Did you know the Bible commands you to tell your stories? Psalm 107:2 says “Let the redeemed of the Lord tell their story”. The cool thing about this commandment is that God just doesn’t just tell us to do it. He also shows us how. I recently posted a blog and resources about how to write a fruitful story. Then on Sunday, my pastor gave a sermon from Psalm 107. Therefore, I thought this week it would be fun to look at the examples God gives us from this text and see how they fit our fruitful story descriptions. It will also help you write your testimony and do as God says, tell your story!
I think we sometimes become overwhelmed with the idea of sharing our testimony. However, it should be fairly simple. The Word of God says if you are “redeemed of the Lord” you should tell your stories. Therefore, we need to understand redemption. Redeemed means to be compensated for something bad. The bad in us and in our world leads to death and separation from God. (Romans 6:23). Consequently, Christ had to die to pay for it all. His death is the compensation that redeems us.
This verse, however, does not say that you are to tell THE story. Instead, it says you are to tell YOUR story! That is because Christ’s redemption can manifest itself differently in each of our lives. That is what makes your story unique and special. Psalm 107 goes on to give four examples.
tell your stories as the wanderer
In verses four through nine, the text speaks of those that wandered in desert wastelands, finding no city where they could settle. They were hungry and thirsty. Then, they cried out to God and He led them to a city where they could settle. Being lost physically and without food or water is hard to imagine. However, you might know what it feels like to be lost emotionally. I know I do. There have been times in my life when I’ve wondered which path I should take. Also, there have been times when I know I took the wrong path, and then I wandered around with regret.
If you feel like you are wandering through life without purpose, this might be where your testimony begins. I challenge you to become hungry and thirsty enough for the clarity and direction that can only come through a relationship with Jesus. Call out to Him, follow Him, and then watch Him lead you to a place where you feel settled and safe. Once you do, your testimony or story will be about how you felt lost until God gave you direction and set you on the right path in life.
If you don’t follow Jesus as a wanderer, you may up as a prisoner.
Next, in verses ten through sixteen, the text describes a prisoner in utter darkness and iron chains. When I think of chains, I think about addictions. Our addictions are definitely things that keep us in the dark and from being free. We have all at some point rebelled against God’s word and did not like His plans. We may have known the way we should live, but for some reason or another, we chose a different path. After being taught right from wrong, we got older and decided that our own way made more sense. Therefore, we stopped wandering and chose certain things that now control us. We feel we cannot stop them. Consequently, things haven’t worked out for the best. The verses describe this person as being subjected to bitter labor, stumbling, and alone. I know the times I chose my path over God’s, led me to feel exactly like that.
Again, however, when a person in this situation cries out to the Lord, He saves them from their distress (vs. 13). He brings them out of the darkness and breaks the chains of whatever addiction is imprisoning them. If you relate to this example, then this might be a part of the story you tell.
If we still do not allow Him to save us at his level, our addictions can make us very sick.
tell your stories when sick
Thirdly, verses 17-22 are about the ill or injured. These verses tell us that our continued rebellion toward God will lead to illness where we no longer have an appetite for food and are close to death. Once again, however, if this person cries to the Lord in their trouble, He saves them from distress, heals them, and rescues them from the grave.
In all three of these examples, God saves us from ourselves and the mess that we can make of our own lives. The fourth example, however, describes how God continues to rescue us whenever our circumstances keep us from sailing through this life.
In the fourth section of the text, verses 23-32, we see the example of a sailor. This person is not rebelling. They are just going about their daily work as merchants do. However, they end up on mighty waters where they see God’s power. In this situation, they lose courage and discover that their own skills or wits are not enough to sustain them. They too cry out to the Lord and He stills the storm around them and then guides them to safety. You might find that your story has you in a situation that you did not create. You’re where you are because of situations that were completely out of your own control. You still need to call out to Christ. He completes your story.
how to tell your stories
In our story writing curriculum, we teach that the main character must have an obvious and a hidden need. The events of the story lead that character to a climax where they fight for the obvious need and inadvertently have their hidden need met. If you have not yet read that post, please do. Then, as you tell stories of how Christ redeemed you, you’ll find these same elements.
The wanderer’s obviously lost and hungry. When following Christ, the obvious need is met. Then, a deeper, hidden need for direction and purpose is found too.
The prisoner’s obvious need is freedom from addiction. When choosing Jesus over the addictive substance, one obviously gains freedom. In addition, the hidden need which originally led to that substance is also satisfied in Christ.
When sick, an obvious need is to restore appetite and health. Finding Christ also restores a spiritual appetite and gives us eternal life.
The sailor’s obvious need is to be rescued from the stormy situations. Hiddenly, he gains courage when new storms arise.
I hope you can see how your stories include wandering, imprisonment, sickness, and sailing through storms too. On the other side of it all is Jesus. He is the unexpected surprise that blooms and causes us to be fruitful.
keep your story growing
Now that you have an idea of how to tell your story, Let’s continue to grow it together. You’ll discover how each of the potter’s vessels has a similar story too. Just put in your first name and email below so we can send you the steps to becoming a fruit-bearing vessel. I promise you’ll be inspired to keep following Christ. In addition, we send fruitful Friday emails with even more stories.