Good Stuff In The Latest Issue of Christianity Today…

In the February issue of Christianity Today. I checked on-line but the articles weren’t posted yet.

First, from the CT Interview with Mark Regnerus (author of Premarital Sex in America: How Young Americans Meet, Mate, and Think about Marrying) has a few good quotes in it. For example…

“Others–especially but not only Christians–are in the marriage market. But since what they hope for-chastity in a spouse-is becoming increasingly rare, the average Christian is spending more time on the marriage market, and making more sexual compromises along the way, than in previous generations…So many young adult Christians are making peace with pre-marital sex, some because they wish to, but many because they feel they have little choice, that to delay sex puts the relationship at risk.”

So, in effect, because Christians (like the rest of society) are waiting longer to get married, they’re feeling the need to just go ahead and have sex. Another finding is that young people tend to be involved in “serial monogamy” where they profess love for a few months, have a lot of sex, and then break up. Lots of food for thought, there.

Another quote:

“I’m optimistic about individuals’ chances. Always. But collectively I’m not optimistic. I’m in the ‘marriage is deinstitutionalizing’ category. I’m not pessimistic about people’s ability to marry. I’m pessimistic about women’s ability to marry without making compromises and waiting as long.”

This issue was also their “Awards” issue for music & movies and books. The best news for me was that the award for “Best Book of 2010” in the category labeled “The Church/Pastoral Leadership” category was a book I loved, called Almost Christian: What the Faith of Our Teenagers is Telling the American Church by Kenda Dean. Here’s the reason they gave for giving it the award:

“Kenda Dean managed to take a sociological study of American teenagers and turn it into a truly prophetic book. I read the data and her analysis and felt convicted by them. You can’t read this book and not want to take action.”


The subtitle of the book reads: “What the Faith of Our Teenagers Is Telling the American Church.” Having read the book, well, we can ignore it at our peril. And, once again, it’s the youth ministers and youth ministries pointing the way. Just sayin’. One of the reasons I love my work.

Their Movie Award for 2010 were broken into two categories: “Most Redeeming” and “Critic’s Choice.” The difference is that the former is a movie that highlights redemption and has biblical themes (love, unity, etc.) running through it. The choices for “Most Redeeming” were:
Toy Story 3
The King’s Speech
Get Low
True Grit
Winter’s Bone
Despicable Me
Tangled
The Fighter

The “Critic’s Choice” were simply superb films in their opinion. Here were their choices:
The King’s Speech
The Social Network
True Grit
Toy Story 3
Inception
The Fighter
Winter’s Bone
Get Low
127 Hours
Tangled

I wasn’t as impressed with their Music choices. Patty Griffin’s Downtown Church was their top album and the typical Christian “approved” artists were on their list, like Sufjan Stevens, Arcade Fire and Robert Plant (which I think is hysterical that he’s now on the Christian’s “good list”). It’s a shame, too. I thought The National’s High Violet, The Dead Weather’s Sea of Cowards, Spoon’s Transference, and Kings of Leon’s Come Around Sundown were all a bit more innovative…

…but I get that music is a MUCH bigger category and when you only have 12 albums on your list a TON of good ones are going to be left off.

Anyway, it’s a lot of food for thought in this month’s edition. Kinda glad about that!

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