More Than Words: Moving Beyond Lip-Service Christianity to True Faith
I identify as one of those millennials who was raised in the church, but no longer attends. And it is not for just one reason. If you have a moment, I would like to respond to some of your reasons, and add a few of my own that I feel are not limited to me:. I feel I have simply been away too long to say whether or not these continue to be an issue. This may be an especially hot topic for me because I have worked as a Social Worker for Child Protective Services in a small community for the past four years. It is merely a superficial gesture rather than providing the poor with actual assistance.
Christian Music artist Keith Green was a major voice in advocacy for the church helping those in need. Sadly, Keith Green has long since passed away I work full-time with some of the most desperately impoverished individuals.
And I cannot justify sitting in a room every week and hearing about how we should sponsor a child in Africa, when I just got through apologizing to a family who live a couple blocks away from the nearest church for the mold and weevils they discovered in the food bank commodities they were planning to feed their children. Until the church acknowledges the true pain and poverty just outside the door, I am not interested in attending. Blaming the Culture: I think you addressed this quite well, in that there will always be damaging components of culture. But what the church is missing is how to reduce the damage.
As a feminist, I am never on-board with objectification of women. But what is the church doing to empower women?
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So, even though I may agree with the church that encouraging women to be more sexual is not beneficial, the church is not ready to embrace women as human beings. For that reason, I am no longer interested in attending. I did not fit in, and that was made abundantly clear to me. I still feel this way now, but for different reasons. I am also in a live-in relationship, and have been for the past four years. We are getting married next spring, but for the church, this would never be acceptable.
I would even be willing to hear everyone out on their reasons. But I know such openness would not be reciprocated. For example, if I were to say this relationship has been healing and empowering for me, that would not be heard. If I were to say I have had to interview twelve-year-olds about how they have had sex with year-old men who were taking advantage of them, and the damage of rape in every form…it would not be heard. For this reason, I cannot attend church.
Our generation was exposed to some of the most inhumane tactics to win individuals to salvation.
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The church has failed to address that it has caused trauma to its children. The hateful tactics utilized by the church against sadly minority populations, such as the gay community has caused hurt to everyone involved. Until the church is able to love these populations, instead of speak hateful dogma, their numbers will continue to dwindle. Controversial Topics: I recently attended a training for work regarding the sex-trafficking of children in the local area.
I was horrified at the statistics of these atrocities occurring in our own communities.
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When was the last time the church participated in raising awareness of abuse of its local children? It is far easier to condemn Thailand and Cambodia for child-prostitution, but what about when it happens in Sacramento? How is the church addressing this, and other topics such as mass shootings? Are they attempting to take care of their mentally ill and victims of residual trauma?
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Our own community recently had a tragedy at our local High School. I have heard nothing but radio-silence from the churches. No raising awareness, no after-care, nothing. Until the church is willing to actually become a working part of the community, I am not interested in being a part of it.
- More Than Words Moving Beyond LipService Christianity to True Faith by Hill & Jason E..
- More Than Words: Moving Beyond Lip-Service Christianity to True Faith?
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Stop Talking Unless You are Doing Something: To some extent I just mentioned this, but it warrants repeating: the church is good at talking…doing…not so much. This is also key in my absence each Sunday. I am desperately trying to help those in need through my full-time job in social work. I know, language.
After that, I am simply not interested in hearing helpful advice about opportunities I can serve my church. In their attempt to be separate, they have made themselves irrelevant. In their attempt to alienate sin, they have alienated their own children. Did you really need to comment about her lifestyle at all?
Thank you for your efforts.
Inside all the me-me-me stuff listed in the 12 there are real concerns that generational differences make difficult to communicate. In the end, it always ends up being about mission statements, budgets and specificity. Seriously, the work of God can be a grind at times. The trick is understanding where our efforts will make the most positive impact.
To find out how those things are decided, come to Elders meetings and Deacon meetings and be prepared to listen. No need to post this, it is a note between you and me. In Christ, Peter.
The focus would be on humble loving service to one another who profess him, mentoring of fellow christians — in any age, socio-economic status, race, education level, etc. This lack also extends to any others who choose to abandon the facade of perfection to openly admit their uncertainties, questions, hurts, habits, past harms or hang ups. Keep speaking them anyway. When I saw the title, I was terrified and saddened.
As I read, I realized why. My church, although I am literally the only millennial, has a very inclusive atmosphere. My church does sometimes only see me as a worker, but they do value me.
They made head of our youth program, although I am not formally trained. They also let me teach adult Bible study. I really enjoyed your article and will use it to help reach others! So, thank you for illuminating this topic for me. Maybe now, I can helped reach more people my age! Sam, There were a few things about what you said that I must admit were true and somethings I would even consider implementing should I ever one day plant a church.
However, as a millennial of 20 years old, I cannot help but feel you missed the mark. I will acknowledge with you that something is terribly wrong and the Church could drastically change, but deinstitutionalizing the Church is the opposite direction of what I feel to be the solution.
The Church needs to be THE institution. But if you have not read their writing I pray that you would. You would discover that the issue has nothing to do with institutions and everything today with the hearts of men. You act as if the religion of our elders is fruitless and outdated, but I wager it is rather our corrupt hearts as sinful mankind causing the issue. Legalism is antichrist, but prudence is a virtue.
The Westminster Shorter Catechism says that the Word of God is the rule that God gave to men to know how they might glorify him. Despite your distaste for statements of faith, they have served the church so well in keeping them unified. They actually help keep us attached to the Word of God rather than disrupt us. All of your issues with the church will be solved with the sanctification of our hearts, the way forward is backward. And before you claim I was brainwashed by my parents, I did not grow up in church, and I was raised by a man who at one point wanted to be a woman.
It is by the grace of God alone that I come to where I am now. You are certainly a good writer, and I pray that both of our hearts would be better sanctified in order that we may worship and serve God in the way he intended. I think a lot of these are valid points that Christians everywhere would do well to consider; 2, 3, 4, 6, 9, and 10 were all things I would, at least in part, agree with. However, I would also say that we need to be careful in what areas we ask the church to change in, and why we are asking it to change.
First and foremost, the reason the church exists is for the glorification of God. For that matter, the reason WE exist is for the glorification of God.