You may be one who doesn’t really know where to start when talking or writing about your testimony of how you came to know Christ. Start by using the following as a guide:
Before I Accepted Christ (or gave Him complete control)
- What was my life like that will relate most to the non-Christian?
- What did my life revolve around the most? What did I get my security or happiness from? (The non-Christian is relying on something external to give him happiness)
- How did those areas begin to let me down?
How I Received Christ (or gave Him complete control)
- When was the first time I heard the gospel? (Or when was I exposed to dynamic Christianity)
- What were my initial reactions?
- When did my attitude begin to turn around? Why?
- What were the final struggles that went through my mind just before I accepted Christ?
- Why did I go ahead and accept Christ?
After I Accepted Christ (or gave Him complete control)
- Specific changes and illustrations about the changes Christ has made:
- Why am I motivated differently?
- Write the way you speak; make the testimony yours.
- Practice this over and over until it becomes natural.
- Shoot for short — 3 minutes when spoken. At that length, it’s easily something you can put into a conversation without it becoming a monologue. This also will make a well-written testimony that won’t turn into a short book.
An example: Look at Paul’s testimony as you consider how to tell your story.
Paul’s life before (Acts 22:1-5)
- Paul describes what he thought and did before he became a believer.
- Your goal: to give specific, yet appropriate, examples of what your life was like (attitudes, needs, problems) before Christ.
- Remember that examples you give will establish you as a credible witness in the minds of non-Christians. However, avoid a religious focus. (You want to make it about Jesus and your need for Him.) Don’t spend a great amount of time talking about church activities or denominations before your life began to change. Likewise, avoid being explicit and sensational in speaking of drugs, immorality, crime or drunkenness.
How (Acts 22:6-11)
- Paul explained how he became a believer.
- Your goal: to allow the listener to walk away with a clear understanding of how you became a Christian and how he or she can trust Christ as the payment for their sins.
- Be careful not to use clichés and church language. Talk in terms they’ll understand.
After (Acts 22:12-21)
- Paul explained how becoming a believer changed his life.
- Your goal: to explain specific ways Christ has changed your life — to show that having Christ in your life really does make a difference!
- Avoid using general statements such as “I have so much peace now.” Be specific. It is the Holy Spirit’s responsibility to draw someone to Christ, but you want to communicate your story in such a way to show the listener that your life is different and more meaningful with Christ.