Every once in a while, God places people in your life at just the right moment to speak words that seem to spill from His lips. Last night, in the midst of studying for my first set of college Finals, one of my dear friends whispered snippets of truth. And incredibly, I actually listened-with full attention devoted to writing down and mulling over her words.
I was telling her about my overriding fear of vulnerability, and habit of shielding transparency. I opened up to her about my reluctancy to reveal myself to others, and my fear of how the Christian community would view my personal testimony. In response, she simply said this:
“Tell the story from where you are now instead of where you were-you can always change the way a story is viewed.”
This truth, though so simple, resonated deep within my soul. Oh how often we see ourselves as scarred, and irreparably broken. I tell my story to people, and struggle to keep the shame from impeding my voice. But the Creator never intended for our emotional scars to be coated with guilt, He longs for our humanness to be revealed with triumph.
Instead of telling my testimony in the present tense, why is it so much easier to focus on the past? We become so consumed with our past mistakes, that they too can actually become idols. Your story of broken redemption doesn’t have to be a sorrowful tale full of “should haves.” In fact, it should NEVER be smothered with regret.
Reliving my testimony from a place of shame isn’t really bringing glory to Jesus, it’s subconsciously inviting people to praise my current actions. (“Oh, look how far you’ve come” “I’m so sorry you had to go through that”)
By starting my story giving praise to Jesus, and telling the story from the vantage point of a redeemed sinner saved by precious grace; the story reveals what Jesus has done. Telling the story from “where I am now” actually displays Jesus’ unadulterated beauty MORE clearly.
Instead of hiding in the mire of regret, I invite you to unashamedly tell your own stories from “where you are now.” A story has multiple perspectives. It’s up to the Author to determine the plot, but it’s up to the characters to reveal their own points of views.
Let the divine Author work through your point of view to tell His story in the most authentic way possible.