There is a growing sentiment in our culture that if you’re a person of faith, you seen as part of the problem. To many, those who live life from a Christian perspective are seen as either irrelevant or extreme. Because it’s becoming more and more difficult to live like a believer and share the good news, Christians are becoming scared. We need to make a difference in the world. We wish the church could be like it used to be, but it won’t happen. We need to learn now what it means to be truly Christian in our times.
Here are few quotes a from the book:
“Too many Christians have substituted comfortable living for a life changed by the gospel.”
“If Christians are to be agents of good faith, we’ve got to overcome the real or perceived barriers to talking with people who don’t already agree with us. We need to become experts at engaging in difficult conversations.”
“Faith has implications for all of life, not just for the hour or two a week when like-minded believers gather to worship and pray.”
“In order for us to flourish as God’s people, his moral order must be allowed to rule our lives.”
More than two out of five Americans believe that, when it comes to what happens in the country today, “people of faith” (42 percent) and “religion” (46 percent) are part of the problem, rejecting the idea that religious individuals could be part of the solution.
More than eight out of ten practicing Christians say religious freedom has become more restricted because some groups are actively trying to move society away from traditional Christian values.
Further, the public’s perceptions of the clergy have changed. Fifty years ago clergy members were commonly viewed as among the most important leaders of our society. They were trusted sources of wisdom across a wide spectrum of issues. But the public’s respect for pastors, priests, and other faith leaders has significantly declined. Today only one-fifth of US adults strongly believe that clergy are a credible source of wisdom and insight when it comes to the most important issues of our day.
“Our identity is not found by looking within. God designed human identity to be found and fulfilled in a fixed point outside ourselves-in He beckons us toward his plan for our flourishing, toward what’s truly best for our hearts, minds, and bodies.”
To put it broadly, a theological approach insists that God is at the center of life, not on the periphery. Faith has implications for all of life, not just for the hour or two a week when like-minded believers gather to worship and pray.
“Good faith doesn’t mean memorizing a script but cultivating a quiet dependence on the God of the universe to meet you in the difficult conversations he brings your way.”
More and more people think the Christian community is completely out of step with the times. No matter how kind or friendly believers are in presenting their beliefs, it’s not likely to make much of a difference. Many folks have their minds made up that Christian ideas are outlandish. These people might listen for entertainment’s sake, but Christians have little chance of breaking through to real understanding.
We believe that when people commit to a Jesus-shaped way of life, they create a counterculture for the common good— living their lives not for themselves but for the benefit of others
to the glory of God.