Posted on Thu, Jul 8, 2010
Recently First Baptist Church was bubbling with excitement as our children came in to enjoy a week of Vacation Bible School made possible by the many volunteers who were very faithful to work and pray for our little ones. Many adults have fond memories of Vacation Bible School. Only once a year children have such an opportunity, however, Sunday School classes are provided every Sunday and are just as important and rewarding. Research shows that being actively involved in church has lifelong benefits. However, it is extremely important to start early in life. Children who attend church services regularly have a much greater probability of accepting Christ at an early age. What if we could find a well-researched and statistically proven program that on average can lead to a happier, healthier life for our children and grandchildren. We would sign on the dotted line immediately. Research shows that we have such a program available to all free of charge and it is called ActiveChurchParticipation. Some benefits of this program are:
-significantly reduce your child’s use and risk from alcohol, tobacco, and drugs
-dramatically lower their risk of suicide
-reduce their risk for committing a crime
-improve their attitude at school and increase their school participation
-reduce their risk for rebelliousness
-reduce the likelihood that they would binge drink in college
-improve their odds for a “very happy” life
-provide children with a caring extended family
-provide them with a life-long moral compass
-and also statistically improve the odds that they will lead an active church life in their adult years.
These benefits of Active Church Participation are supported by research from various universities and polling organizations. In study after study, children who actively engage in a faith community on a regular basis are rewarded with SIGNIFICANTLY reduced likelihood of life problems and risky behaviors, and stand to significantly improve their odds of a happier, healthier life. Studies show the same results for adults as well.
But here’s the thing… To increase the odds of our children receiving these benefits, we can’t wait. Research shows the following statistics:
*Children between the ages of 5 and 13 have a 32% probability of accepting Jesus Christ as their Savior.
*The probability of accepting Christ drops to 4% for those who are between the ages of 14 and 18.
*Those older than 18 have a 6% probability of accepting Jesus Christ as their Savior.
Salvation is priceless!! We can know that through salvation, our children are in God’s hands throughout their lifetime and eternity to come. We would know that when God calls, our loved ones would spend eternity in Heaven.
Parents who truly want the best for their children should get them involved at church now and regularly. The Bible says in Proverbs 22:6 “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.” Research shows that the spiritual maturity process should start at a young age. Active parenting is vitally important, but it also takes a caring “village” to raise a child. ActiveChurchParticipation provides an extended faith family that stimulates the intellectual, social and spiritual development of children through long-term caring relationships. And faithful churches can provide this important ingredient.
Christians often testify to the fact that their faith has helped them through many trying times along life’s pathway. Children face stressful situations at an early age and can benefit greatly by knowing Christ as Savior and being comfortable with praying about the situations they are faced with. Problems facing young people have gotten worse over the last 30 years, and Sunday School and church attendance has fallen over this same period.
Research information in this article was compiled from studies conducted by the following:
Gallop Poll Pew Research Center Center for Disease Control Barna Research Group
IndianaUniversity The University of Michigan National Institute for Healthcare Research
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