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I'm a preacher's kid, so I can tell you from experience why I left. It is true that preacher's kids are under pressure to live a certain way, to be perfect in everyone's eyes because of our parents. It is very hard to live up to, especially when I didn't really know God for myself. I believed in Him, was even baptized in Jesus name and filled with the HolyGhost, but I didn't have a RELATIONSHIP with Him. Because I didn't have relationship with Him, the second my father the pastor fell, I left the church. You see, I held my father on a very high pedestal, thinking he could do no wrong! That was the problem! I was looking at man and not seeking after God! I did backslide, but I always had a conviction when I did something wrong. I do know that God never left me, even when I was in a club He was tugging at my heart. I remember one time specifically, I was drunk and God had me look around at the people in the club. He said, "YOU DON'T BELONG HERE." I sobered right up and left the club and never looked back. I got back into church and am now a choir director. My point is to all preacher's kids: please have a relationship with God. Don't look at men, men fall daily. God is truly the only one we can lean on and trust.
Apostacy is rampant all over the USA. Millions are approaching faith, then turning away. Millions genuinely, authentically profess faith, then drift away. The reasons in both cases are many. The allure of power, prestige and riches. Popularity. "Just one of the guys" (or gals). Drugs. Lonliness. Something new and different floods into the lives of college students right after they leave high school. Peer pressure is overwhelming. The quick answer is that they were not "grounded in the faith." One then needs to examine the cause of their lack of staying power. The answer is clear: They relied on themselves and others to create their "world." The phrase "let go and let God" became "let go of God." Have fun. Be in the IN crowd. In most cases the "wake up call" doesn't arrive until they have burned out on "fun" and hear Him calling, "I'm here. I will never leave you or forsake you. Come home." Lest we forget, there are those who are grievously depressed, tragically alone, no one to turn to. Life doesn't seem worth living. We hear "Where is God? Why does he let people suffer? My prayers bounce off the ceiling. Who am I? Why am I here?" Sadly, there are millions of folks like that. Who offers them help? TV evangelists, soothsayers, psychics, cults. Everytime you watch the news, PRAY out loud for every news item. You'll find yourself praying without ceasing.
When I was a kid I and my two brothers were expected to be different from other kids whose father was not in the ministry. We were not saved because we had not been born again but the community acted as if we were filled with the Holy Ghost, simply because the Lord had called our father into the ministry. The pressure to pretend you know the Lord when you don't is more than most of us can bear for an extended period of time. The easiest thing to do is to throw in the towel in front of a packed house and let everyone know that you are not the preacher and don't intend to be. We didn't walk away from the faith, we walked away from the people who put too much pressure on us to be DIFFERENT, which is a hard sell for many young people. Thank God He doesn't throw us away.... Pretending to be someone you're not can last a lifetime...
It is the responsibility of both the pastors (in this case the parents) and the congregation to help the pastor's children to understand that God does not have grand-children. He only has children (John 1:12-13) " Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband's will, but born of God". The pastors children, should know that they, first and foremost are children of God, then their parent's children. We must make sure that they get born again and know the Lord Jesus for themselves for this is the will of God for us (1Timothy 2:3-4) says " This is good and pleases God our Saviour, who wants all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth". This is where the congregation can assist the pastor in ascertaining that they are really saved. The standard of the Word of God does not have a generational gap, it's the same for all humans, young or old. If they don't have a relationship with Christ then they will drift away whether they are a Pastor's kid or not. We all must live by the standard of the word of God and make Jesus our pattern.
Because they were never truly "in the faith" to begin with? With this being so, they never left to begin with. There is another question out here that relates to "fake" Christians. There is a strong tie between the two.
I see a lot of good thinking and valid reasons. I have two grandsons who were raised by a minister and my daughter, who, In addition to serving churches here in the US, were also missionaries in the Philippines and later in Lithuania. After they graduated from high school, left home and started college, they quit going to church. When I asked them about it, their principal and forthright statement was, "I never want to be poor again!". They felt that they had been relegated to 2nd class citizens. From my observation, we do not properly compensate the pastors of our multitude of small churches, particularly when you look at the hours involved in serving as a good pastor. Someone has to lose out and in most cases it is the children.
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