A Contract with God
I am a firm believer in the importance of guest follow-up ministries. As I have oft said: 100% of your new converts come from your guests. But since few receive the Holy Ghost the first time they come, we must get them to return. An effective guest follow-up ministry can double your repeat visits.
If a guest cared enough to get cleaned up, dressed up, and drive several miles to visit us, we should care enough to do the same. Every guest should receive a letter from the pastor and a visit from a trained follow-up worker soon after coming. Always take a nice gift, thank them for coming, and invite them back (a flyer for a special service works well here). If you feel prompted, ask them about a home Bible study (“Have you ever heard of our home Bible study ministry? No? Let me tell you about it!”). You can also ask if they have any prayer requests (“We have a great prayer ministry. Do you have any special needs you would like us to pray about?”). This unannounced visit should be short and casual. Most importantly, be kind, polite, and invite them back.
Your guests should be visited 3-4 times a year. Put at least three months between each visit, but the second and third visits are even more important than the first. You see, this is your contract with God. You promise to knock on their door again and God promises to deal with their heart. Most people come to God in the midst of crisis. If God knows you are going to visit them again, He can easily arrange their life circumstances, so they need His help. So, prayer for your past guests is a must. How do we pray? That God will draw them to an altar by whatever means, even via a life crisis if necessary.
Some feel that knocking on the doors of guests is too aggressive. Yet we have no problem knocking on the doors of strangers. May God give us a healthy dose of holy boldness and a willingness to obey the Lord’s solemn command: “Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled.” (Lk. 14:23)