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73 of 81 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "You Lost Me" Sparks Ideas To Help A Hurting Generation
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Chances are you know about The Great Departure: Christian youth leaving the church. It's the very reason why I wrote a book to help Millennials follow Jesus without leaving the church: Called to Stay: An Uncompromising Mission to Save Your Church. Anywhere from 60 to 80 percent of professing believers are going to walk away from their faith by...
Published on October 14, 2011 by Caleb Breakey

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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Kinnaman Lost Me
I read the book and will address it below but first a few words about the conference by the same name.

A friend/colleague recommended I attend Kinnaman's conference. Figuring that I would gain insight into the generation I teach, I agreed. The material was intriguing but I nevertheless departed the conference after two hours. Ironically, Kinnaman had lost...
Published 11 months ago by No King But Christ


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73 of 81 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "You Lost Me" Sparks Ideas To Help A Hurting Generation, October 14, 2011
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This review is from: You Lost Me: Why Young Christians Are Leaving Church...and Rethinking Faith (Hardcover)
Length:: 2:00 Mins

Chances are you know about The Great Departure: Christian youth leaving the church. It's the very reason why I wrote a book to help Millennials follow Jesus without leaving the church: Called to Stay: An Uncompromising Mission to Save Your Church. Anywhere from 60 to 80 percent of professing believers are going to walk away from their faith by their twenties.

Yeah, serious.

So how are parents, pastors and youth workers/mentors supposed to counter this?

David Kinnaman's You Lost Me: Why Young Christians Are Leaving Church...and Rethinking Faith explores this very question and sparks ideas as to how we can help young people own their faith. He also takes a look at how this generation is "discontinuously different" from all others before it, and why this fact is important to understand.

Below I've listed: 1) key definitions; 2) what to expect inside the book; and 3) a sampling of the nuggets I took away from it.

' Key definitions from Kinnaman:

...Nomads: They walk away from church engagement but still consider themselves Christians.
...Prodigals: They lose their faith, describing themselves as "no longer Christian."
...Exiles: They are still invested in their Christian faith but feel stuck (or lost) between culture and the church.

' Now, what to expect as you crack open You Lost Me:

'PART 1: Dropouts
1--Faith, Interrupted
2--Access, Alienation, Authority
3--Nomads and Prodigals
4--Exiles

'PART 2: Disconnections
5--Disconnection, Explained
6--Overprotective
7--Shallow
8--Antiscience
9--Repressive
10--Exclusive
11--Doubtless

'PART 3: Reconnections
12--What's Old Is New
13--Fifty Ideas to Find a Generation

Throughout the book, I jotted down notes that really got me thinking about how to effectively help this generation follow Jesus. Here are just a few of the nuggets I took away:

Get young people involved in Scripture reading, praying, worshiping, and giving their testimonies; let them join the dialogue at church; lead them in visiting the sick and shut-ins; be a mentor to a young person at church; connect spiritual wisdom with real world knowledge; don't ignore science; show them how to live "in but not of" lives; and teach them how to think well, not what to think.

If you haven't already, I'd also suggest picking up Kinnaman's book Unchristian. Another great read along these same lines is Gabe Lyons' The Next Christians: The Good News About the End of Christian America. All of them are excellent resources in our ongoing battle of raising young men and women to love God and others.
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39 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Why Mosaics Drop Out of Church, and What the Church Needs to Do Differently in Response, October 24, 2011
This review is from: You Lost Me: Why Young Christians Are Leaving Church...and Rethinking Faith (Hardcover)
"The ages eighteen to twenty-nine are the black hole of church attendance," writes David Kinnaman. Most church leaders and Christian parents know this. And most believe that the "next generation" will return to church once they've married and had kids. There's some truth to this belief. Church involvement among Boomers and Busters followed predictable patterns, with participation in childhood and adulthood sandwiching non-participation in young adulthood. And yet, this generation--referred to as Mosaics--may very well be different than preceding generations. The goal of You Lost Me is to "define the dropout problem [of Mosaics] and interpret its urgency." No church leader or Christian parent can read Kinnaman's research and remain complacent about the absence of Mosaics. It is an urgent problem requiring thoughtful solutions.

The culture in which Mosaics have grown up is "discontinuously different" from the culture of preceding generations. "The next generation is living in a new technological, social, and spirituality reality," Kinnaman argues; "this reality can be summed up in three words: access, alienation, and authority." Access refers to "the changing means and methods of communicating and finding information." Alienation refers to the "very high levels of isolation from family, community, and institutions" experienced by Mosaics. And authority refers to "[t]he changing spiritual narrative" told by the culture, leaving Mosaics asking "new questions about what to believe and why." Mosaics have more information, fewer role models, and more questions about what constitutes truth than preceding generations. These social realities "have deeply affected the cognitive and emotional process of `encoding' faith" in the next generation.

But though subject to the same social realities, not all Mosaic dropouts have dropped out in the same way. Kinnaman reminds readers that "every story matters," but the stories themselves take one of three narrative forms. For nomads, "faith is nomadic, seasonal, or may appear to be an optional or peripheral part of life." Prodigals are "young people who leave their childhood or teen faith entirely." Exiles are "those who grew up in the church and are now physically or emotionally disconnected in some way, but who also remain energized to pursue God-honoring lives." Notice that nomads and exiles continue to identify themselves, in varying degrees, as Christians. Only prodigals are hard dropouts, that is, deconverts from Christianity, and they make up a small share of all dropouts. Given these distinctions, Kinnaman concludes: "The dropout phenomenon is most accurately described as a generation of Christians who are disengaging from institutional forms of church."

Why they are disengaging, and what to do in response, take up the bulk of the book. Based on extensive surveys of Mosaics, both quantitative and qualitative, Kinnaman offers "six reasons" why the next generation is disengaging from church.

1. Overprotective: "The church is seen as a creativity killer where risk taking and being involved in culture are anathema."
2. Shallow: "Easy platitudes, proof texting, and formulaic slogans have anesthetized many young adults."
3. Antiscience: "Many young Christians have come to the conclusion that faith and science are incompatible."
4. Repressive: "Religious rules--particularly sexual mores--feel stifling to the individualist mindset of young adults."
5. Exclusive: "Although there are limits to what this generation will accept and whom they will embrace, they have been shaped by a culture that esteems open-mindedness, tolerance, and acceptance. Thus Christianity's claims to exclusivity are a hard sell."
6. Doubtless: "the church is not a place that allows them to express doubts."

Church leaders and Christian parents need to read this section of the book non-defensively. Many dropouts exhibit a keen interest in spirituality generally and Jesus Christ particularly. But they don't like the church--the church that their leaders and parents have worked hard to build. When they say, "You lost me," they are pointing fingers. At least that's how leaders and parents might feel. Moreover, they might have strong disagreement with Mosaic ethics, particularly with regard to sexual behavior--as well they should. Rather than reading defensively, however, church leaders and Christian parents should read these chapters to learn the unique social forces that are shaping (and in some cases misshaping) the next generation.

By reading non-defensively, leaders and parents may also see new, biblically faithful ways of being Christian in community that have been neglected by their generation of Christians. On this issue, Kinnaman does not merely describe the dropout problem, he prescribes potential ways of moving forward. The penultimate chapter of the book outlines three things Kinnaman has learned from his research: "(1) the church needs to reconsider how we make disciples; (2) we need to rediscover Christian calling and vocation; and (3) we need to reprioritize wisdom over information as we seek to know God." The final chapter surveys Christian leaders--both inside and outside of church ministry--and offers "50 Ideas to Find a Generation."

I highly recommend You Lost Me to church leaders and Christian parents who are concerned about "the black hole" in their churches. It will help them understand how their Mosaics think, why they are disengaged from church, and what might be done to hand on the faith to a new generation.
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22 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars let's get the conversation started, September 20, 2011
This review is from: You Lost Me: Why Young Christians Are Leaving Church...and Rethinking Faith (Hardcover)
David Kinnaman has done it again. With great skill and concern for the Body of Christ, David helps everyone understand that a new generation of Christians is not intentionally belligerant, angry, fed up... etc. but that the young Christians today have questions. Good questions. Theological questions. Questions that must be answered and not simply brushed aside by the Church. He has identified the young Christians as either Nomads, Exiles or Prodigals - with each group at various stages of the questioning/leving process. But regardless of the path or stage, they have one thing in common: these young Christians do care about faith and God... they are simply looking for answers - and want to be part of the solution as well.

Use this book to start the conversations in your faith community... we cannot afford to lose 60% of young Christians, when all we need to do is hear them and listen to them... and engage in conversation.

Thank you David for yet another compassionate yet clear call for the Church to engage in loving action.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Serious but Hopeful Look at the "Dropout Problem", December 26, 2011
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This review is from: You Lost Me: Why Young Christians Are Leaving Church...and Rethinking Faith (Hardcover)
For quite a while now, people have been talking about the "dropout problem"--the grim reality that young professing Christians are leaving their faith behind in droves. Some catastrophize the issue and proclaim it the death of Christianity in America. Others minimize it, shrugging it off and retorting, "They'll be back when they settle down and have kids."

David Kinnaman, president of the Barna Research Group and author of You Lost Me: Why Young Christians Are Leaving Church...and Rethinking Faith, doesn't believe the problem is so simple. Through his research and analysis of the Mosaic (or Millennial) generation, Kinnaman shows that the problem far more serious than some think--but far more hopeful than we might expect.

You Lost Me, like many books on the Mosaics, is quick to point out an important reality: every story matters. It is exceptionally easy to make sweeping judgments about this generation (even in acknowledging its peculiar "Let's change the world--look at me!" ideology), so much so that it becomes easy to overlook the reality that these are the experiences of real people. And the experience they share, both in the testimonies peppered throughout the book as well as in the research itself, is troubling.

You Lost Me`s greatest strength is Kinnaman's assessment of the real reason behind the dropout problem--it's a discipleship issue. "The church is not adequately preparing the next generation to follow Christ faithfully in a rapidly changing culture," he explains (p. 21). This bears itself out as he details the frustrations of the Mosaics participating in the study, who find that the church is:

Overprotective--they see the church "as a creativity killer where risk taking and being involved in culture are anathema" (p. 92).

Shallow--having been fed a steady diet of "easy platitudes, proof texting and formulaic slogans," they don't see how their faith connects to every facet of life and how their passions, gifts and abilities can be used for God's glory.
Antiscience--they see faith and science are incompatible, even finding that "science appears to welcome questions and skepticism, while matters of faith seem impenetrable" (p. 93).

Repressive--"Religious rules--particularly sexual mores--feel stifling to the individualist mindset of young adults," Kinnaman writes. "Consequently they perceive the church as repressive."

Exclusive--Christianity's claim to exclusivity is a hard sell, simply because of how this generation has been shaped by "a culture that esteems open-mindedness, tolerance, and acceptance."

Doubtless--they don't believe the church is a safe place to express doubts or admit that their faith doesn't always make sense. "[M]any feel that the church's response to doubt is trivial and fact focused, as if people can be talked out of doubting."

These areas of disconnection have direct implications for making disciples. Shallow platitudes don't build a robust faith, nor does cultural withdrawal assist in connecting with those outside the Christian community. An antiscientific mindset doesn't help those who are genuinely interested in the sciences feel like they "belong" in the faith. An environment where genuine questions aren't welcome doesn't allow us to "have mercy on those who doubt" (Jude 22).

Reading the overviews and the in-depth analysis featured throughout the chapters devoted to each issue, I often found myself agreeing with a hearty "yes and amen." But I also found myself carefully examining the experiences depicted and asking, "How much of this is a genuine problem of the church and how much is a problem with the person's actions and attitudes?" This again points to the diagnosis that there is a disciple-making problem at the heart of the dropout problem.

For some, it's because they legitimately haven't been equipped--so those who believe the sexual mores of biblical Christianity are repressive should read the Puritans to completely shatter that image. But "repressive" or "exclusive" can often be used as excuses for "presumptuous sins" (Psalm 19:13)--you know something is wrong, you know it's bad for you, but you're going to do it anyway.

While some might struggle with the widely ecumenical view of Christianity displayed, perhaps the weakest element of You Lost Me is its lack of gospel application particularly in terms of the questions being asked (at least as far as what was shown in the book was concerned). I can't help but wonder what the results might have been had the surveys included a question such as "What is the gospel?" My suspicion is that it would only have further illustrated the gaping hole in our discipleship methodology, but it might have also been an opportunity to drive home the reality that the gospel is not something that you accept once and move on, but something you delve deeper into. The only place I recall this playing out at all is in all too fleeting mentions in the final chapter of the book, "Fifty Ideas to Find a Generation" (which carries on the ecumenism displayed by including voices from all across the spectrum such as Francis Chan, Britt Merrick, Drew Dyck--whose quote is perhaps the best in the entire chapter--Shane Claiborne and Rachel Held Evans).

Despite this weakness, You Lost Me is an extremely helpful and revealing look at what is causing young Christians to leave the Church, one that I hope will serva as a wake-up call to those who have become complacent and an encouragement to those who are pressing on in the hard work of making disciples. Read it carefully, give it due consideration and allow Kinnaman's findings to help address any changes that might need to be made.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Kinnaman Lost Me, August 4, 2013
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I read the book and will address it below but first a few words about the conference by the same name.

A friend/colleague recommended I attend Kinnaman's conference. Figuring that I would gain insight into the generation I teach, I agreed. The material was intriguing but I nevertheless departed the conference after two hours. Ironically, Kinnaman had lost me.

First, a caveat. I am an Exile with a little dose of Nomad. I consider myself exceedingly orthodox--Spirit-filled Reformed. However, I found myself agreeing more often than not with the charges this generation, according to Kinnaman, lodges at the "church". Moreover, Kinnaman and I disagree on the definition of "church". He defines "church" as people who belong to an organization or institution and who attend an event on Sunday and perhaps Wednesday whereas I see the church as an organic body of regenerated believers in Christ. The system or tradition Kinnaman refers to depends upon a professional clergy overseeing a relatively passive laity. I can no longer attend an event where "fellowship" means a quick handshake and where the "audience" is not permitted to participate in a meaningful way. I am no longer willing to give money toward high overhead or pastoral salaries. The point is, why would I return or encourage others to return to a system that I have since repudiated?

That brings me to the other reason Kinnaman lost me. There was no participation at the conference. I admit I am being a little absurd here--Kinnaman was trying to convey a lot of information in a short span of time which justifies the lecture methodology. However, I am longing for meaningful dialogue and was not going to get it at this conference. For this reason the "church" and the conference lost me.

Now, the book. Excellent assessment. Although I am Generation X and orthodox, many of the reasons Millenials cite for dropping out of "church" resonate with me. Unfortunately, as I stated earlier, I do not see the HOW we do church changing anytime soon. All I know is that my days of regularly attending the standard church service is over. Please note that the consequences of dropping out have been rather severe. Would-be teachers at Christian schools have to declare where they attend church and to name their pastor. How passively attending an event once a week proves you are called--ordained by God--to be a teacher is beyond me. How a pastor who does not know you exist is supposed to vouch for your character is also a mystery.

In short, if you want insight then I recommend you read the book. If you want real solutions then be prepared to adopt a paradigm shift about who the church really is and how church is supposed to be done.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You Lost Me, Helped me Understand, March 19, 2013
This review is from: You Lost Me: Why Young Christians Are Leaving Church...and Rethinking Faith (Hardcover)
David Kinnaman seeks to understand the dropout rate between the teen years and the twenties we are observing in the church today. Barna research shows this dropout rate exceeding forty percent of the church population, so for every 100 teens that grow up in the church about 43 of them are disappearing from the church in their twenties. These numbers are scary for those who are interested in discipleship, have worked hard to disciple teens, or even for those who have an interest in the future of the church.

Kinnaman wants to understand the reasons and suggest a way that the church might help these sojourners. Kinnaman's thesis: "You Lost Me seeks to explain the next generation's cultural context and examine the question How can we follow Jesus--and help young people faithfully follow Jesus--in a dramatically changing culture?" (12).

Kinnaman says the next generation's culture is defined by three issues: Access, Alienation, and Authority.

Access refers to unlimited relationship of today's culture. Technology has literally put the world of information at your fingertips. All of this access gives one the idea that they know everything or can in a few seconds. However, it has left them with very little appreciation for discernment or wisdom.

Alienation refers to the isolation this generation feels based on their lack of relationship with the traditional systems which have aided in self-identity: Family, Adulthood, and Institutions. Families have become so "blended" that they do not have a core identity or loyalty. You truly are on your own. Traditional rites of passage to adulthood have been diminished or abandoned. This culture has drawn adolescence out into their thirties. Even pregnancy does not push them into adulthood. They merely hand the child over to their parents to raise and treat the child as a sibling.

Finally, authority refers to the change in culture in which the authorities of Scripture, Church, and Christians are all viewed with skepticism.

Kinnaman also grouped the participants of his survey in to four distinct groups: Nomads, Prodigals, Exiles, and Faithful. "...[T]he spiritual nomad, the wanderer. For these young adults, faith is nomadic, seasonal, or may appear to be an optional or peripheral part of life" (63). The nomad has not altogether abandoned their faith, just stepped away from it for a season.

The prodigal group includes both "those who deconvert (including atheists, agnostics, and `nones,' those who say they have no religious affiliation) and those who switch to another faith" (66). These young men and women no longer consider themselves Christian in any way.

Exiles are those who describe themselves as Christian but no longer feel accepted inthe church nor do they feel comfortable in the culture (75). They are exiled.

Kinnaman also affirms through the book that a segment of this population remain faithful though out their twenties.

Kinnaman then spent the bulk of the book (six of eleven chapters) discussing the primary reasons that Nomads, Exiles, and Prodigals have expressed as their reasons for dropping out of the church. He calls these "Disconnections."

Overprotective: Mosaics value creativity and change, the church generally does not and in fact usually is overprotective of its traditions.

Shallow: Church seems boring and lacking in depth.

Antiscience: The church has set science on one side of the fence and faith on the other. Most mosaics understand science, it works. Science also invites skepticism which Mosaics love (and the Church hates).

Repressive: The church refuses to discuss most sexual issues while mosaics and the culture openly discuss these matters.

Exclusive: Tolerance is the cardinal virtue of the mosaic world.

Doubtless: The church is not a safe place to express doubt or question when faith does not seem to work.

Kinnaman is not just trying to tell the church it has failed, rather he is working to help the church reconnect to what could easily become a lost generation. He calls his responses "Reconnections." "...(1) the church needs to reconsider how we make disciples; (2) we need to rediscover Christian calling and vocation; and (3) we need to reprioritize wisdom over information as we seek to know God" (201).

Kinnaman has demonstrated his thesis well. I want to continue to think about these issues some more, maybe with some of my students. As an assistant professor at a Baptist college, most of my students are a part of the mosaic generation and many of them fall into these categories of Nomad, Exile, or Prodigal. To be honest, as I was reading the book, I could hear myself vocalizing some of the same complains as some of the students interviewed in the book. And I can see myself guilty of disconnecting from this generation at other times.

Kinnaman does an excellent job of clarifying the problem and suggesting some answers to our current dropout situation. If you know a nomad, exile, or prodigal this book might help you reconnect to them and maybe through you, them to the church.

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16 of 21 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Fewer and better Christians, February 14, 2013
This review is from: You Lost Me: Why Young Christians Are Leaving Church...and Rethinking Faith (Hardcover)
Since we Americans have a "can do" attitude, we tend to think every problem has a solution. Obviously not. After all, we all die, eventually. Some things are inevitable, and though it gives me no pleasure to say this, I think it's certain: in our increasingly secular and hedonistic culture, Christianity is going to decline - numerically, anyway. The mainline (liberal) churches have been declining for 60 years because they conform so closely to the secular culture that most people don't think it's worth getting up on Sunday morning. But the evangelical churches are affected too, and though numerically they seem healthy enough at the present, the fact is that most people, especially the under-30s, have only a superficial knowledge of the Bible and Christian belief. There are plenty of self-styled evangelicals who, according to surveys, don't believe in hell, think Christianity is only one way to heaven, that it is wrong to try to convert others, that sex is a purely private matter that is of no concern to God or the church. In other words, lots of people in the churches are not, strictly speaking, Christians. They've learned the mantras - inclusive, tolerance, nonjudgmental, etc - which means they look at traditional Christianity with a jaundiced eye.

What can be done about the people who drop out of a church they consider "repressive" or "exclusive"? In my opinion, not much - because the church as Jesus and the apostles designed it is inevitably going to get called "repressive" and "exclusive" and even worse things in this culture. There's no getting around it. I read You Lost Me hoping the author might have some suggestions for how to hold onto the churches' young people. "We need new architects to design interconnected approaches to faith transference. . . . We need to rethink our assumptions." That kind of seminary-babble struck me as fluff, because it is. How are "new architects" and "rethinking assumptions" going to alter our very secular culture that reaches into every corner of young people's lives? The author's telling of various people's stories is at first interesting but soon grew repetitious. He concocted a scheme, identifying these alienated people as "nomads" or "exiles" or "prodigals." This probably helps sell the book, but it provides no help in the matter of keeping these people in the pews.

Frankly, it can't be done. Sexual ethics? Too strict, too "repressive," the young people say. They said the same thing in the New Testament period. Chastity has never been an easy sell, and lots of people today just won't accept it, period. They can hook up easily, and they can view porn 24/7. How does the church retain single people who enjoy sleeping around? We can't - not without tossing aside the Bible. The more people sleep around, and the more they view porn and accept it as normal, the fewer people will accept Christianity and its moral standards. The liberal churches threw aside chastity as a goal, and the only time they discuss sex is to insist that Christians should be "inclusive" enough to condone any form of sexual behavior - and their inclusivity hasn't gained them many new members, or retained many of the old. So no point going that route, is there? Like it or not, it's like a spiritual law: make a church "inclusive" and watch it shrink - which is ironic, since the people profiled in the book claim they dislike the churches for being "exclusive." (Kind of a no-win situation, isn't it?)

Part of the problem with this book is its subtitle: "Why Young Christians Are Leaving Church." I would change "Christians" to "People." Because young Christians - as in *committed* Christians who try hard to live by the Bible's standards - aren't going to leave in droves, unless it's to find a different church where there is more emphasis on living God's way. A lot of the "Christians" the author refers to should be called "church attenders," with just the vaguest idea that belonging to a church requires any sort of life-changing commitment or self-denial. Lukewarm (or cool) attenders are dropping out, and no doubt more will follow, and the church that tries to retain them with an endless round of pizza parties and concerts and guest speakers is putting its emphasis in the wrong programs. Lots of busy-ness in a church isn't necessarily a sign of spiritual health.

So, since I'm not a pastor, I can say this: let the casual lukewarm attenders go. They need to hear sermons on Christian living, and that includes sexual ethics. If they insist that high standards are driving them away, so be it. Look at the Gospels and Acts. Never in any location did the majority of the people respond to the gospel. Acts reports that churches grew, but also that persecution grew. Paul and the others did not dilute the gospel - some people responded to it, most did not. If Paul were alive today, he might look at the church buildings so common in our landscape and ask "Are these gatherings of Christians, or just Sunday social clubs?" The honest answer is "Sunday social clubs." Is it a great loss if lots of those social clubs shrink and eventually disappear?

Christianity isn't supposed to be "sort of" important. People who find it "sort of" important eventually will drop out. But imagine a church without the lukewarm attenders - smaller group, but more committed.

Jesus didn't tell the apostles to "build churches and do whatever it takes to fill up all the pews." He told them "go and make disciples." Obviously a lot of young people that Kinnamon categorizes as "prodigals" or "exiles" or "nomads" are not disciples, never were, and may never be. If they won't accept the gospel - raw and undiluted - so be it.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The book I have been waiting for, November 29, 2011
This review is from: You Lost Me: Why Young Christians Are Leaving Church...and Rethinking Faith (Hardcover)
You Lost Me by David Kinnaman is the book I have been waiting for. I found myself reading it saying, "Yes, Yes, YES!" There has been much talk recently about the phenomena of young people disengaging the church when they leave high school, but now we have some substantive data as to why this is happening and what we can do about it. Kinnaman is the president of the Barna Research Group, so he backs up everything he says with research.

According to You Lost Me, 59% of young people with a Christian background report they have dropped out of the church after going regularly. Interestingly, Kinnaman notes that they are not necessarily leaving the faith. In fact, he says, "Most young Christians are struggling less with their faith in Christ than with their experience of church" (27). While historically young people often return to the church when they have kids, the new social and spiritual realities of this generation makes it less likely they will come back in the same numbers.

Kinnaman notes three key realities that describe this generation. First, access to information. This generation has unlimited access to non-biblical worldviews at their fingertips, which has caused many to question the nature of truth. For better or worse, they largely perceive the world through screens. It invites non-linear thinking and it empowers them as content-participants not just consumers of media.

Second, this generation is relationally alienated. In the 1960s only 5 percent of live births were to unwed mothers. Now that percentage is 42. Youth are maturing later and few churches today are equipped to minister to them. According to Kinnaman, "....relational alienation is one of the defining features of this generation" (45).

Third, this new generation is deeply skeptical of authority. This may sound familiar, but Kinnaman notes how the cultural structures that enabled faith--school, media, community, and stable family structure--are no longer available to the church. Everybody has an opinion so it is hard to know who is trustworthy.

One of the most helpful features of You Lost Me, was the six top reasons Kinnaman cited for why students leave the faith. Here they are:

(1) Overprotective--Young people have been so overprotected by our "helicopter" culture, that many seek risks outside traditional boundaries including drugs, pornography, and extreme thrill seeking. Kinnaman says parents and youth workers should allow young people to take bigger risks.

(2) Shallow--Not surprisingly, research shows that young people do not have a deep understanding of their faith. Yet the shallowness of faith is not restricted just to youth, but among all adults. Kinnaman says that our industrialized, program-driven ministry approach has failed to produce deeper disciples. He says, "We need to change from an industrialized, mass-production, public-education approach and embrace the messy adventure of relationship.

(3) Antiscience--More than 50% of churchgoing youth want a career in a science-related field. Yet only 1% of youth pastors report addressing a scientific issue in the past year. Kinnaman wonders how we can prepare a generation to follow Jesus in our science-dominated culture when only 1 in 100 youth workers are even talking about it.

(4) Repressive--The truth is that 4 out of 5 evangelicals 18-29 have had sex. The problem is that sex in our culture defines individualism: Sex is about me. Kinnaman notes that Christian teens have more conservative behavior than others but not different behavior. He is concerned that abstinence talks are
too focused on individual benefits rather than the teaching that sex is about selflessness.

(5) Exclusive--This generation tends to read the Bible through a pluralistic lens. They tend to base their morality on what seems fair-minded, loyal, and acceptable to their friends. They have more non-Christian friends than previous generations as well as relationships with people of differing sexual
orientations. These relationships inform their approach to truth.

(6) Doubtless--According to Kinnaman, "Doubt is a significant reason young adults disengage from the church" (187). There is both intellectual and emotional doubt that plague young people. This is why Kinnaman says our teaching ought to be more Socratic and process-oriented, allowing kids to
live with their questions.

What I appreciated most about You Lost Me, is the balance Kinnaman brings. He recognizes that the core issues of why kids are disengaging are both truth-related and relational. He says, "I think the next generation's disconnection stems ultimately from the failure of the church to impart Christianity as a comprehensive way of understanding reality and living fully in today's culture" (114).

We have failed to help people develop a biblical worldview. Kinnaman says, "It is a modern tragedy. Despite years of church-based experiences and countless hours of Bible-centered teaching, millions of next generation Christians have no idea that their faith connects to their life's work" (207).

But Kinnaman also emphasized the importance of mentoring this generation. Sadly, a majority of the youth he interviewed reported never having an adult friend other than their parents. More than 80% never had a mentor. Kinnaman says truth must be passed relationally to the next generation through the same discipleship model of Jesus. Amen.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "You Lost Me" is Relevant for today., April 16, 2014
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This review is from: You Lost Me: Why Young Christians Are Leaving Church...and Rethinking Faith (Hardcover)
This is an excellent read for those who are challenging the church practices, Spot on for todays believers who are questioning the relevency of the istitutional church.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Right on the mark!, April 16, 2014
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I loved the research that went into this book. It is a new way of thinking about our young people and how important they are to a church.
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You Lost Me: Why Young Christians Are Leaving Church...and Rethinking Faith
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