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My Faith Story Worksheet

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There are two options to use in writing your faith story. Use Option 1 if you have a specific turning point in your life leading to salvation (you remember what life was like before). Use Option 2 if you became a Christian as a child and at some point in your teen or adult years you chose to not only believe in Jesus but to follow Him as His disciple.

Faith Story Option 1: Specific Turning Point Leading to Salvation

Before I trusted in Christ

Although the tendency is to spend most of the time on your “before Christ” experience, only give enough information so the women know why you needed Christ in your life. Tell them what you needed so that some may identify with you.

1. Identify what your life was like. What were your attitudes, needs, and/or problems? From what did you get your security or happiness? How did those areas begin to disappoint you? To what source did you look for security, peace of mind, or happiness? In what ways were your activities unsatisfying?

2. Find 2-3 words to describe what only Christ could fill or do in your life (e.g. loneliness, feelings of insignificance, anger, rejection).

3. Briefly share a personal example that captures the needs and attitudes from this time of your life as identified above.

How you came to know Christ (point of salvation)

Share when and how you first heard the gospel and/or were exposed to Christianity. What brought you to the place of being willing to listen? Who influenced you? How and when did you decide to follow Jesus? Describe how you felt, what truths you heard, what you thought about them, how you felt after you made the decision. Give the gospel in this section. Use 1 or 2 relevant scripture verses.

My life after knowing Jesus

1. Spend the most time on this. What conditions in your life before Christ has now been satisfied by a relationship with Him? What does it look like in your life to have a relationship with Christ? How long did it take before you noticed changes? What are your blessings? Where do you struggle? How do you depend on Him through those struggles? What difference does having Him in your life make during those times? Emphasize what you have learned about God’s grace to you.

2. Briefly share a personal illustration that shows the wonderful difference that Christ has made in your life.

Wrap up by inviting them to trust in Christ as you did!

Write your five-minute faith story.

As you tell your story, what is the one big idea you want everyone to walk away remembering? This is your main idea—kind of like a theme. “Jesus satisfied my loneliness” or “To live is knowing Christ in my life.” Think about those comments a woman might make that gives you an opening to tell this part of your story.

Whether you like to be spontaneous or need everything written down, it helps to script what you will say. It forces you to think through what you will say to maintain your main idea. It helps you to manage your allowed time.

Write it as you would speak it—shorter sentences, peppy words that are clear and simple. Use everyday terminology. For example, instead of saying “my testimony,” say “the story of my life.” See “Screen Your Language” below for other alternatives. Include specific illustrations that give them snapshots of your life, not only general descriptions of your life events. Practice telling your story several times. Make eye contact with the listener to draw her into your story.

Write out your five-minute faith story in the space below. Remember only spend 30% of the time on your “before,” just enough to have them identify with your need at that time. Spend another 30% on the decision time, and spend the rest of the time on what knowing Christ has done for you. Always end by inviting them to join your adventure.

Faith Story Option 2: Believer to Christ-Follower (Disciple)

Those who trusted Christ as children often feel they "have nothing to tell" because they don’t have a dramatic story. Yet, your story is the one every parent wants for their children! In the case of childhood believers, there occurs a later, mature decision to follow Christ as His disciple where more obvious life changes occurred. If you are in this category, therefore, focus on that later turning point in telling your story. Although the tendency is to spend most of the time on your “before” experience, only give enough information so the women know why you needed Christ in your life. You want them to be able to identify with you.

Before I became Jesus’ disciple

1. Identify what your life was like as a young Christian or living as just a believer not a disciple. Share when and how you first heard the gospel and/or were exposed to Christianity. What were your attitudes, needs, and/or problems? From what did you get your security or happiness?

2. Briefly share a personal example that captures the needs and attitudes from this time of your life as identified above.

3. Although the tendency is to spend most of the time on your “before” experience, only give enough information so the women know why you needed to trust Christ more with your life.

What brought you to decide to become Jesus’ disciple

What brought you to the place of being willing to listen or of wanting to be more than just a believer? Who influenced you? How and when did you decide to be Jesus’ disciple? Describe how you felt, what truths you heard, what you thought about them, how you felt after you made the decision. Give the gospel in this section if you haven’t already done so in the previous section. Use 1 or 2 relevant scripture verses that God used to draw you to Himself. Emphasize what you have learned about God’s grace to you.

My life after becoming Jesus’ disciple

1. Spend the most time on this. What conditions before this time has now been satisfied by a deeper relationship with Him? How long did it take before you noticed changes? What does it look like in your life to have this closer relationship with Christ? What are your blessings? Where do you struggle? How do you depend on Him through those struggles? What difference does having Him in your life make during those times? What remarkable thing has Jesus done in your life (or in the last three years)?

2. Briefly share a personal illustration that shows the wonderful difference that following Christ has made in your life.

Wrap up by inviting them to trust in Christ as you did!

Write your five-minute faith story.

As you tell your story, what is the one big idea you want everyone to walk away remembering? This is your main idea—kind of like a theme. “Jesus satisfied my loneliness” or “To live is knowing Christ in my life.”

Whether you like to be spontaneous or need everything written down, it helps to script what you will say. It forces you to think through what you will say to maintain your main idea. It helps you to manage your allowed time.

Write it as you would speak it—shorter sentences, peppy words that are clear and simple. Use everyday terminology. For example, instead of saying “my testimony,” say “the story of my life.” See “Screen Your Language” below for other alternatives. Include specific illustrations that give them snapshots of your life, not only general descriptions of your life events. Practice telling your story several times. Make eye contact with the listener to draw her into your story.

Write out your five-minute faith story in the space below. Remember only spend 30% of the time on your “before,” just enough to have them identify with your need at that time. Spend another 30% on the decision time, and spend the rest of the time on what knowing Christ has done for you. Always end by inviting them to join your adventure.

Screen Your Language

The following is taken from Stonecroft Speaker Workshop, sponsored by Stonecroft Ministries.

Unlearning the Lingo

Many of the words we use to share our faith may be meaningless, too churchy or clichéd to the people we’re attempting to reach. If you were an unbeliever, would you understand the following? (Note: Common Christian clichés are in italics.)

I heard the plan of salvation and was told that I needed to be saved. So, I went forward to be born again. The Lord spoke to me and then opened the door of my heart to show me God’s plan for my life. I learned to stand on God’s word and began to walk with the Lord. I turned away from worldly things, and it has been such a blessing.

Instead of these clichés (left), what could you say (alternatives on the right)?

Cliché

Alternative

Scripture or Bible verse                           

A place in the Bible where it says…

Believe             

Trust, accept

Born again, converted             

Changed, transformed (with explanation)

Christian             

Follower of Christ

Confess             

Admit, agree with God

Found the Lord, got saved

Accept Christ make a decision to follow Christ

Grace             

God’s totally unearned forgiveness

Gospel             

God loves us and sent His Son so that we can find forgiveness and new life through Him

Have a burden             

Be concerned

Know             

Believe, trust, be certain

The Lord             

God, Creator, Jesus

The Holy Spirit             

God’s Spirit, the Spirit of God

Praise             

Thanking God for His greatness

Pray             

Talk with God, ask God

Preach             

Talk about

Repent             

To be sorry about wrongs and to turn from them to do right

Salvation, saved             

Forgiven of wrongs and given eternal life

Savior             

Jesus, God’s Son, who forgave my wrongs and gave me eternal life

Share             

Discuss, explain

Sin, sinner

Acting against God’s will and offending God’s character; the wrong things that we do

Testimony             

Telling my story

Witness             

Tell, show

Worship             

Giving honor and glory to God

Other commonly used “churchy” terms also could be baffling to a nonbeliever. What could you use instead of the following:

  • Into my heart—
  • Lord of my life—
  • Rely on the Lord—
  • Raised in a Christian home—
  • The Lord told me/spoke to me/directed me—
  • Total surrender—

In most cases, you may want to avoid using theological words such as justification or the sovereignty of God unless you explain them well.

If you are praying with nonbelievers present, even with believers, be careful how often you address God by name in prayer. Prayer is simply talking to God. In normal speech, you wouldn’t continually repeat someone’s name, but many Christians think it necessary to mention God’s name after every five words or so. This is disconcerting to non-Christians. Write out your prayer if this is a temptation for you.

Above all, be real and be normal.

Avoid Inappropriate Information

Be cautious about using these in your faith story.

  • Use discretion in naming religions, churches, denominations, or cults.
  • Controversial issues such as doctrinal, political and social issues.
  • Derogatory remarks relating to any person, place, group, or issue.
  • Promoting any project, campaign, business, cause, or financial need.
  • If you refer to any person, especially family members, could this cause embarrassment or conflict?

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