Unplug Your Family

My wife and I were in a restaurant having lunch with one of our sons and couldn't help but notice a nearby family: a mom, a dad, two sons and a daughter.

The daughter was middle-school age and clearly in contemporary middle-school mode—ear buds securely in place, staring off into space. Every aspect of her demeanor made it clear: "I don't want to be here and I don't want to be with my family. So I am going to stay in my world of music and media. By plugging in, I'm tuning out."

And her parents were letting her do it.

They're not alone.

Media use in children ages 8 to 18 is off the charts. Teens (age 13 to 18) consume an average of 9 hours of entertainment media per day, and tweens (age 8 to 12) use an average of 6 hours, not including time spent using media for school or homework, according to a 2015 census report from Common Sense Media, a child-advocacy group based in San Francisco.

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Daily Headline News

Christian geneticist Francis Collins ponders promise, peril of biotechnology

In a talk co-sponsored by organizations examining the intersection of faith and science, Collins told his audience of more than 300 about the wonder and the cautions that come with biotechnology. He also gave them a look inside his perspective as an atheist-turned-Christian. (Banks, Religion News Service)


Have the Culture Wars Killed Christian Unity?

Pope Francis will address the World Council of Churches this week amid diminished expectations for ecumenism. No modern pontiff has more zealously pursued unity with non-Catholic Christians than the man who currently holds the office. (Rocca, The Wall Street Journal)


Where a Taboo Is Leading to the Deaths of Young Girls

In this corner of Nepal, deep in the Himalayas, women are banished from their homes every month when they get their period. Each year, at least one woman or girl — often more — dies in these huts, from exposure to the cold, smoke inhalation or attacks by animals. (Gettleman, The New York Times)


Canada is first major economy to vote to legalise recreational cannabis use

The Cannabis Act completed its final step in a 52-29 Senate vote. It means Canada will be the first of the G7 advanced industrial nations to allow the cultivation, purchase and consumption of the drug nationwide once it comes into force. (Crilly, The Telegraph)


Meet Generation Z: Understanding and Reaching the New Post-Christian World

Move over Boomers, Xers, and Millennials; there's a new generation - making up more than 25% of the US population - that represents a seismic cultural shift. Born approximately between 1993 and 2012, Generation Z is the first truly post-Christian generation, and they are poised to challenge every church to rethink its role in light of a rapidly changing culture.

James Emery White, author of The Rise of the Nones, brings this enlightening introduction to the youngest generation explaining who this generation is, how it came to be, and the impact it is likely to have on the nation and the faith. Then he reintroduces us to the ancient countercultural model of the early church, arguing that this is the model Christian leaders must adopt and adapt if we are to reach members of Generation Z with the gospel. He helps readers rethink our old evangelistic and apologetic methods, cultivate a culture of invitation, and communicate with this connected generation right where they are.

Pastors, ministry leaders, youth workers, and parents will find this an essential and hopeful resource.

"James Emery White shares helpful insights into the generation that follows the Millennial generation in a clear, practical way. Pastors and church leaders seeking to better understand the world of their youth ought to read this text."
-Ed Stetzer, Billy Graham Distinguished Chair, Wheaton College

"Christian leaders who are not only serious about church and ministry but who also want to understand and engage culture in order to connect this post-Christian world with the claims of the gospel will find White's work to be essential reading. Highly recommended!"
-David S. Dockery, president, Trinity International University/Trinity Evangelical Divinity School

"It's clear that Jim has a white-hot passion for Generation Z to know God. His research, practical applications and desire for all church leaders to get this right will inspire and challenge you."
-Sue Miller, children's ministry champion; Orange Conference staff; coauthor of Not Normal: 7 Quirks of Incredible Volunteers

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