George Yancey on the Rise of Anti-Christian Bias

There has been a lot of recent debate over the shape of Christianity in the West and how it will cause the Church to rethink it's posture. What nobody is debating is the increasing antagonism toward evangelical faith, both in the West and, in violent and murderous form, overseas. I had the chance to speak with George Yancey, who has a new book, Hostile Environment. Yancey is a professor of sociology at the University of North Texas. Here is one of the questions I asked him: You coin the term, "Christianophobia" to describe the increasing hostility toward Christianity in the world. Why this term as oppose to "persecution" or some other common term? We struggled to find the best term for the type of anti-Christian hostility and bigotry we documented in our work. We finally settled on “Christianophobia,” not because it is a perfect term but because it is the best one we could come...

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Short-Term Missions Trips: Good or Bad?

There has been a lot of discussion and debate among missiologists about the validity of short-term mission trips. Some view them as an impediment to long-term, rooted gospel work in cross-cultural contexts and others still see mission trips, used well, as a great tool to engage God's people in His work in different cultures. I posed this question to Tony Myles, the author of a new book, Flipping Missions. Like me, he feels that short term missions is still a good thing and he gives great tips on how to do them well. Here is one of the questions I asked him: Do you still think short term trips are valid? Absolutely, but they can't just become a calendar event or an annual thing we do. Mission trips are like "date nights" for married couples. They aren't meant to replace the relationship, but provide space and investment to figure out what's even happening in...

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Finding the Story Behind the Story

Every story, whether in movie or music, has a story behind the story. I've learned a lot about this from the work of my friend Mike Cosper, who I've interviewed several times. Another voice is Kevin Harvey, who has written a new book, All You Want to Know about The Bible in Pop Culture: helping Christians see gospel themes in pop culture. This doesn't have to be in a ham-handed way, but in a redemptive way, tracing the thin lines of the big Gospel story in the stories we tell ourselves. I had the chance to interview Kevin this week for Leadership Journal. Here is one of the questions I asked him: Sometimes Christian themes are overt, sometimes they are subtle. What motivates otherwise secular artists, filmakers, and songwriters to include Christian themes? Just like the psalmists in the Bible were simply communicating to God, sharing their hearts through their art, today’s writers are doing the...

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When I was hungry

One of the more interesting books I came across lately is written by Daniel Ryan Day: 10 Days Without. In this book, Day chronicles his experiment in experiencing the suffering of those who are less fortunate. Each day he gave up a personal item, such as a coat, a meal, technology. The items were carefully chosen, items that are luxuries for people in the developing world, items first-world people easily take for granted. I had the chance to interview Day for my weekly Leadership Journal blog. Here was one of the questions: ...

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