When I was 17 I went on my first mission trip to Mexico with my youth group. It was a week of hard work in 115 degree weather, ministering to sweet families and children. It was the first time I really saw the face of poverty. I still picture those faces and can remember the names of some of the children.
Though I spoke Spanish, it was not well enough to share the Gospel message…or so I thought.
I love that about God. You think you don’t qualify. You think there isn’t anyway you can get outside of who you “think” you are in order to do what He desires of you.
That evening, I introduced myself to this girl, who was known for walking the streets and was only a few years older than I and I presented the gospel message…in Spanish!
And let me tell you…I never knew I knew some of the words I used!
It was amazing.
I felt the Holy Spirit come over me and overwhelm me and I spoke without any fear, without any hesitation.
I said no.
Not because I was nervous, of course I was, but I knew that God would speak through me like He had the night before. No, it wasn’t nerves, it wasn’t fear either.
I didn’t have anything to say.
What was I going to say?
My story of being a good girl and loving Jesus all my life wasn’t going to move anyone to repentance. It wasn’t one of those, ‘look what God has done in my life…look what God has brought me from,” kind of story.
I said no.
I didn’t have a story to tell.
What was I suppose to say in that tiny room? I cried with them, I laughed with them, I encouraged them…and then it was my turn.
“I really don’t have a testimony. I’ve been a Christian all my life and the worst I’ve ever done is disobeying my parents. I really don’t have a story to tell.”
Your story just isn’t powerful like that.
The truth is I don’t have just one story. I have a lot of stories.
I have the story of being good and faithful to God despite the world around me and the peer pressure and angst of adolescence.
I have the story of walking in faithfulness to God and in purity before Him in my 8 year courtship with my husband.
I have the story of being saved from fears that tormented me for my entire life.
I have the story of walking through pre-and post-partum depression, losing my faith, yet being reminded of God’s love and faithfulness.
I have the story of being a totally, messed up, imperfect mom and wife and walking in His grace daily.
I have the story of realizing that I can do none of this life well and so I surrender my life to Christ and whatever He has called me to daily.
I have the story of coming to a point that despite my desire to be perfect and “good,” I am imperfect and not good enough, but He loves me despite my imperfections and is more than enough. He is faithful and He calls me faithful.
He is writing a story that is worth living.