Over a year ago, I felt moved by the spirit to talk about youth and why some of them end up leaving God’s house to not set foot in it for a while or ever again. Quite a bit has happened since I shared that blog post. For over a year I have been an instructor for our church Pathfinder Club, in which I help minister to the youth about Christ. In prepping for those classes and taking my time getting my words out, I’ve learned more about Him myself. Also, since last month, myself and three other church members have brought back our church Adventist Program. Every Saturday an hour before sunset at the church we hold a service, which includes prayer; singing; activities, and devotions and thoughts. Everyone of all ages is invited to come out and close out the sabbath.
Over a year later since that blog post and my stance on keeping the youth in the church and bringing some back is still as strong as ever. Once again, here is that blog post.
“Question Why Do Young People Leave the Church” by David Harris
Originally posted on April 20, 2018
A couple of weeks ago my pastor preached a compelling sermon regarding people in their teens and 20s. Specifically why people in those age ranges, even brought up in a church household, end up leaving the church as they come of age. Why do so many young people leave the church? I can think of many reasons, but I’m just going to give a couple so I can give others a chance to give awesome feedback. It’s okay. The floor is open. Keep it civil though. I wish to hear your opinions.
Hippocrates I am very well aware that I am not the ideal Christian. I feel as though I still got more than enough things to improve upon. Luckily the church is like a hospital, a place for the sick. Never once will you catch me saying anything along the lines of “Im perfect” or “Once saved always saved”. Hearing anyone say these things bothers me. These same people who claim to be so holy are often the ones doing the same things they’re looking down on others for doing. So it’s okay for you because you’re supposedly saved and flawless?
Bullying and Embarrassing There is a way to confront a brother or sister about something that they probably should not be doing if you happen to notice them. If you feel compelled to do so, do it in private with the person(s). Not in front of the congregation during service. Not gathered in a circle before potluck. If you do this you run the risk of the person never showing their face in the church ever again. That’s one more lost soul, which you contributed to being lost. Kids and teenagers often face bullies in the schools. They don’t need to face any in God’s house.
Can’t Talk About Certain Topics Some people are so quick to jump on the person dealing with matters such as drugs; alcohol; sex; pregnancy before marriage; porn; or questioning their sexuality; etc; rather than try to understand what the person is going through. Why is that? What we need to understand is that we all have our trials and tribulations. As far as I know none of us are immune to giving into temptation or being tempted. Jesus Christ himself was tempted while he was tired and hungry in a harsh environment for 40 days and nights. Satan was practically talking trash to him. “If you are who you are, do this”, Satan said. I advise you to open you ears and open your eyes to the person in distress. Listen to them as a brother or sister in Christ, not as a person with a torch and pitchfork.
Long Lecture-Like Sermons My definition of such a sermon is a message presented that is longer than 30 minutes, by a person speaking in an uninterested tone of voice, and doesn’t care if the congregation is hungry or sleepy. They seem to like hearing themselves ramble and getting their point across. My second blog post was about how a sermon should be properly preached, according to what Ellen G. White said in her writing. Students especially, get enough lectures in the classroom by the teachers and professors. Come on now.
There is Nothing to Do As someone who has grown up in the church I have uttered these words before. Church often seems like it’s geared mostly for the adults. Give the youth something to do! Take them out on a nature walk to observe and appreciate God’s creations. Engage the youth in activities that are both fun and spiritually educational for them. Our parents had an arsenal of Christian games for sabbath hours that me and my siblings either loved or just appreciated for keeping us occupied. Have social events such as bowling, camping, game night, skating, cook offs, picnics, movie night, candlelight dinners, Thanksgiving dinners, and Christmas parties.
Why do you think young people leave the church?
To those who are just reading this for the first time, thank you for reading. To those read this over a year ago, thank you for glancing at this once again.
(HEADER IMAGE & GIF NOT OWNED BY ME)