Archive for the ‘Testimony’ Category

February 14th, 2014

Building Your Testimony

“Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.” James 1:2-3 (ESV)

Without a test, there is no testimony.

God allows trials to come into our lives in order to prove the authenticity of our faith. We are like a tube of toothpaste, when squeezed whatever is on the inside comes out. Trials have a way of revealing character. When our faith is tested, we have the opportunity to demonstrate the character of Christ being developed in us. Our testimony is enriched as our faith increases. Learning how to trust God when trials ensue is part of our spiritual formation. God does not waste the trauma that comes into our lives. When difficult circumstances are in view, our faith is fortified.

  • Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that isset before us.” Heb. 12:1 (ESV)
  • “Therefore we ourselves boast about you in the churches of God for your steadfastness and faith in all your persecutions and in the afflictions that you are enduring.” 2 Thess. 1:4 (ESV)

Review your spiritual journey and identify those hard places in your life that proved your faith. You will find that some of your most meaningful moments with God were during those seasons of intensity and adversity.

Drawing Near,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Friday, February 14th, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category Character Development, Testimony, Trials.
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February 14th, 2010

Building Your Testimony

“Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.” James 1:2-3 (NIV)

Without a test, there is no testimony.

God allows trials to come into our lives in order to prove the authenticity of our faith. We are like a tube of toothpaste, when squeezed whatever is on the inside comes out. Trials have a way of revealing character. When our faith is tested, we have the opportunity to demonstrate the character of Christ being developed in us. Our testimony is enriched as our faith increases. Learning how to trust God when trials ensue is part of our spiritual formation. God does not waste the trauma that comes into our lives. When difficult circumstances are in view, our faith is fortified.

  • “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.” Heb 12:1 (NIV)
  • “Therefore, among God’s churches we boast about your perseverance and faith in all the persecutions and trials you are enduring.” 2 Thess 1:4 (NIV)

Review your spiritual journey and identify those hard places in your life that proved your faith. You will find that some of your most meaningful moments with God were during those seasons of intensity and adversity.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, February 14th, 2010 at 1:00 am
Category Character Development, Testimony, Trials.
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September 3rd, 2009

Commended as One Who Pleases God

“By faith Enoch was taken from this life, so that he did not experience death; he could not be found, because God had taken him away. For before he was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God.” Heb 11:5 (NIV)

Two people in the Bible had the distinct privilege of not experiencing death, namely, Enoch and Elijah. Elijah went up into heaven in a whirlwind (2 Kings 2:11). Enoch walked with God and was no more because God took him away (Gen 5:24). Can you imagine walking with God and then bypassing death altogether in order to be instantly ushered into the presence of the Lord?

What kind of life did Enoch live before he was taken up to heaven? The Bible gives us clarity that Enoch lived by faith. He is honored in the Hall of Faith found in Hebrews chapter eleven. Enoch’s walk with God gave evidence of a lifestyle devoted to pleasing God. Enoch embraced a consistent lifestyle that brought honor to God. He was an avid God pleaser!

Do you please God? Are you loving what God loves and hating what God hates? Assess your current reality. Examine the motives behind your lifestyle. Consider the spiritual resume that you are building through your walk with God. Think about how your life influences others. Can you be commended as one who pleases God?

If the focus of your life has been pleasing others, repent of that sin. Reorient your life to embrace a lifestyle of pleasing God. Make God’s smile the goal of your life. Remember that you will stand before God one day to give an account of how you lived your life on earth. You will not give an account to any of the people you are currently trying to please. Become a God pleaser!

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, September 3rd, 2009 at 1:00 am
Category Commended, Faith, Testimony.
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May 9th, 2009

Suffering as a Christian

“However, if you suffer as a Christian, do not be ashamed, but praise God that you bear that name.” 1 Peter 4:16 (NIV)

When you received the gift of eternal life, you were saved by the grace of God. Your name was written in the Lamb’s book of life and your eternal security was sealed by the Holy Spirit. Your position in Christ is that of having a right relationship with God and a right relationship with others. The sacrificial death of Christ upon the cross provided you with a new identity, in Christ, as a child of God.

Receiving the benefits of salvation is a joy. However, what you may not have realized is that being a follower of Jesus Christ includes suffering. You cannot be on mission with God and give your life to fulfilling the Great Commission and live out the Great Commandment without an element of suffering. Going against the current of culture will produce a level of suffering. Combating the satanic opposition from the kingdom of darkness will generate a level of suffering. Denying yourself and crucifying the flesh in order to walk in the Spirit will spawn an encounter with suffering.

Do not be ashamed if you suffer as a Christian. Maybe you work in a difficult environment where Christianity is not well received. Maybe your home is not conducive to the reality of your Christianity. Perhaps being a Christian on your campus, at work, or in your home places you in the minority. Do not be ashamed. Give praise to God that you have high honor and privilege of bearing that name. You are Christ on your campus. You are Christ at your work. You are Christ in your home. Everywhere you go, you are representing Jesus! You are continuing the ministry of Jesus on the earth by doing what He did. You wear His name and you bear His identity. Remember, you may be the only Jesus others see!

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Saturday, May 9th, 2009 at 1:00 am
Category Comfort, Suffering, Testimony.
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May 7th, 2009

Prepared to Share

“But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.” 1 Peter 3:15-16 (NIV)

Readiness to share your salvation story is proportionate to Lordship. Your submission to the Lordship of Christ determines your level of readiness to give an answer for the reason of the hope you have. When you make Jesus the Lord of your life, your passion becomes pleasing Him. Your ambition in life is to do what Jesus did. Submitted to the Lordship of Christ, your life becomes oriented to the redemptive activity of God.

What is the reason for the hope you have? What was your life like before Christ became your Savior and Lord? How did you come to know Christ personally? What is different about your life now that you have an abiding love relationship with Him? Be prepared to give an answer. Be prepared to engage others in spiritual conversation. Unveil to others what Christ means to you and what He can do for them.

Sadly, conversation can dilute into being superficial and temporal. What if you began to operate your life in light of eternity? What if your conversation became centered around the reality of God’s redeeming love? Give evidence to the Lordship of Christ in your life. With gentleness and respect, declare the hope you have in Christ. Speak of the mercy and grace of God you have been freely given. Allow the light of God’s love to radiate from your life and your lips. In Christ, you have the most powerful message on the planet. Are you ready to give an answer?

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, May 7th, 2009 at 1:00 am
Category Lordship, Soulwinning, Testimony.
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May 4th, 2009

Message Worth Sharing

“So do not be ashamed to testify about our Lord, or ashamed of me his prisoner. But join with me in suffering for the gospel, by the power of God, who has saved us and called us to a holy life–not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time, but it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel.” 2 Tim 1:8-10 (NIV)

Paul modeled his testimony before his son in the ministry, Timothy. Paul was consumed by the gospel. The Good News of Jesus Christ had radically transformed Paul’s life and he unashamedly bore witness to the saving grace of Jesus to a lost and dying world.

  • “I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile.” Romans 1:16 (NIV)
  • “And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing.” 2 Cor 4:3 (NIV)

What’s there to be ashamed about? Jesus has saved you and called you to a holy life by His own purpose and grace. Jesus has destroyed death and has brought forth life through His gospel. You are armed with the most powerful message on planet earth. The gospel impacts life in the now and the hereafter.

God has given you an eternal message empowered by His eternal Spirit that brings forth eternal life to everyone who believes. You have been given the keys to unlock hell and open heaven for every person who turns from their sin and to Jesus alone for salvation. Hallelujah! Praise the Lamb of God!

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, May 4th, 2009 at 1:00 am
Category Soulwinning, Testimony, Witnessing.
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May 3rd, 2009

Actively Sharing Your Faith

“I pray that you may be active in sharing your faith, so that you will have a full understanding of every good thing we have in Christ.” Philem 1:6 (NIV)

Our participation in God’s redemptive activity includes actively sharing our faith. We are commissioned by God and for God to share His redemptive love to all 12,500 people groups on this planet. God has saved us and set us free so that we can shine His light and share His love with every individual. God wants us to share our faith with those He brings into our path. God also wants us to build bridges to people we have never met in order to share our faith with them.

Are you willing to seize the opportunities that God gives you? Are you willing to go on a short term mission trip in order to share your faith in other cultures? Your home is your mission field. Your neighborhood is your mission field. Your school is your mission field. Your work place is your mission field. Everywhere you go is terrain that God wants you to claim for His glory.

How many people will be in heaven because of you? Will your life impact the population of hell? Will your testimony impact the population of heaven?

God has given you the gift of eternal life so that you can personally share that gift with others. Don’t mute your testimony. Don’t conceal your testimony. Instead, reveal to others what God has done in your life to bring you to the point of salvation and abundant life.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, May 3rd, 2009 at 1:00 am
Category Soulwinning, Testimony, Witnessing.
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May 2nd, 2009

Sharing Your Salvation Story

“Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, ‘He told me everything I ever did.’ So when the Samaritans came to him, they urged him to stay with them, and he stayed two days. And because of his words many more became believers.” John 4:39-41 (NIV)

God uses human instrumentality in the redemptive process. There is nothing like the power of a changed life. When someone turns from sin and to Jesus for salvation, that transformed life touches other people. The Samaritans knew the shadowy past of the woman at the well. They were familiar with her lifestyle and most impacted by her transformation.

The woman at the well was willing to go back into her city to share her salvation story. She was willing to go back to her fellow Samaritans to share her testimony. The Lord Jesus had transformed her life and she was compelled to let her new life in Christ be an instrument to bring others to salvation. “They said to the woman, ‘We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the Savior of the world’” (John 4:42 NIV).

Are you helping people come to know Christ? Are you sharing your personal testimony? Do your family members know your salvation story? Look for opportunities this week to share your testimony and watch how God uses your life to draw others to Christ.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Saturday, May 2nd, 2009 at 1:00 am
Category Soulwinning, Testimony, Witnessing.
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May 1st, 2009

Entrusted with God’s Treasure

“On the contrary, we speak as men approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel. We are not trying to please men but God, who tests our hearts.” 1 Thess 2:4 (NIV)

God has called us to speak on His behalf. When others hear from us, they need to hear from God. God has saved us, is sanctifying us, and will be glorifying us. We speak as those who have been approved by God.

God has entrusted us with the precious treasure of the gospel. The Good News that brings forth eternal life and the forgiveness of sins has been entrusted to us by God and for God. Our assignment is to share God’s plan of salvation with the lost. Every person on the planet is lost without Christ. Our mandate from God is to shine His light and to share His love with all people groups.

What is our motivation? Is it to please men? Is it to receive the applause of men? No, we spread the fragrance of Christ to bring pleasure to God. We are ambassadors for Christ because God is making His appeal through us (2 Cor. 5:20). We live to please God. Our Heavenly Father has given us eternal life through His Son, Jesus.

Are you convinced that lost people go to hell? Does your life give evidence to the reality of heaven and hell? You have been approved by God and entrusted with the Good News of Jesus Christ. Make it your ambition to please God. Express your appreciation to God by sharing His message of reconciliation with those disconnected from Christ. Make the smile of God the goal of your life.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Friday, May 1st, 2009 at 1:00 am
Category Soulwinning, Testimony, Witnessing.
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February 27th, 2009

Share Your Story

“The man from whom the demons had gone out begged to go with him, but Jesus sent him away, saying, ‘Return home and tell how much God has done for you.’ So the man went away and told all over town how much Jesus had done for him.” Luke 8:38-39 (NIV)

This demon-possessed man had not lived in a house, but lived in the tombs for a long time. When the demons came out of the man, Jesus gave them permission to go into a herd of pigs. The herd rushed down the bank into the lake and drowned. When the people of that region came to Jesus, they saw this man sitting at Jesus’ feet. The man was dressed and in his right mind. Jesus instructed the man to “return home and tell how much God has done for you.”

What is your story? How did Jesus reveal Himself and His salvation plan to you? Revisit the circumstances leading up to your salvation event. Consider the people God brought into your path to introduce you to Jesus. Begin to pray and thank God for each person specifically.

Review the changes that have taken place in your life since receiving God’s gift of eternal life. Calculate the progression of your faith and the levels of maturity gained over the years. Remember, salvation is an event followed by a process of maturation. What is different about your life now?

Share your story! Let’s others know what the Lord has done for you. Proclaim the Good News of Jesus with those who do not have a personal relationship with Him. Testify of the atoning work of Jesus on the cross and the victory over sin, death, and hell. Share with others how Jesus came to your rescue and delivered you from the kingdom of darkness and placed you in the kingdom of light. Tell how you were an object of wrath, but because of God’s love and mercy, you have been made alive with Christ in order to show the incomparable riches of His grace (Eph. 2:3-7).

God has given you a message worth making known and a story worth sharing!

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Friday, February 27th, 2009 at 1:00 am
Category Redemption, Salvation, Testimony.
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