We recently shared an article about the importance of discovering God’s story in our own personal stories. Stories connect people and are a key resource leaders can use to engage the younger generations. Even though identifying and tracing God’s hand in our stories provides a personal blessing, our lives are not our own. They belong to God. Scripture tells us, “He comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any kind of affliction, through the comfort we ourselves receive from God” (2 Cor. 1:4).
To allow God to use our stories in others’ lives, we must tell them. Telling can occur many ways: face-to-face conversations, emails, texts, letters, blogs, or phone calls. All avenues provide opportunities to tell of God’s love and how He demonstrated it to us.
With so many options, why would we hesitate to share? Perhaps we have multiple reasons—fear being a big one. Some common fears are fear of rejection, fear of being assertive, fear of appearing too religious, fear God won’t be there for us, or fear we won’t know how to answer others’ questions. You might have different reasons. If so, pause and identify them, and then ask the Lord to give you victory over them.
Sometimes telling our stories of hope requires time. Others only need a few words. Mary Magdalene summed up her message in five words, “I have seen the Lord!” (John 20:18). She overcame hearers’ doubt by repeating truth as she experienced it: Jesus was alive. She demonstrated boldness as she proclaimed her message; but often taking initiative and being bold don’t come naturally to some women. We have the same resource the disciples had when they prayed for boldness and God gave it to them in the Holy Spirit. “When they had prayed, the place where they were assembled was shaken, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak God’s message with boldness” (Acts 4:31). Through prayer, practice, and boldness in the Holy Spirit, telling of God’s grace can become natural and spontaneous.
How has God used your story to encourage someone else? Share with us in the comments!
This article is adapted from Transformed Lives: Taking Women’s Ministry to the Next Level, compiled by Chris Adams.