GIVING YOUR PERSONAL TESTIMONY

WHY?

One of the most exciting and interesting ways to share Jesus is to give a personal testimony. Your testimony is the basis of your witness. It is your story, your firsthand account of what God through Christ has done in your life.

Your testimony has authority. Many questions about the Bible you may not be able to answer, but you are the authority on your testimony.

This guide will help you learn how to report your experience with Jesus in simple language.

WHAT?

At the end of this guide you should be able to understand the importance of your testimony in witnessing and be able to share it with others.

HOW?

You will achieve this goal by:

Read I John 1:1-3. In these verses, John literally shares his tesimony. Those things which had seen and heard, he was telling others. Many times the Apostle Paul effectively gave his testimony. Sharing your testimony is one the most effective ways to witness for Jesus Christ.

These are three basic characteristics of a personal testimony:

  1. IT HAS AUTHORITY. You may not be able to answer many questions about the Bible; however, you are the only authority in the area of your experience with Jesus Christ as your Savior and Lord.
  2. IT COMMUNICATES. It reaches out and expresses to people your very heart and life. You are not talking merely in theological terms, you are speaking about the things in life with which you are familiar. You are telling others what you have experienced with Jesus Christ.
  3. IT RELATES. As you talk about your experiences with God you are relating with people whose lives are like yours and who are seeking to understand the change that Jesus has brought about in your life.

Paul gives his testimony in Acts 22:1-16 and 26:9-23. He says almost the same thing using a simple four-point outline. First, Paul says, "I have not always been a Christian, but God showed me my need of Jesus Christ. I committed my life to Jesus and now my life is different."

Read those passages and then list the four points in Paul's outline.

You should have something like:

  1. My life before Jesus.
  2. How I realized I needed Jesus.
  3. How I received Jesus.
  4. How Jesus makes my life full and meaningful now.

Review these four points. You will use them in preparing your testimony. Simple facts to remember are:

A SAMPLE TESTIMONY:

"As a young man I began looking, searching and longing for meaning and purpose in life."

I was born three blocks from the county courthouse in Fort Worth, Texas. My father left my mother before I was born. In my early childhood - during the depression - my mother sought security. She met and married a man whom she thought would offer the security she so desperately needed. I grew up in what I thought was a normal home, a home similar to other homes. But there was a noticeable void. My life lacked real meaning and purpose.

As a young man I began looking, searching and longing for meaning and purpose in life. For a while, I really did not find what I was looking for. Then I noticed a difference in the lives of some friends. That difference was Jesus. Jesus had made a change in their lives. I began to see in them what I wanted and needed.

After one of my friends told me how to become a Christian, I very simply turned from my old way of life and invited Jesus Christ to come and live in me. No Roman candles burst. No bands played. But in a very real way I knew that God had come live in me.

I cannot say every day since then has been beautiful and that I've been perfect. I'm human. But I continue to grow and develop and mature. One thing I know - Jesus Christ has always been faithful. He has helped, guided and blessed me. Now my life has real meaning.


Further examples and tips on writing your testimony can be found HERE.

Now please take the time and write your testimony out using the four points discussed earlier. Keep it to about 275 simple, understandable words. When complete, please e-mail it to Glen Stewart for inclusion in this online ministry.