Sharing Your Journey of Faith

Stories are powerful. We all love stories, especially ones that give us an “inside look” into someone else’s life.

As a child of God, you have a powerful story to tell. Sharing how you came to Jesus and the difference He’s made in your life can help others discover how they, too, can know God personally.

But how do you distill a lifetime of experiences into a few minutes and communicate the significance of your faith in a way others can understand? This is the challenge.

It’s also the reason we’ve put together a template and some tips to help you draft your personal testimony. This guide will help you develop a three-minute synopsis of your story that you can share with individuals or groups. A carefully prepared testimony, empowered by the Holy Spirit, can be a tool you can use anywhere to effectively share the message of God’s love.

Getting started

As you set out to gather ideas, begin by asking God to bathe the process with His Spirit, and give you wisdom as you write. Your objective at this point is to write freely without editing–to just get all your ideas on paper.

The outline below will provide a solid frame to build your story on. Try to think of specific examples and details that relate to each question.

1. What was your life like before you trusted Jesus Christ as your Savior and Lord?

  • What were your attitudes, needs and problems?
  • What did your life revolve around? What was most important to you?
  • Where did you look for security, peace of mind and happiness?

2. How did you come to accept Christ and give Him complete control of your life?

  • When did you first hear the gospel? When were you first exposed to dynamic Christianity?
  • What were your initial reactions to Jesus Christ?
  • When and why did you begin to feel positively about Christianity?
  • What was the turning point in your attitude?
  • What feelings did you struggle with right before your decision?

3. What happened after you trusted Christ?

  • What changes did you see in your life? In your attitudes? In your actions?
  • How long did it take before you noticed any changes?
  • What does Jesus Christ mean to you now?

Threading it together

During this second step, it’s time to get selective and decide which details to include. Read through your ideas, and using a highlighter, underline the most important feelings, examples or incidents that relate to each of the three points in the outline above. Use the ideas you highlight to begin writing your story, and make sure you explain what your life was like before you knew Christ, how you came to know Him, and what your life is like now. These guidelines will help you shape your story.

  • Begin with an attention-getting sentence or incident.
  • Be positive from start to finish.
  • Be specific. Give enough detail to arouse interest.
  • Be realistic. Do not imply that Christ removes all of life’s problems, but, rather, that He walks with you through them.
  • Use one or two Scripture verses, but only where they would directly relate to your experience and fit in naturally.
  • Edit and rewrite as needed. Consider writing your first draft and setting it aside for a day so you can go back to it with a fresh perspective.
  • Write a conclusion that makes your testimony sound finished and complete.

There are certain things you should filter from your story to avoid detracting from its essential message.

  • Don’t harshly criticize the church, organizations or other people.
  • Avoid mentioning denominations; the concept of different kinds of churches can be confusing to non-Christians.
  • Be careful not to glamorize how “bad” you used to be.
  • Steer clear of vague terms such as “joyful,” “peaceful,” happy,” or “changed” unless you explain in a concrete way what you mean.
  • Do not use Christian jargon such as “saved,” “convicted,” “born again,” “sin,” or “repentance,” without clarification.

Telling your story

It might seem tough the first time or two, but the more you share your story, the easier it will get. Most people will appreciate your willingness to talk openly about your life, and no one can argue with your personal experience.

  • Rehearse your testimony until it becomes natural. Practice sharing it with a Christian friend or family member.
  • Share your story with enthusiasm, in the power of the Holy Spirit.
  • Smile often. Ask the Lord to give you a pleasant expression.
  • Speak clearly, in a natural, relaxed tone. Speak loudly enough to be heard.
  • Stick to your time limit. Go too long and you’ll lose your audience.
  • Tailor your story to your audience. Use examples from your experience that will relate to theirs.

Beware of nervous mannerisms that can distract others as they listen to your story, such as rubbing your nose, swaying, jingling coins in your pocket, playing with a pencil, clearing your throat, or using many “you knows” and “uhs.”

Also, remember that a testimony should never be a “preachimony.” Stay humble; never argue or use high pressure methods to persuade people to make decisions for Christ.

Keep it fresh

New chapters of your life are being written all the time, so in one sense, your story is never complete. Feel free to add new content and revise to keep your testimony fresh and reflect God’s ongoing work in your life.

Look for openings

Ask God to give you opportunities to tell your story, and look for openings. People you meet may comment that there’s something different about you, or even ask you why you’re such a “religious” person. Such situations are windows of opportunity to tell your story of faith.

Besides sharing your story one-on-one or in group situations, consider putting your testimony in written form to give to people you meet.

Be creative in sharing your life! And enjoy sharing with others the incredible story of what Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, is doing in you!

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72 Responses to “Sharing Your Journey of Faith”

  • Kate says:

    Peter thank you so much for your testimony here. We trust that the Holy Spirit will vivify your witness to touch the hearts of the many who read it.

  • Peter Voss says:

    I am writing this truth because Jesus Christ asked me to. I am currently 60 years old and though I have told my story when the opportunity presented itself, I feel that I need to do more.
    Christ became my Savior and Lord when I was a youngster of about 7, though I didn’t really understand what that meant for another 10 years. I grew up in South Dakota and had a happy and carefree life with loving parents, and as I look back I realize God has been watching over me all my life. When I was 5 I used to walk down to the elementary school where my older sister went to pick her up after school. One rainy cold day I had on some new red rubber boots that little kids have and I was showing my sister how I could jump into puddles and make a splash, one of those puddles ended up being a hole where maintenance people had been repairing a broken pipe (no barriers) so when I jumped in, I went down. I was going down for the third time, my sister was stunned and watched, and by chance (or by intervention) there happened to be some boy scouts walking across the street, they saw what was happening and pulled me out in the nick of time, but that was before I knew anything about God.
    When I was around 6 we moved to Pontiac Michigan and though my parents were not avid church goers, they sent my sister and myself to church with some neighbors. I don’t recall who they were, or what denomination, but I don’t think it makes any difference. At church one Sunday they invited the younger kids to go downstairs to Sunday School. My sister being a little older stayed upstairs and I was told to go downstairs, though I wasn’t comfortable leaving my sister, I went. During the Sunday School class the teacher (God Bless Her), told us about Jesus and all the wonderful things he did and how we could be more like him and all we had to do was “ask him to come into your heart, and he will help guide us, and never leave”. I thought that sounded good, and I asked him to come into my heart. Almost immediately I felt different, and then I got scared. I cried for my sister, and when we got back home I refused to go to church after that.
    Jumping forward 10 years, I was a junior in High School and some friends of mine were going camping to celebrate their graduation from H.S. As teenagers will often do we had gotten some beer and were drinking, when someone suggested that we drive into town to see if we could find any girls to chat up. As we were leaving the State Park the driver started driving much to fast for the winding road, and I told him to either slow down, or let me out of the car, because he was going to go off the road and hit a tree. He wouldn’t listen, so I grabbed the seat belt next to me an buckled it up. On the next curve we went off the road and head on into a tree. Of the four of us in the car I was most seriously hurt in that when thrown forward the seat belt dug in, and tore my intestines internally. We all managed to get out of the car and up the bank onto the side of the road, “adrenaline”. I immediately collapsed with the most excruciating pain I have ever felt in my life. “I wanted to die”! It was as this moment that I remembered the Sunday School teacher saying “once Jesus is in your heart, he will never leave you”. I prayed and said “Jesus you said you would never leave me, and I need your help to die.
    Immediately all the pain went away, everything went totally silent, and I felt a hand or presence on my shoulder and a voice (though not verbal, but rather more telepathically), said “It’s Not Your Time, But I will Take You If You Want”. Which made me think thoughts about my mother, and the fact that my father had died a few months earlier, and how it would pain her if I were to leave too, so I said I would stay. I then asked, knowing to whom I was talking with, what can I do in return, to which he responded “Publish what has transpired here”. Then he was gone, the pain returned immediately and I heard the ambulance in the distance.
    I was taken to the local hospital, which was small and unable to handle my kind of injury so they transported my by ambulance to a larger hospital 80 miles away. I was in pain, but not in fear, because I knew today was not my day, but more so because I knew that what Jesus promised is true.
    I am not the only one that has a remarkable story that Jesus asked them to tell, and I will conclude by saying that it doesn’t cost anything to have faith, but the payoff of doing so is beyond all belief. God Bless.

  • Tom Tom says:

    Arun–

    Thank you for writing of your personal journey with the Lord. You are living proof that when a person repent and trust in Jesus Christ, they become a new person in Christ. “Old things have passed away, all things have become new.” True saving faith results in a changed life–and, of course, a changed eternity!!

  • Arun Stephen says:

    Hi , my name is arun stephen.Iam from chennai ,India.When Iam Studying my 8th standard i accepted Jesus as my Saviour ,on that day I felt extreme joy and peace in my heart.Before that my life is full of burden and sorrows .I will keep thinking one after other ,nothing satisfied me .After I accepted Jesus as my saviour ,i found that my life in this world has purpose.Now Iam 24 years old ,still now God has cleansed me of my sins and has given me peace .When Iam confused ,he guides and comforts me by his words and dreams.The extreme point of Jesus forgivness and mercy that I felt was ,when Iam murmuring against the Lord while i was in problems ,after murmuring i found myself guilty and iam in doubt whether God will forgive me or not .On that night ,I felt a cold touch in my hands ,I got a dream regarding my life ,it happened after and God comforted me.He has given me peace and hope of eternal life.He has fulfilled all my needs and desires,Thanks and glory to loving Jesus.

    “God is Love”, he forgives all our sins .Devil confuses us saying “God doesn’t exist ,devil will make us thing and question the ways of God,that hinders our faith”. One thing we should always keep in mind is that we cant understand the ways of God by our thoughts , belief is the test that we should pass ,to live a life with Jesus.Believe God that he shed his blood for our sins and ask him to forgive ur sins .Meditate on his words .Search him in silence ,you will find him .One thing I tell u “Living a christian life may not give u fame,wealth or attention of the world ,but it does give u a peaceful and contended life ,with all ur needs meet and it will give u hope of eternal life ,having Jesus with you.All thanks and glory to Holy God Jesus.

  • Trent Bolesky says:

    The following is an excerpt from the book i wrote after my only son died, “The King’s Lion … Bound for Home!” please share with those who have suufered a loss, esoecially a child. We Hug, We Cry, and We Say Good-bye

    Before I begin to write this chapter, I will make a bold warning … this sad dark chapter is very different than the rest of this book!
    Up to this point I have had a creative wealth of fun describing T. J.’s joyful, animated existence and glorious, inspirational times which he spent here on this earth. I tell readers about his brief life within the gratifying framework of the silly-hearted stories, and heartwarming moments that I, as his father and his friend, recall from his blessed and miraculously cheery life.
    This unwelcomed chapter will touch that intensely sobering, dark part of his story, his sudden tragic death, and how that unwelcomed event has impacted me and continues to taunt and torment me as well. I genuinely wanted to skip over or just ignore this gloomy final part of his earthbound journey. I feel that I have honestly told this part of his life’s story too many hundreds if not thousands of times. Additionally, I had determined that to provide details surrounding his tragic death as a teenager, may not fit very well into this tongue-in-cheek, lighthearted book of warm, familial reflections.
    My wife Carrie was adamant that I needed to tell readers about his death because it is a real part of his life, his story, and God’s plan for his ongoing legacy as well. Therefore, if this awkward, misfit chapter takes you off guard or slightly appalls you, then please blame that on her. Just kidding.
    I will, however, go to a dark, gruesome, unhealthy place inside, which I only tap into on rare occasions. This is genuinely unlike me, or my glass-half-full style of character to dwell for too long in this morbid place, or speak at length in this chilling regard very often. As I mentioned in my prelude to this book, writing T. J.’s story has been a great source of personal therapy, and therefore, getting out and releasing some of the deep clutter of blistering, branded scars, intense grief, and lingering hurts that are bottled up underneath the surface, will help with my continued ongoing healing. Going to that dark sobering place and working through the intense pain is like finally taking a breath deeply into my lungs of fresh, pure, cleansing air. I can finally breathe freely again, and smell the sweet aroma of the pure-white, silky essence of a loving God.
    I hope that witnessing my attempts at working through the bitter struggles helps you as well. But for those individuals who do not embrace death, or have never lost a close friend or a loved one, then this gruesome chapter may be too far over the socially-accepted lines of discussing death and its lingering impacts upon us. I meander into a dark world that few comprehend or desire to understand. I am not positive that I honestly understand it either. Working through the painful, scattered emotions after the death of a loved one, is like trying to ride an unbroken stallion bareback, while simultaneously attempting to herd allusive demons or corral spooky ghosts that haunt us from a world which we do not genuinely dwell in or comprehend. I do know, however, that I need to get some of this out to continue growing and striving forward and stretching my faith and reaching higher. So thanks for momentarily indulging me in this heavy-hearted endeavor.
    About two months before T. J. died; we were doing our occasional summertime ritual of sitting on our back patio porch swing and puffing on a cheap cigar while watching the blazing sun go down like a fire ball and lighting up the brilliant evening sky. T. J. had been asking a lengthy series of questions about heaven, what it looks like, where it is located, what people do there, and will it eventually get boring seeing as that we will be there for all of eternity. He asked about people who have died, could they see us now, and we talked for a long time about these supernatural wonders which await us. I wondered why he was so curious and therefore I asked, “Teej, why are you suddenly interested in heaven and all of these heavenly things?”
    He hesitated, and I started seeing tears beginning to roll down the side of his cheek.
    He asked, “Dad what would you do if I died?”
    I knew I needed to answer his sobering query. I explained how completely and thoroughly crushed and totally devastated that I would be, and how all of the life and the air would suddenly feel sucked out of me. I explained how difficult this life would become without him to look forward to, and our times together, or simply watching him grow, and then moving on with his life. I told him how immensely sad and heavy life would instantly become, and how each and every day I would miss him and cry and severely struggle to move forward through the intense grief.
    Now he was really starting to weep.
    “T. J. what’s wrong?” I was now concerned.
    After another long pause, he finally blurted out, “Dad I’m going to die! I am not making this up, God told me that I am going to die soon, dad, I’m going to die!”
    Wow! I was not prepared for this. I explained to him that we all feel that way at times, but I stated that I was certain that everything would be okay.
    It was as if he completely ignored what I was saying. He went on to tell me that he was worried about how we as his family would do without him. He worried about his friends and told me that he absolutely did not want me or his family and everyone else to be sad for him. He told me that his death meant that many people would get saved. He explained that he did not completely understand it, but that it would all make sense to me one day soon. He told me that his greatest heart’s desire was to serve the God that he loved, and that this was just a part of that faithful service, as hard as that may seem. He begged me to please not be angry or mad at God, and instead to rejoice for him in that he will be in heaven. He additionally asked me to make a celebration from his life, and to be happy for him in that he was selected by God to serve Him in this way.
    I was stunned! His lengthy speech was spiritually mature, fiery, and passionate, almost like he had been coached on what to say to me to speak to that Christ-centered fatherly part of me, and connect to the living Spirit of God deep inside my soul. I still could not accept what I was hearing. I told T. J. in a stern fatherly voice that I did not think that God spoke to us in that way. I was becoming distraught, severely unsettled, and even a little agitated. I was now done talking and wanted to abruptly dismiss myself from this strange, eerie, disconcerting conversation.
    We hugged as we still wept, and then we went to bed.
    Around two months later on a gorgeous summery September evening. T. J. was headed to a Sunday evening church youth meeting with his girlfriend Lydia and his best friend Roy, who was also Lydia’s older brother. They were in a large jeep and on back country roads. The weather was warm and it was sunny and clear. The young couple who had been dating since last spring was sitting in the back seats and they were softly teasing Roy who was driving about a girl whom he would see at the youth meeting once they had arrived at the church. Roy realized that he had slightly crossed the center line, and then quickly corrected his steering, in his haste he mildly overcorrected and then left the road into a ditch.
    The jeep struck a tree …
    Carrie and I had decided to ride our bicycles downtown because it was such a sunny, warm, beautiful evening. Carrie skidded to an abrupt stop; she had a horrified look on her face. I asked what was wrong. She yelled back at me with tears running down her face, “I just got a text message giving us sincere condolences on losing our son who died in a car accident earlier this afternoon!”
    “What! What do you mean died? We just saw him! He is at youth group!” I cried out in desperation.
    “Call his girlfriend! I will call him and we will clear this up! This must be a mistake Carrie! It has to be a mistake!” I said in a hopeful, quivering voice.
    Everyone we called had their phones turned off! This is a bad sign! Carrie broke down, “I think he is dead! Trent, I think T. J. is dead!”
    We determined to quickly get back home and then get into our car and head for the youth meeting where the kids were headed earlier in the day figuring that if they were in an accident somewhere along the route we would surely be able to find them. We made a breathless sprint home on our bicycles, not slowing for anything. Once arriving home, we grabbed our daughter, and sped off in our car.
    I remember how my guts sank into the floor when we saw red flashing lights up ahead. A police officer was redirecting traffic after barricading the blocked off road which the kids would have taken, heading toward the church. When I pulled up to the officer, with a huge lump in my throat which was nearly choking me, I explained that we believed that our son was in this auto accident and we needed to get to him immediately. I am thankful that he did not hesitate to allow us entry; I think he sensed my desperation and that I may not stop for too long before darting around the barrier and back onto the road to go locate my son whom I sensed was in life-threatening peril. The officer quickly moved the barricade, and then motioned us around.
    I heard the engine screaming as I punched the accelerator to the floor; about half a mile ahead I could see scores of emergency vehicles in a cluster. I headed for the area just to the rear of the last flashing lights, and skidded to an abrupt halt. I threw the car in park while simultaneously leaping from the vehicle which was jolting to a stop. I made a beeline sprint for the mangled wreckage that I could see, the whole time screaming, “T. J., T. J. dad is here! Answer me T. J.! Where are you? Dad is here!”
    A half dozen or more police officers and emergency personnel rushed at me, but like a Heisman Trophy winning running back I slipped and darted around a few of them and continued my sprint toward the wreckage. Finally they corralled me, and I screamed in my struggle to free myself, “My son is in there, and I need to see him now!” In my adrenaline pumped up state, I was dragging six officers with me toward the mangled wreckage.
    One of them screamed in my ear, “Sir, who are you, and why are you here?”
    “My son T. J. was in this accident and I need to see him now!” I demanded.
    “I need you to stop struggling and show me your I.D.!” they had gained leverage and better footing and he was now in control.
    I stopped struggling and stepped back. As I showed my I.D. they could see that my hand was quivering and shaking uncontrollably. He took my license, his face became stern, and yet, full of compassion, “Mr. Bolesky, I am sad to report that your son was in this accident, and he did not survive!”
    My knees instantly buckled, I fell to the ground, and I began beating the pavement with my fist. “No God! Please God no! Not T. J., you cannot take T. J.! No God! Please … NO!”
    Just the night before T. J. had surprised his mother and me after we had come home from a week’s vacation. He had hidden himself on the stairway and then came bounding out to welcome us home and surprised us since he instead was scheduled to be up north with his grand folks. He and I hugged for longer in that one moment than any other hug we had ever previously shared together in our lives. It was like our spirits within already knew that this would be the last and final hug, at least for now. This last long hug will have to hold us over, until we reunite once again in glory.
    But as for now, no more hugs, no more pranks, or silly surprises … our sweet, smiley, joking baby boy is gone, gone for good.
    I suppose that I could tell you about the numerous amazing and unbelievable things that we have experienced in the wake of his passing, but that is not the direction that I promised myself earlier. I now need to deal with the bitter, grief-stricken parts of the best friend and the father which he left behind. It is time to finally be honest and real about the bitter scars that are torturing my bruised and battered soul.
    You may want to stop reading here, or flip to the next chapter. Either way, I tried to warn you and give you this last out.
    Pure pain in its rarest form is associated with death. The intense pain that is attached to death is connected to evil. Evil in its most refined, purified state, takes human life without regard or remorse. Add to this the unnatural sequence of death, which rips a child away from its parent’s nurturing arms before the slow, natural unfolding of time, and you can literally stare into Hell’s flaming furry, and know exactly what that is like.
    The death of a loved one, especially a young child, has the potential to connect you to an ugly mass of powerful, dark, sinister, and evil emotions. This can overwhelm you and overtake your life, rendering you useless and feeling helpless. In having lost a child, I can attest to this fact.
    There is a deep dark well of intense emotions, buried way down underneath the more simplistic and obvious scars and suffering that smolders and occasionally bubbles up from down below, for a variety of random reasons, and from a multitude of triggers. Sometimes the triggers are recognizable and you can manage them, but most times they are not recognized or even noticed and they unfortunately begin to control us in ways that we do not truly see, fully appreciate, or even understand. This is when life gets dangerous, when we think that we are doing just fine, slowly healing, and in control, yet the intense fires burn and smolder way down below the surface. Evil whispers attempt to keep the submarined aches and pains hidden in the vast ocean of dark depths within the shadowy caves and crevices of our psyche, and the bitter, black cracks of our broken and wounded hearts.
    I guess I need to state at this point, that I honestly believe that I have handled our son’s tragic death as well as many or even most who have struggled through the loss of a child. But I have also witnessed and met many unfortunate people who have suffered greatly in the loss of a child. I have seen the torturing, lingering effects of these foreign, powerful emotions when they are not always recognized, dealt with appropriately, and with the utmost respect that they demand and deserve.
    We should reverently fear God, and offer Him our respect. Similarly, we had better humbly respect the incredible, gripping powers of these intense heavy chains of evil which are keeping us in bondage, shackled up inside, and negatively affecting our lives in dramatic ways as well. We do not necessarily need to fear evil, but we must absolutely respect it and recognize its captivating power, and its unwavering presence that is delivered to us through the immeasurable pains forever engrained deeply within us. If we do not, then this evil could control us from that deep, dark place inside, even against our own better knowledge, or in spite of our own wills, and subtly sabotage our mature, spiritual desires.
    Those who have become intimately connected to death through the loss of a loved one know exactly what I am talking about. It is that intense, purified, immensely powerful evil that has touched each minute part of our weak, fleshly fibers, down to our very core. The cryptic evil has manipulated, twisted, and distorted the bright variety of colors in our life, and instead, sinisterly colored us and tainted us in dark, gray, spooky shadows. Death has directly and inappropriately, touched the frail human essence of who we truly are as mere flesh and blood. It has criminally broken into our home of peace and comfort, as an unwelcomed intruder, and forthrightly invaded the safe dwelling places where we live in this temporary, painful, earthly life. The evil rudely brings us to a somber place in our feeble human standing. We sadly find ourselves attempting to survive somewhere just barely above the dirt and dust of the ground. A place where we were created and have come from, and to where we will soon return in those dirt-covered graves, who we now realize are the true masters over our physical bodies. Death surrounds us and continually reminds us, that this sullen world we live in is not our permanent home, but instead, it is just a temporary dwelling place.
    Death and its associated pain command the militant, ominous, demonic voice within to firmly direct us into falsely believing that this hollow world now holds nothing for us, and that our meager, pitiful life has been ungraciously and thoroughly sucked dry. The heavy burden makes our back and muscles literally ache. We become sluggish for our dry, brittle bones feel weak and cracked. Death’s dreary voice unfortunately allows us to believe that we are now rendered useless, and convinces us that even God Himself is distant and not concerned for us, and that He instead is done with us.
    We feel totally and firmly connected to a new blandness, where food has no taste, water has no purpose, and even the air we breathe is just a ridiculous waste of time for sustaining us in this painful, cruel world, and thereby, magnifying and glorifying the stark evil which is its master. This hideous voice tries to teach us to hate life itself and anything that sustains us in our earthly form. This gruesome voice taunts us, whispering about delays to the inevitable vast wonders that we confidently hold onto in our constant stream of thoughts surrounding our future heavenly afterlife, and mansions in glory which await our inevitable arrival.
    Death has now lost its fearsome sting, but in that same bold thought, we suddenly believe as well, that death would become a welcomed better option for us compared to the bitter daily struggle to survive through our grinding pain and ongoing grief. That is partly why we cannot dwell in this dark place for too long or go there too often. It has the ever-impending potential to ruin us, making us crash and burn, and destroying anything good that may come from our lives and our ongoing ministries. Devouring our pristine reputations, and spitting on our golden legacies, are the ultimate goals of these evil satanic influences, so we must be alert.
    We must deal with the immense pain of the earthly deaths which impact us in small chunks and bite-sized morsels that we can more easily digest, and then deal with appropriately. Allowing sufficient time between these rare visits to these dark places which have indelibly branded our lives with the scars of death is necessary. Don’t get me wrong, I do not think that we should attempt to bury our emotions. Instead, we must utilize a more balanced and wise approach. One which includes planned and thought out times, where we deal with the pain and grief in a more tolerable way. We need to seek out and to be wisely instructed by those who have been through a death, and then handled these raw, biting emotions while maintaining a good witness. We can then know, and be encouraged that we absolutely need to go there into that dark, tormented place inside. But yet, at the same time recognizing that we cannot camp out there as some struggling souls have done, and then unfortunately have allowed it to wither away at the whole of their person, and their waning spirit within.
    Death and its best friend pain, delightfully serve up for us a one-course meal, and play for us a one-note tune, on a one-stringed guitar. That tasteless, barely tolerable one-course meal is called extreme hopelessness. And that ominous one-note tune, plucked out on that pitiful one-string guitar is called The Death March, which eerily reminds us that each day that we survive, we are just one day closer to the last beat of our burdened and busted hearts. Therefore, we cannot make this one meal of hopelessness the only meal that we choose to eat, because we are what we eat. And we cannot listen daily to that one ominous note and that only morbid song called Death, for it will be that same music which emanates from us in the melody of our demeanor, and the song of our lives.
    If there is any good news in this, it is that these powerful, painful emotions have two opposite sides. They are connected to evil no doubt, but on the flipside our crushing pain is connected to a Comforter, and we are firmly and forever held in the precious hands of a loving God. The Psalms tells us that our compassionate God is intimately close to the broken and contrite-hearted saints. So in one respect, when we face death, we are never more closely touched, transformed, and confronted by evil, face-to-face, and eyeball to eyeball. On the other hand, we have never been so tenderly loved, and gently nestled, closely to our Father God. I think that I can use an analogy here of the strange and mysterious way that our intense, shocking pain in witnessing death is simultaneously both the worst crippling horror, and the most awesome motivating benefit to ever come our way.
    What is the most painful thing you have ever physically experienced? Passing a kidney stone, child birth, a broken bone, frostbite, a car accident, or any other injury to your fleshly body?
    One of the most painful things that I have ever done to my body was to swim in chilling waters that were just barely over the freezing mark. It was like simultaneously being callously stuck through the flesh by sharp pins and piercing needles ten thousand times over. However, after the initial jolting shock wore off, and even though the overwhelming pain was still intense, I began to recognize the odd excitement of conquering the pain. There was an extreme thrill in living in the midst of the stabbing pain and still running and diving into waves of frigid waters that could have knocked me completely off my course. I screamed at the top of my lungs and howled and laughed in the fearsome face of the brutal pain. It instantly ignited a new fiery surge of pure adrenaline. I understood the supreme blessing of the painful, life-threatening challenge, and the incredible, unmistakable victory in overcoming the torturous grief with flying colors.
    Isn’t it the same with child birth?
    The intense pain, followed by immense joy. A new surge of overwhelming love and emotions, and a heightened, focused energy with extreme motivations surrounding the vitality of life itself. Can’t this also be true that this is the proper pathway toward conquering and actually growing in our faith through all of our temporary trials and painful sufferings? In the midst of our mountain of tangible sufferings, don’t we oddly feel a calming, supernatural element of that God-sent peace that surpasses our own understanding, or our own personal abilities to simply just cope on our own meager strength alone?
    Our overwhelming pain and burdening heartache, mysteriously and supernaturally connects us to the closest places nearest the heartbeat of our loving God, or at least it has that definite potential.
    I would dare to suggest the point, that until you have had a time of overflowing brokenness where you have suffered immensely in the painful loss of a close loved one, then you still have yet to fully and thoroughly connect to a powerfully emotional God, and become totally changed by his tender love. You have yet to genuinely feel His deeper, hidden emotions that are well beyond the surface of our easy, comfortable, and familiar faith. Emotions that are truly and firmly connected to that crushing pain in a mysterious way, which then allows for His gentle, whispered voice to speak to the secret inward parts of your wounded and wanting soul.
    Pain hurts us. Pain helps us. Pain connects us to our comforting, caring God in a deeper way … if we allow it to.
    When you have experienced the darkest side of life’s mysteries through such intense suffering, grief, and pain, then you can finally begin to truly and fully appreciate the power of living in the blinding light of God’s overwhelming love.
    As much as His heart breaks for you, His heart also aches for you, even all the more so. And the closeness that you may experience when your pain causes you to rely more intimately on Him alone for your daily strength and reassuring comforts, guiding you through each new inspired step that you take in His service.
    Many times He sends us that love in the form of His saints who surround us, connect with us, and comfort us with their divine prayers and angelic qualities.
    As a part of our healing … He sends us angels!

  • Sharon says:

    my journey of faith is I grew up in a Christian home I went through some years after I got married with depression from five people I knew died in one year pretty much and other family and personal issues after we moved from one area to another area I went to a church where we still go and from there I met JESUS even though I went to church growing up I never accepted JESUS as my LORD, it was accepted I still go through struggles but now JESUS is enough HE wasn’t enough then after I got married for awhile. HE IS NOW.

  • Karen Rice says:

    Thank you Elkay for those beautiful words, concerning my survival story. That’s the point of my story, as well as my survival; to share with others, in giving hope. I will continue to share my story. The more I share, the more I can inspire.

    Thank You,

    K. Rice

  • Elkay Elkay says:

    Karen, you have a very courageous story to share and be a blessing to many people who are tempted to ask Why me? Why must people suffer? Why can’t someone else get sick? Tony Snow told Christianity Today, we can’t answer such things and quickly learn that we are fallen and imperfect but because of this, God offers the possibility of salvation and grace. We don’t know how the story of our lives will end, but we get to choose how to use the interval between now and the moment we meet our Creator face-to-face.

    I went to your Shutterfly page and found your words, “No one can interfere with Gods’ plan” that imply we don’t know much, but we do know that no matter where we are, no matter what we do, no matter how bleak or frightening our prospects, each and every one of us lies in the safe and impregnable hollow of God’s hand. May God richly bless you with full healing and deepen your faith as you continue your journey.

  • Karen Rice says:

    “An Awakening”

    When I was diagnosed with Breast cancer a few years back, I reacted like most who receive a cancer diagnose; first thing came to mind was a “death sentence”. However, I found out later that it was truly “an awakening”. I began questioning God, why would you do this to me? What had I done in life so bad to have this placed upon me? But instead of bemoaning my fate, I decided to look for the positive side of it. There has to be a reason for it all.

    I also realized that I was about to face a new beginning, new hope, do and see more with a whole new prospective on life. When I think of the “gift of life” that was given to me, I know that I will develop and gain strength from all my experiences. After going through all that I did during my breast cancer period, I was left with a few complications I now have to live with; one being daily pain. For a while, I wasn’t happy with the way I looked around my breast area, nor the pain I had to endure each day, but I decided to snap out of it. Even after being diagnosed with another cancer (colon) a few years later. Which totally took me by surprise. But even with the pain I had to endure through each diagnose, and all the struggles I’ve dealt with all my life, I still feel truly blessed. I think about the individuals that are no longer among us. I also realized that there will always be someone worse off than I am. I reminded myself, that I “still have my life”, so who am I to complain.

    One day during one of my surgeries, I experienced something of a miracle, as if I went to the other side, so I felt the compulsion to write it down. I turn that experience into a poem and I called it “Peace”. Writing had become therapy for me. I took that poem, along with many others I had composed during my breast cancer period and placed them into book form. I was blessed enough to have that book published, called “True Simple Poems of Life, Faith and Survival”. I later had another inspirational children’s book published, with a third one on the way. I’m hoping that anyone who has the opportunity to read my first book of poems, get out of them, what I placed in all of them. My poems are from the heart, as real as any could ever be. With the words and phrases of each poem of statement, I wish to make a positive impact on someone who’s ill or otherwise, where they could develop the strength to embrace life in a whole new way. I never anticipated becoming a writer, I just became one. I truly believe when you survive a horrific tragedy or a horrible disease as cancer, it’s for a reason, “you have a purpose” and I want to live to find find out exactly what that is for me.

    That’s what I’m all about now, inspiration. I would have never become a writer, producing inspirational poems and stories, if I had not gone through all that I did. I’m a true example that you can survive cancer not once, but twice, providing you catch it in time, have faith and allow that faith to direct your path.

    Karen Rice
    x2 Cancer Survivor/Author
    Houston, Texas
    http://www.karensfaithandsurvivor77.shutterfly.com

  • Shelley says:

    You welcome, may the Lord our God bless you both.

  • thanks to the info from my father added insight thank you so much, may be useful for us all
    please aprove mister.

  • Thank you .That was exactly what I was looking for. You have done a wonderful job communicating your message. good work.

  • Chris Landwerlen says:

    Sharon Kim…we pray jesus highest blessings upon you today!

  • Rashid says:

    Hi
    Pray does work it is working for me. We all can change our surrounding by thinking.
    Following God

  • Sharon Kim says:

    Trusting in God. People say they trust in God. When you ask them they respond very quickly and say oh yes I trust God for everything. I believe that people trust God for certain things sometimes small things and sometimes big things. I also believe that somethings or situations have been present in a persons life for so long that people give up on trusting God in that situation. They have prayed, cried out to God, fasted from entertainment, water fasted, gone to every church service, try to change their behavior to be a better christian, Tithed, given bigger offerings, volunteer to help Gods kingdom, cried and prayed cried and prayed and cried some more. But most of all everything they did, they did with genuine love for Christ. He has delivered them from many things, many prayers were answered quickly so many blessings given. So you ask yourself and the Lord why then don’t you deliver me from this thing that has been in my life for so long. For example like a sickness. It could be many other things that you could replace it with but I am using sickness because that has been what I can relate to. I myself suffered secretly with a sickness that caused my ovaries to be in so much pain, but I suffered 2 years before I came to Christ, and that was one of the reasons I came to Christ. Was for healing. I tried doctors, medication, holistic doctors and still nothing. Nobody even had a real diagnosis. But Me being in the medical field and knowing the symptoms I had an idea what it was. That still didn’t help me either I was always in horrible to mild pain and I just felt humiliated inside. After 2 years of suffering I gave my life to Christ, and it would get better but not completely healed. So three years into my walk with the Lord it was up and down. Sometimes it was better and sometimes it was horrible. I had gotten so used to being in pain and hiding it that nobody ever really knew. I just kept it to myself because nobody believed me any way they just thought I was making things up. I am not that type of person. If I say I am in pain or if I say I need to go to an emergency room you must know that I feel like I am dying literally. I almost hate hospitals and I really really don’t like going to doctors. I put my complete trust in them before and they messed me up some kinda good. But that’s just me. I am not saying that you don’t need hospitals and doctors because sometimes you do. I just have gotten along a lot of times better with the Lord. After 3 more years of suffering and asking God to heal me and deliver me, after years of crying and suffering, taking herbal pills and pain medications, after fasting and praying, after reading and seeing testimony and testimonies of healing for others I asked God what am I doing wrong? I know you don’ enjoy seeing me suffer like this because things had gotten so bad that it was destroying my marriage and it did for a while. Me and my husband actually separated. This was not the only reason but it played a big part. After trying everything in my power to help the situation that I was in with no success, I just broke down with shame and hurt. I didn’t feel like a women. I felt like my womanhood had been stolen from me. You see I come from a long line of controlling women so I tend to try and control everything in my life too. But that was apart of my problem, God wanted me to trust him and allow him to be in control. I just couldn’t see what I was doing. So I did an extreme fast and asked G to help me to trust him and to increase my faith in him. After the fast I decided I was no longer taking and pills for pain anymore that I was going to completely trust him for my healing and he gave me the strength to trust him. Something that I was never able to do before because for me that was one of the hardest things I could ever do. So when I stopped, Oh Lord the pain was horrible but I prayed and told the Lord that I was going to trust him and not give in. I am not going to lie I was a little scared but I held onto his words of healing and recited them and believed in them. I told God that I would not give up on Him because He never gave up on me. Even when I didn’t deserve it. The pain gradually day by day got better until there was none, and he set me free. All he wanted from me was to trust him in that. How much much time from suffering I could have saved if I would have realized this a few years ago. Please, Please no matter what you are going through please don’t give up on God. Nothing is impossible for him and I mean nothing. We just have to trust and believe. God has helped blessed me. Thank you Lord.

  • Chris Landwerlen says:

    David Robertson….lord you be praised for davids wonderful, new job. your provisions will there for him and for many of those whom he will be able to meet their needs as well. blessings!

  • David robertson says:

    God is the most awesome god. When you feel down he lifts you up. My job came to an end after six years. It wasn’t my fault, I worked hard, proved myself but god decided it was time for that season to end. After three and a half months of not working, praying and fasting and trusting god, he gave a me a new job with European responsibilities, a great salary, prospects, shares, double bonus opportunities and a significant challenge to make a difference to serve and make a difference for his kingdom. I encourage everyone never give up trusting in god. Don’t allow doubt and sorrow to stop you. Believe in gods power of deliverance and he will deliver you. God bless all of you

  • Jamie Jamie says:

    Hi Surya, it is good to know that God is trustworthy isn’t it?! He does indeed hold everything we need and gives generously in order to help us accomplish His plans and purposes. I love the promise that, “God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ.” (Ephesians 1:3) It is through my relationship with Jesus Christ that I have everything that I need to live out His design for me. Jesus modelled that so well for us when He only spoke and did what God the Father directed Him. If Jesus, who is the Son of God, needed that kind of moment by moment direction, how much more do I need it?! I guess the key is focusing on knowing Jesus better each day. Peter wrote, “By His divine power, God has given us everything we need for living a godly life. We have received all of this by coming to know Him, the one who called us to Himself by the means of His marvellous glory and excellence.” (2Peter 1:3)

  • Lama Surya Das says:

    Spiritual growth means taking a leap of faith from time to time. Rather than trying to get everything in place before you start something important, why not follow God’s leading and allow the plan to evolve? This means taking a step of faith and trusting God to provide what may be needed for success.

  • Doris Beck Doris Beck says:

    Mariam,
    Thank you so much for sharing how God touched your body and healed you! We love hearing stories of our God at work and it is always such a blessing to others as they too trust Him in their journey of faith!

  • Mariam Alex says:

    This is one of the miracle God done in my life in the name of Jesus Christ. .I had a severe back pain for more than 2 years. Sometimes I wouldn’t able to walk properly , sit or sleep. Doctors said that it is a disorder in backbone named Scoliosis after a MRI scan.they asked me to take precautions otherwise the condition will be more worse and my backbone will become like ‘S’ shape. I was really worried and my parents too..once the pain got worse and unexpectedly I talked to a aunty who prayed for me in the name of Jesus Christ over telephone..and on the spot itself my Jesus healed me..until now its around an year and I never get that pain again.Recently I picked a filled gas cylinder of around 30 kgs..and at that time I realised the miracle that God done in my life as before I was not even not able to take my laptop or any bag with more than 1 kg. I thank my Jesus Christ for healing me and I believe that if we pray to him with true heart..he will surely hear our prayers and will do miracle in our life…

  • Shelley says:

    Dear Father God.
    Lord i lift up John to you at this time in his life, that you will heal him and forgive him as You said you would. I pray that you will bless him beyond measure. In jesus name amen

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