If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. 2 Cor 5:17
Investing in God’s people from life to life
These pages are designed to aid study or investigation for Christian discipleship through individual Bible study, Cell groups, Home groups, or meeting one to one. The questions could be used alone allowing each person to use their own Bible.
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New faith is a time of wonder. Suddenly a person’s world has been turned upside down, there is a whole new way of looking at things and understanding them. It is a great privilege to be with someone as they start this journey.
In meeting with a new believer it is good to nurture this sense of wonder, and the romance stage of meeting with God.
There will come a time when this romance gives way to frustration and a desire for growth. It is at that stage that they will need to move on from this enthusing stage to being established in the more disciplined aspects of faith needed for real growth.
Helping a young believer at this stage of spiritual life is like looking after an infant. It is often called spiritual paediatrics. Here are some suggestions.
This page only covers the practicalities. For the Bible’s principles of this ministry see Principles of Ministry.
A young believer often has little idea about what the Christian life is all about. There are many discoveries ahead. Our role in this romance stage is
The aim we have in meeting up with a Christian at this stage of development is to provide a secure environment where they can make discoveries. The disciplines and rigour will come with time. Now is the time of adventure and thrill at who God is. The overwhelming need from us is love and acceptance.
Any new life needs a new source of nourishment. This clearly comes through prayer and the word. An early start point must be to show them how to meet with God in a Quiet time.
Those who are new to faith inevitably make many mistakes. These can be out of ignorance, but also from untamed drives and fears. The challenge for you is to be with them and accept them no matter what. You must be a safe person to be with. At this stage one would not expect to deal strongly with these issues. One has to work out what a young believer can take by introducing things at a pace they can handle. Remember that once lost, trust is very hard to regain. The better the character of the person, the more they can take and this kind of commitment can be a major advance in their trust in God. Our greatest help is the work of God by His Spirit. He shows us the way, and can lead us into the issues that need to be acted on.
The new life can come with a massive gap in knowledge. Even if there is knowledge, often the knowledge is theoretical rather than practical. This leads to the need for some content. This link takes you to the content specifically for Beginnings of faith. This link takes you to a shortened lesson plan following on from ‘Beginnings’.
It is best to go lightly on the content at this stage. It is best to balance the time with focusing on the young believers discoveries with the significant truths that they are not even aware of.
Something that makes immeasurably more sense than words is seeing things in action. This works both ways. It is vital to see the young believer in their natural context, ideally their home. Seeing them in their natural context stops them from putting on airs. You see their relationships as they really are. Seeing the state of someone’s room can be quite an eye opener. In their context you are able to note issues that might need addressing at a later stage. The other side is for them to see your life. You invite them into your world, share your devotions and spiritual insights with them. It is invaluable to receive a real example.
ENTHUSE NEW FAITH