This week’s news plus an analysis of why so many millennials are rejecting “religion”
IT’S NEWS TO ME
3 Things You Need to Know About Marine Le Pen (MUST READ)
SETTING OUR MINDS ON THINGS ABOVE
I Will Build My Church
The lead article today about college-aged millennials reveals some serious weaknesses in the church of America. It suggests that an entire block of young people is rejecting what the church has to offer. Obviously, many reasons can be cited, some of which are mentioned in the article.
One of the most obvious is that those who attend college are likely to be bombarded with far-left political and religious “teaching.” Only those followers of Christ who have a solid faith and have been well-trained to defend their faith will survive. Those with no religious background will likely consider Christianity only through the efforts of fellow students or groups like Cru. Too often, those with no positive Christian background will join the crowd and reject what they see as some kook trying to force religion down their throats.
This brings us to the real problem which is the failure of the church to fulfill its primary mission-making disciples. Instead of going into all the world, the typical American church has adopted the Islamic model instead of the Christian model. It invites people to come to it to hear life-changing messages that will change their lives. Just prior to Easter, when most churches see the greatest attendance, they target neighborhoods for distribution of colorful invitations to their Easter services.
There is nothing inherently wrong with this, but why would they expect a neighborhood to respond positively if that church has never been involved with its people? If a church had an active positive presence in a neighborhood offering mentoring, tutoring, or help for those needing it, they would have earned the right to ask them to check out their church. Too many churches are unwilling to do the hard and sacrificial work Christ calls us to do. They have become so ingrown that their primary ministries are to their own members.
They plan their calendar according to what they want to do and their budgets based on what they think they can afford. God’s desires for their church are seldom, if ever considered. They are so busy doing things “for God” and hoping God will bless their efforts that they fail to look to see were God is already at work so they can join Him. When things don’t work out, they double their efforts, getting the same results.
Undaunted, they continue doing things the same way they have always done them, refusing to allow God to set the agenda, and, therefore never attempting something God-sized, something only God could do. When new folks do show up at their church, they try to fit them into pre-determined slots for service instead of considering what God’s assignment for their church may be by investigating the gifts and talents of the people God has sent them. Consequently, each year is another version of the previous year.
This brings us back to where we started, the decline in religious affiliation for college-aged millennials. The general approach of many churches has been to modify their church décor, music, and message to appeal to the population segment they are trying to reach. It’s an evolving seeker-sensitive mentality that has determined that “spiritual advertising” will lure them in.
Some churches have been very successful in increasing their numbers this way, but I believe that if they are using the best tactics man can devise, they will end up a mile wide and an inch deep, just as Willow Creek experienced about ten years ago. The emphasis was on the size of the congregation instead of the depth of a heart-felt love for God which would express itself in genuine acts of compassion as the members WENT to where the hurting people were and acted on Jesus’ command to GO and make disciples.
Considering where the church has placed its emphasis, it’s easy to see why entire population segments have turned their backs on what they believe Christianity to be. Jesus said He would build His Church into an unbeatable body of warriors. He is looking for those who are ready and willing to take His commands seriously and become His ambassadors doing His work His way. Are you ready to enlist?
Check out my YouTube channel to get my biblical analysis of current events and my suggestions for surviving and thriving while the world falls apart. Click the link or enter edrodgersauthor in the YouTube search box.
ON THE LIGHTER SIDE
Dijon vu: The same mustard as before
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