Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Boring Testimony?

"I often feel that I have a boring or even uninspiring testimony. Like most believers, I have sat through (and sometimes endured) courses, seminars and Bible studies that have taught the value of a good testimony in evangelizing the lost. Many of these have taught evangelistic techniques that begin and end with a riveting testimony, as if God can only save through such a testimony. Of course, like any long-time believer, I have heard some incredible and inspiring testimonies. I have heard about women who were prostitutes giving their lives to the Lord and becoming active in ministry to women. I have met men who were drug dealers, living lives that would cause the most hardened of us to pale, but who were convicted of their sin and, through God's grace, were saved. Compared to these, my testimony seems bland. It seems boring.
My testimony goes something like this: I was born into a Christian home. I was a pretty good kid and never got into any real trouble. Sure I lied a little bit and stole some pocket change from my mother on occasion, but I never did anything really bad. At some point during my teenage years I became a Christian. I do not have a crystal-clear idea of when this happened, but I do know that by the time I graduated high school I was a committed Christian. The end. Not surprisingly, no one has ever offered me a book deal or a spot on the speaking circuit to share that testimony with others."

Interested? Read more.

8 comments:

Mary said...

Jamie,
I rejoice for you that the Lord saved you while you were young and before you went further into sin. As one that was saved later in life, and deeper in sin, I can say that while my testimony may be less "boring", the memory of those sins are never far from me. Thank God they are far from Him "as the east is from the west". God's grace is sufficient for both of us. PTL Share your testimony as the Lord gives opportunity and bless his name for his mercies toward you.

Mrs. Jamie Butts :) said...

Thank you, sweet Mary!

I have learned the same lesson that Challies did over at www.challies.com. I am so grateful now to understand conversion as a miracle, just like yours or Paul's or anyone's for that matter. Encouraging to read this article that expressed thoughts on total depravity and my conversion far better than I could. PTL! :)

Phillip M. Way said...

The only thing that makes a testimony truly boring is more focus on sin than on the grace of God!!

And let us never forget - when we were born again that is when our testimony STARTED! At our new BIRTH. Everything that has happened since then is our testimony. Often we think the testimony ends when we get saved, but that is literally just the beginning.

I almost think it is funny that we think the things that make a testimony fascinating (our sins) are the things that God has already forgotten. He put them under the blood of Christ when He saved us!

Thanks for the great link and the great thoughts.

~pw

Eron said...

James,

Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were not burned and then healed; they were preserved through the raging fire.

Moral: This serves as an illustration that it is equally a display of God's omnipotence when God preserves and shelters one from the raging, sinful temptations and sins of our age by not allowing one to fall into a lifestyle of debauchery. Just a thought.

Plev.

Emmie said...

What a wonderful post! I totally echo Mary's thoughts! Wretched memories...but I'm forgiven--glory to God! I heard a testimony once that made a huge impact on me. He said, When God saved me, He reached DOWN below the prostitute, the child molester, the thief, the murderer, and saved me from my self-righteousness. Selah.

Emmie said...

PS "Emmie" is Vivian.

Mom Butts said...

My little dictionary defines testimony not only as "an open declaration of one's faith", but also as a "statement used for evidence or proof." I know that many times we are asked to give our testimony - tell our story, but the testimonies that touch me the most are given by others. Our testimony is not just a story that we tell, it is a life that we lead - our "evidence" for the world to see. When others testify about a person whose life is filled with grace and love, who lives the Christ like qualities that we all strive for - that to me is a wonderful testimony!

Mrs. Jamie Butts :) said...

Great thoughts, everyone. I love you all!! Mom Butts - I loved your comment. Very true! Phillip Way - we are enjoying getting to know your friend Dave. Your comment about testimonies led to great conversations (with Dustin) about this. Eron - good observation!! Helpful indeed. Vivian - your joy overflows...