Living In The Tension: Decision vs. Process

When you do church for people who don’t like church, joining Jesus on His mission of helping people who are far from God get close to Him, there are all kinds of tensions you live in and have to embrace.

There are some churches who are always pushing people to make decisions. They offer invitations at every service, every event, and sometimes do altar calls in the men’s bathroom. And I understand that. We desperately want people to experience the love of God, and the full life of following Jesus. (Though, honestly, for some of these churches there may be some wrong motives, such as an obsession with numbers, driving them to get people to make decisions.)

There are other churches that don’t push decisions and apply very little pressure. And I understand that as well. Perhaps they don’t want anyone to make a premature decision, or one based purely on emotion. They probably understand that for most people coming to Christ is a long process, and this person may not be at the point of decision yet. (Or, honestly, it could be that they lack passion for God or for people, and feel no sense of urgency to connect people with God.)

So what’s the right approach? Well, both. If we don’t respect the process, we’re ignoring reality and can hurt what God’s trying to do in this person’s life. And if we don’t (respectfully) push for decisions, people may never make the decisions they need to make. Living in this tension is an art form, and it’s one churches need to master.