Mission-minded GraduatesBy Joe Stowell on June 6, 2017
In May, we launched over 600 graduates into our world to light up the cultures of their worlds for Christ and His Kingdom. And in this dark world, that's no small thing! But to be honest, while that is the fulfillment of our mission, there are lots of students that I wish we could keep in our campus community. Their positive influence on their peers and on our campus culture will be greatly missed.
Take Zach Torres for example...as a CU Empowered scholar, Zach's diverse family background and depth of character impacted and inspired all of us. He has an incredible passion for international missions and sharing the gospel with his life. He spent a semester studying abroad in Ecuador during his time as a student, and as a recent graduate, he's headed to Korea to pursue mission work overseas.
We took time to ask Zach a few questions about his experiences as a CU student. You'll get why we'll miss him when you read the interview below.
Zach is just another of the many reasons why I love it here!
Q&A with Cornerstone Grad: Zach Torres
- Where did you grow up?
I grew up in the Denver Metro Area.
- And what was your major at Cornerstone University?
I graduated with a major in intercultural studies and minors in Bible and Spanish.
- Why did you choose that major, and what do you aspire to do with it now that you have graduated?
This degree path made sense to me because what I want to do with my life is share in the Gospel that I am receiving.
- How would you say that CU has helped you grow in your relationship with God?
Cornerstone helped me know God as a giver of good, gracious and provisional gifts. I learned to fear Him and see Him where I did not see Him before my experiences at university.
- What was your favorite class at CU and why?
My favorite class at Cornerstone was Counseling Families in Ministry. This is because one of my strongest beliefs is in the power of the family unit for Gospel reconciliation.
- How did CU prepare you to influence the world for Jesus Christ?
My time at Cornerstone has prepared me to influence the world for Jesus Christ by shaping my view of what it means to live in this world with all the roles we have as humans while proclaiming Jesus Christ as Lord, His Father as sovereign and their Spirit as active.
- You studied abroad in Ecuador. How did that experience shape your heart for the world?
I came to know that the created order is big; I am small. I am loved, chosen, romanced and upheld by the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. I am just a baby in this life; I don't need to fear in this life, only walk in dependence on Him and His wisdom. He makes me qualified. Poor people are people first. My life is part of a story; my life is not the story (this one is still developing in me). Taking care of a child means intentional repetition. At the end of the day, after all my insecurities, I want God.
- Was there a particular experience you had during your time at CU or abroad that shaped your calling?
An assignment given by Dr. John Duff in my capstone class assured me to walk freely knowing that my calling is received from the Word, in my inheritance, by faith. I do not have to wait around hoping and worrying for God to speak any particular vocation for me to do, I am called to be.
- You will be heading for Korea this fall. What will you be doing there?
During my time in Korea, I will be spending time with other American and Korean university students to encourage and teach Korean youth how to speak English. I also hope to visit the DMZ, learn from translated interviews, conversations and the eyes of fellow believers who have been able to flee from North Korea. I also hope to gain some more perspective around Korea having the highest suicide rate among all developed countries in the world.
- Any other relevant information to your story?
Going to Cornerstone was something out of left field for me. Growing up I really never thought of the state of Michigan. I did not know anyone who lived there. God chose to give me clear direction and assurance that His purposes included me going to Cornerstone University through a vision He gave me and the following provision He gave me. My family and I thank all people who contributed and gave of themselves, their time and their money to make this happen in my life. We certainly knew it would have to be made possible through Him when we looked at tuition prices the morning I received the vision.