But, I don’t have a testimony…

My hands were sweaty as it neared my turn.

The leader of our group had asked that we all share our brief testimony with the rest of the group.

Testimony.

But, I don’t have a testimony. 

Or, rather… I don’t know what my testimony is. 

I was one of those people that had grown up in the church. I naturally had an eager-to-please spirit, never rocked the boat, and gladly accepted Christ young. What was my testimony?

I love Jesus? 

Yep, that was about it.

My nerves only grew as others began sharing how God had helped them overcome fears, broken families, faltering health, and failed dreams. They’d seen dark times, but now seemed so joyful, so sure of their story.

I, however, was not.

I felt my throat tighten up as my brain scrambled for something, anything, that might make it sound like I had a story, too. But, I couldn’t think of anything. I felt inferior. I felt unimportant. I felt… boring. My story was boring. I had nothing to share. Nothing to offer. Nothing to say.

Oh, how the devil loves to convince us of that. He loves to belittle our triumphs over him. He loves to derail our enthusiasm, causing us to believe that our stories don’t matter.

You see, I did have a story. I had a dozen different stories. Only, I didn’t realize they were worthy of sharing, worthy of stealing a few precious moments out of somebody else’s life. I didn’t know what my testimony was, because up until that point, I hadn’t lived through anything BIG.

But… I had lived through many things small.

Failed friendships, rocky experiences, and moments that challenged me mentally, emotionally, and physically.

I did not get through those alone. I couldn’t. I had to rely on the strength of Christ.

And that, as simple as it is, is testimony.

In reality, we all have numerous little testimonies. But, we often only highlight the big ones. All the while wondering if they’re “big enough” worth sharing.

I can assure you, they are.

Sometimes, the most simplest of stories can be the most relatable. The most needed. If your dog went missing when you were twelve, and you spent the entire day ping-ponging back and forth between crying and searching, crying and searching, you understand the feeling of loss. You understand the feeling of fear at what may have happened. You understand the feeling of helplessness. You understand the power of love.

It may not feel like a big story, or something worth sharing. But maybe that was the first time in your life that you realized you needed to enlist the help of God. If your puppy never made it home, maybe you whispered your first plea for God to heal your broken heart.

If God was invited into the situation, you have a story. Because God is a God who hears and cares. He waits for us to seek Him, and acknowledge His presence. And loves when we ask if we may tap into His power. And when we do, He does not sit stagnant. He moves. He orchestrates. He helps us. He heals.

Maybe He healed a broken bone. Or maybe it was a broken heart. Maybe it was a broken dream, or maybe it was as simple as fixing a broken car.

The point is, God heals. He meets us at a place of hurt, and carries us to healing. 

If you’ve ever been hurt, and sought out Christ, then friend, you have a story.

And that story is worth sharing.

 

Remember the Sigh

Can you remember it?

That moment that made you sigh with relief and utter, Thank God. Not flippantly, or as just a thoughtless reaction, but with a genuine heart of gratitude?

When you, only seconds before, carried the weight of the world, fearing a positive test result, unsure of the state your loved one was in after an accident, or perhaps wondering whether the child you’d lost sight of had been abducted?

Remember that feeling. The feeling before the sigh. When you were anxious. Worried.  Out-of-your-mind terrified. And desperate to know that things would turn out alright.

We’ve all been there. We’ve all experienced something that shook us to our core, threatened our well-being, and made us realize that we are not in control.

Those moments that make you utter a prayer, if not scream it, perhaps for the first time in your life, hoping… and even praying that there is a GOD… and begging for Him to help you.

I can’t do this... you think.

I can’t handle this. 

If I’m sick…

If she dies…

If he’s gone for good…

How am I?

How am I going to live with the pain?

How am I going to tell her siblings?

How am I going to be able to raise these kids by myself?

Sometimes the sigh comes quickly. 

The lost child is found.

The test results come back that day.

The nurse tells you he’s stable, and expecting a full recovery.

But sometimes, it takes some time…

The kids, with help from the counselor, are adjusting to their new normal.

The cancer, though always a threat, has finally subsided after months of chemo.

The young wife who’s husband broke his vows all-too-soon, has found a new man who understands what love and devotion is all about, and has given her hope for her future again.

But the thing is… the sigh always comes.

The weight gets lifted.

You can breathe again.

Thank God. 

It’s easy to blame God for the troubles in our life. To share how unfair our circumstances are. To vent off our anger and rant about injustices. To forget about the sigh. 

But, there was a sigh. 

There is always a sigh.

Do you remember it?

The moment you knew, even if only in that moment, that someone was watching over you. Someone had just answered your cry. Someone had been aware of your anguish. 

And… someone had taken that anguish away.

Sigh.

Thank God. 

Remember that moment.

Remember the sigh.

The Mission

“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” 

Edmund Burke

 

Unfortunately, that’s largely what happens in society today.

Nothing.

The problem is that approximately half of these people aren’t doing nothing intentionally… they want to do something.

They are the ones sitting erect in their seats every Sunday morning, obsessively taking notes… perhaps on paper, but always in their heads.

They are the quiet ones.

The thinking ones.

The introverts. 

Oh, if only they knew the power they had. The power that they can, indeed, make a mark on the world… and it doesn’t have to be done awkwardly.

It doesn’t have to happen through forced, unnatural-feeling conversations. It doesn’t have to contain that stressful small-talk that drains your energy before getting to what you really want to talk about. What is really worth talking about. The “big issues” that introverts are superb at caring about.

Introverts can often get overcome with passion and enthusiasm, but falter when opportunity presents itself to do something about their ideas.

WHY IS THIS?

Because, put simply, they’re scared.

They’re scared to talk to people. They’re scared to cause waves. They’re afraid that if someone critiques what they say, they’ll be “on the spot” to dish out a reply in the blink of an eye, without the oh-so-necessary time to think.

They’re the ones afraid to answer the phone. Approach the teacher. Invite someone into a meaningful conversation. And all for one little fear they can’t seem to shake…

Speaking. 

Because, when they open their mouth, it never comes out as beautifully constructed as it sounded in their heads. When they are brave enough to open their mouths, they are often interrupted. If a third party bumps into their conversation partner, they find that they are often all-to-easily dismissed, as the original conversation is discarded and they are left feeling unimportant. Unworthy of attention. As though their words didn’t matter at all.

What happens then?

They shut down.

They stop trying.

So, what happens when these people have something POWERFUL to say?  Something so powerful it can change the course of someone’s life, eternally, for the better? 

This is, after all, the only true calling of the Christian.

To go and make disciples of all nations.

How do we do that?

By sharing.

But, aren’t introverts too scared to share? Sharing means speaking, right? WRONG. 

Oh, I’ll just leave that part (sharing) up to the missionaries, and send them a little money to support their effort, you might say.

Alright, that’s good. BUT IT’S NOT GOOD ENOUGH.

The world doesn’t just need your monetary donations… it needs your witness. IT NEEDS YOUR STORY. Your very personal, handcrafted just for you, story of how God has brought forth healing from hurt, forgiveness from failure, joy from sorrow.

Stories have the power to capture peoples thoughts, their emotions, and can even change the very course of their life.

It’s why we have libraries. And movie theaters. And sitcoms. PEOPLE CRAVE STORIES. It’s how God designed us. Perhaps to prime us for the most important story of all. Christ and the cross. Many people have heard this story. They’re familiar with it. Yet, they disregard it. Even though it’s the only story that has enough power to save. 

Why do they disregard it?

Because they first need to know that God is at work in the world NOW. They can’t rejoice in what happened 2,000 years ago, until they know it’s joyous effects are still resounding today.

That’s where you come in.

Yes, you.

The world needs your story. The mission of Christ is dependent on it.

If every introverted Christian were to never share their story, we are jeopardizing the world-wide and eternal impact of the gospel by 50%. 

We are all called to share. To testify. To be his witness. Extrovert and introvert alike.

But here’s the beauty of this… you can do this, without saying a single word.

Because, you live in the age of Blogging. And Youtube. And Pinterest. And countless other ways you can share your story, your way. YOU DON’T HAVE TO SAY A THING TO TELL OTHERS ABOUT CHRIST. You just have to be willing to share your story. Together, we can figure out the best way for you to do that, in a way that will pack the most punch.

We do not have to be awkward in this. We CAN own our stories, and own our faith. 

Let’s learn how we introverts can, together, move the world for Christ… without saying a word.

Because really, that’s all that matters.

Pointing to Him.