Before Kevin Cross turned 22 he'd received a bachelor's degree in accounting, embezzled $300,000 from the government, been blackmailed by the mob and convicted of a felony. But Cross says the excitement of his cinematic life story doesn't compare to the exhilarating life he now leads in Christ. He travels the country teaching that true riches can be found only through biblical financial stewardship.
Cross says he spent most of his early years chasing riches. "My god was pleasure, and it was so satisfying. The problem is, it wears off like a drug," says Cross, who is president of Cross Stewardship Ministries in Roswell, Ga.
He successfully embezzled more than $300,000 from a Florida sheriff's office where Cross was an accountant. Members of the mob heard of Cross' operations and threatened to kill his girlfriend if he didn't embezzle $50,000 for them. After Cross stole more money for the mob, they turned him in for reward money.
Cross said he hit rock bottom when he was sent to jail and finally surrendered his life to Christ. Despite his new faith, he was convicted of a felony, given 15 years probation, ordered to pay back almost $70,000 and found himself homeless and working dead-end jobs.
But for Cross the story didn't end there. Not only did he get out of $100,000 in personal debt within five years, he also owned one of south Florida's largest Christian-operated CPA firms for 17 years. He now hosts Margin and Means financial conferences that help attendees understand how to get out of debt and use their financial abundance to help others.
"I learned that doing it my own way is not going to bring me the long-lasting pleasure like doing it God's way," Cross says. "I am compelled to show people the way to ... the ultimate pleasure in the richest of all the treasures in Jesus Christ."
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