NEW YORK — Contrary to a time when urban areas were abandoned in a rush of white flight to the more racially-homogenous suburbs, eager and excited church planters are now flocking to cities like L.A. and NYC, holding up the banner of God's call in Jeremiah 29:7 to "seek the good of the city." But, according to urban apologist and former church planter D.A. Horton, his peers mostly seem intent on seeking the welfare of the safe and gentrified urban areas.
Horton is also a former pastor and previously served as executive director of ReachLife Ministries. He currently works as the national coordinator of Urban Student Missions at the North American Mission Board, or NAMB.
NAMB is among numerous organizations and networks (like the Orchard Group and Acts 29) that are on mission to evangelize and revitalize cities by training, supporting and sending (usually male) Christians who say they feel called to start a church. With so many new churches being planted and launched (read about a few here, here and here), some observers have expressed concerns that the movement has become a fad. Others, like Horton, have noticed that amid the influx of Millennial-led churches to major cities, some leaders appear to be avoiding, or overlooking the inner city — frequently marked by poverty, high crime and afflicted education systems. more >>
This is my third consecutive column about the shooting of Michael Brown, an unarmed 18-year-old black youth, by a police officer in Ferguson, Missouri.
I have focused on this because the circumstances that led to this tragedy point to more than narrow, parochial concerns of low-income minority communities. They point to things fundamentally wrong in America that are dragging us all down.
Hopefully, remedial measures will be adopted that will lower the likelihood that a police officer will reduce a black youth to a racial stereotype and kill him. more >>
A recent study conducted by Facebook revealed that author J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter book series has been more influential in people's lives than the Bible.
For the past year, a meme circulated around Facebook has asked people to list books that have influenced them, which is how two researchers, Pinkesh Patel and Lada Adamic, were able to compile their data composed of 130,000 user updates to create their list.
"List 10 books that have stayed with you in some way. Don't take more than a few minutes, and don't think too hard. They do not have to be the 'right' books or great works of literature, just ones that have affected you in some way," read the meme statement on Facebook. more >>
Feathers have been ruffled at California's Ventura High School, where the principal this week banned the football booster club from selling Chick-fil-A sandwiches over fears that people might be offended.
What, pray tell, could people find offensive about a plump juicy chicken breast tucked between two buttered buns?
Were English teachers put off by the restaurant chain's grammatically challenged bovine pitchmen? more >>
WASHINGTON — Best-selling author and intellectual Eric Metaxas believes that happiness is not an emotional state Christians should pursue.
"I want to be the skunk of the garden party and say that I think the whole idea of happiness is stupid," Metaxas asserted at the American Enterprise Institute's Evangelical Leadership Summit on Wednesday.
Cohabitating before marriage is a short-term solution for what God designed to be a long-term relationship, says a South Carolina-based blogger and writer for NewSpring Church.
John Weirick asked readers if they would buy a car without first taking it for a test drive, as some couples use that comparison to justify moving in together before marriage. He then emphasized that God has greater plans in store for a relationship between an unmarried couple than cohabitating, and splitting rent and groceries.
"A great love relationship goes beyond knowing each other well or ensuring compatibility," Weirick asserted. "What keeps a relationship strong isn't whether a couple lived together before getting married, but their commitment to Jesus and to each other." more >>