The Bible says
that we are a “new creation” (2 Corinthians 5:17) when we decide to follow Jesus. Our old “self” is gone, and the new is here. We spend our whole lives growing up into Jesus and eternity knowing Him. We all need help to grow. We want to start helping you right now to grow in your faith and in your understanding of Jesus.
Here’s how to start:
(If you don’t know what we’re talking about, go to our Jesus! page first and get a new life!)
Together in Jesus
If you just recently accepted Jesus as your Lord and Savior, your next step will be to ask the Lord to lead you to a place where you can grow in your faith and be baptized. Jesus told His followers to baptize in water all those who confess and believe in Him, and this is done publicly within the Body of Christ – the Church.
When you became a Christian, you began an authentic personal relationship with Jesus. However, no one is a Christian alone. The Bible says that when we joined Christ we became members of Jesus’ Body with Him as our Head. So it is important to have real connections with other Christians to keep our faith vibrant, tested, and growing.
Christians around the world gather together regularly to celebrate, to worship, to study, to learn, to serve others, to pray, to heal, to grow, to share in the Lord’s Supper and baptism, and to support one another through the trials and joys of life. Together we are God’s family.
Ask God to lead you to a congregation (large, medium or small!) that will help you to grow in faith where you can do the same for others as you grow.
At times you may doubt that you really are a Christian. Perhaps you have failed or surrendered repeatedly to sin. Remember, we are not saved because of how good we are but because we trust in what Jesus did on the cross. He took on the sins of the whole world and paid the full price for our sin. When we trust God, we “put on” Jesus. We can fully trust the truth of God’s Word over our own feelings. This is faith. If you fall, turn around and run back to God. He loves you!
“I write this to you who believe in the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life.” (I John 5:13).
Depend on the Holy Spirit
The Bible teaches us that when we choose to follow Jesus, the Holy Spirit actually lives within us (Romans 5:5; John 14:16-17). The Holy Spirit is God with us 24 hours a day/7 days a week: teaching us, guiding us, strengthening us, empowering us, comforting and refreshing us. The Holy Spirit helps us to hear God’s voice and follow Him. As we obey the Holy Spirit’s leading, we grow stronger and stronger in faith day by day. Listen for God’s still, small, voice within you and follow Him. Life with the Spirit is never boring, always challenging, and totally worth it. Totally.
Read the Bible
The Bible is God’s written word, alive and inspired, an instruction manual for believers. It acts like guard rails for our lives; providing us direction, instruction, inspiration, and answers to help us to know what pleases God; showing us what God is like. (See Jesus? That’s what God is like. See Hebrews 1:3.)
As you read, ask God to give you understanding and wisdom: “Open my eyes to see the wonderful truths in your law” (Psalm 119:18). Think about what you read: study and consider it carefully. Write down questions you have and ask a mature Christian to help clarify your understanding.
A good place to start is in the New Testament with the Gospel of Luke; which introduces us to Jesus’ life, teachings, death and resurrection. The book of Acts is a great follow up; it contains exciting stories of how Jesus’ disciples, the Church, spread the Good News of Jesus by the power of the Holy Spirit through witnessing, miracles, healing, and more.
Pray with God Daily
Prayer is simply talking with God; which is a two-way, real live relationship with God. Prayer is union with God. Talk over your everyday joys and problems with Him and listen for His response. Thank Him for who He is and what He has done for you. Confess your sins to Him, admit your weaknesses, and accept His forgiveness. Ask God to show you how to live a life that pleases Him and He will!
We can speak with God in prayer all the time, aloud and silently, about whatever is happening throughout the day, and listen for His response. Jesus tells us to ask so that we can receive. God speaks to us in many ways, even ways that we do not understand. That’s okay. Faith means we don’t know it all, we just believe that God is better than we think or know, and we trust Him.
“Why worship?” some may ask. The straight up answer is that God is worth it!
Worship is about focusing on God, putting everything at His feet, and trusting Him. Worship in form is silent and loud, still and moving, ancient and always new. We worship in Spirit (as the Spirit of God leads us) and in Truth (believing God is who He says He is and worthy of our attention, trust and praise). We worship alone (wherever we are) and together: singing and celebrating God’s life with and in us. To worship God with our whole being every day is to really live.
God gives all of us gifts and talents that we are to use to love Him and others so that others will know that God loves them, too. Jesus said that if we try to keep our lives for ourselves, we will lose our lives. But if we give up our lives for His sake, and for the sake of the Good News, we will find true life (Mark 8:35). The more we give ourselves in loving service to others, the more we will grow and enjoy our life with Jesus.
Ask the Lord what He is doing in your home, neighborhood, at work, everywhere, and how you can participate. God invites us to do what He is doing, so we never go alone. Invite others to join you! God always goes with us.
Tell Others About Jesus
Sharing with others about our new life in Jesus – by word and by action – can be one of the most satisfying and exciting experiences we will ever have. The Bible encourages us to always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks us to give the reason for the hope that we have (I Peter 3:15). Pray that others will know Jesus through you and then listen for the Spirit’s leading and follow. Jesus said, “You are the light of the world!”
This is just the beginning of your new life with Jesus and you will have many more questions as you go along. We are here for you. We’re family! Let us know how you’re doing and how we can encourage you along your way.