Barna Group research says there are five reasons why three in five kids leave the church after they’re fifteen.1 First? They say churches “seem overprotective.” Most young people in the church want “their faith in Christ to connect to the world they live in.” Unfortunately, most youth groups do little to prepare them to engage the culture. Much of what they’re learning is “stifling, fear-based and risk-averse.” Many believe “Christians demonize everything outside the church”—“ignoring problems of the real world”—and are “too concerned with movies, music, and video games that are harmful.” It’s hard when you read Scripture that says to be in the world but not of the world. What can change it? Relationship-building and discernment skills rather than scare tactics. Read Philippians 1:9 and 10.

1Based on “Six Reasons Young Christians Leave Church,”

Suggested Reading: Philippians 1:9-10,, John 17:14-19