Cross-cultural

Cindy Brandt 07-24-2015

Not too long after being introduced to John 3:16, I was taught Psalm 139:13: “For it was you who formed my inward parts; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.” Now that I was a Christian, it was important I understood that Christians are anti-abortion, that life begins at conception, and that terminating life is nothing short of murder. Throughout college, I carried the cause of the pro-life movement in a symbol tacked on my school bag: a miniature pair of feet, a replica of a 10-week old baby in utero, intricately shaped in sterling silver.

I didn’t think about it. I never HAD to think about it, having never carried an unwanted pregnancy. For me, the pro-life movement was simple, uncomplicated, pretty, and as sanitized as a small silver ornament. That is, until I moved to China, a country well known for its high rate of abortions — including forced abortions, particularly of baby girls.

Cindy Brandt 12-30-2014
Eye glasses. Image courtesy Tatiana Popova/shutterstock.com

Eye glasses. Image courtesy Tatiana Popova/shutterstock.com

We all wear a set of spectacles. Everyone does. These lenses dictate the way we view life. They determine the habits we make, what to eat, when to sleep, when to marry, and how to work. They assign value to our lives, determining what is meaningful: family, faith, honor, love.   

If you are like me, you wear two pairs of spectacles — some people in the world wear three or more.   

What I learned living cross-culturally as a Christian is that you can see Jesus wearing different spectacles. You do not have to abandon your pair, or switch it out for a new one, in order to find Jesus. You do not have to forsake the cultural values you were assigned at birth, taught by your parents, and passed down by your ancestors in order to know Jesus. You find Jesus by looking through them.   

Tom Getman 03-04-2011
President Barack Obama's decision to veto the February 18 U.N.
the Web Editors 03-04-2011
In the strength of your spirit and inspired by your compassion, we make this promise to work for change which empowers the forgotten.
Efrem Smith 11-10-2010
As we continue to live within the ever-increasing multi-ethnic and multicultural reality, it is more and more obvious that the "black and white" matrix of the American Christian church is outdated.
Justin Fung 07-01-2010
As a musician, I'm always interested in seeing how my fellow creative types respond to injustice or need.

More Than Equals, co-authored by Chris Rice and the late Spencer Perkins, is considered one of the pivotal books in the Christian racial reconciliation movement that found its greatest momentum in the early and mid-1990s.

Melvin Bray 07-24-2009
There are only a handful of widely, cross-culturally known black intellectuals in this country-Maya Angelou, Cornel West, Michael Eric Dyson, Julianne Malveaux, and maybe a few others.
Edward Gilbreath 07-06-2009

You can't do church in the 21st century without a vision for cultural diversity, says author and theologian Soong-Chan Rah.

Leroy Barber 06-22-2009

I attended a majority white high school in the late '70s and since that time my life has been one cross-cultural bowl of spaghetti. It tastes good but is really messy, sometimes sauce all over your shirt.

Bart Campolo 10-09-2008
Good stuff from both of you, Ryan and Jimmy!
Jimmy McCarty 10-06-2008

My mother is an immigrant from Korea who has worked as a janitor in a hospital and waitress in a Korean restaurant. My father is a white guy from a small town in Tennessee who has been a soldier and dock worker.

Seth Naicker 09-09-2008

I have paid keen interest to this current presidential race. Being from another country, the whole process is quite fascinating and emotive, as gifted rhetoric and track records are flaunted for the public eye and reflection.

However, as much as the presidential race and electoral process in North America is capturing and intense, a person who is listening closely to the issues and policies presented will find him or herself quite confused by the arguments that are presented by [...]

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