You just got saved, now what?
“God became man to turn creatures into sons: not simply to produce better men of the old kind but to produce a new kind of man.” - C.S. Lewis
As a youth pastor, I get the joy of being apart of many conversion conversations and God talks. Discussions in which result in someone placing their faith in Jesus Christ, confessing Him as Lord. These conversations are eternally significant. One starts the talk on their way to Hell and finishes it on their way to Heaven!
It’s an incredible thing to be apart of. In every talk there is a sense of excitement, peace and freedom for the new Christian.
Shortly after though, there is the all - consuming and common question: Now what?
Now that I have made the biggest decision of my life, changed the course of my eternity and committed to serve Christ instead of myself - what do I do now?
That’s a good question. Because without an answer, one is left to only to wonder what God’s plan is for them in this life. Almost always resulting in a less than adequate Christian walk and a dishonoring of God in the process.
This post will seek to answer that important question in a practical manner that one can apply to their every day life immediately.
Knowing this, there are THREE things every new Christian should do to set themselves up for success in their newfound faith:
1. Get connected to Christian community. Aka, go to church! For most Christians, their conversion took place in a church. So the first thing they should do is get involved and plugged into that church. For those who got saved outside of a church or at a stand alone event - find a church and get connected.
If the church has small groups or bible study classes, join one. Don’t be to picky - just choose a group. You can always change later on. These are the people who will encourage and keep you accountable in your walk with God.
After joining a group of some sort, find a place to serve. Christianity is like any sporting endeavor - it’s more fun when you’re in the game! No matter how new of a Christian you are, you can make an impact in the local church. You can do anything: Greet, usher, social media, work with youth (fav), worship team etc. Regardless of the specific position, just show up and serve.
Doing these will provide you the accountability, support and purpose a consistent Christian needs.
2. Get Baptized. Baptism is a public profession of an inward confession of Christ as Lord. It symbolizes the death (above water), burial (under water) and resurrection (coming out of water) of Christ. Candidly, you can get saved and not tell a single soul. No one would have to know. Baptism is different, it is public, not private.
If getting saved is joining the team, than baptism is putting on the jersey. It showcases to everyone that you’re not ashamed of being a Christian. It is an incredible endeavor.
Baptism is commanded in scripture (Matt 28:19-20). Following through with Baptism is a matter of being obedient to what God has called us to do. It’s very important.
Practically speaking, baptism is like a launching pad. It has the potential, if completed, to launch us into other acts of obedience for God. Think about it: no one walks into church thinking they’d like to be fully submerged in water that day. Yet, we do it anyways for His glory. The choosing of what God wants us to do in the scenario sets us up to do it down the road as well.
On the other hand, if one refuses to be baptized because of the public or uncomfortability factor that then sets them up to continually prefer their comfort over God’s calling. Which is not what the Christian life is about. Follow through with believer’s baptism.
3. Establish spiritual disciplines in your life. This is very important. Going to church and getting baptized are very public actions, while spiritual disciplines primarily take place in private.
Spiritual disciplines can include, but are not limited to: bible reading, daily prayer, meditation, scripture memorization, watching sermons online, journaling and so on. There are lots of them.
For simplicity’s sake, the two you should focus on first should be bible reading and prayer. The Bible is God’s primary guiding force in your life. Through the scriptures, he leads us towards the life we are called to live.
So, start with a chapter a day and read it when you wake up in the morning. I recommend starting in the book of James. It’s a very practical and straightforward book.
For prayer, just start by praying before and after your quiet time. Ask God to bless your bible reading and afterward thank Him for what He spoke to you. Then, eventually work it into your daily rhythms to the point that you are “praying without ceasing (1 Thess. 5:17).”
Those are the three things! I pray they provide you a succinct answer to the question: now what?
All in all, becoming a Christian is the best decision you will ever make. The second best decision is deciding to follow Christ in obedience no matter what. So, let the next steps of church attendance, baptism and spiritual disciples help you in that journey of following Him wherever He may lead.