If you find yourself in a situation where you want to talk about Jesus but you don’t know what to say, just remember you have a story. Your story is a celebration of what Jesus has done in your life and He wants to use it to impact and change the people in your world. Stories have power; they have the ability to change and challenge you. Stories are often God’s chosen method for transformation.
Sharing your story is as simple as telling others how Jesus has changed your life–sometimes we call it a testimony. It is something Jesus often encouraged those who he healed to do (Mark 5:19). Taking the time to consider and construct your testimony is time well spent. It can be a powerful tool in the hands of the Holy Spirit as He guides you in conversations with your friends.
Here are some helpful tips on how to build and clarify your Jesus-story.
Construct a statement and story for each of the following points:
- WHAT your life was like before Jesus? Without Jesus, our lives are void of identity and purpose. What was an area of identity or purpose that was lacking before you met Jesus? Perhaps you were filling your life with an addiction (social media, alcohol, bad relationships) because you lacked purpose. Or you felt lost in the world because you had no place to belong.
- WHY did you to follow Jesus? The moment Jesus broke into your world and changed your life is a powerful story. Sharing it helps you avoid cliches and it personalises the Gospel. When you share your story, focus on what was happening internally for you, not just the sequence of events. People will be impacted by hearing about your change of heart. For example:
“I really believed that no one could ever love me but I was looking for it everywhere. It wasn’t until I heard the story of Jesus’s death that I started to comprehend that I was loved–even cherished.”
- HOW your life has changed since following Jesus? Jesus changes us. He gives us a new identity and purpose. Share how Jesus has impacted and changed your life. Focus particularly on the identity and/or purpose you were lacking in section one, then share how Jesus filled that lack. Share how His love and mercy has shaped your emotions (no longer angry, anxious, etc), or changed your actions for the better (love helping people, don’t react, forgive quickly).
5 Tips For Sharing Your Story
Be Fresh — Share what Jesus is doing in your life now. Jesus is always changing us, so take notice and be ready to share a recent story.
Be Honest — Authenticity is often the make or break for people. You don’t need to embellish or exaggerate. Instead, trust that the Holy Spirit will use what’s true to change the hearts of your friends.
Be Specific — Be vulnerable and include details–about the journey of your heart and the truth and lies that rose to the surface of your mind; this will help make your story relatable.
Be Normal — Use everyday language that your friends will understand. Avoid Christian cliches.
Be Sharp — A story that has a point is powerful. Be careful not to explore too many tangents, instead focus on the main thing Jesus has done in your life.
You have a story and the Holy Spirit is your helper. Get out there and start sharing your story. Trust the Holy Spirit will use your story to change people’s lives, just as He did with you.