I am hearing that young people are leaving the church in large numbers. Google this one, and many have an opinion on why they are leaving. I have my opinions of why “the ship is sinking” too. Parents and pastors are very aware that we need youth revival and we need it now. How we are going to spark youth revival is a good question.
Why are the youth leaving church and God?
Polling expert George Barna gives us his six latest reasons.
Reason #1 – Churches seem overprotective.
Reason #2 – Teens’ and twenty-somethings’ experience of Christianity is shallow.
Reason #3 – Churches come across as antagonistic to sci-ence.
Reason #4 – Young Christians’ church experiences related to sexuality are often simplistic, judgmental.
Reason #5 – They wrestle with the exclusive nature of Christianity.
Reason #6 – The church feels unfriendly to those who doubt.
I have been a pastor and church planter for thirty years. There are more reason I have heard beyond those mentioned by Barna.
Reason #7 – Colleges expose young people to secular ideas.
Reason #8 – Too busy working Sunday jobs.
Reason #9 – Parents are hypocritical.
Reason #10 – Christian pastors and programs are irrelevant.
Reason #11 – Christianity is no fun.
Reason #12 – Christianity is too controlling.
Many church leaders have come up with plans. I have tried many approaches too. Here are the common solutions I have either seen or tried myself.
Solution #1 – More youth programs. More youth leaders less parent involvement.
Solution #2 – Forget youth programs. More parent involvement and control. Home school.
Solution #3 – Christian education and colleges.
Solution #4 – Mission Projects. Send them to Calcutta or Haiti and help them get gratitude.
Solution #5 – More rigorous home discipleship. Memorize more Bible passages.
#Solution #6 – Liberalize the Christian message to make it accommodating to youth values. One pastor encouraged me to proclaim the gospel of the liberal God to young people who are leaving Biblical truth. I do not agree with this pastor. The God of the Bible is how is he is revealed to be.
Solution #7 – Don’t worry about it. They will be back.
Looking for reasons and the discovering of solutions makes for valuable discussion as church leaders seek to do everything possible to pass the faith on to the next generation. Many of the causes and the solutions will be controversial as we struggle with why many of our children have left the faith. So we pray that God brings the youth revival.
I am committing to do three things to help right now. I am going to pray more for youth revival and I am going to proclaim the gospel more to bring the best kind of youth revival. And I am going to seek to train every young person who wants ministry training.
I am praying for youth revival
Lord, please bring a youth revival on our earth. Bring a youth revival in America, Europe and Australia, where young people are the vibrant leaders of Christianity and bring God’s salvation to jaded and affluent counries. Inspire a youth revival in Africa, where they young people there rise up propelled by the gospel to build a continent of hope. Lord God, please inspire youth revival in Asia, in places like India and Pakistan where vibrant Christianity will be attractive to hopeless wanderers. Help the youth leaders of the world be identified and mobilized.
I am proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ for Youth Revival
Jesus is the bringer of youth revival and hope. Two weeks ago I proclaimed the gospel to Erin, a friend of my daughter, Ann.
I am noticing that others are doing the same. I am finding people like Brett Davis who are being invited to hear the gospel by young people who have a youth revival in their hearts already. His story helps me realize that God will bring youth revival. When I hear his story, I see that the young people are having an effective stage by which to proclaim Christ to their friends and family.
Brett tells his story about an “amazing girl” who dared to introduce him to Christ. He writes,
From an early age I was told about Christianity but never went to church or was really taught the bible. I fell into idol worship and was a pagan. When I was 17, I went to a technical school for computers and met an amazing girl named Danielle. She told me, “You could come to church if you wanted to, but you do not have to.” I started to go “for her”… to flirt of course, but slowly I stopped flirting and started getting distracted by what the pastor was saying, and soon I was hooked! I became born again.
I am inviting young Christian leaders to receive free ministry training for youth revival and more!
When young Christian leaders are “born again”, when the Spirit of God activates young hearts to action and calling, I want to do everything I can to deepen those passions. Brett shares his passion “to spread the gospel to everyone, for some, many just seem so dead. I want them to get excited about God, to just go crazy for him because he provides everything.”
“God has been calling me to be a youth leader I want to start a revolution of praise for God in the world of youth. I want God to work through me.” Brett is called to bring youth revival and he is putting himself out there.
Brett has received a scholarship from Christian Leaders Institute. He says, “I can learn what I never could early in life and after my training I can go help more people and be confident I am telling them the truth from the Bible.”
Brett and others are forming an army of youth revival leaders at Christian Leaders Institute. Read about Stacie from New York who is bringing revival there.
I feel strongly that the youth revival will come from a variety of solutions, but to me, it will come best from the youth themselves. These youth revival leaders are being saved and trained and mobilized to reach their generation for Christ.