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Posted by on Jan 10, 2018 in Voices | 2 comments

Parents: Your kid’s college professor is not the reason they are walking away from their faith – You Are!

Parents: Your kid’s college professor is not the reason they are walking away from their faith – You Are!

You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates – Deut. 6:5-9.

We live in a “Christian parent culture” that, by process of elimination, is teaching by example. In and of itself, this is what we are called to do.

We are to lead our kids. We are to show them what it looks like to love Jesus. We are to show them what it looks like to love the church and to truly be committed to the body local of Christ.

But there is a problem. The stats are showing something different. More than 80 percent of students are walking away from the church by the time they are seniors in high school. And there are blogs, articles and books that attempt to address the “why,” but I think the biggest reason is that the parents are not truly living out Deut. 6:5.

We have adults who are professing to know and love Jesus, but they act as if they are atheists. Look at this command:

“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children…”

What are we to be teaching our children? Are we teaching them to pursue Jesus with everything, to make him the top shelf when it comes to our priorities?  Are we teaching them that being active in the church is important?

The sad thing that is happening is that the average church member only makes around two church services (meetings) a month. This includes Sundays and Wednesdays. Church attendance is not what saves us, but it is an outward barometer that measures what we view as priorities.

If you, as a member of any other social organization only made two meetings a month, it would be deduced that you really did not think that this group was that important. Out of all organizations on the planet, the church should be one of the most cherish and loved above all else. What we are doing in the church WILL matter in 10,000 years.

You need to ask yourself the question, “Does what your recreational sports team is doing going to really matter in eternity? Is it more important than the things that Jesus has called us to do?”

I know the regular arguments: “We can be salt and light if we are in these areas.”  And the answer to that is YES WE CAN BE!  But in all reality, 99.9 percent of the time we are NOT being salt and light.

We don’t want to rock the boat. We don’t want to truly engage on that level. So we remain quiet, or even worse, we dive headlong into the realms of the people who are present with us, and instead of showing the light of Jesus, we just become exactly like the other lost people. So in all reality that excuse is not truly valid.

It’s been my experience with people that if folks are replacing church with other activates, they are committing idolatry (i.e. they love this world and the things of this world more than JESUS). And just so you know, that ends badly for those people.

Our utmost commitment needs to be to Jesus Christ and the mission of Jesus, which is primarily executed in the local visible New Testament church. If you are devoting more of your time to any other organization or group, you are living un-biblically.

Matt Chandler said: “There is data out there that now shows that kids are not being secularized at college by some atheist teacher. Rather, they are being secularized at home, before they go to college by well-meaning Christian parents who can’t tease out the value balance between sports and activities and the gathering of people of God.”

So, in other words, a ball game or some other activity determines and dictates how your family views and operates around God and the church.

One of the major reasons atheism is growing in our church culture is because men (fathers in particular) in the last 60 years or so have placed high regards on everything and anything, (sports, money, jobs, hunting, fishing, video games, etc.) but the things of God (Bible study, Church membership, being active in that biblical community, and prayer) have mostly been ignored.

Because of this, it has had a trickle-down effect on children, so we are seeing children now not just ignoring the things of God, but rather becoming hostile to the things of God. So the bottom line is parents are choosing to show their children that investing in a ball and a gun is vastly more important than investing in the eternal things of God.

It’s time to change things! MEN (Fathers) WAKE UP! Take an active role in your child’s spiritual formation. How can we do that?

  1. Make sure you are committed to a local Bible-believing church. What does that look like? You and your family are actually committed and active in that community, and not just on Sundays but throughout the week.  Have other believers and church members in your home on a regular basis, and show your children what a healthy loving church community looks like.
  2. Make time to have regular family prayer and Bible study together. This means taking time to get on your knees and pray with your wife and children. Open your BIBLE inside of your home, and encourage and lead your family to do the same!
  3. Be committed to living the Gospel out in your city.  This means, actually do something. Lead and encourage your children to do mission projects that actually will have an impact, and commit to helping lead others to Jesus Christ!

What are we to be teaching our children? To make Jesus our EVERYTHING…and we should be chasing Him more than we chase anything else!  Or are we teaching them that Jesus is just an add-on?  What you’re doing right now with your children matters!

This verse sums it up: “But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you” (Matt. 6:33).

 

About The Author

Caleb Gordon
Caleb Gordon http://calebgordon.com/

Caleb Gordon is a Communicator and Life Coach in Bartlesville, Oklahoma.

Caleb Gordon has blogged 76 posts at wordslingersok.com

  • Betty Tracy

    There is one more thing: choose to actually teach your kids about God in every subject every waking moment (like the scripture says.) You can’t put your child under a God-free authority for 30 hours a week and be surprised with they choose to be free of God’s authority in their adulthood. “We can not continue to send our children to Rome for their education and be surprised when they come home Romans.” – Bro Voddie Bauchamn

    85% of churched Christian kids who are government schooled leave the church within a year of leaving home.
    85% of churched christian kids who are homeschooled stay in church when they leave home, and beyond.

    When we choose to give our authority to teach our children to those who are not following God we teach our children to compartmentalize and that it is far more important to follow the world than to sacrifice for God.

    “He who is not with Me is against Me; and he who does not gather with Me, scatters.” Luke 11:23.

    Government schools sure aren’t gathering for God. Jesus says they are then scattering God’s kingdom. The statistics agree.

  • Clayton N Christie Carlisle

    This article is spot on! And so is Betty’s discussion about the article.
    We as men must lead our families in prayer and in Bible study. We have to step up and obey God’s commands. We cannot shrink back from our God commanded responsibilities and then blame our pastors when our kids jump ship.

    Nowhere in the Word of God is it stated that the preacher, children’s minister or the youth minister is responsible for my children. In fact I’d cannot even find the office of youth pastor or children’s pastor anywhere in the Bible! It’s my privilege and responsibility.

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