During our Lutheran Indian Ministries yearly staff meeting, we were reminded of how much an impact our own personal story can have on others. One of the greatest witnessing tools we have is the testimony of a changed life. My wife, Deon, and I shared our story of our road to salvation. Like many Native Americans, we have sexual abuse, broken families, and drug and alcohol abuse in our past. Thankfully, several years ago, God in His mercy and grace took us out of that lifestyle and into His Son’s marvelous light through the power of His holy Word.
Prior to the meeting, Deon and I admit we were timid in sharing our story. We had gotten comfortable in our Christian walk; it had become routine for us. We were living our daily lives surrounded by other believers, which is a great blessing, but we had put ourselves into a Christian “bubble” and neglected to reach the lost and share our story as we once had as new believers.
When were arrived at the staff meeting, we were nervous because we feared what others would think of us. After we shared our ugly, brutal, disarranged past, we were reminded of God’s mercies and grace all over again. We revealed a part of our own lives that allowed everyone to know us better. We made our wounds known, which invited others to share their own struggles from the past and even presently. Thankfully, we experienced love, acceptance and encouragement from all our brothers and sisters in Christ.
The unique thing about Lutheran Indian Ministries is the staff’s willingness to be transparent and share their own testimonies and the brokenness of their past and their ancestors’ past. They speak of that brokenness, knowing there are other Native men, women and children going through the same things, and they hope to reach them. We are so blessed to now be part of this Gospel ministry outreach.
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