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what do think are the reasons that our youth are leaving church?

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Many young people live the church because they have no relationship with Jesus, their faith is not anchored in christ as a result their spiritual life has no firm foundation. Jesus was bitten, ridiculed and talked about although he was perfect. Young people look for all excuses to live the church, church members gossip too much which is true, the church is too boring, there are too many rules and so on. If they spend some more time in prayer, read the bible and other inspirational books and trust God, then satan will not have any power over them.

The only time satan needs us is when we are trying to give our lives to God, when we want to surrender our all. So when we do that he makes the journey so diffiucult that giving up would be the only thing that make sense at the moment. But imagine if Jesus had given up on us where would we be?

But youths, young people Jesus gave us the example let us follow it and allow him to lead, and through the storm he will able to give us a calm landing.
Wow. This is good stuff. You make some excellent points here Michael. Thanks for this post.
Hmm... not sure about this being "good stuff", I personally find this very worrying. We are obviously failing our youth if c.half of them do not understand the basis of salvation or the good news of the Gospel.

I agree with your last couple of paragraphs. We have a duty to our children which we sometimes try and abbrogate by blaming them entirely for their departure without looking at what role we played (or failed to play). It seems to me that we are sometimes quick to make ourselves what we think is "youth-friendly" without, as you rightly say, taking the time to actually see what the needs are of those youth. I don't mean that we should water down our religion to try and keep the youth - that has never worked. However, sometimes it is we who need to be able to define in clear terms why we believe what we believe and present it in a straightforward manner and with a Biblical basis. Is this a call for us to return to a primitive Godliness, to behave as the Bereans did and to reason everything clearly from the Bible? Is it possible that if we sort ourselves out we won't need to worry about our youth because we will be presenting them with a living witness?

Of course, the other side of that coin is to also remember that there must be no compulsion in religion. For example, a simple example, we (my wife and I) brought our children up as vegetarians (and don't focus on that, I'm just using it as a simple, easy, example). As they got older they had their own choices to make. Then the oldest child began eating meat. I was sad, naturally, but I had to respect that it was his choice. I would make the odd complaint about the smell if he brought it in the house and I would make the odd comment about him clogging his arteries, etc., etc., but I had to respect his choice. He was at an age of reason and, in his mind, he had a reason to eat meat. So, his choice. One day he began a series of Bible studies with other youth and they looked at the health message. Some time later I realised that he had not only returned to vegetarianism but was also going beyond what we practiced and exploring veganism. Now, he is the first one to denounce wrong dietary practices and he is quick to tell me off (in a very loving way) if he sees me putting something unhealthy near my mouth.

I could have become bombastic about *my* religion and beaten him up with EGW quotes until the cows came home - even thrown him out of the house if he didn't conform to my way of doing things... and I could have lost my son. Instead I now have a young man who feels free and comfortable to disagree with me and is the first one to say, "Dad, you and me have to sit down and study this out."

Constantly I find myself asking the question, "What would Jesus do?" As long as I can match my responses to those of Jesus then I'm on the right track. Our youth watch us, listen to what we say, how we say it and we need to be demonstrating to them that faith that we profess. Our witness will do much to keep the youth in church. If we couple that with clear Biblical explanation of the plan of salvation we can open up the Gospel to the unconverted and confirm the Gospel to the converted. Sadly, some will leave whatever we do but they should leave with the memory of a Christ-like church, how much easier to return to a friendly, comfortable environment when the Holy Spirit moves on them.
Just read the article... some excellent statements by Elder Paulsen and Bro. Kibble. If I had read the article first I wouldn't have bothered posting my last response :-)
This is a good observation. I would even agree to it...", It's happening in every SDA church...",
"Stuff". Good in that we can learn from it!!! (Even though it is bad). Am I making ANY sense?
Mmm... no. But I am used to that. :-)
Oh well .... I'll keep tryin'.
I suppose in every generation, there has been a need to bridge the prevailing culture with Christian principles. Much of this is done in the home and through the influence of leaders, peers and mentors. How representative a sample of SDA's this is, I do not know. But it does suggest a respect for values in matters of importance. This is a good sign. Clearly we can improve in matters of salvation. But it is not so simple as saying I am saved by Jesus' blood, nothing else matters. There is a garment check at the door. sml. and it won't be about how good the fit but is it the right garment.
"If the souls of your children are saved, you must do your work with fidelity." 5 T 506

"The preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God." AA 241

"For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish, foolishness; but unto us which are saved, it is the power of God." CE 94

" I will now tell it to you.” “God has raised one Man from the dead, the Lord Jesus Christ, that he might destroy death, expiate sin, and shut the gates of hell. This is the work of salvation. Christ has vanquished! This is the joyful news! And we are saved by his work, and not by our own." {GC88 152.2}

"Those who are saved will be saved because Jesus has paid the full debt; and man can do nothing, absolutely nothing, to merit salvation. " {ST, November 10, 1890 par. 1}

" He is our Rock. It is by his might that we conquer, and by his righteousness that we are saved." PC 58
The grandparents of Adventism today were the ones who joined the church in its legalistic phase, re up to the 1970's, now the adults of todays children tend to be less strict than their own parents cos sad to say Adventist was presented in a borderline rightwing manner in some cases , more about rules and hardly about relationship. Once todays youth notice that some things don't add up not because the things are wrong in themselves but because our presentation is skewed a lot of them pack up and go. Parents need to remember until children decide for themselves the picture of God you present to them is the one than lets them know whether they are going or staying. Unfortunately especially in cases where Adventist marriages are nothing more than a sham, you can fool the members but you cannot fool your children.
Few real life role models


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