THE MINISTRY OF ASSIMILATION
PASTOR MIKE SCHMALZ
Great strides have been made in the church to encourage new converts and to keep them in the church. Reaching out to the lost is only half of the Great Commission. The second part is to make disciples of those we have reached.
The ministry of assimilation is the work of every born-again child of God. Together, we must help the new convert “fit into” the church.
Absorbing new people into the family of God. Taking a spectator and making them a participator in the work of God.
I. FOUR IMPORTANT TRUTHS TO CONSIDER IN ASSIMILATION:
First – New converts will not be automatically assimilated into the church.
Every saint is responsible to help new people find their place in the church.
Second – New converts come to church expecting to be accepted and to “fit in”.
Be sensitive to their needs.
Third – Successful assimilation often begins before the person gets saved.
Friendships established with people of the church prior to salvation starts a special bond for the new person.
Often, we are being “TESTED” by our friends and associates in the world to see if our Christian philosophy and lifestyle agree. They have been disappointed by so many people that they want to make sure we are REAL!
Fourth – Assimilation of new people must be a high priority of the church.
There is no joy if the number of people coming in the “front door” is matched by the number exiting out the “back door”!
There must be an atmosphere in the church of love and concern.
“Too many are saved, sanctified, and galvanized” Chuck Swindoll
II. THE BIBLE EXAMPLE OF AN ASSMIMILATOR:
A Barnabas – son of consolation.
Consolation means comfort, encourage, to build up, to console.
B. Barnabas worked with people who were not accepted or outsiders to the church.
1. Saul (because of Barnabas) was helped to be turned into the Apostle Paul.
Acts 9:26-27, 11:22-26
2. Mark (because of Barnabas) became profitable for the ministry.
Acts 15:3640, 11 Timothy 4:11
“We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves.
Let every one of us please his neighbor for his good to edification.
Wherefore receive ye one another, as Christ also received us to the glory of God.
III THE PROCESS OF ASSIMILATION
Combine personal and mass evangelistic efforts for maximizing outreach effectiveness.
Ways of evangelism:
1 Home Bible Studies
2. Bible Surveys
4. Bus Ministry
5. Letter Ministry
They are a guest at a church service or special event.
Help your visitors feel welcome.
1. Ushers and greeters ready to help them.
2. Provide the guest with a visitor packet.
3. Make your service “seeker-friendly”.
4. Teach your saints to be warm and friendly.
5. Help the guest feel comfortable.
6. Thank them for coming as they leave.
Three-fold follow up program:
1. Phone call within 24 hours.
2. Pastoral letter within 3 days.
3. Home visit within one week.
Things to remember in a home visit:
1. Be friendly and sensitive.
2. The main purpose of your home visit is to set up a Home Bible Study.
3. If they have any special needs – pray for them.
4. Never talk negatively or become defensive.
Fourth – Salvation
After New Testament salvation takes place, follow up with “first night counseling.”
Research shows that most new Christians that backslide do so soon after conversion. First night counseling simply means that you sit down with the new convert the same night they receive the Holy Ghost or are baptized (whichever comes first) and spend about 15 minutes with them covering four basic principles from God’s Word.
1. Your new life in Christ.
2. The need for faithfulness in three areas – prayer, reading the Bible, and church attendance.
3. The devil’s attack.
4. We care – call anytime, we want to help.
Fifth – Establishing
Providing for the survival, growth, and church involvement of the new convert.
Get each new convert in a new life class. Some excellent new convert courses are:
1. My Father’s House – Level 1 and 2
2. Called, Chosen, and Faithful
3. From An Acorn To An Oak
Encourage involvement in all church social activities.
Care Partner – a strong saint to watch over the new convert much like a mother over a new baby.
Responsibilities of the care partner:
2. Prayer Support
3. Cards/visits/sit by them in church
5. Provide minor counseling
Sixth – Equipping
Training the new believer to be involved in church ministries.
Use both classroom teaching and on the job training.
Use a “gift test” to find the special talents and burdens of each new believer.
“Involvement is critical for proper spiritual growth. A church must define roles, place converts, train and supervise them to insure personal fulfillment. The wise pastor will see himself as a ‘spiritual employment counselor’ to help each new Christian define what their ministry is.” Jack DeHart
Seventh – Multiplication
Involve them in outreach ministries to help reach their family and friends. (Teach new believers that we are saved to serve.)
Involve them in assimilating new people into the church. (The new believer is not truly assimilated into the church until they are helping others to “fit in”.)
THE MINISTRY OF ASSIMILATION IS WORK- It’s hard but not impossible. Start small with a vision of what you want to see in your church. As others catch your vision they will want to be involved.
THE ABOVE MATERIAL WAS PUBLISHED BY PASTOR MIKE SCHMALZ.
THIS MATERIAL IS COPYRIGHTED AND MAY BE USED FOR STUDY & RESEARCH PURPOSES ONLY.