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 craft 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, shared in the power of 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 direct the whole process through 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 framework for your story. 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?

2. How did you come to accept Christ and surrender your life fully to him?

3. What happened after you trusted Christ?

Threading It Together

During this second step, decide which details to include and which to exclude. 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, making sure to 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.

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

Telling Your Story

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

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 your testimony to keep it 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 say 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 or adding it to your social media profile.

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!

If you would like more opportunities to share your faith, consider becoming an online mentor.

updated September 2019

Photo Credit: Cynthia Magana