Here you can stay connected and read about new testimonies from CLI students from all over the world!
Hello, my name is Cynita Slater, and I am on a new ministry study journey at CLI. I am from the United States by way of Texas. Soon, I will relocate to sunny Arizona. I am a proud mother of five beautiful children, four boys, and a girl. Born and raised in Chicago, Illinois, I hold a Bachelor’s and a Master of Arts degree. I have been in and out of church all my life, until approximately three years ago, where I recommitted my heart to my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
I did not grow up in a church. When I was young, I attended a Baptist church with my mom. That lasted for a while, but it faded out, and she stopped going, I never knew why. God seemed to have a better plan for me. Around the age of ten, I found myself back in church, but this time my mom was not involved. I went to Vacation Bible School with a friend. I was so excited to learn about Jesus, so I continued to attend church after VBS was over. As a young child, I walked to church on Sundays. It was only a few blocks from my house. I was baptized in the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit on August 17, 1983.
All my life, I have been in and out of the church, however, mostly out. My life has been one struggle after another. I married the first time for thirteen years. He spent the majority of those years in jail, so I raised children on my own. Through every struggle, God always provided a way through, from being homeless with five kids, low income, and bad credit. Yet, God provided me with an apartment, made sure my bills were paid every month, and my family had food on the table. It was God because I barely made enough for my rent.
Even as I made one wrong decision after another in the marriage field, God always picked me up and started me on my way again. He never left me. At the time, I did not pay attention to Him covering me. It wasn’t until I was really in the world, enjoying all the world had to offer, that I found God again. A friend I worked with asked me to visit her church. I went a few times and felt comfortable and at home. My children and I started attending regularly. We became invested in the church as a family. That is where my real walk with God began.
I married an elder of the church. Then, I became more invested in my walk with God. It wasn’t because I was married to an elder. I had to cover my husband in prayer. I did not see how disconnected from his walk he was until after we married. In that long year, I spent more time on my knees praying for my husband and our marriage. I did not know what a prayer closet was, but I had one. Through the preacher and author, Tony Evans, I learned about spiritual warfare. I needed to know how-to put-on God’s armor and fight a good fight.
On May 15, 2017, I came home from work to a half-empty house and no husband. He left me for another woman. I could not believe it, but God was with me. Many days, I spent crying like a baby. I was a strong woman at work and in the world, but cradled in my Father’s arms, like a baby, when I was at home.
Then one day, when I was praying and crying to my Father, he told me, “Get up, I built you for this.” I couldn’t argue with God, so I got up and dusted myself off and turned it over to God. I have been trying to follow God’s plan ever since. I am a sinner, so I have faltered, but I dust myself off, ask for forgiveness, and try again.
God has not blessed me with a husband, but I am being patient and waiting on Him. It is no longer my will but His. He blessed me with a best friend of over twenty years, who is a pastor. I have supported her in her ministry for many years, but that was her thing, not mine. She started a church in Arizona and asked me to join her to help her out. I was very reluctant at first. I thought that I was not good enough to be a servant of God, but I was wrong. As I read the Bible and asked questions, I learned differently. I will be moving to Arizona in July.
Then, I started looking for a way to gain more knowledge of ministry and being part of a church. I could not afford to attend another college because of all the debt I already had from college. So, I turned to the internet, and I found the Christian Leaders Institute. I started to read about the organization and asked my friend if she had heard of CLI. She had, so I started classes. I am so excited about my new ministry study journey and what it holds for me. I walk my new ministry study journey day by day, step by step.
Hello, my name is Tim Garber, and I am taking the ministry study program for free at CLI. I live in Carson City, NV. I am happily married to my wife Brittany, and we have four children. Our oldest is from a previous relationship of mine, but you would never know it if you asked my wife. I knew about God at the age of 5. I attended a Christian school from kindergarten to second grade, but I gained little knowledge of Christ. Moving around a lot as a child, I never had any consistency in church.
At the age of 16, I started attending youth groups and church, mostly for a particular girl that I liked. But the Lord had other plans for my life. I was baptized and surrendered my life to God, or so I thought. The little information I had didn’t keep me close to Him for very long. No one told me about the trials and tribulations that would come with my salvation. The only thing I knew was if I didn’t want to go to hell, I had to say the sinner’s prayer. Seemed magical. Almost too good to be true.
I spent the rest of my teens and all of my twenties upset with God. Why were these things happening to me and why wasn’t He doing anything about it? I found solace in the bottom of a bottle, drugs, and promiscuity. At this time, I met and married my wife. It wasn’t until she stopped asking me to go to church that God dealt with me. I remember one night in drunken anger crying out to God, “If I don’t look after myself, no one else will.” To my surprise, God responded, “You take care of your family, and I’ll take care of you.”
I started attending church, but old habits die hard. Seven years into my marriage, my wife asked for a divorce. She said she couldn’t sit by and watch me kill myself. She couldn’t bear to receive a call saying something had happened to me. I told her that I would do whatever it took to change. I started attending a recovery program at a local church. Then we started attending the very same church.
It wasn’t until I had to do some self-reflecting that I realized why I was the way I was. It wasn’t until then that I realized God had been with me all along. There was no other way to explain why I was still alive. Just because I wasn’t listening for or to God, didn’t mean He wasn’t there.
At the time of this submission, I am five years sober, my marriage is intact, and God has called me to preach His Word. I don’t know where God is going to take me, but I know He has a plan for my family and me.
I’m thankful for the Christian Leaders Institute for making available this ministry study program that works around my schedule and my wallet. Therefore, I can receive ministry training to fulfill God’s purpose for my life.
Hello, my name is Mary Barrera, and I am taking free online courses at Christian Leaders Institute. I have five children and nine grandchildren. From my youth, I had a speech problem that I still have today. However, God helps me through the Holy Spirit with that difficulty. So, I don’t have to worry about that anymore.
I was born in Galveston, Texas, to Just and Dovie Jane Alfaro. I am the baby out of twelve children. In my young life, I experienced things that no child should have to endure. A family member molested me from the time I was five years old until the time I was 12 years old. When I was 12 years old, a tree fell on me. I almost died, but thanks to God, that didn’t happen. Then, when I was 14 years old, I gave my life to Jesus. It was a long road, but God got me through every step of the way as I grew up.
When I was 41 years old, my husband, a street minister, passed away with sugar diabetes and one lung. While he was on peritoneal dialysis, the doctors told him that he wouldn’t make it three years. But he made it for over three years. Then, in his last year, he had bone marrow cancer and died in 2016. I was his caregiver, but God made a way, and my church was there for me. After he died, I didn’t have anything, but God took care of that because we were obedient to his word. God takes care of his faithful followers.
Last year I met my fiance, and we set our wedding date for April 11, 2020. It’s so precious because God sent me him on my walk with God. He also sent my fiance to help my family because part of my family is unsaved. So we have a long journey ahead of us.
I wanted to tell my story as I’ve been through a lot in my life. However, without God, I’m nothing. The joy of the Lord is my strength. I have a ministry on Facebook called Gym Outreach, where I do a nightly reading. Furthermore, I have a women’s ministry. It is where 30 women of faith from all over the world come together daily. We encourage each other, we pray for each other, and we are there for each other.
God is good! Now, He has brought me to the Christian Leaders Institute for free online courses for ministry training. Let the journey begin!