So, today I stumbled across an article that had 5 churchy phrases that are driving Millennial’s away from the church. And quite honestly I find that funny and very degrading. Funny because there are allot of different phrases out there that turn me off but none dictate what I will and won’t do. I’ve heard people that are vegetarians refer to those who were not as “those meat eaters” well guess what, I’m still eating chicken, pork, beef and fish. So, I honestly don’t believe its a religious phrase or phrases that’s driving young adults away from the church.
And the reason I believe it’s degrading to say that certain phrases are driving Millennial’s away, and I hope this isn’t showing my naivety, but I truly hope the younger generation isn’t that sensitive and I also hope the body of Jesus the Christ isn’t that out of touch with the world.
If I’m going to be candid here, the reason I believe the institution of the church is losing young members is because it is so entrenched with how it believes things have to be done and the religious services that it has forgotten or failed to remember something they used to place on bumper stickers and rubber bracelets and wear all over the place. It, the institution and quite possibly the body has forgotten what would Jesus do.
So, first of all, what would Jesus do about it if He saw that there were young people leaving?
What would Jesus do? Number one, He would pray. Always seeking the Father’s heart and advice in all matters. How can we possibly know how to approach life with out God’s guidance. Every decision that we make on a daily basis is compounded over time. If we as followers of Jesus do not turn to our heavenly Father in prayer and ask Him to guide our lives, how can we ever believe that we can be effective in helping or aiding someone else with their lives. Prayer allows God to speak to us, mold our hearts and fill us with compassion. The compassion of His only Son. As followers of Jesus if we want to impact and help those who are in need we need to pray and pray often.
What would Jesus do? Second, He would turn to the scriptures. As much as everyone likes to preach a good message the one facet that I believe we have gotten away from as the body of Jesus, who is the Christ, is reading God’s word. And while I’m on this point allow me to share this; God’s word was never meant to be used as a finger pointing tool in the face of non followers. When you read the letters in the new testament they are ALL directed to a body of believers, NOT those who have not trusted in Jesus as their Lord and Savior. Why are we, the body of Jesus and followers of The Way, attempting to tell society how to live when there is so much sin inside our own house?
Where you aware that the number of men who look at pornography on a daily basis is the same for both church going men as well as non church going men? THE SAME! How then can anyone expect the church to be effective or help anyone. It is drowning in the same diseases that are drowning society.
The reason young people are leaving is they don’t see the church making a difference. They see people there using the same language, doing the same things as people who don’t go so why should they go?
So, what would Jesus do? He would turn to the scriptures for each of His houses of prayer and clean house! His message would be clear to every single member. Repent, turn from the sin that has ensnared you and turn your hearts to Him so He can heal and cleanse you.
If you don’t know already, I want to tell you. God, our Heavenly Father loves you with a passion that can’t be matched by anything on this earth. But you have to open your heart to Him. You have to allow Him control of your life. You have to allow Him to show you how much He loves you. Open your heart to Him, do not let your heart grow cold and bitter. He will never forsake you but you have to choose to listen and to obey Him no matter what. Jesus said we must take up our cross and follow Him daily. Every day is new, and every day we have a choice. The closer we get to Jesus and our Father on a daily basis, the easier it is to over come heartaches and help those who are hurting.
So what would Jesus do? The final thing He would do is get out! Get out and help! There are people who are going hungry, there are kids who are going hungry, there are people who don’t have clothes, or a home. When Jesus saw a need regardless of how great He didn’t turn a blind eye or say, “oh, let’s let another organization or government help them.” NO. He said, how many fish do we have and how much bread? Then He acted.
Today’s young people are not interested in words. In fact they are tired of them. How many politicians that they probably admired have spoken lies to them? How many Celebes that they idolized spoke lies or lied to them?
They are not afraid of lies, they are used to them and that is sad. What they want is the truth and they want to take action.
I bet if a church body instead of holding a “regular” church service spent the day going into their local communities and helping or cleaning, I bet that would actually attract more young people than they would know what to do. Young people, well, in fact I believe everyone is tired of all the talk and everyone wants to see true love in action. And that is exactly what Jesus would do.
He would pray, clean house and then get out and take action. It’s not about the words we use, it’s about the integrity behind our speech and the love within our actions. When someone is arrested by the love and compassion of the living God there is no going back. This I speak from experience. I know what it’s like to dabble in porn. To be in a constant fight between the will of God and the ways of the world. I’ve tried everything I thought would give me peace and fulfillment. But it only came when God opened my ears and I heard Him tell me just how much He loved me. That day came 2 and a half years ago. Even though I had been a follower of Jesus for close to 18 years at the time. That’s right. I had given my life to Jesus and was doing what I thought I should. It’s so easy to get sucked into believing the world is right and mirroring what it does in our own lives. Keeping up with pop culture, watch what everyone else is watching, speak how everyone else is speaking and we keep wandering down that path and before too long we have no clue how to get free. Or even know what true freedom feels like.
God is the only one who can set us free. Only His love can conquer every feeling of insecurity, hate, pain, self loathing, fear and depression. There are no secret formulas in this life. If you want a life filled with fulfillment and peace then you have to follow Jesus the Messiah. If you want to continue to live in a continual cycle of highs and lows then stick with the worlds plan for your life.
If you are in a body of followers who truly want to impact this world for Jesus, then start and do what Jesus did and is still doing. Pray, clean house, and get involved with His love as your only motivation.
Life is hard. Life is tough. Life is full of pain and uncertainty. But God is REAL and He desires to walk beside us, comfort us and love us every single step of the way. Let’s all allow Him to do so. In my own life that is what I chose in November 2013 and I have never gone back and I have never been the same. God’s love and presence are as real to me and more important to me than anything this world has to offer. And that is why I chose to share this with all of you. Not for judgment, not for any other reason but, as the body of the Messiah, lets stop working against one another and God and get back to basics. Take time to ask one another; What would Jesus do? And then do it.