‘Your Story Matters’ conference spreads messages of hope, purpose

Published 2:15 pm Monday, April 11, 2022

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By SCOTT MIMS | Special to the Reporter

ALABASTER — Whether you call it a story, a testimony or an autobiography, one point was made clear at the first ever ‘Your Story Matters’ conference—everyone has something to share.

The event, held at Cultivate Church in Alabaster on March 26, featured inspiring stories from former Alabama and NFL player Simeon Castille, as well as Ammie Morgan and Sanchez Tanniehill, while worship music was led by Iron City Worship.

“The heart of this conference was not to simply have a front row seat to the stories of others, but to empower and equip you to find and share yours,” said Brandon Matthews, lead team pastor of Cultivate Church. “This conference is focused on the attendees as opposed to the presenters. This day was focused on bringing the purpose and potential out of each person.”

Castille gave a behind-the-scenes look at not only his professional football career, but also his personal life. From overcoming tragic events as a child, suffering betrayal, injury and loss, to healing and fulfillment through his relationship with Jesus Christ, he encouraged those in attendance to look to what matters and to never give up the pursuit of their purpose.

Morgan shared how she overcame a traumatic life event after being shot multiple times and almost losing her life. From a coma, she could hear doctors say that she would likely not live, and if she did, she would either be a quadriplegic or a paraplegic.

“Lying in her bed, Morgan would think to herself, ‘You don’t know my God,’” Matthews shared. “Miraculously, today she shares her story of God’s faithfulness in her life.”

Finally, Sanchez Tanniehill of God Did It Ministries shared his story of perseverance with the audience. Although Tanniehill was born a healthy child, he suffered a stroke at the age of 6 weeks.

Doctors said he would never talk or walk, but through the goodness of God, he not only shares his story, but is now encouraging others to do the same through efforts like the Your Story Matters Conference.

Matthews said that the goal is for the conference to become a regular, annual event.

“The desire is to offer the conference annually and to grow it from here,” he said. “The event will get better and better as it grows and matures.”