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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 background of the Church but to improve and correct such acts. Not only Deeper Life parents do this but I am talking from my experience as a Deeper Life child.
We are not perfect but 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 little as wearing dark sunglasses were considered to be things of the world. I wondered and thought about a lot in my heart. My parents focused more on building my spiritual life which isn't bad but less of my social life. I was a very reserved child growing up. I couldn't play with some children because they were considered worldly children. 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 which most Christian parents, especially Deeper Life parents failed to expose growing children and teenagers to, and it affected 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 practising 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 is needed.

There are certain behaviours and mistakes that Deeper Life parents have made in the past which needs 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 an endless number of December and Easter retreats. What you hear more is,... "I don't want to ever see you standing with a boy", "don't disgrace me", oh, "never you 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 heart void and wondering. As a Deeper Life child, 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 brought ups when exposed misuse the opportunity due to lack of proper communication with their parents, not understanding the reason why an action or activity is said to be bad. Parents spend hours advising and giving instructions without passing any information. Be straight forward 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? Discuss sex education, relationship and the right way to socialize instead of always telling them that other people are unbelievers and you are expected to stay away from them, that the Bible commands us to do so. Well, like most of them do, when they leave home away from their parents they seek for answers and go in search of it because parents fail to give reasons as to why certain things are said to be wrong but instead they just give instructions backing it up with the Bible and forget that we face humans and not words.


Forcing a child to attend church (Punishing 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, the dictionary meaning of the word train is to teach (a person or animal) a particular skill or type of behaviour through sustained practice and instruction? ( instruct, teach, coach, tutor, give lessons to, school, educate, upskill, edify, prime, demonstrate something to, make something clear to). People often use this verse as a guarantee that if you raise your children “in the discipline and instruction of the Lord” the child stays that way. Sometimes the reason why most teenagers depart from it is because of the hard way parents use in pushing them towards 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 brought ups attended Church because of the fear of being flogged, punished or as 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 said 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 to 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, 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. This leads them into not wanting to associate themselves with anything that has to do with Deeper Life Church due to such stress and upbringing. I remember going to church three times a week but I never understood why. I was under 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 youths due to such style of discipline. Most youths still believe in the teachings but because of the lifestyle they faced while 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 very high score than I and he got 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 result of people with an average score point and 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 mum or my dad that 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, adding that he will be my guardian. My mum 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 Deeper Life members as true believers of Jesus Christ. Well, I got the admission and my parents sewed long oversized uniforms and day wears 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 into 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 saying 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 Deeper Life members give to fellow members is so 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 act in Christendom has to stop. You commit a young girl child to a man all because he attends the same church as you. Remember even Deeper Lifers have blood flowing through their vein, they are humans and can also be tempted. After all, Jesus Christ was tempted.

"And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually." Genesis 6:5, KJV.
"The heart is deceitful above all things, 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 from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness: All these evil things come 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/her parents.  I remember being sexually harassed by a member of my church. Let me tell you the story. My dad had a member of the church whose family happens to be close friends with our family.  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. They failed to communicate with us as children and teenagers. Believe me, in a 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, you are expected to obey because the Bible commands you to. They hardly think out of the box when it comes to relating with a member of the Church. 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: Holiness is supposed to be our standard and watchword but in the heart of Deeper Life parents all you need to do is wear long dresses, skirts, blouses and have natural hair. What I am saying is from past experiences. Parents from Deeper Life tend to value a child who goes to church and obey church rules more than a child who prefers to stay home. Well, I think every parent does. But the reality is this, they fail to actually check or observe if that child is taught to achieve anything from going to church. All they want you to do is to 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 but not 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 peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord: Hebrews 12:14.
Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Philippians 2:5.
Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect. Matthew 5:48.

Comparing youths based on the service they render in the church: This is an unconscious competition to me. How do you explain my mum saying, "cant you see Christiana? she dresses so well in her pleated skirt, wrap-around headcover and she sings in the choir. Just take a look at sister Godspower, she is the youth leader, 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 youths into pretence. They come home and they 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 this 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, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. 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 gathering helps you interact with other people and build your confidence. You grow up timid and unable to easily communicate with others. When you finally mix up with other people everything looks new and you are super curious to try new stuff, most times they go about it the wrong way. Allow children to explore life but be there to guide them well.


Believing 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. My dad can even stop talking to you for something he never saw. 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 mum is "you need to watch this child". Such actions don't build a child/teenager instead it breaks them and creates unfriendly barriers between you and your child. My mum 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 to 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 mind of parents into seeing their child as evil, disobedient and wayward. God is watching you.

FOR YOUR INFORMATION
A lot of youths are still hurting from past experiences and have vowed never to go through such again. I was talking to a friend of mine from home, I asked about the Church and 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 least expected fervent youths often used to portray good examples have all left. I attended the Easter retreat 4 years ago and the population of youths who attended really reduced compared to previous years.

 There are still fervent and born again Christian youths in the Church don't get me wrong. 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 youths from staying in Churches were the pure word of God is being preached. The devil can use you as a parent to push your child away from the things of God by your acts, actions, neglects, and way of discipline. 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.



30 comments

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

    www.torichux3.com

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

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

    Jennifer
    Effortlessly Sophisticated

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    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.

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  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
    www.allienyc.com

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    Replies
    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.

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

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    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:
      https://www.melodyjacob.com/2019/06/mistakes-parents-make-that-drives.html

      Delete
  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

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    Replies
    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.

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

    Laura
    https://pinkfrenzymissl.blogspot.com/

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  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.

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  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!

    https://www.kathrineeldridge.com

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  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.....

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

    -Ashley
    Le Stylo Rouge

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  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/

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

    ReplyDelete
  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.

    Ruth
    www.VogueFauxReal.com

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

    https://julesonthemoon.com/

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  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.

    BLOG | YOUTUBE | INSTAGRAM

    ReplyDelete
  16. Thanks a lot :D

    super interesting post

    NEW OUTFIT POST | YOU ARE THE ENERGY THAT YOU WANT TO ATTRACT!
    InstagramFacebook Official PageMiguel Gouveia / Blog Pieces Of Me :D

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  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...
    XO
    S
    https://s-fashion-avenue.blogspot.com

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

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  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

    ReplyDelete
  20. 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

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

    https://www.missymayification.co.uk

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

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  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. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  24. Thank you for sharing this amazing post. Hope readers will like it. I really appreciate for putting such efforts.

    Cheeksandtoez
    Register at Cheeksandtoez

    ReplyDelete

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