Why Do So Many Church Kids Leave The Church?
One of the most challenging things to teach kids is the grace of God.
In my opinion this is why so many kids leave the church when they graduate from High School.
They have not experienced God’s grace.
For the most part the children in our classes are kids that have grown up in church.
They are what we call ‘church kids’.
Our kids grow up in a Christian culture, which is a good thing, but it has a down side.
Many of our kids experience the blessing of God without an understanding of the grace of God and this can set them up for failure.
Jesus said He came to “seek and save the lost.”
One day I asked the kids in my class, “What is Jesus looking for?”
“What does a lost person look like?”
Their response was “a poor person.”
If we are not careful we can create an elite community – a church full of elder brothers who see themselves as superior to the lost.
How do we teach our kids about grace?
Here are some suggestions:
1) Talk about the sins of Christian kids: lying, gossip, anger, pride, jealousy and verbal put-downs.
- Read Romans 1:29-30
- Hand out a piece of paper and ask the kids to grade themselves in these areas.
- Allow your kids to talk about which sins they struggle with.
- Then go around the class and write A+ on every paper.
- Talk about how Jesus got an A+ and when we believe in Him He gives us an A+.
- Jesus did all the hard work for us.
2) Use the illustration of a parent and a new baby.
When a new baby is born her parents do all the work.
They feed her and change her diapers.
They go to work every day to pay for the food and the rent.
Parents do everything at the beginning simply out of love.
As the child begins to mature the parents ask their daughter to do more stuff to take care of herself.
This is similar to us when we come to Christ, we don’t do anything to earn God’s grace.
Our good works can’t save, but we are saved for good works. (Ephesians 2:8)
3) Talk about how when we sin God wants us to repent, but our repentance doesn’t earn God’s grace.
God’s grace never leaves us.
God’s grace is what empowers our repentance.
4) Encourage your kids to have an attitude of gratitude.
Instead of thinking about how you are falling short.
Write down a list of all the good things God has done for you.
5) Read the story of parable of the Prodigal Son and talk about how the elder brother was just as lost as the younger brother.
The elder brother never left the ‘church’ but he thought he was better than his younger brother because he kept all the rules.
If you are flowing in the grace of God you will have grace for your brothers and sisters.
You will have grace for the new kids that come to you church.
You won’t push people away.
“He declares sinners to be right in His sight when they believe in Jesus! Can we boast
then that we have done anything to be accepted by God? No, because our acquittal is not
based on obeying the law. It is based on faith. So then we are made right with God
through faith and not by obeying the law.” Romans 3:26-28
Not only has Mark served in the local church as pastor, associate pastor, and family ministry pastor but he is also a certified coach with the John Maxwell Team.