What if you were told that there was a well-researched and statistically proven program that can:
- Increase the average life expectancy of your children by 8 years
- Significantly reduce their use and risk from Alcohol, Tobacco and Drugs
- Dramatically lower their risk of suicide
- Help them rebound from depression 70% faster
- Dramatically 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 them with a life-long moral compass
- And get them to wear their seat-belts more often
Would you be interested? Sound impossible? Could there possibly be such a program?
Yes, there is.
And it is supported by research from Duke University, Indiana University, The University of Michigan, The Center for Disease Control, Barna Research Group, and the National Institute for Healthcare Research.
How much would a program like this be worth to you?
What if I told you it was free, and that it would only take about 2 hours each week?
Take a look at the list again.
It’s not a dream and you don’t need to travel to some exotic location.
You ready for the answer? OK, here it is (drum roll please)…
The program is called “active church participation.”
That’s right, CHURCH! In study, after study, after study, children & teenagers who actively engage in a faith community on a regular basis are rewarded with SIGNIFICANTLY reduced likelihood of problems and risks, and significantly improved odds of a happier, healthier, longer life. These studies show the same results for adults as well. Now, add to those specific and proven rewards to our life – the eternal blessings that follow. Wow!
The time is NOW, my friends! To increase the odds of receiving these results, you can’t wait. According to a Barna Research Group study, adults who attended church regularly as children are nearly three times as likely to be attending a church today as their peers who avoided church during childhood (61% to 22%, respectively). In other words, parents who truly want the best for their children should get their children involved at church now and regularly.
Our secular culture has taken up preaching “parents (as) the anti-drug,” promoting D.A.R.E. programs, school uniforms, after school programs, and athletics as solutions to various ills. And yet, a whole host of problems plaguing young people have only become worse over the last 30 years. Perhaps not so coincidentally, church attendance has fallen over that same period. The latest tremor to rock the “what works” lobby has been several studies that indicate D.A.R.E. and its 700 million dollar budget doesn’t work.
In a search for “what works,” researchers keep turning up “active participation” in a “faith community” as the one consistent potent factor in raising up children in the way they should go.
IF we want a better tomorrow, we better get busy today. It’s time to humble ourselves and admit that we need help… God’s help. He loves our children and will give them everything they need to succeed in today’s culture. As parents, guardians and caring adults, how could we resist such an opportunity?
Jesus said, “If your children ask for bread, which of you would give them a stone?” (Matthew 7:9 NCV).
We, at Mount Hope Church, strive to have great programs for the kids and teenagers of our community. And we also have great things for adults too. Our churches must strive harder to provide the freshest spiritual bread – so fresh that it draws people to it’s aroma. Enough stones! There’s far too many broken smiles caused be the hard, stony religion that’s being shoved into the mouths of the lost. Let’s open the ovens of grace, truth, love and compassion and bake some living bread (John 6:51).
back to the bakery, Chilly