The other day I got spam from Teen Mania Ministries, telling me about their “Battle Cry” leadership summit. The web site features a video with the introduction, “The Enemy Has Launched An Attack — And An Army Is Rising To Respond”. …Let’s overlook the inappropriateness of using war language during wartime, shall we?
The next few clips show pyrotechnics. Yes, stage fireworks, and an arena of kids jumping in sync. …Let’s overlook the fact that if you use large, expensive productions (with pyrotechnics!) to get kids excited, there is no way the local church can match that, so the excitement inevitably becomes a let-down.
Scrolling down the page, it says, “This generation of teens is the largest in history — and current trends show that only 4% will be evangelical believers by the time they become adults. Compare this with 34% of adults today who are evangelicals. We are on the verge of a catastrophe.” Let’s overlook the implication that “evangelicals” are the only Christ-followers worth counting. Whatever it is, this projected shift is large. It is worthy of our attention.
So, what is this catastrophe we are on the verge of?
“Imagine an America at 4%:
- Church attendance dwindles
- Tithes and offerings are at an all-time low
- New church buildings sit empty
- Live-giving sermons go unheard
- The role of a church leader becomes irrelevant”
I am not making this stuff up.
If this is what evangelicals are about, then you can include me in the statistics of adults who used to consider themselves evangelical but now want to distance themselves from that term. Every point you listed is about how your church programs will be affected. You didn’t even mention the teens themselves, or the world into which they are growing up.
Shame on you. You deserve to dwindle and fade away.