Tuesday, November 25, 2014

sharing the gift (part 2)

As we continue to learn how to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with others, I think it is important to point out that one of the most valuable tools to use in witnessing is our own personal story.... our testimony. Trust me, a testimony doesn't have to be some dramatic rendering of the most elaborate overcomer story that anyone has ever heard... we are not shooting a movie or writing a thrilling novel. No, it is more important that it is real and genuine.

A person's testimony is effective in sharing the gospel because it offers an opportunity for others to relate to you and your own unique experiences. I have found that people are more inclined to listen when I talk about how Jesus has personally affected my own life. This is received so much better than some of the elaborate "fire and brimstone" over-the-top messages that I have heard out there. For me, those stories usually come off as either overly judgemental or fake. Who can relate to that?

No, I believe that God wants us to just be ourselves. We are flawed human beings. Jesus has the power to save us from our own sinfulness. It is pretty simple.

When I share the gospel, I usually talk about my own path to salvation or one of the infinite ways Christ has made a difference in my life. For me, it is usually the latter because I have experienced so MANY tests and trials that I know and can attest to how God ALWAYS has remained faithful. Think about it... What person doesn't have a trial in their life as a result of this sinful world? That is common ground. So in my opinion, that is a great starting place.

When sharing your testimony, it is important to include these three key points: (1) What your life was like before accepting Christ, (2) How you were introduced to God and why you realized you needed Him, and (3) How your life has changed since you have accepted Jesus as your Savior from sin and eternal death. From there, trust that the Holy Spirit will lead you in how little or how much more you should share with your audience. Also, remember that some people don't understand "church talk" or "Christianize"...for example, "getting saved" or "born again". Because of this, you may want to avoid the use of religious terms/phrases unless you plan to clarify them.

Most important, you will need to be prepared to accept the reality that some unbelievers will simply not want to talk about the gospel. In Acts 4:18-31, we see that followers of Jesus will be rejected when they speak up about Christ. So, just know going into it... some people will choose to reject Jesus.

It is a sad fact that many people our there (normal, everyday people) will reject and refuse God. It is unfortunate, but true. However, this reality should never stop us from sharing the good news. We are to love all people and graciously witness without apology irrespective of the possibility of receiving an uncomfortable response. We must not present the gospel as overbearing know-it-alls, but we should always be willing to boldly share. (See Acts 4:31)

In tomorrow's blog post, I will provide scripture verses to memorize and keep on hand as biblically based truths to share while witnessing. Until then, I encourage each DW to think about and/or write out your own unique testimony covering the three key points listed above. (This exercise is intended to better prepare you to clarify what you will share in advance of an actual conversation taking place.)

Remember, we do not live in a cookie cutter world where every person will respond exactly the same way to your testimony and the news of Jesus Christ. Because of this, I encourage each of you to ask God for opportunities to relate with others who will desire to receive Jesus when hearing your personal experience. Always trust that the Holy Spirit will bring you to exactly the right person. And, even if a person rejects Christ, trust that God will use all moments in His own timing and for good.

Ladies, let's leave the results in God's hands. Our job is to show up and be willing to share. Our job is to LOVE LOVE LOVE!

Be a blessing today!

XOXOX ~Victoria

© 2013 The Devoted Woman | Victoria Anderson

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