And just like practicing your golf game, practicing your story improves each time you tell it.
The goal of good practice is muscle memory. It’s getting the feel of the swing so ingrained into your memory bank that the swing becomes natural, like second nature. It’s not forced or under tension, but it’s relaxed and powerful. In life, the goal becomes developing and practicing your story so that it, too, becomes like a second-nature swing in the course of conversation.
Why Tell Your Story?
Everyone loves a story, and people can relate to others’ experiences. It makes the ethereal concrete. It’s credible because it’s your own. The ultimate reason is to share the gift of a risen Savior. His impact on your life cannot be doubted because it is real and so are you.
As with your golf swing, it is a matter of preparation meeting opportunity. It is at the meeting point where you see results; the more simple the swing, the better the results. If your story is prepared, it will be succinct and clear.
Facing a tough shot, solid preparation gives you the confidence required to make the swing needed. And so, with your story, preparation provides the confidence to step out and swing. Remember how the Old Pro’s interactions with Paul were not forced or uncomfortable? He was completely natural, comfortable, and warm. That’s because he had equipped himself in advance to be thoroughly prepared to meet and mentor Paul when the opportunity came his way. So, too, will you be prepared by taking the time to develop your story below and then beginning to practice sharing it in opportunities presented to you.
What to Prepare
Have you ever heard some awfully ridiculous advice on the golf course? Perhaps a particularly poor cliché that has been offered to falsely promise great results? So it is with some folks’ impressions of the Lord’s message. There are many caricatures and a lot of misinformation about who we are and what we believe.
The following questions have been designed to help overcome that misinformation by applying your story to them. Take some time to briefly answer these questions mentally to begin creating your story.
- What was my attitude before I took Jesus seriously?
- Why did I say “yes” to Jesus?
- How did I say “yes” to Jesus?
- What difference does being a believer make in my day-to-day life?
- What is a true believer anyway?
It would be helpful to develop two or three different ways you could answer the individual questions. Edit each to a couple of short sentences. Then you will have several different options as varying opportunities present themselves — just like pulling out the right club for a specific lie and distance, you’ll have multiple answers for different situations.
Here is some help in considering how to approach each question.
- Ask God to lead your thinking and give you wisdom (James 1:5).
- Reduce your answers to sound bites. You may only have a few seconds to share.
- Prepare answers to stand alone. You probably won’t give your story all at once, since that would be like throwing your entire bag of clubs at someone — look out!
- Write some single-word thoughts to capture your thoughts, hopes, fears, ambitions, emotions, etc.
- Be specific, be honest, and avoid “churchy” jargon.
Begin Writing Your Mulligan Story....
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