Romans 5:8 says, “But God shows his love towards us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”