Our church did a book club on the book, “unChristian.” It’s a book by David Kinnaman and Gabe Lyons. Kinnaman works for the Barna Group which conducts research studies. His research took over three years and his focus was on the age group of sixteen to twenty-nine year olds.
Christianity has an image problem and this book examines why that is and explores the perceptions people outside the church have about Christians. I believe we do have an image problem and some of it is well deserved. I didn’t agree with every perception in the book, but most of it was right on.
The book contains raw data – what people think when they hear the word, “Christian.” The chapters deal with the perceptions “outsiders” have about Christians. Here’s an example: we are hypocritical, only interested in getting people “saved,” antihomosexual, sheltered, too political, and judgmental.
What I liked about the book is Kinnaman didn’t say we should stop speaking the truth of who Jesus is or that we needed to water down our faith. What he was saying was we needed to change the perceptions to new ones that reflect the heart of God. We need to love people just because that was the example Jesus showed us. He hung out with tax collectors and prostitutes. He was a friend to those who were friendless. He simply loved those his Father placed in his path.
Some people had a hard time with the book because they felt insulted. I don’t believe this book was meant to insult, but enlighten. If something is not working then we need to examine why. We need to love God’s people. We need to love them the way Jesus did – right where they are at.
I hate it when a telemarketer calls me because they don’t know me. They don’t care about me or what my bills are. What they care about is closing the deal. I don’t ever want to make someone feel like that. I want them to know the love of God. For me that should start with my being their friend.
I’m doing a book giveaway. If you live in the United States and would like a chance to win a copy of this book, then leave a comment. I will pick a winner next Monday, February 22nd.
If you want to listen to some messages Tom preached on the book, just go to our church’s website.
© Nadine Zawacki 2010
AND THE WINNER IS . . . Brenda. Congratulations. I'll be contacting you for your address.