For years, I have told myself that my testimony “didn’t matter” or that it “wasn’t cool enough”. I mean I didn’t go through drug addiction or alcoholism or rape or abuse or drastic atheism, and to me that meant that I didn’t have a good testimony. I had been going to youth camps, hearing these insane testimonies of how these people were freed from addiction and self-mutilation and how God turned their life around. They moved me, and brought me to tears, and that made me think that all testimonies had to do that.
It wasn’t until a few years ago that I was in the position to give my own testimony. I didn’t know what the heck I was going to say, in fact the first thing that crossed my mind was “Oh crap, I don’t have a good testimony. How am I supposed to get people to cry?”. I asked my mom about it, and she told me that every testimony is powerful and meant to bring people to Christ. It was a short but sweet piece of wisdom that I decided to explore. I started researching the passages in the Bible that had to do with trials and tribulations. I found the passage of 2 Corinthians 1 :3-11 which says :
3 Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and the God of all comfort,
4 who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted by God.
5 For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ.
6 And whether we be afflicted, it is for your consolation and salvation, which is effectual in the enduring of the same sufferings which we also suffer; or whether we be comforted, it is for your consolation and salvation.
7 And our hope for you is steadfast, knowing that as ye are partakers of the sufferings, so shall ye be also of the consolation.
8 For we would not have you ignorant, brethren, of our trouble which came to us in Asia: that we were pressed beyond measure, beyond strength, insomuch that we despaired even of life.
9 But we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves but in God who raiseth the dead,
10 who delivered us from so great a death, and doth deliver us, in whom we trust that He will yet deliver us.
11 Ye also helped by praying together for us, so that for the gift bestowed upon us by means of many persons, thanks may be given by many on our behalf.
I found in these verses that we are given experiences to relate to others and to seek God while doing so, that’s what our testimonies are for. The ultimate message of our testimonies are not about how we made it through the trials of our lives but how God brought us through and how we through Him found light in every situation. I often felt that my testimony lacked a ‘substantial’ trial or tribulation. As I mentioned before, I hadn’t dealt with addiction or disease, and to me that meant I hadn’t faced a trial. The reality was that I had faced multiple trials that played a big part in my life, they just weren’t on the same scale as addiction or disease. We often think that every testimony has that “one thing” or the “wow factor” or the “tear jerker”, and the fact that I didn’t have that made me want to not share my testimony at all. But here’s the thing, me not having a “wow factor” is something to be extremely thankful for. I’ve known of the love of Christ for as long as I can remember, and for as long as I can remember, God has used me to reach people through my happiness and through the opportunities that He has given me. I don’t know about you, but I consider that to be a great testimony.
Any testimony is a great testimony. Hearing a story of how God has worked in someone’s life is a beautiful thing. We can’t allow ourselves to think that our testimony isn’t powerful just because we don’t think it’ll make anyone cry. We share our testimonies so that people can hear our experiences and relate to them or find Jesus through our words. And if either of these are achieved, then we’ve accomplished our goal. Testimonies are powerful because Jesus is powerful.