The Next Generation

Nathan Ros

Churches are seeing a mass exodus of young people walking away from their faith in their late teens and early twenties. There is a study that says around 80% or higher walk away from their faith. What a mind-blowing statistic! This number not only saddens me but also makes me question, why? Why are young people walking away from their faith? Why are they conforming to culture and not conforming to Christ?  What can I do as a parent or ministry worker to help the next generation?

I may not have the answer to these questions, but looking back on my tenure working with young people at our church, I have seen so many young people that have made it for the Lord. Praise be to God that the majority of our teens, though all are not “perfect,” have been faithful to the Lord. We’re not seeing the mass exodus in this church that many churches are seeing.

In the next few paragraphs, I would like to share what I really believe has helped our young people.

Godly Parents—I have never seen “perfect” parents, but I have seen parents that love the Lord and try to live consistent, godly lives that bring honor to the Lord. Most of the stable teens come from homes that have parents that are consistent with biblical values and live out their faith. They are not without failures, but they are undoubtedly faithful to the Lord.  These parents pray for their children, get involved in their lives, teach and mentor, and are responsible for the character building of their children. They don’t play the blame game, but embrace our church as a team to help their children.

A Father-led Home—What is lacking in our country today are men! Pastor Esposito would often say, “We have a weak country because we have weak communities; we have weak communities because we have weak churches; we have weak churches because we have weak men.” Honestly, I believe our country is in the shape it is in because our men are weak! We have men that are more concerned and passionate about sports, stocks, making money, hobbies, and fun than they are about their families.

Hard, Pointed Preaching—I am not saying we need to have hateful or judgmental preaching. I am not saying that our preaching should be insensitive. What I am saying is that our churches have scaled back immensely on biblical, loving, hard, passionate, and pointed preaching!  We have way too many “cool” youth pastors and “bussin” preachers that care more about their social status than preaching the truth. We want to be socially relevant, but instead, let’s be Savior-sensitive.

But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine: That the aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience. The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things; That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed. Young men likewise exhort to be sober minded. Titus 2:1-6

Life Enjoyment in Serving God--Serving the Lord is awesome! There is nothing like knowing and doing the will of God. Many times, we as ministry workers or parents portray to our young people, without even knowing, that serving Christ is a sacrifice or even a burden! We are serving the Lord because we “have to” and not because we want to! This should not be the case. Serving God is AMAZING! We not only have joy here on this earth, but we also have treasure we are sending to Heaven. What an awesome God we have!  The slogan for McDonald’s can be our slogan for ministry: “I’m Loving It!”    

A Mindset to Develop Disciples of Christ—Pointing our young people to “sell out” for the Lord has never been a secret in our church. We push our young people not just to conform to the rules or our standards, but to love the Lord from the inside out. We try to do our best to teach young people the biblical reasons why, the benefits of living by God’s principles, and the loss that we will face if we choose self or the world over God’s will.

2 Timothy 2:2 And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.

Nathan Ros

Bro Ros does a great job in every aspect of ministry that he serves in! He leads our Khmer ministry, youth ministry, and is the teacher of the Grace Adult Bible Class. He and his wife have four wonderful children.

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