July 9, 2017
You Are Not Alone
According to recent demographic surveys, one of the fastest growing belief categories is “none.” While there hasn’t been a surge in atheism, people who have identified their preferred religious affiliation as “none” are growing at an alarming rate. Many of these “nones” were once affiliated with an established Christian denomination, but are now more content to stay away. If we are being truthful with ourselves, the responsibility for that exodus from the church is ours. We are finding that it is less about our culture and more about the failure of the church to be the church.
Why are they leaving? Most de-conversion stories don’t have anything to do with Christianity- they have to do with Christians. What we have been told as a child or as a new believer might not meet the test of a more critical adult perspective. Questions we should be asking them are: Who told you what God is like? Who or what have you based the foundation of your current faith perspective on? Instead of basing our faith on a “somebody told me so God’ maybe it is time to talk about the God that Jesus exemplified.
Questions for discussion:
· What do you think was the main point of Matt’s message?
· Of the types of gods Matt alluded to, which one could you most relate to? Explain.
· Is the foundation of your faith based on someone’s description of God or a personal experience of God?
· What are some practical ways we can sure up our faith foundation?
Do something about it:
This exercise begins with an honest, personal, introspective review. Spend some time thinking about “Why you are a Christian” and “Where you got your information about God/Jesus?” After you have had time to process that information, discuss your findings with someone you trust, someone who you believe has a strong foundation in the faith.
Matthew 7:24-27; 18:1-5; Luke 22:24-27; Romans 1:20; John 1:1-4,14; 10:10