If you feel like you don’t really have a testimony worth sharing because your story isn’t “gritty” or “raw” enough, you’re not alone. There are more than just a few Christians who have come to believe they have very little to no testimony worth sharing at all.
Because they’re regular.
With regular experiences. Regular church attendance. Regular families.
Several years ago, my family and I were heavily involved in a particular ministry when I was asked to teach a new women’s class. I showed up for my appointment with the pastor’s wife excited to discuss the plans and particulars for the summer long course which was going to focus on ministry in the home. I was ecstatic, ready to dive into what I thought would be an awesome opportunity with a topic that was near and dear to my heart.
During my chat with the pastor’s wife, she prodded, “Stacey, you are a very sweet person, but I need to know that you have experienced some things, you know, been through some significant struggles in life… to make sure you are ready… that you’re qualified for this task.”
We regarded each other quietly, and I weighed my answer. I knew what she was getting at- what would a run of the mill, middle class girl who was saved at 6 have to offer? Some of our class-goers had suffered abuse, rejection, and addiction just to name a few. Just what had I struggled with? What had I been saved out of? What could I offer? How could I relate? She wanted to know where my credibility would come from.
In a culture that enjoys the dramatic conversion story, without the story of a dark, reckless past that was turned around in a tear-jerking instant, it can be hard to know how you fit into God’s plan. We even have memes about it.
Sometimes, when we view ourselves as just “regular,” we get duped (and so do others) into thinking that God doesn’t want or need us to share the message of Christ. We might even start to think that He can’t use us. So while we may yearn to do otherwise, we close those doors on having anything of significance to contribute and move on. After all, what would we have to say even if given the chance?
The truth is… quite a lot.
2 Things You (and everyone else) Should Know About Your Regular Testimony
1) It’s Not About You.
Just as our struggles don’t disqualify us from service or relationship with God, they don’t qualify us either.
You know why? Because the job God has for us really doesn’t have anything to do with us at all. It doesn’t have anything do to with what we know, what we have or haven’t done, or our abilities. As a matter of fact, it’s not even based on us. It’s based on Him, His wisdom, and His message. Jesus does the reaching into someone’s heart; we don’t. And until we get that, well, we just won’t really get it.
There is no doubt that God can use our different life experiences to His glory. Romans 8:28 promises that. But it’s not our past or present circumstances that make us usable, it’s our obedience, our hearts, our willingness.
2 Chronicles 16:9
2) Stop glorifying the pit.
The idea that struggles or hardships are what a testimony is all about or the only place, even the best place that great ministry stems from is so far down the wrong road, I don’t even know how we got there.
It’s not what we’ve gone through that is glorious; it’s His sacrifice. Every Christian has a different story, but the very best part of all our stories is always the same— through Christ we are no longer separated from God for eternity. Through Christ we live again! He is faithful every day to love, guide, and protect us! Those are the facts that make a true difference!
Here’s the skinny: it took the WHOLE work of Christ to save each one of us. Each of us required the WHOLE sacrifice in order to become “righteousness in Christ Jesus.” There is not one of us who got less of Jesus or needed less of Jesus and some who got more because they warranted more. Even in our “goodness,” our “regularness,” our “boringness,” we were just as separated from God as anyone else.
Because of Christ, it is impossible for such things as an “uninspiring” salvation or an “ordinary” Christian to even exist. When you really consider the complete work of Christ, there can be no unremarkable stories.
“But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousness are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.” Isaiah 64:16
2 Corinthians 5:21
Honestly, what God wants to do through you really is just what someone else out there needs and is waiting for! Don’t let yourself or someone else convince you that you aren’t qualified for the task. When we stop focusing on “our story” and start focusing on HIS, we’ll find out that there is plenty to be said about our Lord and Savior. God is no respecter of persons, places, or pasts– good or bad. He only requires a humble and willing heart, a heart that depends on him, wherever he may find it.