HELPFUL TIPS ON WRITING YOUR TESTIMONY
(By: Norm Rasmussen) Director, Precious Testimonies Evangelistic Ministries
"The greater the test - the greater the mony"
"No test - no mony"
Video Tips On Writing Your Christian Testimony - Pt 1 of 3
How To Write (SHARE) Your Testimony With Impact - Pt 3 of 3
Most people do not write out their born again testimonies because they STRUGGLE WITH WRITING PERIOD. If you are in the category of the "I struggle with writing," we ask that you take a little time to read over what we have to say on the topic, and perhaps the Holy Spirit will use us to elevate your confidence considerably in the writing arena.
If you and I had to write out our born again testimonies as a REQUIREMENT TO GAIN ENTRY INTO HEAVEN, I'll bet we could grow pretty proficient at writing it.
If I promised you our ministry would send you a million dollars for your full-length, born again testimony, I suspect your ink pen or key pad would start smoking!
If I could convince you that your eternal rewards will probably increase from writing out your born again testimony and letting God use it . . . many Christians would snicker to themselves and think I'm attempting to use some kind of slick gimmickry to attempt to motivate them, even though it's true that it probably will increase your eternal rewards . . . so I won't go in that direction.
People who believe they are not writers struggle with writing. (The same goes for speaking, by the way). Having one's belief system changed is the FIRST KEY in tackling poor self-confidence in writing (and speaking) skills.
In grade school and high school, I always got low marks in English. I did not think of myself as a gifted writer in any way, simply because my English teachers used enough red ink on my papers to repaint a red barn.
When I got out of Vietnam and decided to go to college, I joined the college annual staff. I had taken up still photography in the military as a hobby, and having access to free film and a darkroom at college was not something I was about to pass up. I was attending college at the time in Southern Oregon, where there was an abundance of wildlife to photograph, something I had learned to love doing in what little free time I had.
A college professor heard about my love for wildlife photography, and asked me If I would shoot some photos of him and his bird dog to accompany an article that Outdoor Life Magazine wanted to buy from him. I wholeheartedly agreed to rise to the challenge, and in the process of befriending the professor, I happened to show him some of the deer photographs I had taken nearby. He suggested that I send the photographs off to outdoor magazines to see if they would be interested in using them, so I did.
To my amazement, the first outdoor magazine I contacted was definitely interested in publishing some of the photos, BUT they would need me to write a hunting story of some sort to accompany the photographs. GULP! I was no writer; I was a photographer!
The college professor friend of mine suggested I take a Creative Writing Class taught by a good friend of his. I consented. I needed the money from the sale of those photos! But from day one, I was honest with the writing professor. "I don't know what I'm doing in your class. I'm NOT a writer."
"Neither is anyone else who will be attending the class, if that makes you feel any better," was his casual reply.
That made me feel better.
The very first class - the professor went around the room and asked each student if they considered themselves a writer. Every one of us confidently said, "No." I said 'No' with several exclamation points added!!!
The professor singled me out right from the git-go, right in front of everybody. "Norm, you were in Vietnam. I believe you were married while you were over there. Did you write your wife love letters while you were there?"
Did I ever! I wrote some of the juiciest love letters a couple dozen cans of beer would help me write! "Yeah - sure, why do you ask?" was my reply to him.
"Then you're a writer, Norm. Anyone who has ever written a letter to their sweetheart, or parents, or grandmother, is a writer. So I don't want ANY OF YOU trying to tell me you're not writers from this moment on, understood?"
My belief system immediately began to change. It did for every one of us in the class. What really blessed me was that the professor refused to grade what we wrote that entire class semester. He taught us how to grade ourselves.
But I wasn't there to pass his course, or to become a creative writer. I was there to somehow learn to write a hunting article that the magazine would find suitable to buy to publish my photos. Which ... is what amazingly got accomplished. I sold the photos for $300 and made up a bunch of baloney of how to be a more successful hunter! I pretended to be a hunting authority and didn't know a thing about it, other than the professor gave me the confidence to write like I knew what I was talking about.
Writing is simply putting words on paper or on your screen. Skilled writers have good command of the language they are writing in, and know how to use words to have impact. Our ministry intent is not to make you a skilled writer. Our intent is to get you to see what that college professor got ME to see . . . that anyone who can write a letter to a friend or loved one already is a writer.
Writing one's born again testimony out is the EASIEST thing to do since learning how to drive. If you can survive the roadways of America, I ASSURE you writing out your testimony is a piece of cake!
For some that have writing handicaps, but are able to speak, telling one's born again testimony on audiocassette tape works very well. The tape can then be played back word for word and typed.
For those who struggle with speaking, but find writing a bit easier, you may find it helpful to write your testimony to someone special who may read it after you have long gone to heaven. For instance, write it out for a grandchild to read someday. Write it out for a friend of the family to read once you pass on.
If you are battling getting started writing, set a goal of writing only ONE SENTENCE A DAY. No more, no less. In one year's time, you will have written 365 sentences. I've got to believe you've got a huge head start in telling much of your born again testimony with 365 sentences.
For you more courageous beginners, set a goal of writing a paragraph a day. In a few short weeks, you will have written your full-length born again testimony!
Another HUGE REASON many Christians struggle with writing out their born again testimonies, or sharing them on tape, are simply due to spiritual warfare. Satan constantly bombards us with his fiery darts of false accusations and doubt: "You're just trying to play big-shot, listening to this guy pump you up about how important your testimony is to God. God would NEVER use YOUR testimony. He'd used others, but certainly not YOURS!"
Or he'll use this angle: "Humble Christians don't share their testimonies; they shut up and LIVE them."
He'll even use FEAR if he thinks he can get away with it: "If you start sharing your testimony, what will people THINK if you don't live UP to the 'holier than thou" Christian you're making yourself out to be?!'"
Here is another one of his most effective strategies: "You need to wait until God does some things you're waiting for Him to do, before writing your testimony." Ten years go by - you keep waiting; twenty years go by - you keep waiting; dozens of more years role by, and before you know it, they've buried you in the ground. You are either spiritually born again or you aren't. It shouldn't require you living your entire life trying to figure out how to share how it happened. Don't let the devil trick you into this "stalling tactic."
If I hauled out my wet noodle and threatened to beat you to death with it, you'd tell me to take a hike. Tell the enemy of your soul to do the same! If Hollywood fans are interested in the lives of their Hollywood idols, how much more are people interested in HOW GOD BECAME REAL IN YOUR LIFE, AND WHAT JESUS HAS DONE FOR YOU. I tell you, thousands and thousands are, when your testimony is presented to millions as the Internet and video is capable of reaching!
The biggest mountain to climb when tackling the sharing of your born again testimony is about one spoon full high. Want to know how to remove a mountain and cast it into the sea ... when you don't have the faith to 'poof' it there? One spoonful at a time.
When putting thoughts into words, it can be helpful to draw yourself a simple roadmap. At the top of one page, write: BEFORE. At the top of another page, write: AFTER. You head your pencil in one direction or the other - it makes no difference.
If you head toward BEFORE first, simply state everything you can remember about your life BEFORE you turned your life over COMPLETELY to Jesus Christ. Address questions you would ask others about God, had the opportunity presented itself before you were born again. Try to put yourself in the shoes of OTHER unsaved people to share things from your past that they can NOW identify with.
If you didn't believe God existed, go into detail as to WHY. Tell people WHY you did what you did, and WHY you did it that way. If you did believe God existed, but was not at peace within yourself in your relationship with Him, WHAT did God do to bring about change?
Your testimony is your spiritual history. Your testimony made interesting to read or hear are not only the facts shared of that history, but the EMOTIONAL WORMS you can use to bait the hook. Sharing little episodes of how God worked in your life are 'inside stories' or 'emotional worms' to attract the fish. Mini-testimonies within your LARGER testimony make for a captivated audience. Dynamic answers to prayer are mini-testimonies. How God brought you through major trials are chapters in and of themselves, and can be greatly used of God to minister to others.
What has happened AFTER you got born again that is God glorifying and worth passing along to others to impart hope, encouragement or insight? Again, consider not only just sharing facts, but also mini-testimonies within your larger, broader testimony. A healing, deliverance, a dynamic answer to prayer, an opportunity to witness; these things and others make for incredible reading or listening to when you testify.
Born again Christians have the CREATOR living inside them. The greatest source of help to teach us how to share our testimonies with interest and impact lives right inside us. With a bit of 'want to' and trust, the only limit placed on our inability to share our testimonies with power is OURSELVES. Truly, when there is a will on our part, God will ALWAYS MAKE A WAY for us to glorify Him, for the purpose of being used of Him to minister to others through the sharing of our testimonies, and the words and scripture we include that the Holy Spirit lays on our hearts to include.
Psalms 96:3 reads in part: "Declare God's glory among the nations." God is giving followers of Jesus Christ the widest invitation to testify of His goodness in this portion of His Word. What real right do we have not to 'declare His glory among the nations' ... realizing our primary purpose in life is to glorify God?
Dear Reader - are you at peace with God? If not, you can be. Do you know what awaits you when you die? You can have the assurance from God that heaven will be your home, if you would like to be certain. You can even have that assurance RIGHT NOW! Either Jesus Christ died for your sins, or He didn't (He did!). Are you prepared to stand before God on the Judgment Day and tell Him that you didn't need the shed blood of Jesus Christ on the Cross to have your sins forgiven and get in right-standing with God? We plead with you...please don't make such a tragic mistake.
To get to know God, to be at peace with God, to have your sins forgiven, to make certain heaven will be your home for eternity, to make certain that you are in right-standing with God right now ... please click here to help you understand the importance of being reconciled to God. What you do about being reconciled to God will determine where you will spend eternity, precious one. Your decision to be reconciled to God is the most important decision you'll ever make in this life, because in Christ, it is impossible to put a value on the worth of your soul in light of eternity.
PLEASE HELP US HELP YOU SHARE THE BEST NEWS GOD HAS FOR EVERY PERSON BECAUSE...
JESUS DID IT! and...
Remember: All that we do in this life comes back to our God-given purpose which is to serve and glorify God. The money and assets we accumulate, the fame and power we've attained or seek to attain - all of the things of this nature will one day pass away, but those lives of others we impact for Jesus Christ will last for eternity, and we will be rewarded for the part we helped play by impacting those lives ... for eternity. (Matthew 6:19-21 is our assurance)