Sometimes I can worry too much about how to evangelize to people. I worry that I will say something wrong or that I will miss some very important point. The Samaritan woman written about in John 4 taught me not to worry as much. She evangelized by telling people that she had just met a man that knew everything about her. She whet 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.
And 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 wonderful or a pearl worth a great price, your first response should be to treasure and be grateful for it. But then your next response should be to share it with others. Joy and peace are meant to be shared as often as possible.
Here are 10 reasons to share your testimony:
- Your story is unique (even if you don’t think so)
There is a specific time when you first realized your need of 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. Think back. When was it for you?
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 wonderful opportunity but then realized 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 when the inevitable problems happen we need help to see another perspective.
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 (both loud and quiet sinners) 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 my testimony is because God tells me to. 1 Peter 3:15-16 reads,
“But in your hearts 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 me to worship Christ as Lord of my life and if someone asks about my hope as a believer, always be ready to explain it in a gentle and respectful way.
- People love to hear stories—both believers and unbelievers
A testimony is a story and we all love stories. We go to the movies, we watch television, and we 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 give us the opportunity 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 own little world.
- It removes fear and gives courage
In speaking about what God has done in my life, I am also remembering all of God’s goodness. When I recount what He has done in the past, it gives me 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 had courage 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.
- Unbelievers will have a hard time disputing what you say is your story
Unbelievers sometimes work overtime trying to argue the facts of the bible. Documentaries and theories are created to try to explain away the obvious Creator that is vividly shown in creation (the earth). They can come up with ideas that sound plausible, but they can’t argue with someone’s story of an experience they had in their life. Either they believe it, or they don’t, but they can’t argue with it.
And if your story shows a living and active God that cares for people, they just might want to believe it.
- 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 want 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 into intimate and real conversations.
- You become a resource for others
Stories about how God has worked in my past helps me to encourage others who may be going through something similar now. They see in me the hope that they long to have. They feel a connection with me. Then I’m able to help them carry their baggage because I’ve already walked through a similar problem.
Your story can be a key to unlock someone else’s prison. God uses people as His hands and feet.
- You keep your initial salvation testimony alive in your mind
The more I tell my story of my initial meeting with Christ, the more I keep that first love feeling alive. Revelation 2 tells me that it’s possible for me to do good work, have patient endurance, not tolerate evil, and even suffer for my faith in Christ and yet still be missing something if I’ve lost my first love. The love of Christ should be my motive for doing good works and pressing on in the faith. Speaking often about my salvation experience keeps that first love feeling alive. I remember when I first really loved God and why.
- You deliver more testimonies as God continues His work in you
As God teaches me more and more, I will gain other testimonies besides my initial salvation one. As I apply God’s Truth to my life, I will have many more testimonies about Him. Testimonies that God’s way really is The Way.
God is working within me every day and slowly changing me to be more like Him in the fruit of the Spirit—love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. My full testimony doesn’t end until I exit this earthly life. So, I desire to share it all—every single way that I see God active in my life.
The Apostle Paul reiterates this in Philippians 1:12 when he says that he wants you to know that everything that has happened to him has helped him to spread the Good News.
- It glorifies God
My testimony shows that God is greater than my story or my experiences. It’s not really about me. It’s all about God and Him working in me. Sharing my testimony is sharing the Gospel because I’m sharing a story of God’s hope.
Here 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 a time when they arrived at a destination despite obstacles.
A Christian testimony is focused on a Person that interrupted our selfish rebellion. A Light that helped us to 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 things His way for the rest of your life. This is what glorifies God and makes Him smile.
Some of the best testimonies involve singing and trusting God even when you’re in the midst of trials and troubling circumstances or as Charles Spurgeon puts it, singing in the night.
Try and sing in the night, Christian, for that is one of the best arguments in the entire world in favor of your religion…I tell you, we may preach fifty thousand sermons to prove the gospel, but we will not prove it half as well as you will by singing in the night. ~ Charles Spurgeon
Share your God stories freely, openly, and as often as possible.
Jennifer Heeren loves to write and wants to live in such a way that people are encouraged by her writing and her attitude. She loves to write devotional articles and stories that bring people hope and encouragement. Her cup is always at least half-full, even when circumstances aren’t ideal. She regularly contributes to Crosswalk.com. She lives near Atlanta, Georgia with her husband. Visit her at http://www.jenniferheeren.com.