Spiritual Autobiography and Christian Testimonies 

Hoping:

Spiritual memoir can help you explore the unique ways your personal testimony can be shared. This page will help you begin organizing your Christian testimony on the pages of a spiritual journal. One of the major themes many find for their Christian testimony is hope. Hope often drives the Christian story regardless of the individual's circumstances, challenges or difficulties.

Spiritual Journal Art

When I think of hope's role in my spiritual autobiography, I consider my daughter. I am hoping that my daughter, Emily, can keep her innocence. I don’t want her to learn that trusting is foolish. I want her to marvel in little discoveries like the beauty of a butterfly’s wings. I want to stop the broken hearts from lashing out and stealing Emily’s tender young heart. I want the voices in her head to speak of love, joy and happiness. This is what I want.

I'm not in control. I want to dodge every possible cause for Emily's pain. I wish to show her a beautiful, perfect world. What I want is impossible. I can't make an imperfect world perfect. I can't stop Emily from living in a broken world. I can't control the reality that she will feel pain.

God is in control. He's the one that's in charge of Emily's young, tender heart. I pray that He'll make her loving, kind and passionate. I know He'll answer my prayer. I also know that there's a high price for love, kindness and passion. I won't always like the way that God instills these good things in Emily's heart. I'd like Him to answer my prayers for her in a quick, easy and painless way. That's probably not how He'll answer me. I hate that. I wish He'd let me have my way. I know He won't let me have my way, because my way is not the best way. God's ways are the best ways. That's why He's in charge, not me.

Do you wish you were in control? I'm glad I'm not. Knowing that God is in control is the only real hope I have. It's the only hope I have for Emily and all the people I love. He's the only hope I have for me. When I hear the stories others tell about God (their personal Christian testimonies) I have hope for them too. A Christian testimony is encouragement that Jesus Christ is not a fairytale, but a real, personal loving savior who died so that he could become our hope. Consider whether Jesus Christ has a place, as your savior, within your spiritual autobiography. Trust that He is an intimate part of your life, let Him have control, and know that He wants to be the story you have to share.


Sharing My Journey 

Spiritual Autobiography and my Christian testimony:

I paint my sweet Emmy Lou as she sleeps. She looks so incredibly innocent. Her skin is creamy like a peach and her golden hair curls tightly to her sleepy head. Behind her resting eyelids are beautiful blue eyes. Her chubby little body is just like mine was when I was a little girl. She is perfect and safe.

I add some things to my canvas that I fear. I add the things I fear will find my sweet Emmy Lou. Innocence Snatchers swirl around the space where she sleeps so peacefully. The world is too big. So much can go wrong. I can’t always be there when the Innocence Snatchers come. “Jesus, keep her safe,” I pray. “Keep my Emmy Lou safe from pain, tears and innocence lost."

I wish I could give Emily more. Instead, I must release her heart to God. Only He can be with her all of the time. His quiet and loving voice can console her pain, dry her tears and shield her from the Innocence Snatchers. Sometimes, though, even He will allow Emily to see the ways our broken world, and our broken hearts, fall short of His perfect plan. I want to stop “sometimes,” from coming but I know that’s wrong. I have to let Emily enter this imperfect world on God’s terms, not mine. All I can do is love her, and hold her when I can, just like my mom did for me. That has got to be enough. It’s all I have. It’s the best I have to give her.

I’d love to offer people a story of happiness that didn’t include the realities of a broken world. That’s not my story. What I have to give is a broken world, a broken heart and the reality of pain mixed with the ever present existence of a loving God. I can’t offer others any more than I can offer Emily. All my story really promises is the promise of God. It’s the best I have to give.

I am a Christian artist and my paintings are testimonies of hope in a broken world. My personal testimony lets me share my story with others who need the hope that I have. As a Christian, my personal testimony tells of a God who made Himself human so that we would see that He understands our pain. The love of God, and the reality of Jesus Christ are the driving forces of hope behind my story. Every picture I make, every word I write and each testimony I share are my personal testimony of salvation. My story says, "God saves." It's the best I have to give.

Child Sleeping in Bed
The Best I’ve Got to Give Her
Age 34

Journaling

Sharing Your Journey

Spiritual Autobiography and your Christian testimony:

What does your story say? What's the best you have to give? Who is in control of your life? Who, or what, is your salvation? Finding expression for the answers to these questions will help your spiritual story take form. Your personal testimony will not be the same as someone else's. God meets us where we are on our journey, and how we answer spiritual questions will be a reflection of our personal relationship with Him. The meaning of words like "salvation" and "hope" will vary from spiritual story to spiritual story. What will be the same is the truth that each of us has our own story to share. Christian testimonies are like a sample of the many tastes of God. Our testimonies are stories that connect us. The way we connect through our individual journeys is part of the beauty of sharing our spiritual autobiographies.

Consider what you hope for. What do you wish for? Who, or what, do you put your faith in? Make a list of all the things you long for. Write about how your life would change if these wishes were met. Write about how your relationship with God might change if you got everything you asked for. Where hope has been lost invite God's encouragement. Where life is out of control invite God's hand of peace. Write a letter to God asking Him for the encouragement and peace you need. Let God's encouragement and peace become part of your story.

Testimonies: The Power of Inspirational Christian Stories was formerly titled Dancing in the Doghouse. This spiritual autobiography has been renamed and redesigned to better reach its audience.


Latest Work!


Peacock Feather Collage 2,
Age 46

Peacock feathers, glitter, yarn, tissue and torn papers. I am a child again: creating using whatever I can find before me.


Past Work!

Angel Children with Wings
Children of Hope,
Age 40

Right outside the doors of my childhood home was beauty and life. As kids my brother and I climbed viney trees, swung from branches and enjoyed long roped tire swings. A choice of sun or shade was everywhere. Open fields sat right beside thick forests. I can still taste all the fruit that grew there: pears, three varieties of apples, huckleberries, red and black raspberries, strawberries, sweet and sour cherries, walnuts and concord grapes. In the summer there was no opportunity for hunger. We could grab a snack right off a handy tree or bush. Today just about every tree, bush and vine has run its course. You can find trees lying half on the ground, their roots barely reaching into the earth, straining for connection with their life source. Everything is dying. It's all a reflection of what's happening just inside the doors of the home I grew up in. My parents, themselves, sit inside straining. Like the trees just outside their windows, they do what they must to make it along as well as they can for as long as they can.

The trees are a metaphor for the reality of all our aging. Some of us still have some fruit to bear, our leaves are still green and we stand fairly tall. Others of us slump, our fruit long ago enjoyed and our leaves brown, hanging on to life for as long as life allows. The metaphor makes me sad the way it reminds me of the grandeur of what once was. I create collages of the metaphor to capture the sadness and give it a chance to speak. I hope, somehow, by giving my sadness a voice I'll feel just a little bit less sad.

I am saddened by what I see lying about the yard I used to play in as a child: broken sticks, rotting trunks, toppled trees, yellowed weedy grass and rotting apples. My children have opened the creaky door leading out from the back porch ready to play and are unaware of my sadness. The fallen apple tree before them is an opportunity for play. They know nothing of what this tree once was to me. All they can see is what it could be for them today: fun. Emily has climbed right on top of the largest branch while Zachy watches. A.J. immediately picks up a stick and wields it like a knight in battle. "Carry on kids," I think. "Make a better way for your children than I have been able to make for you. Make a better way for your children than my own parents have been able to make for me. Battle hard, A.J., for things will get old and pass away but your legacy is my hope. Even in the midst of what is dying all around you, my sweet children, you are my children of hope."

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