She was raised in a Christian family, and she was frustrated. No one seemed able or willing to provide her with satisfactory answers to her big questions about life, God, and reality.
Halfway through high school, she abandoned her religious upbringing.
It happens far too often, doesn’t it?
A young person has questions, but instead of engaging them and helping them wrestle through to the answers, adult Christians (including parents) often prescribe more devotional experiences as the answer.
However, encouraging the emotional side of faith more does nothing to satisfy the intellect.
What happens when a young person goes off to college, having never received a solid foundation for thinking through why he or she subscribes to a biblical worldview?
They become vulnerable to “empty deceit” (Col 2:8).
Here’s the thing: God created human beings with a brilliant mind. We are commanded to “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength (Deuteronomy 6:5).”
Loving God with all we’ve got includes loving God with our mind.
That said, Christian parents must overcome three things in order to pass on a faith which stands up to intellectual scrutiny.
It’s easy to feel intimidated by all the voices in our ungodly culture who insist there is no God, or that it doesn’t matter if there is a God.
Anti-gospel philosophies abound, especially on school campuses –but that doesn’t make them true.
Christianity is the most logical, defensible worldview that exists. That’s because it’s the truth, and the truth has nothing to hide, nothing to apologize for, and nothing to fear.
Which leads me to the next point.
If we don’t know how to demonstrate that Christianity is logical, if we don’t know there are many, incredibly accurate copies of original Bible manuscripts, if we can’t cite evidence for Jesus’ resurrection, then we can’t pass that knowledge along to our kids.
They need to know this stuff. We need to know this stuff.
We need to be able to explain that every other worldview besides the biblical worldview is based on idol worship and will inevitably contradict itself.
Every. Single. One.
Only Christianity makes sense of life, history, and human experience in a consistent, coherent way.
The biblical worldview offers the most sensible, satisfactory answers to our biggest questions, because an infinite, personal God has revealed himself to us through creation and his word to give us his transcendent perspective.
To articulate this to your kids, you might need to study up. Pay attention to their questions and offer to help them find answers. Grab some good resources. Here’s one: Why I Believe, by Chip Ingram.
3. Disordered priorities.
If we become too busy with the wrong things, we will not make time for what’s most important.
Remember, every ungodly philosophy is based on idol worship.
Let’s say, for example, you get sucked into worshiping the idol of people-pleasing. If that’s the case, you’ll spend time and energy on performance and achievement so that others think well of you and your family.
You end up shuttling your kids to one game or practice or recital after another, with no time as a family to talk about deeper spiritual issues.
Your priorities are disordered.
How do we overcome fear, ignorance and disordered priorities?
By engaging the questions and arming ourselves with the knowledge of the truth. By building our lives on the truth, rather than following the world’s idolatrous patterns.
Once she found answers to her questions, the young woman who left her religious roots as a teen came to fully embrace Christianity. She’s Nancy Pearcey, the author of Finding Truth. (I owe some of these thoughts to her.)
May you fearlessly teach your children the knowledge of the truth with great confidence.