It's so hard to believe that another semester at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg has come and gone, let alone the whole 2020-2021 school year. Although COVID-19 has made things difficult, there are still so many things to be celebrated, including CoMission's USFSP graduating seniors. The week before spring break, we had what we called a Send Party, which not only celebrates the end of a semester but the sending out and commissioning of our graduating seniors as they finish school and prepare for the next chapter in their lives. Naturally, our hope is that these graduates will be able to take the gospel and become effective disciple makers wherever the Lord calls them. This week's content features a short testimony of one of our graduating seniors, Ashley Cyrus, who was also one of CoMission's prominent student leaders. Here's her story.
(Side note: Ashley and one of our CoMission staff, Jordan, knew each other long before USFSP but had lost touch until a few years ago. Now that's what I call a divine encounter!)
I transferred to USFSP in the spring of 2019. During this semester, I was very lonely, knowing basically no one and had no community to be a part of. I thought "this is how my next two years of college will be." However, God answered my prayers and on the first day of the fall 2019 semester, I re-met Jordan. She brought me into CoMission and within the first week, I was serving with different events and getting to know everyone involved in CoMission. Looking back at my first semester, I learned that God was showing me how important community is and how much we need to be involved with other believers to be able to grow in our faith. I also learned that we need to have a support team that will go into the lost world and hear other people's stories; but most importantly, share God's story with others.
I want to encourage students to cherish this community and family that we are a part of. Also, do not be afraid to take as many opportunities as you can to hear other people's stories and share God's story with them because this is a crucial step in growing this family and community. I know many people say this, but these years really do fly by. Take these experiences as learning opportunities to lay the foundation of being able to share God's story with other people in the future. Whether you feel called to be a missionary or go into the workforce, we are all called to tell others about Christ if we believe in Him. What good is it if we just keep this good news to ourselves?
As I transition into a non-student/support role, I also want to encourage the non-students to pray, get to know our students and be there for them. One thing that really stuck out to me when I first came into this community was all the support and love I felt from all generations of people. I could really tell that they cared and wanted to get to know me and support me as I went through college. Let's continue to be a family on mission together that supports, loves and welcomes new people into this family.
I serve on staff as both Receptionist and Administrative Assistant for Gulf Coast Community Church and as Executive/Administrative Assistant for CoMission, the church's college outreach ministry. My role in CoMission specifically, includes bookkeeping, calendar oversight, document editing and of course, my favorite part: writing this blog. My hope for this blog is to help you get a feel for what the heartbeat of CoMission is about as I share various content on the topics of discipleship, evangelism, college outreach strategies, and everything in between. I'll even share an occasional update on the current events of CoMission as we strive to raise and equip disciples for the sake of the Gospel on the USFSP campus. May you be well informed and encouraged with every post. To Him be the glory.