There has been an increase in the distance between the Church and Generation Z. Generation Z are those who were born between 1999 – 2015, you know teenagers and young children who have never known life without a smart phone, having their own laptop, or even video game systems.
Back in January, Christianity Today ran a piece about a very hefty study done by the Barna Group, which is a Christian research company. This study shed new light on some striking social trends taking place within Generation Z.
These social trends are that people in Gen Z are twice as likely, as their parents’ generation, to either be or become an atheist or a member of the LGBTQ+ Community.
This Barna study found that 12% of Generation Z will describe their sexual orientation as something other than heterosexual, as compared to 7% of Millennials and about 4% Generation X. What is even more interesting, is that 37% of Gen Z say that their sexual orientation plays a significant, if not the key role, in their identity as a whole. Meanwhile 28% of Gen X parents believe similarly.
These numbers may not seem significant, but when looked at closely, they reveal a widening gap between God and current generations.
So, when it comes to religion, Generation Z is even further ahead in the statistics of either not believing in God or not subscribing to any form of religion at all. Since most people in Gen Z are being raised by young Gen X or older Millennials, most of which do not claim any religion, it only makes sense that Generation Z find themselves unsubscribing to Judeo-Christian values and looking at the world through lenses of zero-moralistic absolutes.
Hence forth, the Barna group has labeled them, “Post Christian.”
Gen Z is currently walking the halls as College sophomores, or have filled the halls of high school and middle schools across the world. They are who surround your children each and every day.
So how are we to respond, how can we begin to reach a truthless generation with Christ? Here are three steps that
you may find helpful.
Step one: Know the difference between Generation Z and Millennials. Millennials are currently living their lives, they are out of college and in the world. They are working, running businesses, and are on the forefront of society in both Christian and secular circles. Generation Z is in college, all the way down to people 3 years old. They are even being raised by some Millennials.
That may seem like a small step but it will prove to be helpful in your ministry to your children and the young adults around you.
Step two: Seek to understand them. Too often generations of people are studied and beaten back by the generation that came before for being different. If you were to google “studies on Gen Z” or even millennials you will see words like, “Entitled/Indifferent/and Lost.” Those negative buzzwords are what seemingly describe the current generations. However, if you sit down and listen to them you will find compassion, eagerness, and ingenuity flowing from their veins.
Step three: Genuinely pray for them. Don’t simply pray that they put down their phones and open their eyes. Pray for them to seek after God and become more like Christ. Whether that means they continue to look at the screen or go outside. Someone can become more like Christ through their phone.
These three steps are by no means exhaustives but they can prove to be bridge builders.
So this week seek to build a bridge to Generation Z. Pray for them and attempt to have conversations with them, even if that conversation is through Twitter, Instagram, or Snapchat.
Click here to research the Barna group
Can you believe that we officially have less than 90 days until the biggest CVCYouth event of the year, and possibly of all time!?
Neither can we…..
We are getting more and more excited as the days grow closer, and to keep the excitement going, we will be releasing the Frontlines theme THIS SATURDAY!
So be sure to keep checking our social media pages for all the
clues yet to come!
Registration is open, early bird pricing will only last until Sunday April 15th, and regular pricing begins Monday the 16th!
Click the buttons below for registration and a link to the scholarship application.
If your child is a Junior or Senior in High School then this event is for them!
April 27th – 29th, we will be heading up to Lake Chautauqua in NY for a nice relaxing weekend.
Registration is only open until Monday April 16th, and the price is ONLY $30!
Click below to register!
COLLIDE FAMILY TIME
We all have questions, even BIG Questions about God, about the Bible, Heaven, Hell, etc. This week we have started our new series “Big Questions”, where we will be going to God’s Word to answer the Big Questions of middle school students!
This week one of out interns, Kyle Cryan answered the questions:
“How is God able to answer everyone’s payers all at once?”
“How come God doesn’t answer our prayers right away?”
Kyle had the students think about all the times that they try to sneak notes when the teacher is facing the board, try to sneak dessert before dinner when Mom or Dad are not looking, but somehow, they always catch you!
Moments like those are a lot like how God can hear, understand, and answer everyone’s prayers all at once.
Kyle then taught the students, two very important characteristics of God. God is:
He had the students open their Bibles and read Psalm 139: 1 – 6. He then explained that those verses were describing Omniscience.
God can answer everyone’s prayers because He is omniscient. Meaning that He is all knowing! He knows when we are going to talk, the words we are going to speak, and all the words we have ever said.
Kyle then had the students look at Psalm 139: 7 – 12, and explained that those verses are describing the Omnipresence of God.
God can answer everyone’s prayers because He is Omnipresent. Meaning that He is everywhere! He is everywhere all at once, He is in this very room, His is with the missionaries that serve all over the world. He is everywhere!
Kyle answered the first question by sharing that God can answer and understand everyone’s prayers all at once because He is Omniscient and Omnipresent.
He then had the students think back to the times they try to eat dessert before dinner, and why they think their parents may not want them to eat before dinner. He explained that it was most likely because their parents wanted them to have something much better and healthier for dinner, instead of junk food.
God often works like that!
He prepares something better for us, and He only ever gives us what is best for us. He does not hold back from answering our prayers because He hates us, but rather the exact opposite!
God does not always answer our prayers because He loves us.
God sees everything, He knows the past, the present, and the future. Therefore, we must trust that God’s timing is perfect and that He wants what is best for us.
This week take time to talk to your student(s) about what you think God is trying to teach you through your unanswered prayers, and what ways you can remember the characteristics of God that we learned this week.
IMPACT FAMILY TIME
Before Easter, Clay Mayat shared that for those who are in Christ, they are adopted into the family of God and are now heirs with Christ.
This week Pastor Joe Valenti continued our Resuscitate series and spoke from Romans 8:18-30
He began his sermon by sharing several stories about suffering. Suffering is not pleasant and we often wonder why God would allow it in our lives.
He explained that there are many churches that try to “sell” Christianity by telling people, “If you follow Jesus, your life will be good! No more health problems, no more unhappiness, all the pain will go away!”
However, that is not true. That is called prosperity Gospel and it is a false gospel. On this side of heaven, our aim here is never happiness, our aim is eternity. We live in a world that is broken and tainted by sin.
Therefore, we will experience suffering.
Joe presented 7 things about suffering that we see in our text.
We see that there are 3 Groans, 3 Promises, and 1 Truth taught.
The 3 Groans:
1. Creation Groans (vs. 19-22)
2. Human Groaning
3. The Spirit Groans
The 3 Promises:
1. Creation Will Be Restored
2. Our Adoption Will Be Finalized
3. Our Bodies Will Be Restored
1. He Also Glorified
Joe explained that because of Adam’s sin, sin entered the world. Creation was no longer the way that God had designed it to be. He cursed it to futility because sin is just that serious to God!
Suffering depicts the brokenness and futility of sin.
For those who have accepted Christ as their Savior, we must understand that We as humans are still going to face suffering, but God knows and has a plan for it all. We are in a state of weakness. Therefore, we need help. We need the help of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit intercedes on our behalf because He knows our hearts and He too is groaning. He prays perfectly on our behalf.
Joe finished his sermon by sharing the truth that verse 30 of chapter 8 proclaims.
“And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified.”
God has promised to restore creation, to restore our bodies, and to finalize our adoption.
He has already completed everything we will need in order to make it to the end. He has a plan to bring all of creation back to it’s original design, and for that we hope.
We Wait Patiently on the Lord.
Take time this week to talk about suffering with your student(s), and ways for you to persevere through it.