The research from my new, coauthored book Ready to Return highlights a sad spiritual disconnect in America between what God’s Word teaches and what many millennial churchgoers believe. Instead of basing their thinking on God’s Word, 20-somethings within the church largely think just like the culture on things like abortion, gay “marriage,” the age of the Earth, and other social and moral issues—they are obviously very secularized in their thinking.
Sadly, this is the result of a generation that was not taught to start their thinking with God’s Word, and not taught how to defend the Christian faith (apologetics) against the secular attacks of our day. Instead, they start with man’s ideas and interpret God’s Word through those ideas. So, what can we do about this dangerous situation? Teach this generation and the next one to boldly stand on God’s Word!
As a part of the solution, the importance of “home” is a top priority. Often times, parents wrongly look to their local church as the primary Christian voice in the life of their child. But God’s Word never takes away from the parents the ultimate responsibility of instructing children in the Lord:
And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord. (Ephesians 6:4)
Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it. (Proverbs 22:6)
You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. (Deuteronomy 6:7)
Parents spend roughly 5,824 hours a year with their children, but kids typically spend only 52 hours per year with their Sunday school teachers and small group leaders. Of course, these are just estimates, but there’s no denying the dramatic difference in available opportunities for parents to minister to their children as compared to a Sunday morning teacher.
The home is the epicenter of spiritual development. Parents are called to teach, talk, and walk out their faith daily as they train up their children. Remember, truth is more often “caught” than “taught.” Your kids will learn more by watching you live out your faith and make decisions based on God’s Word than they will by what their Sunday school teacher says each week.
Now, school, of course, also plays a huge role in the life of a child. If you are homeschooling (which is an excellent alternative to public schooling), you have even more influential hours available to spend with your child. If not at home or a Christian school, it is undeniable that your child will be exposed to a compromising culture that is less concerned with honoring God and more concerned with pleasing self. Research shows even many Christian schools and colleges fall under this category. And the local church isn’t immune either!
The bottom line: you cannot fully control what your children are exposed to outside of your home. What you can control is what they are exposed to inside your home. Are you showing your family the importance of daily Bible reading and devotion time? Are you honoring your spouse with your words and actions? Are you allowing natural conversation about faith to flow throughout your home on a constant basis? Does your family have access to apologetics resources that will answer their questions and in turn solidify their faith? These things are vital to the spiritual health of your child.
Now, maybe you feel like you have already blown it. Your children and grandchildren are already headed down a destructive path. Well, Ready to Return has step-by-step solutions for you too! I encourage you to order your own copy of Ready to Return right away so you can be equipped to guide your family in the way they should go. And bring your children to the Creation Museum near Cincinnati! Read about our 2016 museum promotion to learn about a wonderful discount we are offering children 12 and under through June.
Thanks for stopping by and thanks for praying, Ken
This item was written with the assistance of AiG’s research team.