Church & Culture
Want To Reach Unchurched People? Don't Create A Sense Of Urgency, Offer An Alternative To It
Urgency doesn’t pull new people in, it reminds them why they’re staying away.
Those who don’t go to church won’t be attracted to us or to Jesus by creating a sense of urgency – whether real or imagined.

People have enough stress in their lives. They’ve had goods and services sold to them through a false sense of urgency so often that there’s a built-in distrust of it.

In western culture, the resistance to the church and the message of Jesus (not necessarily the same thing) is not primarily based on ignorance, anger or even stubbornness.

It’s apathy.

They’re not upset or worried, they just don’t care.

The uncommitted person isn’t waiting for a cue that “this is the weekend to get the deal of a lifetime at your local church!” They’re not thinking about it at all.

Not only is urgency not the antidote to apathy, it’s the enemy of importance. Of joy. Of community. And of curiosity.

Urgency doesn’t pull new people in, it reminds them of why they’re staying away.

A Place To Cast Your Cares

Churches that want to reach new people need to work against urgency, not foster it. To reduce people’s stress, not increase it.

Instead of pushing a sense of urgency, we need to foster a sense of wonder, of love, of beauty and of hope.

Don’t add to people’s burdens. Show them how Jesus came to ease their burdens. Create a church environment that is welcoming, engaging, joyous and calming.

Jesus didn’t say “Come to me, all who are hurried and excited, and I’ll give you the deal of a lifetime – but only for a limited time!”

He told us “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28)

Pivot is a part of CT's Blog Forum. Support the work of CT. Subscribe and get one year free.
The views of the blogger do not necessarily reflect those of Christianity Today.

December 08, 2017 at 2:00 AM

Join in the conversation about this post on Facebook.

Recent Posts

Read More from Karl

Follow Christianity Today

Free Newsletters