Our testimonies are so fragile. The word ‘testimony’ is simply defined as “an open acknowledgement.” Our actions and our words acknowledge our beliefs, our lifestyles, our care for others, etc. Often, it is our actions that truly determine our testimonies. When we say one thing, but do something different, we do not fool anyone. Our actions often give us away…whether for good or bad.

Let’s consider the testimony of Peter and John. We read in Acts 4:13, “Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marvelled; and they took knowledge of them, that THEY HAD BEEN WITH JESUS.” The actions of these two men caused others to take notice of them. What did their boldness in the Lord reveal? It showed that they had BEEN WITH JESUS. When we take time each day to be with the Lord in prayer (that is when we talk to Him), and take time to be with Him in the study of His Word (this is when He talks to us), it will affect our words and actions…and people will notice that we have BEEN WITH JESUS.

1 Timothy 4:15 instructs us, “Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear to all.” All believers need to be in God’s Word daily, learning precious truths and receiving direction from the Lord. We need to ‘meditate’ upon the Word of God by giving serious thought and prayer to what we have read. We need to give ourselves over completely to the Word, allowing the Holy Spirit to direct our paths according to the Word. Paul commended the Roman believers by telling them, “For your obedience is come abroad unto all men. (Romans 16:19) The fact that they obeyed the Word of God formed their testimony. When we spend time in God’s Word and obey it, we will profit by it, and that will be evident to all those around us. People will see that we have BEEN WITH JESUS.

The Apostle Peter was one who dishonored the Lord terribly by denying Him. After the Lord told Peter what he would do, Peter did not believe Him. Mark 14:30-31, “And Jesus saith unto him, Verily I say unto thee, That this day, even in this night, before the cock crow twice, thou shalt deny me thrice. But he spake the more vehemently, If I should die with thee, I WILL NOT DENY THEE IN ANY WISE. Likewise also said they all.” I think we all are familiar with this tragic story. Peter did indeed deny the Lord three times, just as the Lord had said. However, the story doesn’t end there, Peter was restored to the Lord and became prominent among the apostles. Yet, not long after Peter denied the Lord, he stood and spoke to the Jewish people saying, “The God of Abraham, and of Isaac, and of Jacob, the God of our fathers, hath glorified his Son Jesus; whom ye delivered up, and denied him in the presence of Pilate, when he was determined to let him go. But YE DENIED THE HOLY ONE and the Just, and desired a murderer to be granted unto you; And killed the Prince of life, whom God hath raised from the dead; whereof we are witnesses.” (Acts 3:13-15) Peter was so completely restored to the Lord that he could speak to others of the same thing he had done. The difference was that he had been forgiven, and they were still in their sins. His restoration gave him the strength to speak to them of their sins.

I encourage you to continue to walk with the Lord. As much as your ‘backsliding’ was obvious to others, so will your restoration be obvious to others. Be patient. People are normally slow to receive one back ‘into the fold’ after there has been serious sin committed. By your words, and especially by your actions, show them that you have BEEN WITH JESUS. By being with the Lord, and meditating upon His Word, you will profit and others will notice it and will take you serious once again. (287.2)