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Shaking Up the Status Quo

Shaking Up the Status Quo:
Why the Younger Generation will not Stand for the
Tame and Traditional Church!
Dr. Tom Cheyney, Executive Director of Missions

The Bible declares in 1 Peter 2:9 as Christians:

“We (you) are the ones chosen by God, chosen for the high calling of priestly work, chosen to be a holy people, God’s instruments to do His work and speak out for Him, to tell others of the night-and-day difference He made for you—from nothing to something, from rejected to accepted.”[1]

As Christ followers we are a privileged generation and yet in the midst of a culture that stumbles over Jesus Christ, disobeys the message of Christ, and then persecutes any who embrace Christ, believers can easily become discouraged from continuing in the journey with Christ. The thought of further growing pains is certainly not attractive to everyone. So Peter laid out in ascending order some of the incredible spiritual riches that believers have in Christ. This encourages us and reminds us of the value God places on each of us. But often it is demanding to do the work of ministry amongst the generational differences, which make up most churches. I want to look at in this edition of the E-magazine: “Shaking Up the Status Quo: Why the Younger Generation will not Stand for the Tame and Traditional Church!” 

[1] Eugene H. Peterson, The Message: The Bible in Contemporary Language (Colorado Springs, CO: NavPress, 2005), 1 Peter 2:9–10.

Twenty years ago, I shared thirteen predictions in one of my books that would come true for what was beginning to be called back then Generation X. It is amazing to see that while not every one of those predictions has come true, the overwhelming majority of them have. My favorite one was that this X-er Generation would become avid coffee consumers and would focus less on sweets. Today this “X Generation” is the generation, which has led the coffee revolution.

Then there was the “Millennial generation” a subset of the Y generation which has entered the work place during the last decade and their dreams and desires are much different than previous generations needs and necessities. How does this group look at churches today when they desire a place to worship? It would help all of us to understand their likes and dislikes in order to advance the gospel to upcoming generations. More recently the “Y Generation” has become much the talk as it is impacting the local church and many believe that this generation is the churches last chance to save their future. Take a look at the Generational Timeline below to see where you fall in relation to the seven specific sub-groups that make up the various generations found in most churches.

There is a shaking going on in the North American church today, and this shaking of the status quo, is being led by the “Millennials,” the “X-er Generation” and the “Y Generation.” No longer will the young consent for the tried and true forms of their grandparents and their grandparent’s parents worship experience. The younger generations will not stand for the tame and traditional and if your church simply refuses to embrace this new reality it might become one of those 8,000+ churches, which will begin closing their doors annually. Someone has wisely said that “if you seek real happiness which will last a life time, invest in and help the next generation.”

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