What’s Your Story?
(How to Evangelize Using Your Testimony)
Terry A. Modica
How comfortable are you telling stories about your faith growth? If anyone asks you why you’re a Christian and how did it happen, would you have a conversion story to share? Yes, undoubtedly. No matter whether you were raised Catholic or in some other Christian denomination or found Christ later in life, you have a story that could help others.
Actually, you have a number of conversion stories. Any time your life changed as a result of discovering something new spiritually — taking you closer to God and deeper into the life of the Church — you experienced conversion. Any time a problem brought you closer to Jesus and his sufferings on the cross, you experienced conversion.
Any time you repented from a sin, you experienced a conversion that could help others if you talk about it, like St. Paul did in Galatians 1:13-24. Any time you put aside the busyness of life to sit quietly and learn from Jesus, you experienced conversion, like Martha did in Luke 10:38-42.
There are people in your life right now who are ready to be like Mary in that Gospel story, but they don’t know how. They want to sit at the feet of the Jesus who lives in you; they want to hear him from your voice. God has placed you in their lives to be Jesus in the flesh for them. They want to hear your stories of love and faith. They want to be loved by the Jesus in you.
Trust that the Holy Spirit will inspire them through your story. Some will ponder what you said and respond to the Spirit’s guidance rather quickly. Others will change their lives only after hearing many other faith stories, because right now they don’t want to accept the truth completely. That’s okay! God appreciates you for sharing the truth with them in your own way, with your own faith-building story.
Here’s how to become more comfortable sharing your story: First choose any conversion experience and get very familiar with it. Answer these questions: (1) What was my life like before this happened and why did I want something to change? (2) What helped me to find God? (3) How did my life improve as a result of this conversion?
Next, tell it to people who understand, for example a small faith-sharing community at church or a Christian friend. Then you’ll know that you really do have the ability to share it. This confidence will enable you to tell it to someone who needs to hear it for their own growth.
Never underestimate the power of your story! You can make a difference in other people’s lives just by being a blabbermouth about God’s love!