Follow Up to Big Church Event is Just the Beginning

You had a great Easter service. The church was packed. People committed to following Jesus, and others who were already saved indicated an interest in returning.

Great. So now what?

Follow up to a big event is frequently the most difficult portion of the event. Church members are gung ho about planning and executing the event, but the event itself often becomes the end game. In reality, for a church to grow and increase its ministry in the community, the follow up becomes the beginning.

Follow up assumes that you had a way to obtain information from the visitors. Surprisingly, this is something churches forget to do, especially if it is a non-worship service church event.

Make a follow-up plan. Ideally, this will have been in place prior to the event. Process and evaluate the visitor information quickly. How you proceed will often depend on the number of and quality of the responses.

Respond quickly to conversions. If a person indicated that they gave their life to Christ, make plans to meet with them as early as possible, within the week. Decide who will make the visits, whether the pastor handles them all or a team of leaders divides them up. Repeat the plan of salvation to make sure they understand what they’re committing to. Make clear that committing their life to Christ does not automatically mean they are committing to your church.

Send additional information. This can be through email, if they indicated they are agreeable to receiving emails, or through the post office. With snail mail, you can include a brochure, information about service times (especially if the Easter service was at a special time) and ways they can begin to get involved in the church. Make sure to include contact information if they have questions, concerns or prayer requests.

Home visitation. This should be a set appointment time, not an unannounced visit and should happen within the first two weeks. Depending on the number of responses, you may need a visitation team to meet with the visitor, although many people prefer a visit from the pastor. Keep the visitation to 30 minutes or less and use it as an informational time – both to give information and to receive information. Spend time listening. Don’t ask for any commitments to the church, simply show that you care. Take prayer requests and pray for them before you leave.

Follow-up again. A few days after a home visit, send a postcard (or email if they’ve agreed to that) thanking them for their time, reminding them what you’re praying for them and contact information for further questions. If the visitor seemed agreeable to another meeting, especially if they were undecided about making a commitment to follow Christ, seek another home visit.

Welcome them back. When the visitorsreturn to church, make sure to greet them warmly. Ideally, you can call them by their names.  This creates a sense of family and increases the desire to commit to the church.

How You Can Make a Difference in 2017

Then Jesus came near and said to them, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,  teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age. – Matt. 28:18-20

Do you want to make a difference in 2017? The key to making a difference in our churches, according to Verge Network, is to make disciples. That, after all, is the key action point in Jesus’ Great Commission.

Below are eight reasons why discipleship is the key to making a difference in the world, taken from the video, “The 8 Keys to Making a Difference This Year” by Verge Network.
Eight Christian leaders were featured in the video. A few of their quotes are listed with each point.

1. Disciple making is the key to the transformation of the world. “In discipling people, they will develop the transformation of individuals, communities, neighborhoods, cities and nations.” – Michael Frost, missiologist

2. Disciple making is what it means to follow Jesus. “He didn’t say make them Christian. I think they should be like Christ after they learn about Christ. Then they can behave like Christ. That’s where I think we’ve sort of got it backwards.” – Dr. John Perkins

3. Disciple making is strategic and central to making a difference. “Evangelism isn’t sharing certain facts about Jesus as if we’ve got no obligation before and afterwards. Evangelism takes place in the context of a relationship called discipleship.” – Alan Hirsch, Forge Mission Training Network

4. Disciple making was Jesus’ priority. “We see the way He did things was He gathered a random group of people and He poured his life into them. When you make disciples you get a missional movement. When you make disciples the way He made disciples, the world is changed.” – Jo Saxton, 3DM Frontier Leader

5. Not making disciples is a serious offense to Jesus. “Jesus rises from the dead and commands us to do it. That’s a pretty big deal. And it’s a pretty big deal if we ignore that type of command.” – Francis Chan

6. Disciple making is what Jesus told us to do. “If you’re not making disciples, I’d go so far as to say that you’re not a church, because the church’s primary role is to make disciples of Jesus Christ.” – Leonce Crump, pastor, Renovation Church, Atlanta

7. Disciple making should be the principle task of our lives. “The Great Commission is defined by discipleship. That was His last word. He saved his most important statement for His last word, so obviously it has to be the principle task our lives.” – Mike Breen

8. Disciple making is how God will cover the earth with his glory. “The only way we’re ever going to see the glory of God cover all the earth is when there are people living for the glory of God in all of life. And that’s really what a disciple is.” – Jeff VanderStelt, apostolic movement leader of Soma