Submitting Your Personal Testimony
Testimonies of salvation are the
Gospel in action. Nothing is more convincing than
hearing how someone was converted from a mean spirited, nasty
person who lived in bondage to sin, to a child of God through the
precious blood of Jesus Christ. Your personal testimony may
be the very vehicle that causes some hurting person
to look to Jesus. Please submit it now.
A personal testimony is a powerful
witnessing tool. Be it the web, your home page, or
witnessing on the street, having a well written testimony
available provides immediate means to answer the question of,
"...Sirs, what must I do to be saved?" Acts 16:30. Your testimony
shows not only how you found Christ, but how they can.
Be prepared to spend adequate
time on writing your testimony. Then allow a friend
to read it and receive suggestions with an open heart. Rewriting
yourself is quit common and is part of the process.
WHAT IS A TESTIMONY?
Funk and Wagnalls says...
1. To make solemn declaration of truth or fact.
2. To serve as evidence or indication: Her rags
testified to her poverty.
3. To bear witness to; affirm positively.
4. To be evidence or indication of.
7. To make known publicly; declare.
Testimony. 1. A statement
or affirmation of a fact, as
before a court.
2. Evidence; proof; also, the aggregate of proof
offered in a case.
3. The act of testifying; attestation.
4. Public declaration regarding some experience.
DOís AND DONíTs WHEN GIVING PUBLIC DECLARATION
This list of Doís and Doníts is
compiled from experience and from talks with other
people involved in testimony gathering. It is by no means intended
to be a limiter as to what is or is not your testimony. However,
the lost always see things differently than those
that have the testimony or witness of the Holy Spirit,
Psalm 19:7; 1 Corinthians 2:14; 1 John 2:20; 5:20. For
that reason, we have a responsibility to ensure nothing in our testimony
detracts from the message of salvation, which is by grace
alone, paid for by the sinless perfect blood of Jesus
Christ, our Lord.
Donít say things like, ďI think I was saved at that
timeĒ. Be as specific as you can. While people who
were saved as children often donít remember the exact
dates as most adults do, please try to say ďI was saved...Ē.
Donít say you were saved at 10 etc., then detail
35 years of sin, drinking, drugs and sexual sin followed
by, ďIím glad Jesus was always by my sideĒ. Remember,
you canít lose salvation, but salvation is evidenced by a changed
life. So, when did your life really change? It may have changed
when you were really saved. Also, many years of such
activity does not show much to hope for to the lost.
1 Corinthians 6:19-20; 2 Corinthians 5:17; 1Thessalonians
5:22; Hebrews 12:8; James 1:26; 1:14-16; 2:19-20; 1 John 1:6; 2:4;
Donít get wrapped up in doctrinal issues or issues
specific to your church or denomination. These are very important to you
but may cause a lost person to say, ďI donít believe
that that happensĒ about a particular issue and miss
the whole point of salvation by grace through the blood of Jesus
Christ. Salvation is by grace, not works, please show that
in your testimony. Ephesians 2:8, 9
Donít get overly involved in horror stories. Tell
that you passed through these things but donít spend
a great amount of time detailing everything you did.
Don't say God made a phone call causing you to
believe, or Jesus visited you, etc. unless you can
backup these statements with scripture proof.
Do keep most of your testimony pre-salvation. This
shows your life before salvation and therefore makes
any changes in your life more dramatic.
Do tell how you started hearing and thinking about
Jesus and how you made the decision to receive Him
into your life.
Do tell how your life has changed for the better.
We know you may have had problems since then but a
testimony to stay positive to unbelievers should not
dwell on how Satan fights to defeat you now.
Do include scriptural verses to support your story,
this adds strong impact.
Do remain positive in your testimony. No badmouthing
of people, organizations or denominations.
YOUR TESTIMONY IS VALUABLE TO THE LOST AND TO
THE BODY OF CHRIST
Things to help you prepare:
Read many of the testimonies online at this site. They will
give you a flavor of where you are going. I do not agree they are all perfect,
but God has never yet used mans perfection to do His
work. Spend time in prayer asking for wisdom and guidance.
ReadJames 1:5-6, then ask according to the scriptures.
Tell a friend that you are writing your testimony and ask
them if they will pray about reading yours and helping with it.
Prepare a crisp head and shoulders photo (black and white
or color) to send with your testimony.
Plan your time and write your testimony in one setting, if
possible. Then, leave it alone for the remainder of the day. I have seen
to many great testimonies ruined because the author
wants to add just "one more idea". The next day, reread
and correct errors, etc. without giving in to the
urge of adding or subtracting form your testimony.
Pass it to your friend and let them proof read it. Be open
to their suggestions.
Send it and a picture to me. You can send it via E-Mail or
snail mail. If you want the picture back, please consider helping with
postage. (A crisp head and shoulders picture, 5x7
is a good choice and will give good results.)
Before you begin, get your ideas on a scratch pad.
Use the outline method just as you learned
in school. This will help with arranging your
story and thoughts in a logical order and will increase the impact
of your testimony.
Before receiving Christ, this was me:
How did I start to see Christ? :
My life revolved around?
The important things to me were?
What did I think of Godly things?
My security and happiness came from?
After receiving Christ, my life has changed:
What made me start to realize that Christ was real?
What scripture opened my heart?
How did I fight against salvation?
How did I receive Christ? What did I say?
My life is different because?
How does God answer your prayers?
What different direction is your life moving in now?
Others see me differently now because?