Sharing your testimony is a phrase that we throw around a lot in Christian circles. For a long time, I didn’t think that I had a testimony. When people shared their testimonies at summer camp, retreats, or from the pulpit, they were always testimonies that were so heart-breaking yet so powerful and moving that they spoke of a great God. I didn’t think there was any way that I could measure up to that.
It was at a Christian summer camp in middle school that started to change my mind. Our group traveled into the city to a park, where we were asked to share our testimony with some inner city kids.
The guy before me pulled out one of those perfect testimonies
that left my heart in pieces on the floor
and my hands raised to our eternal God.
His story: being misdiagnosed at birth with the very disease that I have.
Well, that put my “testimony” in the trash. I took the paper out of my pocket and ripped it up. I don’t remember what I said. The one thing I remember is that I told them that I had Cystic Fibrosis (CF). I’m pretty sure I started crying at that point and sat down.
But I still was convinced that other people’s testimonies
were better than my nonexistent one.
It wasn’t until my senior year in college that God showed me how very wrong I was. My pastor at the time asked if I would be willing to share my testimony during the service one Sunday.
I said no.
He kept asking, and eventually I said yes, just so that he would quit asking. Having no clue what to say, I prayed and then sat down and started to write. And as I wrote, I found myself being honest and vulnerable and I saw God’s hand in my life, leading me from before I was conceived until now.
I thought that I was just a person with an early expiration date that couldn’t do anything for the Kingdom.
I thought that my struggles were my own and that no one else struggled with them too.
I thought that God could never use a person so broken as me.
I thought that that I didn’t have a testimony to share.
I thought that my testimony was about me.
But here’s the thing:
Your testimony is not about what you have overcome in life, though that is part of it.
Your testimony is not about what you have suffered in life, though that is part of it.
Your testimony is not about you, though you are the vessel through which it is brought to others.
Your testimony is about a God who has known you from before you were born.
Your testimony is about a God who has brought you through the fire so that you can be refined. Your testimony is about a God who has been by your side and who has loved you even when you have walked away from Him. Your testimony is about a God who sent His one and only Son to redeem the world. Your testimony is about a God who chose you: a broken, beautiful, bold child of God.
So no matter how broken you think you are, no matter how far you have strayed, no matter how boring you may think your life is, God has done something in you. He has redeemed you, and He is working out your testimony in His time. You may not be able to see it right now. God’s not done with you yet. But that doesn’t mean that you don’t have a testimony right now.
So share your life with people, share with them the God that has redeemed you. Share with them the power of our great God.
Share with them the God who knows you and loves you no matter what.
Because you are a testament to God’s great love, and that is a powerful testimony. It’s your testimony.
Kristen Entwistle is a graduate student pursuing her PhD in biochemistry and molecular biology at Michigan State University. After graduating with her PhD, Kristen hopes to teach biochemistry at a small liberal arts college. A member of Red Cedar Evangelical Free Church, she helps to lead worship on Sunday mornings and leads a women’s Bible study on Saturday mornings. She was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis when she was three months old, and has seen God work through the ups and downs of life and through her disease. Kristen enjoys reading, swimming, running, crocheting, and writing in her spare time.
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