Why I Stopped Going To Church, Even Though I Love Jesus & Believe In God

Why I Stopped Going To Church, Even Though I Believe In God
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A recent survey on young people and the decline of church attendance among the Christian faith made me realize I'm not the only one who left and not coming back.

Ten years ago I began attending church regularly with my mom and older sister. I was 12 years old and had an immense interest in learning about the word of God.

Why do people leave the church?

Over the years, my faith began to decline and that same fire in my heart suddenly burned out.

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The question circulated in my head all day and night, "What happened?" There was no desire to learn or even want to attend church anymore.

There are several reasons why I decided to leave the church.

I can tell you from personal experience that I didn't want to go to church for three reasons:

1. I left the church because going made me feel like I lost my rights.

I did not like being forced to go (thanks to having a Hispanic mother).

2. I left the church because going meant being tired.

I did not like waking up early on Sunday. It's called a day of rest for a reason.

3. I left the church because I felt socially-isolated.

The last became the more important reason — I did not like the response I would get when I told people I was Christian.

All my fellow Christians and church-goers know what I'm talking about, and their reasons are likely the same as to why they stopped attending church.

It's the way someone's hair stands up and how their back hunches at the pure sound of "God" or "the Bible."

I felt as though I were bothering people if I mentioned anything about church, God or Jesus. But, was it my fault they were the ones asking me what my beliefs were?

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It is no surprise when people begin talking about religion, everyone around them slowly starts walking backward and fades out of the scene when one of those people in the crowd is actually a Christian.

Truth is, each generation has a different viewpoint and stance on a very hot topic. Why is it that most of us can't talk about our beliefs without feeling chastised?

Evangelism is among one of the Christian practices in the church. For those of you who don't know, it is simply defined as spreading the word of God and how their lives have transformed through following the faith.

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Young people like me are leaving the church, and we aren't coming back.

'Reviving Evangelism' is research conducted by Barna that gives us more insight into each generation's thoughts on Christianity and evangelism.

Data shows that 73% of Millennials are confident in their faith and know how to respond to someone when asked about their beliefs vs lower percentages of the other generations — Gen X (66%), Boomers (59%), and Elders (56%).

Why is it that younger people are able to spread their own accounts to their faith than the other groups? Maybe it is because these people do not feel inclined to defend their beliefs anymore.

Spending my whole life trying to talk about my Christian life in a world where Christianity is frowned upon can become exhausting and also very discouraging for other people like me.

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Here's a more relatable metaphor for those who may not be involved with religion. Let's say I have a favorite movie I've watched thousands of times throughout my life.

And sometimes, I'll slip in a reference or scene into a conversation with your friends or colleagues. The first few times, I'll have some of them laugh or even agree with my reference!

The next couple of times I'll notice the bored faces and hear, "Boy, you sure do talk a lot about something we don't care about."

It sounds pretty discouraging, doesn't it? Being told that something you're passionate about is not interesting or worth mentioning can be extremely detrimental to the way we view that thing.

I may not want to talk about it anymore, nor would I want to be asked about anything similar.

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Based on the studies conducted by Barna, I'm not alone. Some generational groups do not feel it is appropriate to disclose information about their religion.

Millennials are at 47% while Gen X is at 27%, Boomers at 19% and Elders 20%.

Whether you want to or not, evangelism is a key element in my walk with God. I find this in 1 Peter 3:15: "But in your hearts, revere Christ as Lord."

Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect."

There are literally so many verses in the Bible that tell us evangelism is important! It is not saying I have to run up to people on the street and scream, "JESUS IS ALIVE AND LOVES YOU!!!!!"

What God asks of us is to make these relationships with our community and share the love, word, and testimonies we have.

At the end of the day, no statistics should bring me down and prevent me from doing and saying what I believe. I should do what I feel is best and do not let the world discourage me in my walk, and neither should you.

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Destiny Duprey is a writer who covers spirituality, pop culture, love and relationships.

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