But You have brought me to Your side
To be led by Your staff and rod
And to be call a lamb of God
–from Paris and Lamb of God
Richard Beck, an associate professor of experimental psychology at Abilene Christian University, has a blog, and today he has a post about how Facebook killed the church.
In case you’re late to the party, a large portion of Generation X (by broadest definition those born between 1961-81) pretty much left the church a long time ago. It appears that Generation Y is leaving it in even greater droves. There was a popular Christian song many years ago: My House is full, but my fields are empty. Who will work for me today?
I’m not so sure it’s relevant anymore, because the House of God, um, not so full. So, what happened?
Beck, who writes a compelling essay, believes social computing is to blame. He says Gen X and Gen Y will blame leaving the church on things like shallowness and hypocrisy, but writes that the church’s main draw is social connection and affiliation. He says Generation Y (Millennials) (and Gen Xers) don’t have to go to church to stay connected. Basically, we just have to jump on Facebook – where not only our virtual friends exist, but our actual friends, too.
I think Beck has it partly right, but here’s what I’m thinking. Facebook and Twitter can be just as lonely as church. How many burdens can you share in 140 characters? How much community can you have via status updates? And, what about Jesus? The irresistable Son of God?
After I left a comment on Beck’s post, in which I mentioned Jesus, I went back and hit CONTROL F and then typed “JESUS” in the dialogue box that appeared to see how many times the word was mentioned in the essay or in the 18 or so comments that followed. The only time it appears is in my comment.
Interesting, how often Jesus is left out of these conversations.
Do you think “social computing” is why Generation X has left the church?
Here is a link to a sweet Oklahoma boy singing Lamb of God Bluegrass style.