My Personal Testimony
My pastor says that we should have our personal testimony ready to share with believers and non-believers. I agree. I think it is easier to reach non-believers with a personal testimony than it is to try to jam scripture down their throat. The personal touch, something they can relate to, is always more effective. We should also share more with believers. Early in my walk, I started to doubt my conversion because I had only heard a few testimonies from other Christians and I couldn't relate to them.
There was the "I have known Christ since I was five-years-old" testimony, or the tear-jerking, miraculous, heart stopping, come to Jesus at the moment of death type of conversion. I started to doubt the authenticity of my more subtle, conversion to Christianity. I think we sometimes inadvertently make Christians who don't have a "Road to Damascus" moment in their life feel like second class Christians.So the solution is to get the word out on your individual testimonies. Young Christians or fence sitting, non-believers will learn that conversions are very personal and can come in all shapes and sizes.
My background- I grew up attending church and Sunday school. But it wasn't a religious experience; it was more of a social event. Jesus was merely a historical figure, and I was an agnostic. My father was saved.
He told me once that he became saved while sitting out a Chinese artillery barrage inside a bunker in Korea. The bunkers to the left and right of his bunker were both destroyed by direct hits. My dad didn't talk to us that much about religion or anything really. But I do have a recollection of him experiencing his own personal revival in the early 70s after listening to Johnny Cash's "Gospel Road.
" I believe my mother is a Christian but she is hard to figure out. My parents came from the children-should-be-seen-and-not-heard school of thought and really didn't relate to us much. We still don't talk much. But she has been a going faithfully to church her entire adult life and loves hymns.
It is often toughest to discuss Christianity with those who are closest to you.My two oldest siblings became saved while I was a child, but they were 8 and 9-year older than I, so we didn't relate much either. Another brother, who was only a year-and-a-half older than I, became saved while we were both about 20. We had a long, stormy relationship so Christianity was just another thing that came between us. But I did notice that once he became saved, he did start to get some focus in his chaotic life. He decided to become a missionary with the Youth With A Mission (YWAM) organization and left home to attend their missionary school in the Samoan Islands.
On the day he graduated, he went for a swim in the ocean and drowned. Years later, after I was saved, my sister showed me his diary where he had written that he had a revelation that his death would help bring us all to Christ.A few years after his death, I was plodding along in my life.
I graduated from college, joined the Army and was sent to El Paso, TX. I met and married a staunch Catholic girl from Mexico. Immediately following our marriage, I was sent to Germany. She had to go live with my parents in New Hampshire while we waited for some pending immigration paperwork. This delay caused her some severe depression.
She was away from her Mexican family for the first time and living with strangers during a dark, cold New Hampshire winter.I was in Germany and had a Christian platoon sergeant that shared some of the Word with us. He was the best soldier I had ever met so I started to listen a little bit. During this time my wife moved from my parents' house to my sister's house. She got a job at a nursing home and this gave her some hope. She always had a soft spot in her heart for seniors and enjoyed working with them.
I did not realize at the time that Christ was simultaneously working with both of us.I was in the Grafenwoehr training area in March of 1988 and I received a letter from my wife. She shared her testimony in her letter. She had been miserably depressed.
We were getting nowhere with immigration and she wanted desperately to get to Germany with me. She had very little hope and was contemplating suicide. She had a plan to drive our car off of a dock and into a pond. She picked a day to do it. But that day happened to be laundry day.
She is a very neat and orderly person so she knew she knew she had to do the laundry for my sister before she would drive off of the dock and drown. She arrived at the laundromat and noticed an older couple inside who did not have any laundry with them. They approached her, started some small talk and then asked her how her husband in Germany was.
This shocked her. Then after some more conversation they told her not to worry about me, and that June was a good month to travel to Germany. She went home and talked to my sister about these two angels. That day she asked Christ to save her.I was still shaking with this letter in my hand when I went over to my platoon sergeant and started asking him questions about Christianity.
I asked a lot of hard questions about angels and other things. He told me that he didn't have the answers. For some reason he mentioned the name of an old buddy of his who he had known a fears years back who might be able to answer some of my questions. He said the guy's last name was Lay and that he had lost contact with him. The name Lay stuck in the back of my mind.About a week later I went to the Grafenwoehr laundromat.
I washed my clothes and started folding them on the counter. I noticed a soldier next to me who was folding his clothes. I looked down at his uniform and noticed the last name, it was Lay.
I asked him if he knew my platoon sergeant and he said yes. We started talking and he answered some of my questions. When he couldn't answer some of the others he simply said, "You really need Jesus more than you need the answers." That night I asked Jesus if he would accept me.
In June I met my wife who had arrived in Germany at the Frankfort airport. We have been married to Christ and each other ever since..firstname.lastname@example.org.Something Ain't Right.
By: Jason Hastings
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