Sunday, June 16

Mistakes Parents Make that drives youths away from the Church: Here is my experience growing up in Deeper Life Church

This is not an attack on the church's history, but rather an attempt to improve and correct some acts. I am writing from my experience as a Deeper Life child. We are not perfect, but the heavenly race is personal, and I pray that every parent that reads this understands it properly. Amen.
Growing up in a strong Christian home, I knew nothing besides school and church. I wasn't allowed to do a lot of things; things as simple as wearing dark sunglasses were considered things of the world. I wondered and thought about it a lot in my heart. My parents focused more on building my spiritual life, which isn't bad, than on my social life. I was a very reserved child growing up. I couldn't play with some children because they were considered "worldly." I really wanted to associate with other people, but as they say, the more you draw us back, the more curious we become, and we tend to want to discover more. 
It is a great privilege to know about Jesus Christ and to be born into a Christian home, but there are certain things that most Christian parents, especially Deeper Life parents, fail to expose growing children and teenagers too, and it affects them so much. I have spoken to a lot of Deeper Lifers, especially youths, and I have gotten almost the same answer as to why they left the church or why they departed from practicing the doctrines of the church. Deeper Life is a church that preaches sound doctrine and the pure word of God, but most parents have failed in certain ways because we live in a world where socializing and knowing the basics of life are needed.

There are certain behaviors and mistakes that Deeper Life parents have made in the past that need to be corrected.
not giving reasons: I grew up as a deeper life child, and I am still one. Most teachings are focused on the heavenly race and making heaven, which is the most important thing, but you will agree with me that we live in a world full of humans and not angels. Parents fail to teach their children and teenagers about facing life. This is totally different from giving instructions, attending youth seminars, and attending an endless number of December and Easter retreats. What you hear more of is, "I don't want to ever see you standing with a boy," "don't disgrace me," "never bring a girl to my house," "do you want me to be disciplined?" "You are from a Christian home for Christ's sake," etc. They do not effectively pass any message to us about life and our body. This leaves our hearts void and wondering. As a child of the deeper life, I had so many questions, some of which are yet to be answered. I wondered why I couldn't do a lot of things, and it made me anticipate growing up. Most Deeper Life-born children, when exposed, misuse the opportunity due to a lack of proper communication with their parents and do not understand the reason why an action or activity is said to be bad. Parents spend hours advising and giving instructions without passing on any information. 

Be straightforward with teachings that concern life. If you indulge in sexual activities, you will get pregnant. Discuss with your children, teach them practically to be bold, hear their views, and understand their mindset about life. Lots of Deeper Life parents only teach their children about the Bible, but what about life? Instead of always telling them that other people are unbelievers and they are expected to stay away from them, the Bible commands us to do so. Well, like most of them do, when they leave home and are away from their parents, they seek answers and go in search of them because parents fail to give reasons as to why certain things are said to be wrong, but instead, they just give instructions and back them up with the Bible, forgetting that we face humans and not words.
Forced attendance at church (punishment and flogging a child to Christ): The Bible says (Proverbs 22:6), Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old, he will not depart from it. What is the meaning of "train"? According to the dictionary, it means "to teach (a person or animal) a particular skill or type of behavior through sustained practice and instruction." (instruct, teach, coach, tutor, give lessons to, school, educate, upskill, edify, prime, demonstrate something to, make something clear too). People often use this verse as a guarantee that if you raise your children "in the discipline and instruction of the Lord," the child will stay that way. Sometimes the reason most teenagers depart from it is because of the hard way their parents push them toward God. I can remember my dad flogging my brothers for missing church. When it comes to teaching a teenager about the Bible, it is best that you communicate effectively and not forcefully, because most Deeper Life children attended church because of the fear of being flogged, or punished, or because it was a normal tradition in their homes, so they didn't understand the Bible truly and never experienced what it means to be born again. The Bible says in Ephesians 6:4: "And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath; but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord."
What is the meaning of "nurture"?
(Care for and protect someone or something while they are growing.) to bring up, care for, provide for, take care of, attend to, look after, rear, support, and raise.
What is the meaning of "admonition"? (a firm warning or reprimand, which is a formal expression of disapproval.)

You don't beat a child or teenager to Christ; you teach and lead them to Christ. By punishing them, they become rebellious to you as a parent and to the church leaders, and they tend to go against church rules because, after all, it all ends up in the normal punishment, and all they do is wait until they are of age to make decisions and leave the church. Deeper Life: Growing youths are always itching to leave the church; some don't even want to identify with the church when they are of age. Because of their upbringing and stress, they do not want to be associated with anything related to Deeper Life Church.I remember going to church three times a week, but I never understood why. I was under the authority of my parents, and since I was being forced to attend church, I obeyed every instruction and got used to the routine without understanding the actual essence and importance of going to church. Deeper Life Bible Church has lost a lot of youth due to this style of discipline. Most youth still believe in the teachings, but because of the lifestyle they faced growing up, they leave the church when they can.

Trusting other members easily: Even in the church, we have to be careful. After I finished my primary education, I wrote my common entrance examination and passed. My dad decided to take us to a school to write the school entrance examination. I remember my brother getting a much higher score than me and getting an express entry while I was waiting to be considered. I didn't fail, but the competition was high, so they needed to evaluate the results of people with an average score, so they asked my parents to wait alongside other parents. While waiting in the car to hear from the school, I can not remember if it was my mom or my dad who first saw this man called Chris Nwankwo, but I can clearly remember that one of them approached him to ask some questions, and as usual, they asked if he was a born-again Christian, and that was when they found out he was a member of Deeper Life. They were so happy and instantly introduced me to him, saying that he would be my guardian. My mom even spoke our native language to him, telling him that "I am his child in the Lord." I was very young and happy because I have been trained to see all members of Deeper Life as true believers in Jesus Christ. Well, I got admission, and my parents sewed long, oversized uniforms and daywear for me. I wasn't looking smart at all, but I was excited to attend boarding school. I couldn't sleep the preceding day, and so I stayed awake packing and unpacking my box. I was so happy. After we checked in at the school, my parents called Mr. Chris and gave him some money to keep for me, instructing me to always go to him each time I needed something. I did as instructed, but each time I got there, he would always welcome me with a tight hug that felt really uncomfortable, but my mind had already been set to see him as a saint since he is a Deeper Life member. Besides, don't forget that my parents barely even knew him. The hug graduated to back rubs, then lower back rubs, until one day he boldly rubbed my thighs and I ran out of his office, never to come back for anything. My dad called and said your guardian has not been seeing you, and I replied, "Dad, I don't want him to be my guardian anymore." Well, guess the reply from my dad: "He is our brother in the Lord and has been asking of you." The trust that Deeper Life members give to fellow members is unbelievable. Up until now, they never found out why I stopped going to that man's office and decided to keep my money by myself.
It is only God who sees the heart. I know most times they mean well, but such careless acts in Christendom have to stop. You commit a young girl to a man all because he attends the same church as you. Remember, even Deep Lifers have blood flowing through their veins; they are humans and can also be tempted. After all, Jesus Christ was tempted.

"And GOD saw that man's wickedness was great on the earth, and that every imagination of his heart was only evil constantly."Genesis 6:5, KJV
"Above all, the heart is deceitful and desperately wicked: who can know it?"Jeremiah 17:9, KJV.
"And he said, That which cometh out of the man, that defileth the man." "For evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness: all these evil things proceed from within and defile the man."Mark 7:20–23, KJV.

Communication: There is a lack of communication between an average Deeper Life teenager and his or her parents. I remember being sexually harassed by a member of my church. Let me tell you the story. My father knew a member of the church whose family are close friends with ours. He comes around, and sometimes my dad asks me to go and call him from his house. As a growing child, I will obey, and each time his family is not around, this man will try to sexually harass me. One day my dad asked me to go call the man, and I boldly refused, and he got angry. Now, this is because he never thought to ask why, but instead, he yelled at me, and I had to go and call the man. Now, these are the things that our parents missed out on. They failed to communicate with us as children and teenagers. Believe me, in our Deeper Life home (Nigeria in general), our parents always had the final say. They never want to listen or hear what you have to say, but you are expected to obey because the Bible commands you to. When it comes to interacting with church members, they rarely think outside the box.A lot of Deeper Life youths and adults have stories yet to be told. The common phrase "brother and sister in the Lord" does not always mean purity.
The standard and watchword are: Holiness is supposed to be our standard and watchword, but in the hearts of Deeper Life parents, all you need to do is wear long dresses, skirts, and blouses and have natural hair. What I am saying is based on past experiences. Parents from "Deeper Life" tend to value a child who goes to church and obeys church rules more than a child who prefers to stay home. Well, I think every parent does. But the reality is that they fail to actually check or observe if that child is taught to achieve anything by going to church. All they want you to do is follow them to church, act like a deeper lifer, and obey every instruction. A lot of Deeper Life youths have not experienced what being born again is because they understand being born again to mean more about dressing holy, not speaking bad words, obeying and going to church, etc. than necessarily about experiencing the Holy Spirit and a personal relationship with Christ.
Having, therefore, these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God. 2 Corinthians 7:1

Follow in the footsteps of peace with all men and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord: Hebrews 12:14.

Allow this mind, which was also in Christ Jesus, to dwell in you: Philippians 2:5.
Therefore, be perfect, just as your heavenly Father is perfect. Matthew 5:48.
Comparing youths based on the service they render in the church: This is an unconscious competition for me. How do you explain my mom saying, "Can't you see Christiana?" She dresses so well in her pleated skirt and wrap-around headcover, and she sings in the choir. Just take a look at Sister Godspower; she is the youth leader and very fervent in the Lord. You need to join the workers' training and make your parents proud. "The last time I checked, I was supposed to be working for God and not man." These are words that lead youth into pretense. They come home and dress how their parents want to see them, but outside they dress differently. A lot of people say Deeper Life youths are the worst. This is a clear misconception, but it is said due to people witnessing a lot of hypocritical lifestyles. Parents should stop comparing their children to other youths in the church based on the service they render. Some youths have been singing in the choir but haven't even experienced God for themselves; they are just following their parents to church and being obedient. Deeper Life parents need to allow youths to experience Christ for themselves by teaching and leading them in the right way.
Now, I beseech you, brethren, identify and avoid those who cause divisions and offenses contrary to the doctrine you have learned. Romans 16:17. 
Enjoying your childhood and growing into your age: So many Deeper Life children weren't allowed to attend birthday celebrations and some harmless gatherings. In everything we do, there are disadvantages and advantages. Deeper Life parents fail to understand that social gatherings help you interact with other people and build your confidence. You grow up timid and unable to easily communicate with others. When you finally mix with other people, everything appears new, and you are eager to try new things, but most of the time they go about it incorrectly. Allow children to explore life, but be there to guide them well.
Believing in and listening to church members more than your own child This is very common. We all know the common issue: "I saw your child standing with a man; I was so surprised and I had to come and tell you to hold this child well." Now, an average Deeper Life parent won't ask who the guy was or anything. You either get punished or flogged. Sometimes you are not even allowed to go out. I saw a classmate of mine on my way to fellowship, and a women's leader in the church saw me standing and exchanging greetings from afar, and the next thing I heard her telling my mom was "you need to watch this child." Such actions don't build a child or teenager; instead, they break them and create unfriendly barriers between you and your child. My mom held my ears and twisted them. I was so angry, and at that moment, I consoled myself with the fact that I will be leaving home soon for a place where I will be free from all the church issues and dramas. Honestly, parents need to communicate with their children and teenagers when an issue is brought to them instead of just carrying out actions without proper investigation. Those members poison the minds of parents into seeing their children as evil, disobedient, and wayward. God is watching you.
For your information
Many young people are still hurting from their past experiences and have vowed never to go through them again.I was talking to a friend of mine from home, and I asked her about the church, to which she replied, "My dear, we have very few youths remaining in the church; most of them left the church, and some even married outside the church." Even the most unlikely fervent youths, who were frequently used to setting good examples, have all left. I attended the Easter retreat four years ago, and the population of youths who attended was really reduced compared to previous years.

Don't get me wrong: there are still fervent and born-again Christian youths in the Church. All I am trying to point out is that if we look deep, the devil is fighting in diverse hidden ways to bring down Christianity and to stop youth from staying in churches where the pure word of God is being preached. The devil can use your actions, actions, neglects, and discipline methods as a parent to steer your child away from God. So, while trying to draw a child close to God, be very careful and sensitive, and be sure that you are not pushing them away and making them dislike the things of God instead.

You can visit the Deeper Christain Life Ministry website to check out upcoming programs you can attend. Stay blessed.

Read more on Mental Health and Christianity.



  1. Never trust easily even they attend the same church, thanks for sharing


    1. Well, I guess some people learnt this the hard way.

  2. My mom blackmailed my sister and I to go to Church! Just one of the many things she made us do.

    Effortlessly Sophisticated

    1. Well, honestly, going to church isn't bad in anyway, but the reason behind it should be fulfilled and it should be done the right way.

  3. Well said and well researched post. Yes you have allow your children to socialize and keeping things too forbidden or controlled often leads to problems. My sister and I 's childhood was similar and VERY controlled but it had nothing to do with religion but more with a violent, abusive controlling father who wanted to control us completely and did not want any outside influences.

    Allie of

    1. Well, I am so sorry for such experience. Being too aggressive or controlling to your children doesn't always help. Some never get to bond with their parents in the right way.

  4. Well said, communication for me is where we have d highest failure of Christian parents! God bless u

    1. Communication is one of the attributes some Christian families lack and it's sad because it has a great role to play in the upbringing of a child.

      new post:

  5. It is interesting how the choices that parents make can drive children away from church. Children should be convinced to go to church out of their own free will rather than be forced. Often times when people are forced to do something, they don't want to do it. It is easy to trust your peers but it is more important to trust your child. Thanks for sharing all of these tips!

    Nancy ♥ exquisitely.me

    1. Well, you are not far from the truth. Parents need to trust their children more and listen to them. It is very good to be observant and understand if children are understanding the reason for going to church.

  6. This was interesting read. Thank you fo sharing x


  7. It is great that parents care about spiritual life of their children, but sometimes they go about it the wrong way. This is a great post, well researched and written. I think similar things happen in many religious (including Christian) families. Parents want their children to be good religious people, but they don't talk with them enough, they expect for children to listen to them without explanation. This is what drives many young people from the church. Parents need to talk with their children more, explain things and try to understand their kids. It is also important to believe their kids and not random people who happen to share the same faith. Anyone can tell that he believes in God but what does that tell us about that person? God means different things to different people. Sometimes an atheist can be a better person than a believer. Many people use God as an excuse...and parents need to be careful about religious people who want to take advantage of their kids. It is good you shared your experience. Many parents make these mistakes. It is best to teach kids by example, be strict but fair. I'm sorry to hear you had bad experiences with some church members, but it is good you're talking about it, so parents can be warned.

  8. I am so sorry to hear about your experience. I see your trust in God by revealing your story. Thank you for sharing. This post will help others. I pray that you continue to do God's work by bringing these issues into the light. God bless you!


  9. This is what I ry to explain to my sono, I am not forcing him and I am explaining why it is a good thing to do.....

  10. This is so brave, lady- thank you for sharing!

    Le Stylo Rouge

  11. This was so well written and well researched Hun, you've really written a thought-provoking piece x

    Grace Louise || www.gracelouiseofficial.blogspot.co.uk/

  12. ! Espero tu opinión en mi último post! Feliz día! ♥️♥️♥️

  13. I think it's pretty much the same in any organization. I know when I was younger and one of our married deacons had an affair with a married woman in the church, it was the end of blind trust for me. But I've come to realize that all humans have chinks in their armor and sometimes being in church regularly just is a way to throw others off real knowledge of a person. It just amazes me how bold some are (especially with sexual harassment and child abuse). You'd think they'd realize it was going to come out some time or another. Thanks for bringing up this article - it's not just the upbringing in your church - we've all seen it happen.


  14. Interesting post dear! I agree with you in many points, above all the first two are so important!


  15. I myself am not a Christian but I have several friends who were since I attended a Christian highschool and middle school. I think a lot of my friends brought up similar issues that you raise in this blog post as well.


  16. Thanks a lot :D

    super interesting post

    InstagramFacebook Official PageMiguel Gouveia / Blog Pieces Of Me :D

  17. A very interesting and informative article, dear.
    Really the issue is very wide and different form case to case bot on my experiience, I frequented Christian (catolic) schools from kndergarden to high school and almost all my friends and classmates are no more Christian or go to the Church, and I live in Rome the center of Christianity. For me, is that the Church is being more and n more away from the young world...

  18. This is super informative dear. As a parent, I appreciate posts like this. Thanks for sharing!
    Jessica | notjessfashion.com

  19. My parents forced my sister and I to go to church but I don't regret that. It's important to have spiritual education also. Thank you for sharing this informative post!

    Jill - Doused in Pink

  20. Anonymous6/20/2019

    This was very interesting for reading. I'm sorry to hear for your experience and really appreciate that you write about it. Maybe your post can help someone.

    New Post - http://www.exclusivebeautydiary.com/2019/06/clinique-moisture-surge-72-hour-auto_20.html

  21. When you can relate. Bringing some sad memories. This post is bang on Melody.


  22. I feel you on this sis .I’m deeper life too ������ been so tiring trying to live a perfect life omg ��

  23. Parenting in Nigeria has it's own unique challenges and problems. I'm glad this post really highlights it well as well as how it connects to the idea of church.

    We still have ways to go. But it's my hope that we'll start figuring things out sooner rather than later.

    And your experiences are not an isolated incident, many Nigerian teens and kids go through this pain and can't tell their parents about it, but you're one of the very few who've been brave enough to voice you as well as they feel. Really great work. Loved reading the post. :-)


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