Step-By-Step Writing Guide:
(adapted from New Springs Church)
Step 1: Focus
What is the overarching matter?
Choose a turning point or defining moment in your life; a problem or struggle; a change of mind or heart; or a significant relationship. A single storyline or idea makes telling your story more manageable.
If you’re not sure what you want to share, try answering one of the six questions below:
- How did Jesus save you or give you a new life?
- How did Jesus grow your faith the most?
- How did Jesus help you through a struggle?
- How did Jesus restore a relationship that was broken?
- How did Jesus use you to make a difference?
- How did Jesus provide when you had a need?
Step 2: Describe
What’s the essential setup or context for your story?
Paint a picture of your circumstances and describe what motivated your life before the change took place. You will help people understand and relate.
Step 3: Explain
What happened and why?
Bring people along on your journey. Share how and why your choices, attitudes, and circumstances changed. Since your story is ultimately about God, make it clear how Jesus becomes the change-maker — turning a mess into a message, a test into a testimony, a trial into a triumph, a victim into a victor.
Step 4: Reveal
What did God show you about yourself or Himself, and how are you living differently today because of that?
Every good story makes sense of the world. This is your opportunity to offer a personal takeaway.
- Be conversational. Focus on expressing your thoughts and feelings, not on the words.
- Be specific. Use concrete situations, details, and emotions. Help people visualize.
- Be honest. Embrace the messiness. Don’t exaggerate or sugarcoat.
- Be real. You are a work in progress. So is what God is doing. Don’t feel the need to tie things up in a bow.
- Be simple: Don’t clutter your story with details, tangents, backstories or people that aren’t really connected to your focus.