| Re: Young Adults "Leaving the Faith"|
When I read the title to your post, I had the same reaction. Being bodily present in a church building in no way makes you part of the church, nor does it mean that you have or are in any kind of "faith" at all. And increased youth programs are not the solution.
Statistically, we found four factors that were the most predictive in determining which teenagers stayed in church:
• I wanted the church to help guide my decisions in everyday life (prior to 18).
• My parents were still married to each other and both attended church (prior to 18).
• The pastor's sermons were relevant to my life (prior to 18).
• At least one adult from church made a significant investment in me personally and spiritually (between 15 and 18).
I think these findings are very telling. Our children and youth need to be an integral part of the body of Christ from their youth. We must train them and bring them up IN the way they should go. I do not believe this means good youth programs. I am not against the church doing things for the youth. As an adult, I love to have times of fun and fellowship with the other adults in my church. We are having a bonfire and sandwiches tomorrow evening just for the sake of fun and fellowship. It is important. But we have institutionalized this thing and packaged it for mass marketing..."Look at our fun and exciting youth program". It will not work, Our youth need the truth. They need examples. They need to know that they are an integral part of the body of Christ. This means that there is no such thing as a "junior" Holy Spirit. The same Holy Spirit that moves upon an adult to prophesy will move upon our youth to do the same. Recall Phillip's four virgin daughters. They were youth. They ministered to Paul. Wow! We sell our youth so short. The message is that they are not mature enough for the real body yet, so we will give them fun and games until they grow up. It will not work. Some may disagree, but we have sold our youth so short in this deal.
The other interesting thing to note is that parents example was a HUGE factor. The best thing you can do for your children is to develop a strong marriage where husband and wife seek God together and visibly grow and mature as an example to their children. Children follow examples.
| 2015/9/11 9:56||Profile|
| Re: |
Programs have been created to replace Mom and Dad in secular society on every level. And sadly, the Church has followed suit. Mom and Dad don't have to be involved anymore, in their children's lives. They can concentrate on making money and providing housing and food, now.
Moms and Dads don't have to bring up their children in the way they should go, because they have given that job to the religious organization they belong to.
They don't have to educate them, either. They have given that job to the government. K-12. The government will soon provide "Community Schools". http://www.thenewamerican.com/culture/education/item/21395-obamas-community-schools-aim-to-replace-parents)
They don't have to go camping with them and explore God's creation because the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts take that burden off of their back.
Parents don't have to read to their children, they have given that job to the IPAD or other computer device. (I see so many young children today with an IPad, babysitting them).
Parents are busy making money and need a break from their children. Here is a robot for that: http://www.wsj.com/video/bye-daddy-hi-atti-a-robot-to-replace-parents/ED500FC2-C016-4FB1-97C5-105B7E47BD95.html
The robot is the child's new friend!
The Federal Education department is going to replace the word "Mother" and "Father" on financial aid forms with a neutral term, now. Hi Parent1, hello Parent2.
And if you think your parents are "bad" parents you can sue them and eventually, even repalce them. Why not? Parents have wittingly or unwittingly been replacing themselves through the years. Why not let the child just replace them altogether?
Ahhh, isn't raising kids and being a parent so easy, now?
When parents get old, their children won't care for them. They have been taught over their lifetime about "replacement methodology" and will give that job to a nursing home. Who knows, maybe the parents will even have their own robot, someday. They will see how it feels.
No one, can replace parents! Parents! Stop replacing yourselves and allowing others to do the same. Time to get with the Lord and find out what being a mother and father is all about. It is certainly not for the "faint of heart".
| 2015/9/11 13:02|
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The Church is void of the power and presence of God. Kids come in and are basically taught about a magic God. They hear the stories and read from the Christian wishbook but zero is real. They left what they see as nothing.
My kids saw and felt a real God that does real things in their life when I prayed for them. I limited my childrens contact with dead assemblies that God never moved in, full of believers that played make believe that He was actually there.
For me this all comes back to my conversion experience. I met the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Not some fictional imaginary sky God.
So while it is vital to have parents that walk in the presence of God. If young people actually experienced the presence of God in churches things would be different.
| 2015/9/11 16:09|
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'I limited my childrens' contact with dead assemblies that God never moved in, full of believers that played make believe that He was actually there'
That is priceless!
I was blessed with a godly group of folks up North but here....well, its more like a wasteland.
| 2015/9/12 7:30||Profile|
| Re: |
Limiting my children's contact with dead assemblies ( gatherings )was vital to me. In my conversations with older believers from many denominations the unreality of Gods actual presence was apparent.
I clearly knew that it had played a role in their children not wanting anything to do with church once the decision was theirs. The NA Church long ago confused gathering with assembling. A gathering is a group of disconnected people with little vision and less purpose getting together for the purpose of recovering something from an external source.
Assembling is parts coming together to fill a role and play a part. This comes from the heart of the Lord for the building up of the body by the release of the suppply within each part ( believer ).
Gatherings produce a social structure on a fleshly, carnel level and are good for advice about where to go on vacation and how the kids are doing in school. Assemblies are habitations that the presence of the Lord inhabits. In the wilderness the tabernacle would be disassembled moved and reassembled as the habitation for the presence of the Lord. It was the type in boards and furniture of what we are today as living stones. Or rather what we are supposed to be.
| 2015/9/12 10:00|
| Re: Young Adults "Leaving the Faith"|
I did not read all the replies, so pardon me if it was already mentioned...
Back in 1993 Willian D. Hendricks wrote a book, "Exit Interviews" that deals with this issue. As the title suggests, he interviewed people who left the church, what they didn't do and what should have been done instead. Very insightful. I suppose it could echo some sentiments expressed here.
It is a worthwhile read. Simple, to the point and easily understood without a lot of gobbledlygook.
| 2015/9/12 10:08||Profile|
| Re: |
A testimony: mine.
I am 68 YO, brought up in a home with a mom and dad who had an intact marriage until dad died 8 years ago. I went to a parachial school that taught Bible seriously, and deeply. We had VBS, Sunday School, wonderful evangelists would grace our community...had a remarkable revival stir in our community in the early 1950s. We had wonderful Bible Schools, youth groups that would gather frequently for inspirational meetings. We were taught the dangers of fornication and for the most part youth followed these teachings. We had it good. Wonderful. But so many apostasized - later, some after they assumed leadership roles in the church and others before.
I asked a couple church conference leaders - who were visiting in our church - why did this happen? They knew the generation I was speaking about, they worked with them in their younger years. No answer, all were silent. Then one asked me a question, "why didn't you?" I was stunned for a moment. I did not know, but then answered with the only reason known to me then and still today, "the hand of God must have been on me."
One can easily point to outside influences like literature, listening to Bible teachers from a different persuasion then ours - "If they are Christians but do not do this or that, why do I have to?" And so they followed man, giving him more credibility then the WORD. But is this the only reason?
Sometimes I think the early Anabaptists were onto something when they did not want their people to be listening to sermons by the Reformed teachers or read their writings.
Still, I read others' works and what did it do to me? At this point in time I read less and less the works of contemporary writers. I find the WORD so alive, so inspiring filling me with delight and joy - something missing in theological works - that I find most inspirational books boring.
I am not suggesting my answer in all-inclusive but this is what happened to my generation. Sad. And I do not think things have changed any since then because the devil uses the same tactics to draw people away now as he did since the fall in the Garden.
My testimony and opinion.
| 2015/9/12 19:36||Profile|
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Funny thing happened today while waiting in the SUV for pizza. My son went in to order and came back to the car and asked me to tell him my conversion experience again. He is 15 and has heard it many times.
He said to me tell me exactly what you saw and every single aspect, he wanted to know every colour, every event, And he wanted to know all about heaven and what it will be like and how Jesus had payed the price for us.
When we pulled out of the pizza place the sky ahead of us was filled with the thickest brightes rainbow i have ever seen and the Lord had a specific word for him the I shared as we drove home. I don't mean a general word that applies to everyone I mean a specific word directly too him that pierced his heart all the while with this massive rainbow in a sky that had not rained a drop all day.
| 2015/9/13 8:35|
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The world is so different now from what I knew in my younger days. People have profoundly lost the 'fear of the Lord'. Violence, greed, and evil have exponentially escalated. Christians have to face a grim daily battle against spiritual corruption and deceit.
It causes such a heavy heart, I pray that the Lord protect and strenghten me to survive this evil generation. My family, friends, and children I pray for them.
| 2015/9/13 10:20||Profile|