The Face of Christianity – Extinct or Effective?

                 Is the face of Christianity on a fast track to spiritual extinction? What do you think? No, the message of Christ is not and won’t ever be extinct. But what about the messengers? Are we losing ground in a world of shocking statistics, misplaced priorities and powerless influence? 

Some claim the problems of today are no worse than they were in past generations. I grew up in the fifties, so I know I’m past my prime. But I do try to stay somewhat savvy through our children and grandchildren. It seems to me the stress factors and challenges are far greater for families today than they were then.

Recently, I sat with a group of younger women sharing their heartbreak over the direction of the teenagers in their school. Granted, many high schools across America are confronted with an alarming degree of rebellious teenagers, wasted potential and desperate parents. Yet, when it’s your school, your friends, your children—it’s frightening, isn’t it?

Since I left these women, I’ve been deeply disturbed. My heart aches for the distraught parents and misguided children in our broken society. Some parents are unwilling to see the problems, much less do anything about them. But there are those who are doing everything they can to help their teenagers find their way.

When nothing seems to work, the process of parenting can seem hopeless. Instead of breakthroughs, there’s despair on every side. Just when they think it can’t get any worse, it does.

I may be an obsolete optimist. But doesn’t every person given the opportunity want to succeed in life? No well-meaning parent plans or wants to fail in their most important assignment. Kids don’t set out to make everyone around them miserable, as well as themselves. Do they?

And yet, there are many battle-worn families who’ve given up any hope of emotionally healthy relationships in their homes. Instead, they struggle to merely survive their various responsibilities and roles.

Do we as Christians have any workable solutions for hurting families who’ve “tried everything” to no avail? We are the face of Christianity. If we have nothing tangible to offer, then perhaps we have become extinct in our witness for Christ.


Note: Perhaps adults and teenagers today have more in common than we dare admit. Join me next week to examine this premise. In Pt. 2 of The Face of Christianity, we’ll discuss how to avoid a common malady I call the three W’s. Hopefully, we’ll discover the wisdom to not just survive the challenges, but to thrive in the midst of them!

2 Responses to “The Face of Christianity – Extinct or Effective?”
  1. Great post, Liz. I agree-I think it’s much harder than it used to be. Looking forward to next week’s post. 🙂

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