by Sarah Monzon
Welcome to Songs of Salvation, a new feature for Sundays. Each week I hope to feature a different Christian author to share a "Song of Salvation", a post that is intended to uplift, encourage and glorify God.
Thank you for having me on “Songs of Salvation.” I have to admit, when you first asked me to come and share my testimony, a trickle of dread crawled down my spine. The word “testimony” conjures up these powerful, transformational stories of people who were so far from God, sometimes dealing drugs or living in other damaging ways, and then they had a road to Damascus moment where the Spirit grabbed them with a grace-filled grip and turned their whole lives around.
I don’t have a testimony like that. In fact, if you had asked me not even that long ago, I would have said I didn’t have a testimony at all. There was no “come to Jesus” moment in my life. I was raised with a mama who prayed over me, sang me songs of Jesus, and taught me of His love. For as long as I can remember, He’s lived in my heart, directed my path. It wasn’t until recently that I realized a person’s testimony is their personal story. And we all have our stories, don’t we?
Along with that understanding came the revelation that I’ve been sharing my testimony for a while now—in every book I’ve written, there is a piece of me and my story.
In Finder’s Keepers, it comes out in the form of the heroine’s backstory. Both a product of an affair/one-night stand, we grew up not knowing our fathers. While I clung to my Heavenly Father growing up, Summer had a longer journey coming to terms with the One who could fill that void.
A lot of people and characters in Christian fiction blame God when bad things happen. While I have certainly questioned God, turmoil and hardships only make me cling tighter to Him, not turn away. I tried to share what that path looks like through the character of Michael Carrington in All of You.
I’ve never been a very confident person. In fact, one of the things that drives my husband the craziest is my inability to accept a compliment. Someone will say something nice either about me or my writing and I will come back with a justification. Example, a book blogger named my book, The Esther Paradigm, her favorite book of 2017. I was completely honored but confided in my husband that the only reason was because she and I were friends and she has a soft spot for our Muslim brothers and sisters due to her background as an ESL teacher. Cringe, I know. Hannah Pratt, the character in that same book, struggles a lot with her own self-esteem and self-worth as well.
I have a novella coming out in June and the heroine in that story is basically me only with curly hair. I won’t say why exactly so as not to give away spoilers. 😉
Moral of the story? Don’t be like me. If you didn’t have this grand transformational experience, don’t think that means you don’t have a testimony. You do. Because God loves you and is working through you every day. Have the courage to share that story with others in any medium He asks you.