6 Signs Your Kids Will Eventually Believe “Nothing in Particular”
By Natasha Crain
By now, you’ve probably seen the headlines from the most recent Pew Forum study on religion in America: The number of Christians continues to decline sharply, while the number of those who are “unaffiliated” with a religion continues to grow by leaps and bounds. The “unaffiliated” group includes atheists, agnostics, and people saying they believe “nothing in particular.”
I’ve talked a lot about atheism on this blog, and I absolutely believe it’s the number one threat to our kids’ faith today. But it’s also important to understand that the group growing fastest is those who believe “nothing in particular.” Most of these people believe in some kind of God, many consider themselves “spiritual,” and some pray regularly…but they don’t identify with a specific religion.
While your kids may get pulled into atheism by its vocal proponents, they may inadvertently fall into “nothing in particular” if they aren’t raised with a faith that gives them reason to believe something specific.
Here are 6 signs your kids will eventually believe “nothing in particular.”
1. You talk about God 50 times more often than you talk about Jesus.
OK, I can’t quantify that exactly, but the point is that faith can start sounding very generic to your kids if you almost always talk about God and rarely talk about Jesus—for example, why Jesus lived on Earth, what He taught while here, who He claimed to be, who others said He was, why He had to die, and what He accomplished on the cross.
The possible result: Your kids won’t see the need for faith in Jesus—Christianity—specifically. Subsequently, any view that embraces some notion of God starts sounding roughly equivalent. That can eventually turn into a distaste for religious “labels” and a rejection of Christianity’s exclusive truth claims. Your kids might hold on to a generic view of God, but for all intents and purposes, they’ll end up believing “nothing in particular.”
2. You mix secular and biblical wisdom to the point they’re indistinguishable.
Scan your Facebook newsfeed. You’ll see links to all kinds of fluffy life wisdom that people eat up like giant turkey legs at the county fair. “Be true to yourself!” “Be an expert on you!” “Live life to the fullest!” “Here’s what you need to do to have a meaningful life!” Many Christians don’t even realize that these seemingly innocuous pieces of self-centered advice run contrary to a Christ-centered worldview. (See this post as an example.) If you’re not consciously drawing the lines for your kids between the Christian and secular worldviews, the distinctiveness of Christian living (both the what and the why) can quickly get lost in a sea of feel-good substitutes…
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