Wednesday, January 22, 2014

LEADERSHIP: What magic bullet will keep millennials in the church?

I rarely (ok, I never) repost somebody else's work because I consider this blog a place of collected resources as opposed to my profound opinions. Mostly because I don't think my opinions are necessarily that profound. They are, after all, opinions. But I keep hearing people talk about what to do to keep millennials in the church and I keep hearing about how we keep asking them what we can do to keep them in the church. Seriously?

In my opinion, this article, How to Keep Millennials in the Church? Let's keep church uncool. is right on the mark. I keep hearing and experiencing people in many different careers adjusting their choices based on the opinions of others. People, including those in ministry, seem more concerned with how they are perceived than who they really are or what they truly believe and this problem persists throughout society.

Politicians make policy based on polls. Good or bad, right or wrong, if people want smut on TV that's what we'll give them. Teachers allow parents and students to influence what we teach and how we grade. We ask teenagers what we can do to keep them interested in high school long enough to graduate. In graduate school a professor asked my class, "Is this what you want to learn in graduate school?" I thought, "What I want?  How about what I need? Isn't the professor supposed to know what I need to learn to earn an M.A. and require it of me?" I've seen colleges and universities ask newly graduated students if they feel prepared for their career. How would a student know? They haven't entered the work force yet!

This is why I keep pushing for a change in education in the church and encouraging those in ministry to stop expecting people to believe because we have fun or entertaining worship services and games or activities before hand to lure people into a study. If you teach them well, allow them to question, and challenge them to think about what God tells them they will be engaged in something life changing... or life giving.

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