It happens every year in the church. A child will begin to ask questions regarding salvation. Parents then have them to sit down with a teacher or minister and receive help in answering questions. They start to attend regularly until little Billy or Betty place their faith in Jesus Christ. Then soon after that, the child is baptized and then poof (Keyser Soze style), the parents are gone, the kids are gone, and the church becomes an afterthought. Let me say that this is as much of the parent's fault as it is the child.
I simply ask the question: parents where art thou? Why did church matter to you before your child's salvation experience and not now? Why have you all of a sudden gotten "too busy" to attend church? Why did Sunday mornings turn into just sitting at home instead of worshipping together as a family?
Parents, please see the damage that can occur by your own actions.
First, think about what you communicating to your child when this happens. Whether inadvertently or explicitly you are communicating the devalue of salvation and fellowship in the church. When you walk away from church after your child is saved, salvation becomes an experience that equates to signing up for fire insurance rather than entering into a personal relationship with Christ. Thus, you raise a child that looks at your own actions, that see's church as a matter of convenience and not obedience.
Second, think about what your child will do when they are out of your house. There are always those moments around graduation that makes everyone feel awkward that Billy has been a member of the church and yet no one has ever seen him attend. In fact, everyone knows that Billy and his dad go fishing on Sunday mornings and come only on Christmas, Easter, and Mother's Day. What do you think Billy is going to do when he graduates and begins his own life? More than likely it will not involve him becoming committed to the church.
Finally, you lessen the opportunity for discipleship to occur. When your child professed Christ to be their Lord and Savior, he or she then takes up the mantle of becoming a disciple that is to make disciples. If Mom and Dad aren't going to teach them how to do it, when or how will they learn? You will miss out on opportunities to have biblical discussions about what the Bible says, how to pray together, how to build proper relationships, how to share their faith.
Parents, all I am saying is that it is a BIG DEAL when you don't attend church as a family. Your children see it, they will live out what they see in you, and if you aren't showing them Christ and commitment to the church, one day you will see the fruits of your own actions.
Don't be a M.I.A. (Missing in Action) family, please be a A.I.M family: Always In Mission