It can feel awkward talking or writing about the things Jesus has done for you. On one hand, I want to talk about who I was and the changes He made in me so that He is honored and so that others might be encouraged. However, I also understand that doing so can be off putting, and there are a few reasons why that might be.
One might confuse boasting in the Lord for boasting in myself. One might hear about a change that the Lord worked in me and become discouraged because they have not experienced that change themselves.
I think about when Jesus worked miracles for people, as we read about in the scriptures. He told some to go and tell people what He had done. For others, He asked them to keep quiet about it. I think Jesus did this because He knew what the outcome would be in each case, and He would not encourage a testimony that would lead to sins such as pride, envy, strife, and murderous intentions.
As far as I can tell, the only way we can know which things to declare publicly and which things we should keep to ourselves is by listening to the guidance of the Spirit as we consider what the outcome might be for those who listen.
If people will benefit from a testimony, then we should share it. If there is no real benefit for others or if our testimony will place ourselves or others in harm’s way before our time has come, then I think it is best to keep the matter private.
Though there might be things to keep to ourselves, we cannot “hide our light under a bushel.” If Jesus works in us, then our lives will change, and people will see that. In-fact, the most powerful testimony is living a life in Christ. As our life inspires questions about how and why we live a certain way, we can talk about Jesus and what He has done.
As far as publishing His works in my life openly, I need to take more time to consider which details I should write about and which details I should not.
Specifics aside, I do notice that the working of Jesus follows a similar methodology.
All change began with a change of mind towards the things of God. There were sinful behaviors I justified before Jesus showed me otherwise. I also had ideas about God and the gospel that encouraged sinful mindsets. Having my understanding changed was an act of grace and mercy; I could not simply change my mind without divine influence.
I have also noticed that the change of mind that comes to us in Christ is a progressive change. Though there are moments of big change, such as the moment we first believe in the gospel and turn our lives over to Jesus or when we receive the Holy Spirit, most change seems to be gradual and cumulative.
There are aspects of our sinful nature that are so deeply embedded into our core nature that we cannot simply change our mind and stop the sin because we are not dealing with just one issue—but many related issues that feed off of each other. In such instances, a slow and steady continuation in the faith as we learn to walk after the things of the Spirit will bring gradual change and healing.
Some changes occur in an instant, and others might take a lifetime. However, all changes we experience are given to us by grace through faith.
It is the grace of God that leads us to Jesus. With faith in Him, we know that we are forgiven of our sins so that means we can boldly approach God without shame because we have passed from condemnation to life.
Since we are not condemned, we can look at ourselves honestly and seek the Lord to change our perspective so that we are no longer justifying sin but instead focusing on Christ and aiming for a life lived in Him.
We should search ourselves regularly, because we can become blind to sin; we are very good at justifying ourselves. Therefore, we should never claim to be without the capacity for sin. In all things, the Holy Spirit will convict us if we seek Jesus and listen. If we don’t know how to listen to the Spirit, then we seek that through regular prayer and consideration of the word of God.
We also have faith in the resurrection promise of Jesus and the healing power of His Spirit, knowing that any real change we receive comes from Him and not our efforts. In this, Jesus alone is glorified and no man can boast.
We also have faith in His perfect timing and will for all things, so if the change we seek is slow we can find patience with ourselves and others. We also know that anything we lack will be made whole once we are raised from the dead bodily at the coming of Jesus.
We have faith that all things pertaining to our salvation are given to us from God. However, we were given this life for a reason, so we will experience things. We will strive in the faith and we will fight against sin. We will experience defeat and we will experience victory. In all things, we rely on the blood of Jesus and the mercy of God alone, trusting that all things are working out for our good.
We have faith that all things are accomplished in Christ. Death was defeated on the cross, and by the grace of God, the divine nature of Jesus and the power of His Spirit teaches us to cast off sin and walk righteously in this present world as one who was given victory over all dead things.
We continue in this faith, knowing that all things must be placed under the feet of our Lord, and we will see that day—and we will rule over death with Him—both as we experience freedom from sin in this life and when we see our Lord coming with power and glory to establish His rule forever.
Whether you are an unbeliever who wants to turn their heart to Jesus or a believer who has walked with Him for years, you need the Physician.
We all have room to heal and grow. The day we claim to have it all is a sad day, because that is the day we cease from pursuing His Kingdom. This pursuit is not a one-time declaration—but a life-long commitment.
I know this from experience, so I will always encourage others to continue in the faith and growth, from faith to faith and from righteousness to righteousness according to the perfect will and timing of our Lord and the grace of God that abounds to all who trust in Jesus Christ.
30 But their scribes and Pharisees murmured against his disciples, saying, Why do ye eat and drink with publicans and sinners?
31 And Jesus answering said unto them, They that are whole need not a physician; but they that are sick.
32 I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance (John 5:30-32).
I intend to look at the above scripture further in tomorrow’s article. Feel free to leave a comment or send a private message if you want to discuss any of the ideas mentioned here, or if you just want someone to talk to about your own walk in the faith.