7 Challenges of Generational Christianity

In historical narratives in the Bible or church records, we seldom read about the offspring of significant figures such as the original 12 apostles.

For example, Peter was married, yet we find no record of his children carrying forward his traditions. Despite the belief that our progeny should surpass us, the zeal necessary for this progression is often not instilled in the next generation.

The explanation? They do not have to pay the same price or undergo the same dramatic conversion experience their parents did. This essay will outline seven challenges that arise in generational Christianity:

Challenge 1: Lack of a powerful testimony.

The first challenge is the lack of a powerful testimony of deliverance from worldly experiences. Unlike their parents, children raised in a Christian environment often do not have dramatic experiences of sin and salvation. Their journey is more likely to be a steady continuum of faith, which, while valuable, may lack the intensity of a profound conversion narrative.

Challenge 2: Taking faith for granted.

Children of Christian parents often take the things of God and the church for granted. Immersed in faith since birth, the teachings and practices of Christianity might become routine and lose their profoundness. This lack of realization of the magnitude of their faith can lead to a superficial relationship with God.

Challenge 3: Unprepared for the secular world.

The third challenge is the potential unpreparedness for the secular world. Some Christian parents opt to shield their children from worldly influences, which might result in these children struggling to reconcile their faith with the secular views they encounter in high school or college.

Challenge 4: No need for sacrifices.

The fourth challenge is that children often do not have to pay the price of fasting and prayer to establish their lives after their parents have already done so. This can create a disconnect from the hardships their parents had to endure, reducing their appreciation of the faith's sacrifices.

Get your FREE CHARISMA NEWSLETTERS today! Stay up-to-date with current issues, Holy Spirit news, Christian teachings, Charisma videos & more!

Challenge 5: Prosperity and lack of faith.

The prosperity from the blessings bestowed upon their parents often surrounds second-generation Christians. This abundance might diminish their need for faith, as their life circumstances do not require the same reliance on God that their parents experienced.

Challenge 6: Replicating negative traits.

Unfortunately, children sometimes mirror the worst traits they see in their parents. Using the biblical example of King David, his children seemed to emulate his issues with infidelity and women more than his bravery and devotion to God.

Challenge 7: Resenting sacrifices.

The final challenge is that children of spiritual pioneers might resent the sacrifices their parents made when pioneering a new church or ministry. Feeling neglected, they may grow to resent God and the church, associating them with their parents' absence.

Despite these challenges, the belief remains strong that our descendants are destined to surpass us, with faith as their greatest inheritance (Prov. 13:22). God intends to bless us for a thousand generations (Deut. 7:9), emphasizing the importance of faith's continuity. Therefore, it is crucial to recognize these potential obstacles in generational Christianity and foster honest, transparent dialogues with our children.

Through understanding and communication, we can guide them to build a profound, personal relationship with God, ensuring the flame of faith continues to burn brightly through generations.

Join Charisma Magazine Online to follow everything the Holy Spirit is doing around the world!

Dr. Joseph Mattera is an internationally known author, consultant and theologian whose mission is to influence leaders who influence culture. He is the founding pastor of Resurrection Church, and leads several organizations, including the U.S. Coalition of Apostolic Leaders and Christ Covenant Coalition.

To contact us or to submit an article, click here.

Get Charisma's best content delivered right to your inbox! Never miss a big news story again. Click here to subscribe to the Charisma News newsletter.

Charisma News - Informing believers with news from a Spirit-filled perspective