A Practical Guide to Discuss Controversial Topics in the Church
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How to faithfully engage in the crucial discussions you've been avoiding
When was the last time you had an honest, heartfelt, yet kind and productive conversation with someone about depression, mental illness, substance abuse, pornography, premarital sex, racism, divorce, abortion, LGBT issues, or politics? Our tendency is either to avoid talking about such volatile topics at all--even with other Christians--or to go on the attack, causing rifts that do nothing to encourage further discussion or growth.
If you're tired of avoiding tough conversations, if you want to be a light in a dark world but you're not sure how, Challenging Conversations, from Perspectives: A Summit Ministries Series, is the book you've been waiting for. With straightforward answers to some of the most challenging moral issues disrupting the church, this book will help you build your confidence with three simple steps to becoming a conversant Christian.
Each chapter begins with a true story, clarifies misconceptions and misunderstandings about the subject, and equips you to build rapport, ask the right questions, find points of agreement, and take the next fruitful step in the relationship. Because even if we disagree on a moral issue, that shouldn't make us mortal enemies.
"Our world is filled with the noise of competing voices shouting about topics that make many Christians uncomfortable: sex addiction and pornography, suicide, gender confusion, divorce, politics . . . the list goes on. Challenging Conversations will equip you to speak clearly and confidently about God's perspective on these issues in a way that honors him and opens doors."--Jim Daly, president, Focus on the Family
"Our world is filled with the noise of competing voices shouting about topics that make many Christians uncomfortable: sex addiction and pornography, suicide, gender-confusion, divorce, politics . . . the list goes on. Challenging Conversations will equip you to speak clearly and confidently about God's perspective on these issues in a way that honors him and opens doors."
Jim Daly, president, Focus on the Family
"Jason Jimenez knows of what he speaks. He has worked with teens and families for many years, walking with them through good times and bad. His book Challenging Conversations distills that experience into wisdom. The questions he answers are the ones our cynical, skeptical, and secular friends and family members are asking. His answers are short, sharp, and compassionate. This is a book we need."
Warren Cole Smith, president, MinistryWatch, and coauthor of Restoring All Things: God's Audacious Plan to Change the World through Everyday People
"Say goodbye to both culture-war aggression and conflict avoidance. Jason Jimenez shows how to love others while still loving the truth--even when it comes to the tough topics that baffle Christians today. The timing of this book for the church, and for our society, could not be better."
Jeff Myers, PhD, president, Summit Ministries
"Could it be possible that having challenging conversations instead of avoiding them is actually good for the church, not bad? Could such conversations, if done differently, bring God-pleasing unity rather than division? Could the secret to having such conversations be to care more and not less about the topics so many Christians fear? Jason Jimenez thinks the answer to each of these questions is YES, and after reading both the why and the how in this book, I bet you will agree."
John Stonestreet, president, Colson Center for Christian Worldview, and coauthor of A Practical Guide to Culture
"My friend Jason Jimenez gets what is lost on so many Christian leaders today: you can't dodge tough issues. You must engage them or become irrelevant. And Jason does engage them, with persuasive content and an artful method. Get this book and master it. You'll learn Jason's knack for asking great questions that invite listeners to consider if maybe, just maybe, the Christian worldview has something to say about the toughest issues of our day."
Scott Klusendorf, president, Life Training Institute
"Do you want to get better at leading your children and others to truth rather than hitting them over the head with Scripture until they cry 'uncle!'? Good! This book will help. Jason's three tactics--relate, investigate, and translate--will help you advocate for truth in ways that keep conversations going. I've already used these to better frame opportunities I've had to listen, learn, and influence others--and they work. So do Jason's suggestions to end discussions well. You'll love his three questions that honor everyone. They make follow-up more realistic and effective so that discussions do become ongoing conversations. His examples will help you implement the ideas successfully. You can have true give-and-take, listen-and-learn conversations and not one-and-done discussions. Your children will more willingly admit they're confused and be more open to your ideas. This increases your power!"
Kathy Koch, PhD, founder and president, Celebrate Kids, Inc.; cofounder, Ignite the Family; and author of Five to Thrive: How to Determine If Your Core Needs Are Being Met (and What to Do When They're Not
"Are you afraid or unprepared to talk about taboo topics in the church--topics that affect people dramatically? Jason Jimenez shows you how to minister to people biblically on divorce, sex, homosexuality, racism, pornography, abortion, politics, and more. I don't know of any other book that covers so many important current issues in such a practical way."
Dr. Frank Turek, founder of Crossexamined.org and coauthor of I Don't Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist
"Somehow in American Christianity it has become Christlike to 'live and let live' and never rock the boat or spark iron-sharpening-iron conversations in any way. But those days are over, and challenging conversations have come back into play. In this amazing book, written by our good friend Jason Jimenez, Christians can once again be equipped to speak the truth in love and have those conversations that are so desperately needed today."
David and Jason Benham, bestselling authors of Whatever the Cost and nationally acclaimed entrepreneurs
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