Ever doubted if your faith story is good enough to share? That's the lie we’re unmasking today. I've wrestled with this doubt, wondering if my story was too simple, too unremarkable. Then, I stumbled upon JP's Five Gifts of Jesus sermon, and it was a game-changer. JP dismantles the lie that your story isn’t worth sharing, revealing that even stories of minimal transformation are stories of God's grace. So, whether your journey involves a major life overhaul or subtle changes, it's worth sharing.
Joining us for this conversation is Elsa, who discovered something was missing in her life and turned to Jesus. We'll explore her faith journey and touch on the idea that clarity often comes in hindsight. Elsa's story serves as a reminder that our faith journeys may seem simple or undramatic, but they are worth celebrating and sharing. So tune in, reflect on your path, and embrace the excitement of your story with Jesus. This episode is a reassuring reminder that every story - yes, including yours - has a place in the grand tapestry of faith.
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Hey, I am really excited to get started. So I'm going to throw the intro at you really quick and then we're going to get started, because it's a really good topic and I'm excited. So this morning I went for my walk like I usually do or trying to usually do and I like to listen to either a podcast or sermon or just anything faith-based to just fill my heart and my soul to start the day. And so that's what I was doing. I was picking out something to listen to and I was kind of doing it as I was walking. So I was trying to do it quickly so I could just kind of focus and not fall flat on my face. And I decided on listening to a pastor, jp sermon from Solid Rock. I talk about it many times, had him on the show many times and we'll have him again. And so I went into a playlist and it's one of the most recent ones. I think it is the most recent one. It's called the Five Gifts of Jesus, and when I looked at it I saw that it appeared that I had missed an episode, that I didn't watch all five of them, and I thought, oh, that's funny. I was so sure that I watched all of them. That's fine, I'm going to listen to that one. Then, obviously, and I hit play, and when I hit play and there's a purpose for this story, don't worry and when I hit play and started to put it in my pocket, I must have slit the little bar, you know the little red line that tells you the progress of the video, and I must have fast forwarded it. So I did that, not realizing it, I did that and put it in my pocket and the podcast it started midstream, essentially, and well, I'm just going to show you because I went back and found it. Let me show you what it landed on. This is so crazy to me.Speaker 2:
Listen, evangelism is sharing your story. I think I believe, according to the New Testament and bearing fruit, that we're supposed to be productive. The most productive evangelists in the world are simply people who share their story.Speaker 1:
Okay, so you're probably going, okay, elsa. Okay, I'll explain. So the first thing I did when I heard that is I kind of like I dead stopped for two reasons. One, I realized wait a minute, I feel like I did listen to this one. I'm so confused. And then my second thought was well, you know what, let's just go with this. Let's go with it because I feel like I needed to hear this right now because of something I've been saying to myself for a little while now, in fact, maybe since the beginning of this journey, of like, from the time that I just fully opened my heart and said I am a follower of Christ. Now, what does this all mean to me? You know, from that moment on, this has been something that's been nagging at me in the back of my mind, and maybe more in the forefront of my mind too, I guess. And that thing has been that I've been questioning my story. I've been saying that my story, my testimony, isn't good enough, it's not interesting, it's not big enough, it's not wow enough, there's nothing dynamic about it, it's boring. Basically, that's what I've been saying to myself all along, and it's not that I haven't been loving my journey. So so much. You all know very well how much I've been loving, because I tell you all the darn time, but sharing it has been a thing for me. That because I don't think it's exciting, it's not, you know, like these big, great stories that instead I was thinking you know, here's what I need to do. I need to learn the Bible inside and out, backwards and forwards, upside down. I need to know like verses, scripture you know, and who said what and what verse it was and what you know. I was putting a lot of pressure on myself and, thanks to re listening to this episode of JPs, I kind of got the reset button hit in my brain and I wanted to share it with you, especially because I'm knocking things over here. I don't even know how. I wanted to share it with you because I was thinking that if I'm going through this, maybe, maybe you are too, or you have, or maybe you're going to at some point, and I just found this whole thing incredibly, incredibly helpful. And it just amazes me I'm sorry this was just this morning, it was just a few hours ago. You're getting a recorded video here. This is an alive video. It's recorded and my brain is still, like you know, firing on all cylinders right now. It's going crazy right now because I'm still so amazed that the timing the timing was so perfect to have heard this. So I figure that when you see or hear this, it might be just the most important timing for you. So we're going to trust the way that God works in our lives and how he gives messages to us and so that we can pass them to each other too. So another amazing thing as I was listening to this episode or sermon, is what he said.Speaker 2:
See, the enemy's greatest lie when it comes to evangelism is to tell you you don't have a good enough story to share. That's a lie from the devil. If all your story is is I used to be really messed up and I'm not as messed up as I used to be. That's a good story.Speaker 1:
Right, right, I mean, how crazy is that? It's so beautiful, it's just so unbelievably incredible, like he just knows everything. He knows exactly what you need to hear, and at least that's how it's been happening for me. And it's incredible. And let me tell you, if you're sitting there and saying, well, he's not talking to me like that and feeling like you're not getting spoken to, you are, and sometimes the greatest thing that you're getting is the pause, the silence, and it's giving you time. So trust that he's still working in your life and he's getting ready to tell you something or show you something or do something foreign with you in your life. That is going to be huge and you just have to be heart wide open for it. So don't be dismayed if you're hearing me say this and you're like, well, I mean, I'm not getting any of that. I mean things are kind of rough and things are not going good. I don't really see the light at the end of the tunnel and I'm not getting these messages. Don't be dismayed, you will, and maybe you are, and you're just not hearing them or seeing them, because sometimes we, you know, see what we want to see or don't see what we don't want to see, right. So it might take some reflex, like, go on that walk, go on that walk by yourself, pop in those headphones and just walk in silence and just absorb and listen, and maybe that will help. And please, I'm not preaching to you on what you should and shouldn't do and any of those things. I can't, you know, I can't attest anything that's going on in your life, but just maybe that will, maybe that will help you, okay. So that's what happened and that's what was going on. And I kept listening and listening and he's explaining all of these things to me that I needed to understand, because I was, quite frankly, I was, getting it wrong and this was kind of like God's way of saying Whoa, slow down, slow your roll, kid, and listen, just pay attention. And he spoke through JP and got that message to me and to anyone else who needed to hear it too, and he explained witnessing, what it is to be a witness. And I think no, I know, I know the first time that I watched this it was not computing, it was not getting inside my brain, and I know with absolute certainty that that is why I needed to hear it again today, this morning, and so this time it sank in. This time I actually heard it and it was incredible. And you know, like I said, I thought that you know my duty as a Christian. Our duty as a Christian is to share the gospel, to share our love for Jesus and try to encourage more people to find their way right, like that's what we're called to do. But maybe you're like me and got confused in your own head, thinking that you needed to know everything so that you can tell everybody what's inside the Bible and be able to quote Scripture and do all of these things. And I got this wonderful correction. And here's a little bit more about witness from this sermon. Here's what scares Christians.Speaker 2:
When you say, hey, you need to go out and do witnessing, it doesn't say do witnessing, it says you'll be a witness. There's a difference Witnessing is something that you do, but a witness is someone who you are.Speaker 1:
Another like light bulb moment for me this morning listening to that, and I actually did rewind it, you know, reversed a little bit to just hear it again, because it was just like are you kidding me right now? What, what? This is amazing. This is exactly what I needed to hear, because Telling your own story is powerful. It's powerful for people to see your love and your excitement and your faith. That's what they want to see. They don't want you, they don't care that you can quit, that you can quote scripture, they don't care. I mean, they'll be impressed to a degree Like wow, it's pretty impressive that you know your scripture. But what will resonate with people is your heart and your passion and your love and for, of course, most importantly, seeing what God has done for you in your life and in your heart and how much he has changed you and helped you grow and be better and be happier and more fulfilled and less afraid, less anxious, less angry. When somebody sees a light coming out of you, they want to know where that light comes from, because they want that light. They want that light inside of them. So you know, we're called to be the salt and the light. Be the salt, be the light, and you can do that, not easily. It's not necessarily easily, but you can do it from the heart, and that does make it easier. When you're sharing your love and your faith, when you share your faith in a truly genuine, authentic way, people will see that They'll understand it. And I needed so badly to hear that message and it was just amazing that it came or I guess it came back again in a time that I was really ready to hear it. So I hope, if you're hearing this message today, that you're hearing it at a time when you need to hear it and that you're ready to hear it, because sometimes you're just not, and that's okay. I'm not worried about it, because it'll find its way to you, whether it's through me, whether it's through JP, whether it's through somebody else, it's gonna find its way to you and there's such an excitement in that, in my mind, to me, that you will get those messages when the time is right for you. And, as we know, god's timing is always perfect. If I ever get a tattoo, that might be the one that gets on my skin first. God's timing is always perfect, and keep telling yourself, keep reminding yourself about that. Now, the last thing I want to share with you is actually kind of funny. Apparently, when I played this episode, I had recorded parts of it back then, but only the part, and here's why I missed out on the bigger message here, the important message. It was all vanity. I'm embarrassed, I am, but I'm gonna throw myself under the bus and tell you exactly what happened. So my friend, who goes to this church in person, lives in South Carolina, lives in Myrtle Beach. She had called me the day, the day of after they recorded this sermon and said hey, pastor JP talked about you today. How cool is that? So I was very excited and I said oh my God, that's so cool. And when they aired it, when they shared it to social media, I was so selfish and so self-absorbed that I skipped through the whole thing to find the part about me. Yes, I know you don't have to tell me, I know, I know, I know all of the things that are wrong and bad about that, but that's what happened. So apparently it just didn't show that I had watched it or something. I don't know what happened. So that's why most of that episode, that part of the series, was a blur to me, because I didn't pay attention to it like I should have. But, like I said, it's okay. Everything comes to you when you're, when it's the right time for you to hear it. So it all happened the way that it needed to happen and it's all good. But I do just because it's cute and it's funny and it does, you know, appeal to my vanity a little bit. Sorry, I am gonna share this last little clip with you, and yeah. So here it is.Speaker 2:
I was on the Elsa Kurt Show this past week. She's a wonderful one. We become friends, she does social media stuff and we put it on our website or somewhere if y'all to see. But anyway, I think she's about my age, maybe a little younger, maybe early 40s, and she just recently got saved every life to Christ, and so she normally interviews me. But this past week I kind of interviewed her because I wanted to hear about you know, what did you think about Christians before and all this stuff. And she said you know what? My story isn't really that good. She said I wasn't hitting rock bottom, my marriage was fine, we had money in the bank, I wasn't in the hospital or sick, you know, and I just recognized that I'm something's missing, I need Jesus. And she said I gave my life to Christ. I said Elsa, that's an incredible story.Speaker 1:
So a couple of things about that. One, I'm gonna tell you, pastor JP knows exactly how old I am and he was just being very, very kind and a little bit cheeky, so I appreciate that that was awesome. Two, as you can see, just to back myself up here, I was struggling with that already then when we were talking and he gave me, I mean, the whole response to that was in this whole sermon and I let it go right over my head. And we do that sometimes, don't we? We do that a lot of times and we realize things after the fact. You know, hindsight is 20-20, right, isn't that what they say? So if you're watching this, it's gonna sink in somewhere, somewhere in your brain. The parts that need to get to you will get to you, and if they don't, it's okay, it's gonna come back around to you when you're ready for it. So thanks for bearing with me as I practically burst with excitement over this here, and I will see you in the next episode, take care.