Giving your testimony
God has given each one of us a powerful weapon for sharing the Gospel which is your story or by another name your testimony. Your testimony is simply the story of what Jesus has done in your personal life.
People can argue about what the bible says or what the church says but they find it much more difficult to argue about what your personal experience in what you say Jesus Christ has done in your own life.
Sharing your testimony is often the first direct step in leading someone to the Lord.
You might have prayed
You might have already built friendship bridges with the person.
When you are witnessing by saying to someone ‘Jesus is in me’ they might not want to know.
However many people are more polite and may respond in one of these ways.
i What does that mean to you?
ii How did you connect with Jesus?
iii When did this happen?
iv How do you know this is true?
Any response that is not a conversation killer may be an opening for your testimony. We must share our story of Jesus in our lives simply and sincerely. Take their reply as a starting point even if it takes a while to answer their questions.
We often don’t know how much time that they will give you to construct your testimony.
There are usually 4 steps in sharing your faith story:
Step 1: Identify the 3 main parts to your story:
Before Christ – How you viewed your life/conduct before conversion, but no sordid details.
Conversion story – What brought you to Christ and your actual conversion experience.
After conversion – What differences has Christ made in your life since then. Explain why we want others to receive salvation.
Every one of us usually can fit our testimonies into these 3 parts above.
Emphasis: Give a balance to what your story was before and then after conversion.
Jesus must be centre of story which should bring glory to God.
Step 2: How to tell your story (things to remember)
a. Remember you are a sinner saved by grace (so show humility)
b. Do not be judgmental or dogmatic
c. Listen for clues as to where they are at with any previous religious experience
d. Find common ground if possible
e. Be honest about your difficulties as well as joys. God is still with us
f. Insert appropriate bible verses into your story
g. Do not argue
h. Avoid jargon
i. Be short and to point
j. Be sensitive to Holy Spirit speaking in you and through you
k. Let them see that you have a living faith in God and you care about them
Step 3: Remember only God can save them
1 Corinthians 3:6-8 KJV - I have planted, Apollos watered; but I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase. So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase.
Our job is to plant the seed.
Others might water it.
But only God gives (the increase) i.e. the new life.
Step 4: Do not just talk the talk.
But we must walk the walk. Our lives must match our stories. Do not let your deeds cancel out your words. This is hypocrisy, we must all always be on the alert.
How to prepare your Testimony
Be concise, be constructive, and be convincing. We are going to write your testimony in 150 words.
Practice Exercises (originally shared with a class)
Break into pairs, share your story and discuss. Pray for each other’s future success.
Try to think of other things that the Lord has done in your life and tell the story. Or make comments that beg a question that give you an opportunity to testify ( do you think you will go to heaven when your life is over)?
Think how good works could add to the effect of your testimony e.g. by giving tracts and books, invitations to coffee, church, house group etc.
Every believer ought to be prepared to share their testimony.
God will help you with it and in it.
Ask God to anoint you with Holy Spirit as you share it.
Your testimony is a unique and powerful weapon that can change the lives of other people. Be ready, be prepared, be bold, be courageous, be sensitive, and be successful for the sake of Jesus Christ.
Never turn down an opportunity to share your story and give God the glory for your new life in Christ.
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