In the 1950’s Christian values and ideas dominated American culture and were considered the “normal” way of thinking and acting in mainstream American life. Then the wild 1960’s came, during which many young people cast off Christian values and experimented with every type of sexual and drug experience imaginable. Even though the young people of the 1960’s did this, mainstream society remained firmly in the hands of the Christian value system. But as those youth of the 1960’s grew up, they revolutionalized American culture. Now their “free” ideas have become the “mainstream” culture of America and Christian values have been marginalized and pushed aside. There are now articles, books and documentaries being produced about the “end of the Christian era” in America. Our president recently said we are not a Christian nation. This shows just how much our culture has changed since the 1950’s.
Many conservative people are frustrated by these changes, especially in regards to the supposed decline in the Christian church. But I actually think this will work to the church’s advantage in the long run.
Why do I think this? Young people have always been drawn to “revolutionary” ideas. They want to “rebel “against the status quo and the establishment. Christianity was the establishment for a long time, so young people rebelled against it. But now liberalism has become the establishment. Liberals, who used to rail against “the man,” have now become “the man.”
So what will the pendulum of culture do? For the moment, liberal ideas are “cool.” Conservative ideas are out. But in another decade people will tire of the liberal establishment and begin to look for “counter culture” groups that don’t fit into the mainstream. And when they do, they will rediscover Christianity. I believe that a decade from now the youth of today will lead a massive spiritual revival of the church. The church that will emerge may look different than it does now, and I’m guessing the music will be quite a bit louder, but the church will emerge as the revolutionary force it has always been. The church will continue to change lives and make the world a better place.
That does not mean we won't have some rough days ahead of us, but it does mean there is hope. It does mean that Christianity is NOT dead in America. The liberals will have their day, but in time, the church will become “cool” again, and young people will lead the way!