Following Jesus will be a struggle. You will need the church for all it offers. If friends or co-workers offer an invite to their church take them up on it. Visit multiple churches to see what they offer. Above all, pray. God will put on your heart which church is best suited for you.
As a side note, it is through fellowship that we often grow the most. Meeting someone or a group at church who will walk with you as your accountability partner(s) can make all the difference in whether you succeed or fail in your walk with Christ. Why do you think Jesus sent his disciples out in pairs? “Then Jesus called the Twelve to Him and began to send them out two by two, giving them authority over unclean spirits. He instructed them to take nothing but a staff for the journey — no bread, no bag, no money in their belts — and to wear sandals, but not a second tunic.” (Mark 6:7-9 NIV)
To be baptized is to be as a reborn Christian. There is disagreement among faiths as to the need and purpose of baptism. In the not-too-distant past churches have baptized babies before they can speak or think a coherent thought. Some still do. Other congregations believe babies should only be presented to the church and when they’re old enough to profess their love for Jesus Christ and make a public declaration of their commitment. There are three methods of water baptism used in Christian churches today including complete submersion, pouring and sprinkling. (These are often referred to as immersion, aspersion and affusion, respectively.) But just because one church uses one method over another does not make it right. The Word is the final authority on this matter and if you’re confused about which is right, refer to the Word.
Keep in mind, however, that Religion is man's idea of who he thinks God is, what he thinks God wants and how he thinks God operates. It's what man would do if he were God. Religion is worshipping a God that makes sense and fits his ideas and ideals. It's man worshipping himself basically. It's telling God what He should think and expecting Him to go along with it. It's traditions of men. But man’s notions are worthless. It's like marrying a cardboard cutout of someone or watching a TV that's unplugged. As Christians we are charged to do only what God taught us to do and to follow the Scriptures He left us.
In those Scriptures we are told to be baptized. Jesus, himself, was baptized before he set out on His ministry and earned the approval of the Holy Father as told to us in Matthew 3:13-17. “At that time Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to be baptized by John. But John tried to prevent Him, saying, “I need to be baptized by You, and do You come to me?” “Let it be so now,” Jesus replied. “It is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness in this way.” Then John permitted Him. As soon as Jesus was baptized, He went up out of the water. Suddenly the heavens were opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and resting on Him. And a voice from heaven said, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased!”
Christians need to be baptized privately and publically. The private action comes in showing your commitment to Jesus and willingness to follow His command. Matthew 28:19-20 NIV tells us: “Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.”
Later we are told in Luke 14:15 “If you love me, you will obey what I command.”
Publically, we are declaring our love for Christ and showing others that Jesus washed away their sins. Baptism is a symbolic way of showing your death as Christ and your resurrection as a Christian.
Note, however, that baptism does not wash away your sins.If you don’t get baptized you are still saved. Jesus accomplished these things with the sacrifice of His life. Baptism is a symbolic ritual that the reborn or even repentant Christian should engage in.
In your childhood and adolescence, you often went to your parents for advice and counsel on many things -- we all do. Unfortunately, Christians often fail to return to their heavenly Father for His advice and counsel. They don’t make the time to spend with the Lord. You need to. Learning the Word is the only way to grow in Christ. Learning the Word is only possible if you read it.
We are told in Joshua 1:8 ESV “This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.” Perhaps the two most quoted verses that speak to this are Psalm 119:105 (ESV) which says “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” Also Matthew 4:4 (ESV) says, “But he answered, ‘It is written, “‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’””
More than 100 times we are told in the bible to seek the Lord and yet nearly Christian I meet talks as though reading the Bible is not something they can fit in their schedule. They behave as though attending church (occasionally or on major holidays) will have to suffice. God doesn’t cut deals. If He says read and study his word, that’s what we are to do.
Reading the Word is the most important daily responsibility a Christian can assume in his or her journey because you will come to know God. You will know Him, His expectations or will for you and His Word and the way He says things.
There was a difference in the way you knew your parents when you were young and as you grew up. As you departed the realm of immaturity, you began to see that your parents really did understand you and really did have your best interests at heart -- even if it didn’t seem like it when they wouldn’t let you go to that party when you were 15. You came to know how your parents thought and what the basis for their reasoning was. Romans 2:14–15 (NIV) explains that by knowing God, you come to understand how He wants you to handle a given situation even if there is not a specific answer to it.
People say that babies don’t come with a set of directions, but I have to disagree. That’s exactly what the Bible is. God already anticipated your birth and has written the one manuscript will would teach you everything you need to live and grow. 2 Timothy 3:16–17 (KJV) says the Word gives inspiration, doctrine, reproof, correction, instruction such “that the man [or woman] of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.”
Ultimately we want to present ourselves as Christians in a manner which is Christ-like. “... Sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear” 1 Peter 3:15 (KJV).
One lesson we all learned at some point was that things really worth acquiring were things we had to work for. Free samples and giveaways don’t mean much since we didn’t want them to begin with. Put a goal on our hearts and we strive for anything. We commit to it; we devote our lives, time and energy to it. A God who never breaks His promises has promised us eternal life. Isn’t that worth more than what the world wants to just give to you? Isn’t that worth the demands of being a Christian?