If Not Now…When?

There’s no time like the present.  The difference between failure and success is action.  Do the thing, and you will have power.

IF NOT NOW…WHEN?

This message has been displayed on church’s billboard all week.  I suppose this is shorthand for, “If you’re not going to devote your life to God now, then when will you finally get around to it?”

It’s a platitude of passive aggressive evangelism.  Chalk it up there with “If you died today, where would you spend eternity?” or “Eternity: Smoking or Non-smoking?”

It makes sense because it plays to our natural desires of procrastination and avoidance.  We don’t want to rush into anything, so we avoid a decision altogether.  Rather than coming to a solid conclusion based on reason, emotion, and faith, we do nothing.

Does this actually work?

The problem that I see is that “if not now…when” hinges on a decision of indifference.  “Well, I guess I’ll give my life to God.  I don’t have anything better to do today.  I don’t want to go to hell, so I guess I’ll try to get into heaven.”

It reminds me of the Presidential election in 2004, where millions of voters said, “I voted for X because he’s not as bad as Y.”  They didn’t vote for the person they liked the most; they voted for the person they disliked the least.  A vote wasn’t a symbol of belief and support; it was a statement that recognized “You’re not as bad as the other guy.”

While it is important to challenge people to make decisions about their spiritual lives, I don’t think that a decision stemming from indifference is a solid launching pad.

What do you think?

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