Guest Post by Kelly Stickel from kellystickel.com
Every single Sunday I provide an opportunity for people to give their hearts to Jesus. Yes, every Sunday! Regardless of the topic I speak on or the type of service we have planned, a salvation call is an automatic part of our service. Why?
There are a couple of reasons to do a salvation call every Sunday:
- You have not because you ask not.
Do you wish your church could see people saved on a regular basis? James, the brother of Jesus said in James 4, “you have not because you ask not.” This statement is especially true when it comes to leading people to Jesus. If you do not ask people to make a decision to accept Christ, they won’t. Many people are looking for God and they are visiting our churches to find Him. They simply have no idea what to say or to do in order to connect with God, so we must provide an opportunity for them to do what their soul craves. In the past, I have made the wrong assumption that people will only come to Jesus after I’ve done a thorough job of explaining salvation to them in a full sermon dedicated at making the Gospel clear. The problem is, hurting people who are searching for Jesus often don’t know when you are preaching that sermon and will show up in their time of need, at their convenience, not according to your planned schedule. So I decided, I would not let one opportunity pass and would set aside time in every service to provide the opportunity for people to come to Jesus. And the results have been staggering. We might have 1 or 2 services a year that someone doesn’t make a decision to give their hearts to Christ. I can teach on anything – money, marriage, sex, Leviticus – and hands will go up for salvation at the end of the service. It amazes me and our team every single time!
- It creates expectation in your people.
I often hear from our regular attenders that their favorite part of the service is hearing me say, “thank you, thank you, thank you…” as I thank the people for letting me know they’ve accepted Christ by raising their hands. We never tire of seeing people come to Christ and it builds an excitement and anticipation in the church. It also encourages our people to invite their not-yet-saved family, friends, and co-workers to church because they know and anticipate that this Sunday there will be an opportunity given for those they invited to accept Christ.
What does our Salvation Call look like?
I’m often asked how we do our ask. Here’s a brief explanation:
- Explain what salvation is.
I often quote Romans 10:9-10 which says, “that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; 10 for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.” Salvation, therefore, is confessing with your mouth the deity of Christ and if you believe what you say in your heart, you can have a relationship with God and be saved.
- I ask the entire congregation to repeat after me a simple prayer of salvation.
This prayer is virtually the same every single Sunday. I do this for one main reason. If our people hear a prayer repeated Sunday after Sunday they will have that prayer memorized in short order. Once the prayer is memorized they will have more confidence to lead someone else through the same prayer when they have the opportunity to.
- I ask everyone to keep their heads bowed and their eyes closed and then ask those who prayed this prayer for the first time to raise their hands.
I do it this way because I don’t want a brand new believer to feel embarrassed, ashamed, or too intimidated to make the decision for Christ because they are in a room full of strangers. This relationship is between them and God, not between them and 500 other strangers.
- I ask those who have made the decision for Christ to see me right after the service so that I can give them a New Believer’s Bible.
The New Believer’s Bible is a great resource for people unfamiliar with the Word of God. By giving them a Bible, I am equipped them to begin pursuing God on their own and to feed their spiritual hunger with a Bible they can personally own.
Click on this link for a video example of me leading the salvation prayer: