Sometimes people lose faith in what they believe in.
According to a 2011 study cited in a Christian Post article, about 25 percent of Christians ages 18 to 29 left their congregation, with 22 percent saying it’s because the church ignores modern-day problems and 18 percent saying their congregations were too worried about movies, music and video games.
Overall, people leave their faith for a variety of reasons. According to the Pew Research Center, people of faith leave for reasons such as not believing anymore in the faith’s teachings, or finding something conflicting with the politics of their religion and their own political beliefs — like how Catholics denounced the sexual abuse scandal that plagued the church in previous years.
So how do you keep your faith and stay in tune with your religion? Here are five ways to avoid losing your faith and continue as a believer, no matter how tough things may get.
Got Questions, a religious information website, highlighted one sources of strengths in maintaing your faith. Since so many people are leaving their religion at a younger age opposed to an older one, one of the best ways to keep people in their religious field is to teach them from a young age about the importance of scripture.
“Our children need to fully understand that Scripture alone can give life and bring sanctification to a sinful soul, and only Scripture can equip us to discern truth from error,” according to Got Questions. “In a world in which there is a growing tide of hostility towards Christianity, we need to teach our children the Word of God and how to defend it. There are three places our children ultimately learn and develop their worldview and belief system: school, church, and home.”
Figure out your reason for believing
Some might not believe in a religion or faith at a young age, but will soon find the courage to become religious once they grow. Take the case of Jarvis Slacks, who started out as a nonbeliever before finding God later in his life.
In a post he wrote for Busted Halo, an online religious magazine, Slacks explained that he only went to church and prayed because he feared the alternative of going to heaven. But then, when he was older, he found himself in need of someone to talk to and share his prayers with.
He needed a God to thank for his life.
“I pray every night now,” he wrote. “I pray to thank God that I had a good day, and to ask that I please have a good day tomorrow, too. I ask that God protect my family, that he look after my friends, that he guide me in the way and the truth, and show me the path he wants me to take.”
Question your doubt
One of the main reasons that people leave the church is because they have a problem understand why they have doubt in a church in the first place, according to Patheos writer Bradley Wright.
Doubt is only increased when people don’t question their own doubt, Wright wrote.
“The way that Christians react to the doubts of others can, inadvertently, amplify existing doubt,” he wrote “Many of the writers told of sharing their burgeoning doubts with a Christian friend or family member only to receive trite, unhelpful answers. These answers, in turn, moved them further away from Christianity.”
So what is a Christian to do? Recognize your own doubt and find out why you have such a lack of faith in your religion. And when the going gets really difficult, and the doubt seems to creep in, believers should understand that they aren’t the only one who is doubting their faith in God, Wright wrote.
“For pastors, it seems like a good idea for them to occasionally preach on doubt in the Christian faith,” Wright explained. “Hearing sermons about doubt would make us more accepting of our own times of doubt. It would also make us more sympathetic of other peoples’ doubt was well as equip us to respond to it wisely.”
There are loads of benefits to praying every day, as Deseret News National reported back in August. Those benefits include increases in your spiritual growth, putting you in better moods and giving you better physical health.
But research from Baylor University found that prayer can make you feel better about your personal beliefs. Praying can keep you spiritual, or at the very least help you understand how you feel about your religion. You may keep on not believing in the faith, but it might put you one step closer in understanding why you feel the way you do.
Belief Net, a religion information and community website, offered a listof quotes that believers can read to keep themselves spiritual. These quotes are mostly for people who are going through a rough time in their lives and might find reasons to step away from spirituality and faith.
“When you get to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hold on. Help is on the way,” one of the quotes reads.
Mostly, the quotes focus on dealing with fear and how faith can help you conquer the worry and concerns that may arise.
“So many things in life are uncertain,” according to Belief Net, “but faith allows us to live a life of positivity and patience.”