Encouraging Those with “Unimpressive” Testimonies, Part 2
This is the second of a two part look at those who have “unimpressive” testimonies of God’s grace. Last week we looked at how the power of such a testimony can be seen in how God saved you out of your morality and self-righteousness, which is biblically rare and miraculous. This week, we’ll take a look at two more reasons how an “unimpressive” testimony can be quite powerful:
2. The power of your testimony can be seen in preserving grace.
Have you ever thought about how God was gracious in preserving you from those spectacular sins that impressive testimonies so often center on? Understand that God is powerful and gracious to save some people out of drugs and abuse and crime; and God is powerful and gracious to preserve some people from drugs, abuse, crime, and a host of other tragedies. You have heard people say (or have even said yourself), “I would never do that” when they hear of certain sins. But what we must realize is that apart from grace we would do the same and if left unchecked would do much, much worse. The Bible shows time and again that apart from grace murder is in our hearts, the idolatry of addiction is in our hearts, law breaking is in our hearts. So if we have avoided such things, it is not because we are better people. Rather, it is because God has graciously preserved us from those sins. What is amazing then isn’t just that God can save people from sin, but that he chooses to preserve sinful humans from the evil that our hearts so naturally yearn for.
Any sin is enough to damn you to hell for eternity. At the same time there are sins that have very serious earthly consequences. Whether it be jail or broken relationships and homes or addiction, sin devastates life. So, if God has kept you from certain sins and left your life intact, then he has been powerfully gracious to you. If you would truly appreciate the power of your testimony you must realize how powerful God’s grace was to preserve you from the very sin that makes certain testimonies so amazing. You must be able to say with Paul in 1 Corinthians 10:15, “By the grace of God I am what I am…”
3. The power of your testimony can be seen in the forgiveness of your sins.
When someone get’s saved out of a life of serious drugs or crime, God’s grace seems so apparent to the “moral.” But what we are tempted to forget in our outward morality is the true depth of our sin. Earlier I mentioned my seemingly moral life, but believe me when I say there was profound and pervasive sin in my heart. It was often sin that was either not easily noticeable or not too offensive to others, but rest assured it was powerfully ugly and absolutely dishonoring to God. The sins of pride and people pleasing and self-centeredness and materialism were sins that I could often keep hidden and even helped me to succeed in the world’s eyes.
But realize how abhorrent that is to the God who deserves all honor. Think about how he sees those who set him aside to pursue idols for their own glory. And ye, he saved me. As Romans 5:8 says, “but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” That is a powerful testimony.
Romans 5:8 – But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
So if you are like me and have a seemingly unimpressive testimony, I pray that you would recognize the power of God in your salvation. No one may ever write a book about your life. But if God has saved you from self-righteousness, preserved you from destruction, and forgiven your sins it is an impressive display of His incredible, loving, merciful, and powerful grace.
Kim Kira is the primary teaching elder at Lighthouse. He loves being part of a church family that is committed to loving God with all their heart, soul, mind, and strength. Kim is driven by a deep desire to encourage people to worship the true, Triune God of Scripture rather than the idols of the world. This, he believes, is made possible by the transformative power of the Gospel, the Good News that offers not only entrance into heaven but offers powerful and practical hope for change in everyday life. Beyond ministry, Kim loves to spend time with his wife Jen and their four children, Caleb, Josiah, Karissa, and Carson. His other interests include the Lakers, the Dodgers, grilling, red meat, snowboarding, and playing sports.