September 3, 2007

I’ve had the pleasure of knowing Dave Kinnaman since college; our wives have been good friends going back to their glorious Jr. High days. The time we have spent together has been sporadic, but I always know a thoughtful and engaging conversation is in store when we spend time together. Most of all, Dave and I share a passion for how the church can have a meaningful engagement with our culture, and I know that when we talk, I will walk away with a number of new ideas to mull over.

Several months ago, Dave told me he was working on a book. Based on the conversations we have shared over the years, I expected he would have worthwhile things to write.A few weeks ago, Dave and his family were up for a visit, and he gave me an advance copy of unChristian. My expectations have been met.

Dave is now the president of Barna Research, and unChristian is based on some intensive research they have done on the perspectives of 16-29 year olds regarding Christianity. Dave’s conclusion is that the way that the Christian faith is viewed by this age group is, well, unChristian. Somehow, as followers of Jesus, we have become known for exactly not what we want to be known for.

I’d recommend this book for anyone who desires to help shape the church in the next decade. The research alone serves as a good wake up call, but Dave — and some other notable Christian thinkers and practioners who comment at the end of each chapter — offer good thoughts on how the church can find a way forward…and undo the un.

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