How I Landed on the Family-Integrated Church

One of the reasons I led my church to be family-integrated has to do with my personal background.  I was raised in a wonderful Christian home by godly, loving parents.  We were as active in church as you could be.  But today, I'm the only one of five brothers who is walking with Christ.  That's an eighty-percent failure rate.  That is totally unacceptable.  And my family is not unique.  Most of the Christian families I grew up with experienced the same thing.  More often than not, kids who grow in a Christian home are not following Christ as adults.  Devoted Christian parents are losing most of their children to the world! 

This has caused me to rethink the church.  Instead of just doing church as usual, I have been asking, "What is the best way to reach children for Christ?  What can the church do to give children the best chance of becoming lifetime followers of Jesus?  How is the existing model missing the mark?"  After much thought, discussion, prayer, and study, I concluded that the answer is parents.  Parents must be equipped to take the lead in discipling their children.  Parents must be taught to disciple their kids instead of dropping them off to be discipled by someone else.

If the ultimate answer to reaching the next generation is parents, then we also need to make some changes to the way we do church.  Instead taking kids away from their parents at church, we need to keep them together.  This way parents can continue the mentoring process while at church.  They can set an example, as well as teach their children how to behave and participate in church life.  Children will be surrounded by mature Christian adults rather than placed in room full of immaturity.  Children will be incorporated into the life of the church from the beginning instead of waiting until they graduate from high school and are old enough for "Big Church."

It's a bold move, but an 80% failure rate is unacceptable.  I have six children.  I'm not satisfied with just one or two following Christ for life; I want to see all six of them walking with Jesus as adults.  I want to see my grandchildren walking with Jesus.

If you are interested in the family-integrated church, reach out to me and I'd be glad to answer your questions.  Or just show up on Sunday at Church Acadiana and join us for worship.  Our vision is to equip parents to reach the next generation for Christ.


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