“This is the definition of awkward. I mean, what do you say to a guy who the last time you saw him tried to kill you?” asks Chris Carrier, the subject of a seven-episode podcast produced by the North American Mission Board as part of the “Who’s Your One” evangelism initiative.
Who’s Your One asks believers to choose one person who doesn’t know Jesus, and commit to pray and share the gospel with that “one.” As of July, some 39,000 people have taken the challenge.
Carrier’s podcast is part of “Stories of Redemption,” three accounts of how God used different people in different circumstances to show the love of Christ to others. The podcast is available at www.whosyourone.com.
“The stories are produced as examples of people who are praying and reaching people with the hope of the gospel,” said Catherine Renfro, NAMB’s evangelism strategist.
The podcast, titled “Kidnapped, a God Story,” tells Carrier’s story of being kidnapped while walking home from school as a 10-year-old. While he was being repeatedly stabbed with an ice pick, Carrier prayed, “Father, forgive him because he doesn’t know, or at least I don’t know, what he’s doing.”
Though left for dead, Carrier survived, but not without repercussions.
“There were those moments in which I would wake up in sheer terror … and could picture that man walking through the house and cornering me in that room and coming to finish what he started,” Carrier remembered.
His attacker eventually confessed and, while he was never convicted, became Carrier’s “one.”
Telling his story
The multi-episode, personal-account podcast was the first of its kind for NAMB. Since 2019, the agency has produced podcasts and blogs for their “Resources” page, covering a variety of topics including adoption support, church planting and equipping pastors.
NAMB also has produced short videos, but Carrier’s full story didn’t fit into the format of what they had previously done.
“As we heard the details of Chris’ story, we realized there were so many fascinating details, we couldn’t pack it all into a video,” Renfro explained. “His story is a unique story that happened over 30 years ago, and it’s difficult to tell a story like this one in a two-minute video … in a scenario where we have photos but very little video footage.
“This is why we chose to use a podcast to tell his story. The podcast series allows us to unfold the story with nothing left out. The format takes full advantage of Chris’ incredible way of telling his story.”
NAMB also produced a shorter version of Carrier’s story in video format, but the best way to experience the whole thing is through the podcast, Renfro noted.
The other two redemption stories are primarily in video format, but each is unique in its total presentation.
“Malachi,” which is about a young cancer patient who made his short life all about others, is shared in two parts that includes a written account of his story.
“Eden,” which is about a teen’s passion to share the message of Christ, is told through a short video, written summary and podcast.
“Malachi’s story was the first one we shared in a longer format,” Renfro said. “His story is an incredible testimony of someone who sought God’s purpose even in the middle of great suffering and used it as a bridge to the gospel.
“Eden’s story came next,” she said. “We loved her courage and passion to proclaim Christ to her fellow students and friends.”
NAMB officials said they plan to share more stories like these.
“When we find a good story, we work with our creative team to determine the format that might work best,” Renfro said. “Primarily, we are looking for stories about people sharing Jesus with their ‘one,’ the kinds of stories that will inspire people to say, ‘If they can do it, I can do it.’”
To hear the full account of Carrier’s story or find out about the next Who’s Your One tour, visit www.whosyourone.com.
To share Who’s Your One stories, e-mail email@example.com.