Sharing Our Faith Stories
Do you share your faith easily with others? Or do are you afraid you would turn them off? Are you afraid of sounding “preachy?” Like a fanatic? And yet, your faith means so much to you and you so wish others knew why? Would you like to be able to share simply and appropriately? Here is one approach some find helpful…
When Jesus spoke about God’s love for us, he often spoke in images and stories —parables. “The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed,” he suggested, and God’s mercy is like the care provided by the Samaritan to a wounded stranger. In giving us a story to follow, Jesus appeals to our human interest in others and in what happens to them. He also gives us the gift of companionship, for stories stay with us long after the storyteller has told us the last word.
During Lent last year we made time to reconnect with stories from Scripture that have encouraged us to keep the faith or to take steps toward faith in the first place. We also thought about moments from our own lives when someone or something has helped us to comprehend the love, or grace, or mercy, or wisdom, or humor of God. It can be difficult to explain our faith to others, or even to ourselves. Yet, through a story we can say, “Here, this is why faith matters to me.”
This session was led by Emmanuel North Side ex-pat Lois Williams. Lois talked with us about stories from her perspective as a writer and college lecturer.
Though this is only one approach, we invite you to consider seeking God during Lent for the faith story you can tell so that you may share how important your faith is to you.
Would you like to practice sharing YOUR Faith Story with others? Please feel free to use the contact form below to send in your thoughts or resources to share with the rest of us.
Below is one submission:
MY FAITH STORY by Nicole Butler
Every year I ask myself, “What would God want for me and from me during this time of Lent?” I want to believe I am pleasing to God. How can I be pleasing during Lent season? Well… I can use this time to be more like Jesus! Relationships are important to God and interactions with people occur daily. If I can, for a moment, be more like Jesus, this process can create insight as to who I am, and in turn, guide me to who He would like me to be.
I’ve played around with this idea over the past years and worked on things like patience, kindness, being less judgmental, more sensitive to others needs, watching out for little white lies, more serving, and this big one —more listening. Before Lent, I spend time in prayer with God to choose an aspect of Jesus’s character I can work on. When Lent arrives I get started. The six-week time frame feels manageable. I find that whatever I am concentrating on, God helps me to see and hear his gentle guidance through-out the day. Not only does he provide opportunities with individuals, but he gives me the courage to carry out my goal.
Building these areas in our lives can create an even more harmonious relationship with God. I encourage everyone to try something different from our usual “giving up sweets.” Lent is an opportunity the church offers us each year. We, with God, choose how to use this time. At the end of Lent, I feel as though I’ve honored God in a big way. I have accomplished something with Him by my side, cheering me on…