Approximately 22 million Americans say they are Christians and made a faith commitment to Jesus Christ, and say that commitment is still important to them, but they have struggled with faith or relational issues and therefore quit going to church. Tens of thousands more will join their ranks this week.When one considers the value God places on even one soul, and multiplies that 22 million times, it is beyond tragic. What must we, as the church, do to stop this migration from His body? It's easy to always condemn those leaving as being weak, if this is true, what are we doing to strengthen them in an effort to make them strong?
There are many professing Christians who have left the church and no one seems to care. No one in their church family has contacted them, and the one leaving feels that the church doesn't care one way or the other about them. If our blood brother or sister just disappeared, for whatever reason, we wouldn't stop looking until we found out exactly what happened, but if it's our Christian brothers and sisters we often just look the other way and write them off.
Not everyone claiming Jesus as their savior will remain faithful, but when 22 million Americans leave the church, something is definitely wrong!
ADDED NOTE: Al Maxey in his newest Reflections article; Churches of Christ in Crisis, describes some of the problems causing the church to decrease numerically.