I believe that many young adults face a similar crisis in their spiritual lives. They get burned out on a super-polished, mega-church, youth group idea of Christianity. Others have the same reaction on the opposite side of the spectrum within a stale, lifeless, extremely fundamentalist version of Christianity. Only a few will endeavor to peel back the curtain and engage the richness of historical Christianity. Often times, this brings them back to a place where they can appreciate some of the good being done by even the stereotypical churches. Others will abandon the idea of historical Christianity altogether in favor of some sort of pseudo or anti-Christianity. Some will become outspoken critics of historical Christianity. They will not give up being spiritual. They will simply approach God, Jesus, and the Bible in a completely different way--with another set of standards (or none at all).
I don't think the solution is to try to make all of the stale churches more hip, or to make all of the plastic churches more organic. These are merely two manifestations of the same problem. The symptoms are different, but they have the same disease. The super-slick churches are doing an excellent job getting people in the doors and keeping them entertained. The museum churches are doing a great job keeping the faithful fundys happy. Both of these are commendable in their own right. But neither of them are telling people what they believe (doctrine) or why they believe it (apologetics). People are being evangelized, but they are not being discipled. Why then should we be surprised when the statistics come out saying that a majority of young adults are leaving the church? They aren't becoming less spiritual. They are just doing what young people should be doing--rebelling against what they consider to be artificial. We should be glad that they don't want to play games or act like they believe something when they really don't. That is a great asset when it is put to work for the truth. But it is also a great liability when the truth becomes distorted, or even replaced with falsehood. It is like the classic line from the first Spiderman movie: "With great power comes great responsibility." We should want them to rebel against things that are worth rebelling--against untruth, pretense, deception, immorality, injustice etc. For that reason, apologetics and theology must be taught in our homes, churches, Christian schools and small groups etc. It is our responsibility to the next generation.
I am not trying to sling mud, and I am not trying to say, "this is what I am passionate about and everyone else should be too!" No. I just want to shed light on a crisis that I think is epidemic, but of which many people seem to be either ignorant, or else they are just ignoring. We have to get our heads out of the sand and start expecting that the important young people in our lives will probably face this crisis at one point or another. And while nothing we do can guarantee a particular outcome; if we are not going to even bother ourselves enough to teach them what we believe and why we believe--if we are going to be afraid of the tough questions--then we really shouldn't be surprised which way they go.