In the middle of Thursday night's Republican debate, I started receiving emergency messages from the Assyrian Christian community in the Middle East.
They were standing in a circle holding hands as they prayed when Al Shabaab terrorists entered the back door of the building and immediately shot and killed the young woman leading the entire group. One by one, they proceeded to kill each one of them, laughing as they did so.
It seems that every day is met with a new atrocity stemming from the Islamic State. We've lost track of the executions, the crimes against women and children are incalculable and unconscionable, and it seems that every drop of innocent blood feeds a thirst for more.
Like so many Christians in Iraq and Syria who watched ISIS kidnap their leaders, burn their churches, sell their children, and threaten all others with conversion or beheading; the archbishop wonders how it is that these maniacs so easily took his home city this summer?
Muslims consider Jesus a prophet, so this was a coy bit of advice given to help them stay alive. But there would be no way around ISIS identifying them as members of that country's ancient Christian minority.
As a young Christian leader – just 30 years old – I'm especially concerned that we aren't effectively educating the next generation on the sheer evil that humans are capable of inflicting upon one another.
With the president visiting Saudi Arabia and the first lady visiting China earlier this month, April would have been a prime opportunity to send a message that America values religious freedom, even in the presence of necessary allies with dismal reputations in this regard.
Christianity began in the East, not the West, yet today Christians in the East are enduring an all-out-assault by Islamic terrorists, while Christians in the West live their lives largely oblivious to it all. This has to change.
Atheism might be in vogue, but it — for sure — hasn't helped history as much as Christianity. Believing in God is not only among the most reasonable ideas in history; it is among its most helpful.
This Thanksgiving, I am thankful for our nation and even our nation's leaders, but I am not thankful for how they have been behaving themselves. Like most Americans, I believe that Congress is behaving irresponsibly.
I recently heard of a group of friends who pile their phones in the center of the dinner table during an outing, with the understanding that the first person to grab a ringing phone will foot the bill. Not a bad idea, but a troubling sign of how absolutely out-of-control our technological obsessions have come.
The Rev. Billy Graham doesn't mean as much to me as he has meant to many other Americans. I am 30 years old, and the lion's share of his ministry was accomplished in my parents' and grandparents' generation. While I have an almost indescribable respect for him, I've never met him and I cannot count myself among the 215 million individuals who have heard him preach in 185 countries around the globe. His significance in my life has been largely historical.
The semester at Liberty University was barely over when I decided to fly half way around the world to see for myself what was happening among the world's most war torn people -- the Syrians.