There was an article circulating on the internet a few weeks ago. It was a survey that proposed to explain why some children who grow up attending church continue to do so when they become adults while others do not. The article didn’t cite any specifics to document their research, but I thought their conclusion was worthy of discussion.
There are three main things that separate children who will continue attending church as adults from those children who will drop out as soon as they can.
1. As children, they had a real conversion experience. At some point, while still considered a child, these young ones made a spiritual connection with the God they came to church to worship. Some call it repentance, some say accepting Christ, but regardless of how it is labeled, the kids who stay make a spiritual connection to God early on.
2. They are engaged in a systematic study of the Bible. They regularly attended classes at church that teach them the word of God. They don’t just hear the same stories repeated over and over, but they are taught an overview of the whole Bible, and are shown how it relates to their present world.
3. Finally, the children who will stay in church as adults live in homes where what they are taught at church is lived at home. The church and their parents reinforce what is taught by the other. Their parents practice what their pastor preaches.
So how does your church and family measure up? Too many parents expect the church to do all the religious teaching and training, but the parents are the major spiritual guides in their children’s lives. Too many Sunday School teachers do not realize the impact their class has on young lives.
Let’s make sure we are teaching and training our children to be successful Apostolic adults by purposely teaching and training at home and at church.