Last Friday I was interviewed for an article by Piet Levy that ran in the Washington Post. We had a great conversation about this important topic and I was grateful for the opportunity to share my thoughts. Students walking away from their faith was a big reason that I wrote Welcome to College: A Christ-follower's Guide for the Journey and it also prompted Sean McDowell and I to write Is God Just a Human Invention? to deal with the toughest intellectual objections to the Christian faith raised by the New Atheists. We must do a better job equipping the next generation so that they are prepared for the opportunities and challenges of college life and beyond.
"Millions of college freshmen are overwhelmed right now trying to make new friends, adjusting to more rigorous school work and learning to live away from home. Whether they also find time for church during their first two weeks on campus will set the mold for the rest of their college years, according to new research. These findings come from a six-year study of approximately 500 Christian youth group members, conducted by Fuller Theological Seminary’s Fuller Youth Institute in Pasadena, Calif. The study’s results will be released Sept. 17 in “Sticky Faith: Everyday Ideas to Build Lasting Faith in Your Kids.” The book examines why, according to a 2006 report by Christian research firm Barna Group, 61 percent of 20-somethings who regularly attended church as teenagers later left the pews...." (Read the rest of this article)
In my forthcoming book Think Christianly: Looking at the Intersection of Faith and Culture (October with Zondervan) I offer suggestions as to what we can do to reverse this trend among students and help them cultivate a mature faith. One thing we must do is help students realize that Christianity actually rises to the level of being of true or false. It is capable of being rationally investigated and defended (1 Pet. 3:15 cf. Jude 3)....
When all is said and done, may we be like the Psalmist who prayed, “O God, You have taught me from my youth, And I still declare Your wondrous deeds. And even when I am old and gray, O God, do not forsake me, Until I declare Your strength to this generation, Your power to all who are to come” (Psalm 71:17-18). That's as missional as it gets.