I Won’t Force My Kids To Go To Church

My parents forced me to eat three times a day growing up. No joke. Three times. Every. Single. Day. And it wasn’t always stuff I liked, either. Matter of fact, I complained a lot about what my mom made. ‘Ewww, gross! Meatloaf? Seriously? Mom you know we hate this stuff!’ So as I approached adulthood I made an important decision. Since my parents forced me to eat while I was growing up, I decided I was done with meals. Oh, here and there I’ll eat out of obligation. I mean, family traditions like Thanksgiving and Christmas, yeah, I’m there. But daily eating? No way. I’m done.

“Set in any other context, excuses people make for not going to church sound completely ridiculous. But set in the context of Christianity, people say these things in all seriousness while others nod sagely in somber agreement.

“My son told me a few weeks into school that he didn’t like the teacher. He wasn’t getting excited enough about learning, and he didn’t really feel connected to the other kids in his class, so I told him he never had to go back to school again. Who wants to waste their time going somewhere they aren’t being fulfilled?

“We’ve never forced our daughter to stay off the road when playing. We don’t want to restrict her imagination. We allow her the freedom to make her own choices in life.
– Ruth Meyer

Now maybe the above analogies sound ridiculous. I’m sure you’re probably thinking, “No loving parent would let their kids decide whether to go to school or not, and they definitely wouldn’t let their kid play in traffic. That’s endangering their lives.  It’s a matter of life or death.” And that is exactly the point. This is a matter of life or death for your child. Eternity is at stake.

In our family, church is a non-negotiable. It’s a non-negotiable because we understand that how we raise our children, and what we teach them (or don’t teach them) about Jesus carries eternal consequences. And as parents we have a responsibility to share with them what God has done in our lives through the love of Jesus. So we read the Bible together at night and we pray together. We go to church. We talk about God at home and in the car and at the park. Will they always be excited about getting up and going to church? I hope so, but I doubt it. But regardless, my wife and I still make them go because we are their parents and we know what’s best for them. And so, when they complain we will tell them why gathering together with other believers is a non-negotiable. Just like when they complain that we serve them healthy meals we explain why we eat vegetables and not just cake. We take them to school every morning, no matter how much they complain or bellyache. And we explain why school is so important. We set boundaries and limits while they are playing outdoors. We tell them to look both ways when they cross the street, not because we said so, but because to do otherwise means possibly being hit by a car. We do these things because we love them and we are looking at the long term outcome, not what will make them happiest in any given moment.

“Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.”
– Proverbs 22:6

Will all of that ensure that they turn out to be the model upstanding citizens that my wife and I hope? No. It’s even possible for children to be brought up in a loving Christian home and still turn away from Jesus later. That is out of our control. As parents, our responsibility is to teach our children about the world and about God. We teach them how God created this world perfectly. We teach them how the world became broken through that first sin of Adam and Eve. When their own brokenness shows itself, we point it out, and then we point to the One who came to heal that brokenness: Jesus. And they are never too young to begin learning these things. Each of our children learned to pray while still in highchairs. Our responsibility as Christian parents is about so much more than just taking our kids to church on Sunday mornings.

To say, as a parent, “I won’t force my kids to go to church. I’ll let them decide on their own,” sounds so enlightened. But it’s the most dangerous thing a parent could say. It would be safer for you to let your children play on the highway in rush hour traffic than to let them decide whether or not they wanted to go to church. One of those options carries temporary consequences (if you let your child play on the highway in rush hour traffic they will die), and the other carries potential eternal consequences.

Church isn’t just one good choice among many. Church isn’t a building. Church, properly understood, is the body of Christ, the gathering of believers in a specific place. And as such, it is a place where we all belong. We are all equally sinful before God and equally in need of a Savior. Church isn’t just a place you go. It’s not a place that you go to feel better about yourself. Its not entertainment. Its purpose is not to give you ten easy steps to fix your marriage. Church is the gathering of believers to receive what God has come to give in Jesus.

Jesus Himself said, “For where two or three are gathered in My name, there am I among them.” – Matthew 18:20

So when we come together as the body of Christ, the church, we confess our sins. Then, having confessed our brokenness and need, we hear those great and unfathomable words of forgiveness. We hear that, though our sins are many, and we in no way deserve grace, God in Jesus has forgiven us. We hear God’s word spoken to us as Scripture is read, and we speak those words to each other through various parts of the service. We sing songs and hymns praising and proclaiming what Jesus has done for us. We hear sermons that proclaim the good news of forgiveness in Jesus.

Don’t give up and don’t give in to those outside voices that tell you how much more important sleep, or schoolwork, or band, or sports, or anything may be than coming together for worship each week. Instead, “Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful. And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.” (Hebrews 10:23-25)

 

Check out http://truthnotes.net/2014/03/24/why-i-would-never-force-my-kids-to-go-to-church/  for Ruth Meyer’s article.

 

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183 thoughts on “I Won’t Force My Kids To Go To Church

  1. What is really important to teach our youth is how to have and sustain a personal relationship with out Lord and Savior , living our daily lives in the likeness of Christ. Teaching them that the word of God is the manual and guideline to a life of peace and fullfillment through his Love for us. It isn’t just about the institition of a church or a church meeting its so much deeper than that. Teaching them that thier identity is in the Love and Grace of our Father in Heaven.

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    1. I agree Jennifer, but I would add that you can’t teach one without the other since the Scriptures are clear on the importance of meeting together for the growth and sustaining of our faith.

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    2. Christianity is not meant to be practiced as a solo event. It is meant to be lived out in community. We see that from the very earliest descriptions of the early church in Acts, and it is emphasized over and over again throughout the New Testament.

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      1. So you believe the alternative? That everything came from nothing? That something as purposeful and information packed as DNA just formed randomly?

        When I was younger and before I had studied biology, the idea that all of this might be here by chance sounded much more plausible.

        If you are interested in the subject, a balanced book on the subject is “The Language of God” by Francis Collins. Dr. Collins is the head of the Human Genome Project and one of the world’s leading scientists when it comes to the study of DNA. In the book he makes his case for faith and science.

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      2. Exactly! Chemistry is not random. And neither is the information encoded in DNA. So either that lack of randomness is by itself a product of chance, or that lack of randomness is a product of a creator.

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      3. It appears you’re equating “not random” and “intentional.” Just because something is not random does not mean there is intent. You’re making leaps without logic to get to the conclusion you want to be true. You can’t go from “something is not based on chance” to “there is a supernatural being who created the universe and wants to have a special relationship with members of a particular species found on a particular planet in a particular solar system in a particular galaxy in a particular spot in the incomprehensible vastness of the cosmos” without skipping over a LOT of steps. If you can’t show your work, as it were, the answer to the equation, even if correct, is indistinguishable from a total guess. If you care whether the things you believe are true, you need to be much more rigorous about applying the hot white light of critical scrutiny to the things you hold sacred and protect against rational inquiry.

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      4. Actually, neither those who believe in God, nor those who believe there is no god, can show their work. Ask any scientist trained in the field about the origins of the big bang and you will get a response without an answer. Either it just happened and the universe also just happens to look intentional, or the universe looks intentional because it was designed.

        At the end of the day of those two options one of them seems more rational than the other.

        But I’m not a scientist so don’t take my word for it. If you want to hear from someone with more degrees then I commend to you Dr. Francis Collins’ book “The Language of God.” His credentials are without question, as he led the study of the human genome project, and he sees no discrepancy between a belief in God and “the light of critical scrutiny.”

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      5. Most atheists don’t believe in any gods. Technically, one can no more disprove your deity than leprechauns. To the same extent you don’t believe in leprechauns existing, we don’t believe in gods existing. If someone makes a claim, it must be justified with evidence. But, simply not accepting the claim based on lack of evidence has no burden of proof; no work to show.

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      6. I agree. If someone makes a claim, it must be justified with evidence. To the extent that it can be. For example, what evidence can you give me that Plato lived?

        As a Christian, I can cite historical evidence for the life, death and resurrection of Jesus. There is more historical evidence for his existence and the things that are recorded that he said than there is manuscript evidence for the existence of Plato and his works.

        Similarly, if a person claims that there is no god, the existence of the universe calls that very claim into question. Nearly everyone I’ve met agrees that the universe exists. The big question is where did it come from. An athiest claims that it has always existed, or that the universe got its start at the big bang, but then the question is still, where did that come from? What was before that? Ultimately the claim that the an atheist makes about the universe’s beginnings are as un-testable as the claims of the theist.

        But once again if you are interested in where the evidence leads and where the burden of proof lies, Dr. Collins’ book is a great place to start.

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      7. Actually, there is no evidence of anyone ever being raised from the dead. There is, quite literally, far more and far better evidence of people being abducted by aliens. You are starting with your conclusion and accepting whatever you think supports it without critical analysis, and rejecting the basic logical reasoning that makes such claims (rising from the dead, riding a winged horse into the sky, etc.) impossible to accept when the claims are regarding supernatural events centuries or millennia in the past.

        Ever notice that, as our ability to investigate miracles has increased, the rate of miraculous events has decreased? Ever wonder why that is? For that matter, ever wonder why you don’t accept as true miraculous claims from other faiths that have equally terrible evidence supporting them?

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      8. I am not starting with my conclusions and then accepting whatever I think supports them. I recognize that that is the approach some have taken. My belief in Jesus starts in creation. Looking at the balance of the evidence of the world we live in, I find the belief that something is responsible for this world’s existence to be the more rational position than the belief that this effect we call the universe had no cause.

        Then looking at the religions in the world I see a striking difference between the way of Jesus and all the others. In each of every other major religion salvation is dependent on something that a person has to accomplish. Jesus pointed to salvation through himself.

        Obviously, if you don’t buy the first proposition, then the second is meaningless.

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      9. You’re assuming that reality is a creation. That smuggles in the need for a creator. That is known as begging the question. Before you can declare it creation, you must demonstrate that it was created. You don’t get to start with premises that are unsubstantiated just because they’re intuitive or feel right, and then build upon that. At least, not if you care whether you believe things for good reasons.

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      10. Then neither can you start with the presupposition that what you see around you did not have a creator, else you run the same problem of starting with a premise that is unsubstantiated. You must demonstrate that it was not created.

        We all start with presuppositions. Those are unavoidable. What matters of course is whether a person is willing to consider the alternative. I’ve considered it and found it wanting.

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      11. I never assumed any such thing. I have simply noted that when you assume some premise without demonstrating its veracity, any argument you build upon it is invalid. Is there a creator? There doesn’t seem to be any compelling evidence to support there being one.

        Here’s an analogy. If you see a guy walking down the street, and I tell you that he’s wearing red underwear, you would want to know what reason I have to reach that conclusion, but you wouldn’t just believe it based on my say-so. Does that mean you’re saying he is NOT wearing red underwear? Nope.

        If you make claim that X is true, want to know what reason you have to reach that conclusion, but I wouldn’t just believe it on your say-so. Does that mean I’m saying X is false? Nope.

        When you make a claim, you assume a burden of proof. If you can’t meet it, there is no good reason anybody should accept that claim as true (including yourself). That is, if you care whether you believe things for good reasons.

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      12. I’ve made my claim and answered it. I believe there is a God because the complexity in the world demands it. I believe that that God is made known to us in the person of Jesus. I believe that he existed on the testimony of history. If that history cannot be believed than neither can any point of history be believed. There are answers that are more in depth of course that rest on mathematical probability and biology, but its easier to point you to the places that has already been written than it is to type it all out myself.

        I commend to you again the book by Dr. Francis Collins, “The Language of God” as he has made it his life’s work to study biology whereas I have not. If you would like to know why myself and others believe that the preponderance of evidence points to the existence of God in general that would be a good place to start.

        But to my second point, everyone makes these assumptions about the world that they see. Either they believe in a god or gods that created what we have before us, or they believe that all of this just is. And from those assumptions then comes the task of ferreting out whether they are correct or incorrect.

        In terms of the original article, however, I am assuming an audience that believes already that there is a God. The point of the post was not to lay the foundation for that belief, but to expand on what the outcomes of that belief will be.

        In one of my other articles I do address the foundational argument more directly. If you haven’t read it, go ahead and tell me what you think. I’d be interested in your take on it.

        https://dirtyhands.wordpress.com/2016/01/29/losing-my-faith-to-a-t-rex/

        I will concede that if you believe that there is a God, then the arguments in the article, “I won’t force my kids to go to church,” will be complete nonsense. But if you read it from the perspective of someone that does believe that not only does God exist but that we are answerable to Him, then the arguments are sound.

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      13. Are you still lost? Jesus loves you. He died to pay for your sins. All you have to do is ask Him to save you and He will never leave you nor forsake you. We all want to be loved and He loves you.

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  2. AMEN! My children are 19 and 21 and while their faith is now their own and they enjoy and want to be a part of the church it was NEVER an option – if you live under our roof you go to church.

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  3. My sentiments exactly! We are so afraid to make absolutes now a days except for the notion that there should be no absolutes. It’s refreshing to hear someone express my heart as a parent and to put it out for the world to read. Thank you!

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  4. I was not made to go to church once I hit my teen years, my husband on the other hand was made to go when they would go.. as a 24 year old I now loving going to church, my husband likes it too but it’s not his favorite thing to do sometimes.. if we have kids someday we will not make them go once they hit 16.. you can make someone be christain.. but that’s just my humble opinion.

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  5. The analogy with food and school which commenced this article is, of course, spurious. A more appropriate one would be music. One does not force one’s child to listen to Beethoven in the hope the child will embrace classical music. One exposes the child to Beethoven, Rock and Roll, Country, Pop etc and then lets the child choose the genre which best suits them a they mature as a person.

    Jesus was quite specific when he responded to the Apostles’ question about how to pray (Matthew 6) In fact, not only did He tell them how to pray, He told them how NOT to pray. “Do not be like the hypocrites who love to pray on the street corners and in the public houses of worship, using long and meaningless words. When you pray, go into your room and CLOSE THE DOOR. And pray to your Heavenly Father who is unseen in these words..” which is what we know now as the Lord’s Prayer.

    So there it is; straight from the mouth of God, incarnate in the form of Jesus. Pray privately. And be brief about it. He’s got billions of others to hear! Seems many young people are doing as Christ commanded.

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    1. I disagree on two counts. First, if you truly believe as Jesus himself testifies that He is the only way to the Father it would be the height of foolishness for a responsible parent to lay all the false gods at their kids’ feet and ask them to choose. Parents should teach their kids about false gods, but to do so in a way that gives the false impression that that choice doesn’t bear consequences is foolish.

      Second, when Jesus taught about prayer he was teaching about hypocrisy in the prayer of the religious leaders of his day. He wasn’t talking about whether believers should gather together or not. On that count he was clear. “Where two or three are gathered in my name, there I am.” This whole “me and Jesus” idea that so many American Christians have is not born out by what Jesus did and taught, nor by how the early church acted. They gathered together for worship, and not just on Sunday, but daily.

      God’s Blessings on your walk

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    2. Evidently you missed the fact that even Jesus learned the scriptures and went to the synagogue to pray. Certainly we shouldn’t go to church just for show but the Lord said that where one or more of you is gathered in my name, there I am in your midst. It’s great to pray alone and we should all have a dialogue with the Lord all throughout our day. However, to go to church and hear the scriptures read to us and explained to us by someone trained in scripture and to join with others gives us strength and encouragement. The Lord surrounded Himself with 12 apostles; He chose to fulfill His ministry by traveling with them, teaching them, and keeping them close. I don’t think He meant for us to keep our faith to ourselves but to spread our faith and to share it with others just as He taught His apostles.

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      1. Hi Nancy… With respect, a few details you missed. One is, you misquoted the Lord. You said, “the Lord said that where one or more of you is gathered in my name, there I am in your midst.” Actually, the Scripture says that Jesus said when TWO or THREE are gathered (Matthew 18:20). Secondly, the context of this passage of Scripture is NOT “how to have church meetings”. The context refers to parties that are in disagreement with each other and attempting to settle a dispute.

        Nevertheless, it’s a true statement that the Lord is with us whenever we gather in His name. I find it interesting that Jesus said “TWO or THREE” not “two or more” or “two or three hundred.” Because two or three makes sense in the context of most relationships. A husband and wife, a father and son, or two friends meet the “requirement”. It’s very hard to have any kind of intimate fellowship among the crowd of a mega church… but among two or three, I can do that. I have done that. Wonderful things I’ve seen from that.

        Notice also that no special meeting is required and no church building. The apostle Stephen and the apostle Paul both said that the Most High God does NOT dwell in worship houses made by man. If you study early Christian history, they did not have any practice called “going to church” for literally hundreds of years (and no church buildings either, no professional clergy, no religious programs, etc.). In fact, they believed that the building of temples for worship was wholly a pagan practice and so they avoided it at all costs. They met in homes because this was the natural environment for family and, after all, we are the Family of God.

        The concept of “doing church” came much later, when the Greek and Roman influence took power. Roman Catholicism gave us churchianity and Luther packaged it for Christian consumption, but it does NOT come from God’s Word. It does NOT come from the teaching of Jesus Christ. It does NOT come from any of the apostles! There is not a single verse in the Bible that tells anyone they need to go to church to hear sermons that are provided by trained biblical professionals. The Scripture rather says (1 John 2:26-27), “These things I have written to you concerning those leading you astray. But the anointing which you received from Him abides in you, and you do not need anyone to teach you. But as His anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true and no lie, and as He has taught you, abide in Him.” This isn’t to suggest that it’s wrong to listen to sermons or skilled Bible teachers, but the Holy Spirit is a fully competent Teacher and He doesn’t require a church service to perform His abilities. True followers of Christ will know the voice of the Master and follow Him and He will not only teach them, but He will provide fellowship according to His purposes.

        The Scriptures also tell us that (1 Corinthians 1:26-27) – “For you see your calling, brothers, that not many wise men according to the flesh are called, not many mighty, not many noble. But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God has chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty…” In other words, God doesn’t require trained professionals in order for people to grow in their understanding of the Word of God and to grow in faith and live out God’s call on their life. In fact, God often (as we just read) calls the opposite of that; He calls those who are not “wise according to the flesh”. Anyone who submits to Christ is eligible to be used by God and to receive of His Spirit. I’ve known a lot of professional pastors in my day. I’ve known men who had multiple doctorates in theology and I’ve seen even these get off track, miss God, and lead a lot of people into deception. God isn’t concerned about whether an individual is some kind of Bible expert. He’s interested in disciples of Christ Jesus. God is well able to teach anyone that comes to Him.

        The notion that we need to all cram into church buildings like auto-parts in a junk yard (hoping those parts will automatically become a working automobile), thinking that just by our “doing church” we are therefore “assembling” as Christ desires is foolish. Sitting in a church pew, listening to sermons no more makes you a healthy, growing Christian than sitting in a movie theater makes you a skilled Hollywood director. And not going to church does not automatically result in the Believer hiding his faith or failing to share it with others or opting for a path of spiritual stagnation. One BIG problem with churchianity is that it actually does cause a lot of people to keep their faith to themselves! It does this (quite often) by creating a mindset where Christians only act like Christians in the comfortable church setting. During the rest of the week, they rarely act the way they do in church or live out their faith the way that is most comfortable in the church environment. In their minds, the life of the spirit is divided from their daily lives and so they are primarily only “spiritual” on Sundays when doing church.

        However, when a Believer understands that Christ is their Master and they walk in a daily relationship with Him, EVERY DAY provides the opportunity for their faith to shine in every facet of their lives! Work associates, acquaintances, friends and family (and ANY location on earth) become the mission field and there is ample opportunity for us to walk out our faith in this daily context. Jesus NEVER taught His disciples to shine their light in church services. God didn’t give us spiritual gifts so that we could just practice them in church. There is also not a single passage of Scripture that shows God giving anyone a commission to go into the world and build (or attend) churches.

        The idea that church is necessary to Christianity is complete nonsense and wholly unbiblical. Again, that doesn’t make it a sin for Christians to gather together and sing songs, pray or listen to sermons (which can all be good things), but church isn’t necessary for any of these things to occur. By-the-way, the Bible talks a lot about preaching, not about “sermonizing”. Pastors go to Bible colleges and learn how to sermonize, but this isn’t a directive found anyplace in the Bible. The word “preach” in Scripture is a term that speaks of prophetic utterance/declaration. In other words, God desires to use us as His oracles (to live and speak through us). He wants to speak through our lives and our mouths. Jesus never told anyone to go and develop sermons and to orate them at Sunday meetings while many pews are warmed by comfortable butts. All of that comes from man and his wisdom. I’d rather stick to the instruction of Jesus and not worry so much about the other stuff. Most of it is just a massive waste of money anyway.

        If you like church world, that’s fine. Enjoy it. Just don’t elevate it to a place that God himself has not and don’t expect everyone else to do that either, especially when God’s Word never commands anyone to do such a thing. I know you mean well and you likely have found value in your church experiences and I wouldn’t intend to shoot that down. But you need to understand that there are people out here like me that have been out of the church environment for a long time (15 years now for me) and I am still close to Jesus, I’m not an “isolationist”… I fellowship with those God assembles me with, and I share my faith daily. The lack of weekly religious ritual has not weakened my faith or lessened my process of spiritual growth at all. If anything, it has accelerated it, matured it and strengthened it. I love the Lord and His people, but I will never shove them in a box of religion. At the same time, I am able to gather with them in that environment too if I choose and without guilt or condemnation. As a follower of Christ I am 100% free! God bless you.

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  6. Alright, I see where you’re coming from on most of these points. What (in your opinion) would you say if a child of yours – at an age at which they can make their own decisions – goes through weeks of pondering, prayer, studying, and comes to the conclusion that they no longer believe in your faith? After doing the research and praying and introspection, would you deny them the worth of their efforts?

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    1. Depends of they are still my responsibility…if they are grown adults living on their own, then I would mourn their decision but at that point I would have done all that I could as a parent

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    2. This article was written primarily for parents of young children who mistakenly believe that gathering together is optional and not that important to the faith of their children

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      1. Alright I see that it was geared towards parents with young children, but what about a teen still living under your roof that have come to you with his or her conclusion that what they’ve been taught up to that point is (or could be) false? I understand continuing to bring them to church regardless, but would you discredit their deliberation and conflict in that decision?

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      2. No, I wouldn’t discredit their deliberations. Shutting down open conversation on the matter would only make things worse and push the teen further away. I would still insist that they join the family in church until they are out on their own, but for a teen there would be much more dialogue then for a younger child.

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  7. for my kids and I…church was not even questioned. We went to church as a family–we prayed as a family, we read scripture as a family. I did however make allowances for them when they were small. For instance…when we were in revival, my expectations for them were not that they would sit quietly night after night for long periods of time. They would sit with me in church through the singing service, then quietly get up and go to my classroom (I taught Sunday School) and they were allowed to have a snack that I left for them, and color quietly in the room with the door closed and locked.

    When my children came to the point where they had accepted Christ as their Savior, eventually the time also came when they wanted to sleep in on Sunday morning. That was when I had a serious talk with them. I told them that I would prefer that they come to church with me, but their obedience to God was between them and God. If they would pray about it–with a willing heart to obey God as He led them–and they still felt it was ok to stay home, that would be fine. On the other hand, if God led them to go with us to church, that would also be fine.

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    1. My folks “made” us go to church too growing up… It wasn’t that big of a deal to me then and I respected my parents so I went without too much complaint. When I grew up, I remained involved. My thinking then was that “church” was the virtual center of the Christian experience; they are inseparable (so I thought). Now I’m in my mid 40’s and have traveled a lot of miles both inside and outside of church world. I’ve learned that “church” is irrelevant to a walk with God. The problem is that man has put God’s label on his own product. People today actually think that “church” is in the Bible, but what they don’t understand is that the word “church” used in our English bibles does NOT mean a religious organization that you frequent once a week to hear sermons and sing songs. The word is a representation of ALL those who have been called out of darkness by the Lord Jesus Christ into His family. This is a SPIRITUAL house of LIVING stones, assembled in Christ. The Lord’s Church exists regardless of religious organizations or weekly meetings and sermonizing preachers. It’s not that those things are necessarily bad, but they are simply irrelevant to a relationship with Christ. Now, Christ may lead some to gather with one group or another and that’s fine because it’s Christ leading, but no true follower of Jesus should ever imagine that “church” (as we know it today) is some kind of expectation by God or that it is even designed by Him. I’ve been walking with Jesus outside the four walls of churchianity for the past 14+ years and have grown more spiritually than I ever did inside. God has connected me with people along the journey to provide those wonderful occasions of tangible fellowship, but I know that being IN the Fellowship of Christ is what’s essential. I no longer disconnect my daily life during the week from my “spiritual” life on the weekend (i.e. Sundays at church). My faith must interact in all areas of my life all week long… and if I don’t know how to feed myself spiritually rather than expecting one man to do it one day each week, I most certainly will starve to death. Christ in us is the hope of glory, not church in us. Church is something we are because we are in Him. The Lord’s body is not a song service, a program, an event, or a ritual. It is Christ in us and through us. My parents, thank God, taught me this as well as dragging me to church. What I’ve learned from my life is that I will do things a little differently with my kids. I will disciple them to follow Jesus and teach them how to live IN Christ IN this world. I don’t imagine that “church” as most people refer to it today will ever be a comfortable part of my existence as long as I live. Peace.

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