Born in Latin America and raised nominally Christian, Michael came to faith in Christ while studying at a university in the Middle East. Now he calls the Middle East home and serves as a full-time staff member with Middle East Student Fellowship.
I was born in Latin America but now I live in the Middle East. I grew up in a Christian family but it wasn’t until God moved me to a Muslim nation that I became a Christian myself.
Though I called myself a Christian for most of my life, I did not understand the good news of Jesus Christ. In my second year of university in the Middle East, a staff worker from the Middle East Student Fellowship started meeting up with me. We started reading a book together that opened my eyes to see that for most of my life I had been a legalist trying to earn my way into heaven. The book made it clear that Christians could approach God at all times because Christ died in our place and rose again. His death paid the price of our sin, and therefore at all times we could confess and find forgiveness at the cross. At the cross there is full assurance of forgiveness. That blew my mind. At that moment I realized that all my life I had been trying to earn God’s approval when I didn’t have to – and couldn’t! The weight fell off and I was free! Finally free to proclaim the gospel, the good news, to others since I had tasted and seen that God indeed is good.
Ever since that day, I started sharing the gospel with my classmates, friends, family and even professors. I grew in my love for God and my life started changing. At that point in time I did not want to be a student leader of the Middle East Student Fellowship because I saw my own hypocrisy. But the Lord had other plans; he changed my heart. I cancelled my study abroad plans in order to stay and help the Christian student club on campus. When it came time to graduate, I saw how my life had been completely transformed because of the gospel that had been shared with me. I couldn’t think of a better way to spend my time than by sharing this same wonderful news with other students. I’ve been trained through an internship with the same student ministry and I’ve started working full time with them. I love that I get to introduce people to Jesus with all my time. I long to see the thousands of students in my country come to Christ.