Posts Tagged ‘culture’



Pastors: How About Less Inspiration And More Reality

The last 30 years of church history could be called the “inspiration” decades. It’s been a period where pastors were more likely to be inspirational speakers than prophetic voices.  And I get it.  Most people are beat up from life, they feel unworthy, and need to be encouraged. But the truth is, the Bible isn’t exactly the most inspirational book ever written. The Bible is focused more on Read the full article »

What Could Christians Do To Change Their Perception?

What you believe matters, but branding and marketing experts tell us that it all starts with “perception.” No matter how great a product may be, I’ll never try it until I have a favorable perception. Once that happens, I’ll consider giving it a shot. In a similar way, for centuries, Christians have tried to share their faith with the culture, but today are losing enormous ground when it comes to perception. Society is experiencing one of the most dramatic shifts in history on issues such as Read the full article »

The Influence Lab is Here!

You’re one of the first to see our new nonprofit initiative called “The Influence Lab.” As you scroll through the website, you’ll see what it’s about, but essentially, our goal is to radically re-think global missions in the digital age. The truth is, the vast mission effort is still based on a 200 year old model. But in an age where other countries send more missionaries to the US than the US sends out, our goal isn’t to send people from here, it’s to Read the full article »

Should Creative Work By Christians Be “Safe”?

Christian media today is filled with the word “safe.” Look at the advertisements: “Family safe programming.” “The safe alternative.” “Safe TV.” Sure we need to protect our kids from violence, sex, or profanity, but one thing you can bet on about the Bible: It isn’t “safe.” It tells the story of humanity in very real, authentic terms. A recent Park Forum devotional (highly recommended by the way) put it this way: Read the full article »

It’s Time to Stop Ripping Off the “I Am Second” Campaign

We all know that God chose to introduce himself in the first verse of Genesis as a “creator.” We know the great artists, painters, writers, filmmakers and others through history who were inspired by their Christian faith. So today, why do we keep ripping off other creatives instead of being creative ourselves? I’m finally fed up with all the “Christian” writers, producers, and directors who have been ripping off the unique approach of Read the full article »

The Self-Esteem Generation Gives President Obama an “A” for Effort

Remember the self-esteem movement? The idea that regardless of the effort expended or actual results, simply by giving a child loads of personal affirmation, he or she would develop positive self-esteem. It created “Trophy Kids” – an entire generation of children who received trophies just for showing up at ball games or music recitals. And it’s contributed to a growing sense of entitlement for that age group as well. Now, in a revealing study reported by Commentary Magazine, we can see just how much that kind of thinking can shift a Read the full article »

How to Change the Perception of Christianity in the Culture

Our team at Cooke Pictures recently spent a few days in San Jose working with Grace Hill Media shooting a promo for NFL great Kurt Warner’s new show “The Moment” for the USA Network. It’s a program that gives people a second chance at achieving their dream. Whatever it was that derailed their plans, Kurt and his team will help them get a second chance at making it happen. We shot the segments at Cathedral of Faith Church in San Jose because it’s a church that’s become synonymous with Read the full article »

Why We Should Support Christian Projects from Hollywood

In spite of the raging success of The Bible series on The History Channel, there are still Christian critics of recent efforts by Hollywood to produce Christian themed movies and TV programming. I was in a meeting recently where we discussed the record breaking audience for “The Bible” series, and one well-meaning Christian in the group said, “But it’s SO inaccurate!” Every time a project like The Blind Side, The Chronicles of Narnia, The Bible, The Book of Eli, and others come out, a group of Christians take an issue with the theology, doctrine, or portrayals in the film. In most cases, Read the full article »

Today’s Open Media World

I originally posted this a couple of years ago, but it’s worth re-visiting.  Whenever you have difficulty convincing your boss, team, donors, or customers on how the “digital revolution” is fundamentally transforming our lives, this is a good scale.  I call it the “open media world” versus the past “closed media world.”  Here’s the difference in the closed media world of the past, and the open media world of the future: Read the full article »

Should Churches Hold “Oscar Parties?”

Last night Kathleen and I attended the Oscar party at Bel Air Presbyterian Church in Los Angeles. Beacon is Bel Air’s ministry to the entertainment and media industries, and they partnered with the Hollywood Prayer Network, The Greenhouse, The 168 Film Project, and Christian Women in Media to host the event. More than 1,000 people showed up to see the Oscars, discuss the films, and have a really fun night. We even had a huge contest to see who could predict the winners. The question is – Why should churches host Oscar parties? Read the full article »


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