Sometimes we can worry too much about how to evangelize to people. We fear that we will say something wrong or miss some critical point. The Samaritan woman written about in John 4 taught us not to worry as much. She evangelized by telling people that she had just met a man that knew everything about her. She stimulated their appetite enough that they came to meet this man for themselves and when they did, they realized and believed that he was the Savior of the world. The Samaritan woman shared a simple testimony about what she saw and experienced.
In Mark 5:19, Jesus said something similar, “No, go home to your family, and tell them everything the Lord has done for you and how merciful he has been.” When you discover something extraordinary or a pearl worth a great price, your first response should be to treasure and be grateful for it. Then, your following answer should be to share it with others. As Christians, we should share joy and peace as often as possible. When we share our testimonies, we let others know that good things can happen to them. Here are some other reasons to share your testimony.
Your story is unique.
There is a specific time when you first realize your need for a Savior. Then when you heard that there was one, you rejoiced, repented of wrongdoings, and believed. It could be a memorable day or simply a certain expanse of time in your life. Were you addicted to drugs or alcohol and found a Savior who helped you to break free? Were you severely depressed and found a Savior who gave you hope to continue onward? Did you get in trouble with the law and then realize just how much you had messed your life up? Did you miss out on some seemingly fantastic opportunity but then realize that things would work out okay anyway because there is a God that loved you?
At some point, you realized that life wasn’t working out so well when you were running it on your own, and you needed help. People can usually run their lives okay when things are going well, but we need help to see another perspective when the inevitable problems happen. Your testimony may have been extreme and radical, or it might have been a calm profession of true belief. Both testimonies depict God’s love and mercy because all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.
God’s Word tells us to share our hope as a believer.
Another reason to share our testimonies is that God tells us to. 1 Peter 3:15-16 reads, “But in your heart revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander. This verse reminds us to worship Christ as Lord of our lives and if someone asks about our hope as a believer, always be ready to explain it gently and respectfully.
People love to hear stories.
A testimony is a story, and we all love stories. We go to the movies, watch television, and read books to hear about great stories. Stories can give us experiences to emulate. They can show us people to relate to and root for. They also allow us to see from another person’s point of view.
We long to see superheroes saving people. We enjoy seeing two people find each other and fall in love. We watch people go to other countries and have different experiences. We even find it interesting to see someone’s adventures in space or on another planet. Yes, stories help us see beyond our tiny world.
It removes fear and gives courage.
In speaking about what God has done in our lives, we also remember all of God’s goodness. When we recount what He has done in the past, it gives us even more faith and courage for present living. When the Israelites remembered all that God had done in the past when He brought them out of Egypt, they dared to continue onward into the promised land. When Jesus’ disciples thought back on all He had taught them, they were able to spread Jesus’ Way to more and more people. Remembering their life before Jesus and comparing it to their lives after knowing Jesus spurred them on.
It creates transparency within the church.
The more we’re honest about mistakes we’ve made in the past, the more other people can relate to us. There’s a natural tendency to look as perfect as possible on the outside, so we hold past mistakes deep within us. Hiding things is a lie that keeps people at arm’s length. Sharing brings them closer to intimate and honest conversations.
You become a resource for others.
Stories about how God has worked in our pasts help us encourage others who may be going through something similar now. They see in us in the hope that they long to have. They feel a connection with us. Then we can help them carry their baggage because I’ve already walked through a similar problem. Your story can be a key to unlocking someone else’s prison. God uses people as His hands and feet.
Sharing your testimony can inspire others to tell their story. However, there is a warning though. Make sure that your testimony is more than just a story about a changed life. Yes, your life did change for the better, but a person can get a changed life from a personal trainer and dietician. Even an unbeliever can have a story about when they arrived at a destination despite obstacles.
A Christian testimony focuses on how God interrupted our selfish rebellion. It’s also about how He helped us see the error of our ways. A testimony is not a Christian testimony unless it includes repentance and a desire to work for God and see His way for the rest of your life. This is what glorifies God and makes Him smile.