“What’s a testimony without a test?”
This question is one that tends to be a mantra of sorts among the Christian community. While I understand the meaning behind it, instead, I find myself asking,
“What’s a test without a testimony?”
Imagine for a moment, living in a world where we do not share our pain, disappointment, despair, and gut-wrenching experiences in life.
What if we just walked around holding it all in, always saying that we are fine, and never, for one moment, declaring out loud the things that twist our souls to the bottomless pit of pain? Like emotionless robots, we encase our feelings in a tomb to which we never open. What would it be like if we kept our stories imprisoned within our own mortal coils?
I am not even sure what kind of world it would be if we never shed our tears with or for others, or if the stark reality of the collapsing of others’ dreams, the dashing of their hopes, and the witness of their afflicted footsteps, did not affect us.
I have had people say to me,
“I had no idea you have gone through so much.”
What this tells me is that I have done an excellent job at tucking away the daggers of devastation and arrows of apathy that have, at times, pierced my walk in this life with doubt, sorrow, and anger.
Even during the time that I was reluctant to tell my story, I knew that it was meant to be told, and that behind the heartbreak of it all, lay hope in waiting, purpose with a passion, and ultimately, the glimpse of redemption through the mercy of our God.
So, what’s a test without a testimony? What’s hardship without the harrowing details of survival?
What is more important…that we exclaim our victory? Or, that we seek to tell the stories that encompass those moments in life where the only lifting of our heads is caused by the hint of something better?
I believe the latter is more important. While I shout for joy at the victories of others, I celebrate with even more enthusiasm at the telling of overcoming mountains, the witness of evading addictions, and the declaration of holding tight to the life-thread of courage.
I believe that everyone has a story.
I believe that all of our stories are important, and worthy of being told. I believe that there is not one moment in a single life lived on Earth that does not matter, and that the Creator of the landscape to which we dwell is the same Creator that fills the spaces in-between our devastation, our tragedies, our heart-breaks, our disappointments, and our yearning for something better in life.
Yes, everyone has a story to be told.
Share your story.
Embrace your experience.
Wear it as a badge of endurance.
You never know how your story can affect someone else going through what you have been through, or how the steps you have painstakingly taken can soften the path to which others are walking on.
Your life’s journey might just lead another soul right to the heart of God.
Your story matters.
Your story is unique.
The story of your life is the cadence to which you heart’s song is being composed.
What a wonderful world it would be if we shared the stories of our lives, the tests that determined our testimonies, and the painful moments that launched our ministries.
Everyone has a story. What’s yours?
Come and hear, all you who fear God, and I will tell what he has done for my soul.–Psalm 66:16