The point is this:
If you preach to our kids that they must believe all that we teach about Christianity with all certainty and if they don't . . . it is a moral failure, then they have choice to fake it, or walk away. Many of them--out of integrity in my opinion--will choose to walk rather than fake it.
But what if you were more honest with the kids? Imagine that they held the option of "mostly believing" without it being interpreted as a moral failure or spiritual inferiority. Imagine, that you even held critical thinking as being a good thing. I think far more would see this third-rail option rather inviting. It would be more palpable to them than the all-or-none situation of either believing everything out of the pastor's mouth, with no doubt, or flushing the whole Christian think down the toilet.
Issac comes to mind. He is the son of a good friend of mine, who died from cancer a little over a year ago. Issac was a faithful "church goer" and was involved with the youth before he graduated from HS and . . . before his dad died. He disappeared from the ranks of my old church.
I saw him around town and attempted to talk to him. He was very presumptuous about my views (and wrong). As I would ask how he was doing, he would quickly add, "I'm sorry I haven't been to church . . . I've been busy. I hope to be back soon!"
I didn't say it then, but the next time I saw him I was going to say right up front, "Issac, I don't give a rat's ass if you are going to church or not." Hey, now I can say, "I haven't been to that church in months myself."
But I was talking to his mom about him. She said that Issac said he was fed up with being told what to believe and wanted to go out and find truth for itself. She then rolled her eyes in a profoundly disapproving way. I told her that I thought that was a great thing. If my kids say they are going out to find truth for themselves, I would be all for that. I would hope to give them some direction in the process.
That is why I taught a class on "Doubt" at my previous Minnesota church. I think that doubting can be a very healthy thing. It is too bad that few churches see it that way . . . and in the process, they drive off a lot of sincere kids . . . and older folks.