EDITOR’S NOTE: Just because you may think your story isn’t “big” enough or “powerful” enough doesn’t mean you don’t have a story worth telling. Like Katie realized, God changes each and every person’s life when they choose to follow Him. Your testimony is worth telling and its value and impact is not measured by how “big” or “small” it is, but by the One who caused it to happen in the first place.
What is a testimony anyways?
According to GotQuestions.org, “A Christian testimony is given when Christians relate how we came to know the God of the Bible through the moving of the Holy Spirit in our hearts. Most commonly, we are sharing how we became Christians by God’s miraculous intervention and work in our lives through specific events.” It’s words like “moving of the Holy Spirit in our hearts” and “ miraculous intervention” that made me feel uneasy. I never had this powerful story… I felt that I had a lack of a testimony; I was ashamed of not having a larger, moving story of coming to know God.
I was blessed enough to have grown up in a Christian family… I just always kind of knew that there was a God and that he had a plan for me. I attended Sunday school and went to Vacation Bible School. At one of those VBS is when I decided to surrender my life… well, that is at least what I am told. Honestly, I do not remember the exact moment when God entered my heart.
When I was a teenager I got more involved in the church and became an active participant in my youth group. All of a sudden there were leaders and other youth telling their testimonies. I remember a few specific testimonies, but the one that really stuck with me came from the youth intern at the time. He spoke to us about how low he was and how he was fully prepared to take his life. He had the plan; he had the gun that he intended to use. He drove to an empty parking lot and began to talk himself through what he was going to do. As he put the gun to his head he looked up and into his rear view mirror. There was what he described as a heavenly being physically sitting in his backseat. The being brought to his attention how important he was to God’s plan and that there was nothing he had done or was going to do in his life that could make God love him less. I left that night crying. I was scared, scared that I was not a Christian because my story was nothing compared to that. I thought I was not a Christian because I did not have a powerful story.
This feeling stayed with me through college. It was not till I was asked about my testimony by a youth pastor at a church I was looking at helping at that I realized that my “lack” of a testimony was not something to be ashamed of. He explained to me that knowing the love of God from an early age was not something to be ashamed of but something to be proud of. I was able to weather lots of storms without losing my faith in God’s grace and love. Some of those storms were losing two of the most important men in my life within three months of each other and having countless friends turn their backs on me in my time of need. I might have not handled these storms in the right way every time but I grew from it and grew closer to God. This gave me that powerful story that I had been seeking all along. Now, as a part of my testimony I am willing to share all of my struggles and storms if I can help show others the power of our God.
The takeaway: Even if you do not have a big testimony that has a large impact on those you share it with, your testimony is important. The important part is that the Lord has changed your life and set you apart. You are saved by the love of God when he sacrificed His only son on the cross.
1 John 5:10a, “ Whoever believe in the Son of God has a testimony in him.”
Ephesians 2:8-10, “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.”