“If anyone wants to become my follower, he must deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow me.” Luke 9:23 (NET Bible)
“I urge you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.” Romans 12:1-2 (New American Standard 1977)
So what are your next steps?
First, remember this one important piece of information. Your relationship with God should be the single most important thing you have from this point forward. It should be above any other relationship, above work, and above any other activity. If something interferes with your relationship, always put God first. Scripture tells us that if we do that, everything else that we need or desire that is in line with His will is granted to us. Your health, prosperity, peace, and your ability to get through the difficulties in life depend on how strong your relationship with God is. If it is strong, He will be able to help you. Just like any other relationship, the more you put into it, the more you will get out of it. He never gets tired of spending time with you, but He will never force Himself onto you, and He will never override your will. You must make the active decision to follow Him daily and deny yourself.
Second, if you just accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior we recommend several things and encourage you to do them.
- Tell someone about your salvation. It doesn’t matter if it is a friend, a family member, your neighbor, or someone you randomly meet in the store. Just tell someone.
- Get a good bible if you do not already own one and begin reading it every day. Reading your bible daily is necessary for a healthy, Christian lifestyle. It feeds your spirit the same way that regular food feeds your body and is vital if you are to walk in spiritual health. If you would like us to recommend a good translation, are having problems finding one that meets your needs, or if you cannot afford a bible, please contact us so that we can help you.
- Find a faith-filled church and begin attending services regularly. Get active in it and get to know the pastor and the other members. Make sure it is a church that teaches sound biblical teachings that will nurture your spirit and help you grow stronger in your relationship with God. Scripture tells us that we grow spiritually when we are surrounded by other Christians because we are able to learn from what God has shown them. If you need help finding a church, please consider letting us help you.
- Begin a habit of praying every day. Set aside time where you can be alone for a period of time where you can begin developing a lifestyle of daily prayer. Use this time to let God know what is on your heart, whether it is some type of praise and thanks for something that He did for you or to lay a burden before Him. Scripture tells us that he cares about the little things in our lives. Nothing is too trivial to mention to Him. Also, begin developing a habit of listening to God. If you will begin getting quiet and waiting for Him to speak to your spirit, scripture says that He will. We do have one word of encouragement, though. Because of how hectic our lifestyles often are between work, home, and the extra things that we have in our lives it is tempting for Christians to pray only when they are driving between locations or in five minute increments here and there. There is nothing wrong with prayers like those, but you need to set aside time where nothing else distracts you. Scripture says that the devil will use the things of this world to choke out the Word of God in your life if you are not mindful. You do not have to spend hours at a time on your knees. If all you can spare at any given moment is 30 minutes at a time, then do it.
- Water Baptism. This is a commandment given to all Christians for us to do. It symbolizes the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is an act of obedience to show that you have accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior.
- Find some spiritual growth books and begin reading them so that you can begin hearing from other Christians what God has shown them. If you would like to know some of our favorites, then let us know. We will be happy to recommend some for you.
- Begin listening to worship music (or if you play an instrument begin playing it). Fill your mind with as much positive, uplifiting Christian music as you can. Scripture says that God inhabits the praises of His people. So begin listening to music that praises Him. There are plenty of Christian radio and television stations for you to listen to.
- We would really like to hear about your salvation experience. Please consider contacting us so that we can begin praying for you and encouraging you, especially in these first steps of Christianity.