Engage Your Community.
Your church’s hidden power
e all know the power of a good story. A story heard in childhood can stay with you for a lifetime. The stories we share in community shape us into the people we are—and the people we hope to become.
A testimony is a good story that is also a God story. It is telling, whether in formal presentation or casual conversation, where we see God’s presence and activity in our lives.
The problem is: many people are not sure how to talk about God in today’s world. When we asked why, this is what we heard.
"I don't know enough to talk about my faith."
“I haven’t had a lot of practice.”
“I wouldn't want to offend people.”
“I let the pastor do the talking.”
“I just try to show my faith by my actions.”
The Bible says even Moses at first felt uncomfortable talking about God.
At Perkins School of Theology, we could see the incredible value of testimony in building community. The stories we tell inside the church community can spill out into our wider communities—the cities, towns and villages where we live. Especially today, when people are longing to connect and reconnect, we need to be able to “speak about what we have seen and heard” (Acts 4:20).
But we could also see that churches need help growing in this area. People want to be able to tell their God stories in a way that is warm and inviting. A way that connects with their culture and community. A way that brings together speaking and listening. A way that weds words and actions.
That’s how Testimony HQ started. After much thought and prayer, we decided to become a hub or headquarters for churches to learn and practice this way of doing testimony.
We’re excited about this project and would love for your church to join us. After all, there’s a world of people waiting to hear your story!
How we can help you
s some churches are inching their way back to “normal,” others are struggling like never before. We are attuned to these different contexts, and we are used to cooperating with a diverse range of people, churches, and denominations.
Right now we’re assembling a cohort of churches that we can help by providing good teaching, coaching, and practice in this area of testimony. As your church works with us and other churches, you’ll grow in the ability to integrate testimony into a variety of settings—including corporate worship, small group studies, casual conversations, and community outreach. We encourage your church to apply (deadline is July 1, 2021).
As part of this Testimony HQ project, you will be able to:
(1) Learn how Testimony can transform your church’s ministry, as you work through our “Testimony As Community Engagement” curriculum. It’s designed to help people become more comfortable, knowledgeable, skillful, and spiritually aware.
(2) Benefit from our team of professors, church leaders, coaches and mentors, who will provide insight and guidance to help your church grow in the practice of testimony.
(3) Connect with other churches in your cohort, so you can compare notes, share ideas, converse, pray, and practice together.
(4) Receive a stipend (up to $5000) to cover food and other expenses for your learning sessions, as well as expenses related to outreach into your church’s wider community.
In addition, you or others in your church can continue to work on an individual basis by enrolling in courses to earn a Certificate in Evangelism.
We received a generous grant that allows us to offer all of the above at no cost to you or your church. We’re focusing first on churches in our region. If your church is located within 350 miles of Dallas, TX, we hope you’ll apply.
But wherever you are, we’d like to keep in touch, so that down the road we can offer you free resources and other ways to help.
The community needs your story.