The Speak-Up Fallacy

The Speak-Up Fallacy of cultural engagement is simple: if I just speak out with boldness, at any time, and in any way, then I can consider myself to have faithfully engaged with culture. But, this ignores the reality that there is both a right time and a right way to speak up (and conversely, a wrong time and a wrong way). Learn how to be pleasantly persuasive with case studies as varied as Queen Esther’s witness to believers influencing Hollywood.

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Is speaking up and sharing our beliefs all the time, every time, always the best approach for cultural engagement? How might we patiently and faithfully wait on God’s timing and then speak up when the time is right? What if… maybe, just maybe… starting that argument on social media is actually counterproductive to our witness and not how culture change really happens? Well, we should still speak up—this isn’t an excuse for cowardice—right? So how do we know when the time is right to speak up?

The Speak-Up Fallacy of cultural engagement answers all of these questions, and more.

(Read more Culture Change Fallacies: The Culture War FallacyThe Top-Down Fallacy, and The Christian-Culture Fallacy)

“Christians will have to make decisions about how “thick” their language is when interacting in the public square… We must discern whether it is advantageous to use patently Christian terms and when to use more “neutral” ones… In distinguishing between thick and thin language, however, we must remember that our arguments should always be based in Christian thought, even if they are not always communicated publicly in explicitly Christian terms. What differs is not whether we are applying Christianity but whether we make that application manifest and obvious. In other words, we are always “thick” in our thinking though not always in our expression.” – Bruce Riley Ashford, Chris Pappalardo

Case Study: The Queen With Beauty, Influence… and Patience?

She could hardly believe her eyes. Sparkling jewels and opulent finery were everywhere she looked, and the strangest thing: it was all becoming so normal. Mere days ago, she had been an orphan, a nobody; commanding even a stray dog in the streets would be laughable. Now she had seven maidservants at her personal beck and call. Her beauty treatments alone cost more than every merchant on her block back home could hope to earn in their collective lifetimes.

For the first time in her life, she had her pick of anything she wanted to eat, to wear, to own. It was all so disconcerting, the way that everyone seemed to defer to her, to show her favor and real respect. She knew that people looked differently on the wealthy, especially those of royal blood, but she had mostly stumbled into this position, and everyone around her seemed to genuinely admire her all the same. Her one solitary surviving family member, her uncle, seemed to understand this pauper to princess dynamic better than anyone, and he had instructed her to keep her background and identity concealed.

Getting to know the king personally had been an experience, to say the least. His reputation for wanting (and getting) the very best things in life was unmatched—he once threw a one-hundred-eighty-day long party, and with unlimited wine for everyone—except for his anger at being told he couldn’t have something. She had heard storied of previous women in his life. He was clearly not someone to be trifled with, but he had been nothing but kind to her. This wasn’t unusual; she had that effect on most men. But still, this was the king. She couldn’t even approach him without an explicit invitation.

When he did invite her into his presence, she followed the advice of her handler, and only asked for the small, strategic requests that he recommended. The last thing she wanted was to be seen as a gold-digger, misusing the king’s favor for personal gain. It all seemed to work beautifully. In a raucous, public display of his favor, the King—surprise, surprise—threw another party, all in her honor, and made her the new queen. It was all happening so fast, and yet her uncle cautioned her to not squander the opportunity and influence she had been given. There was serious trouble brewing, for her and her people. When the time was right, she needed to speak out…

Speaking Up Effectively

The story, of course, is that of Esther. Held up as a Biblical example of faith, and rightfully so, Queen Esther exemplifies the type of speaking up that is both winsome and compelling, strategic and persuasive—in short, Esther models for us a way to speak up for what we believe that is effective. And that’s what we all want, right? We don’t want to squander the influence and position that God has given us, but to wisely utilize those gifts in a way that allows us to be wise as serpents and harmless as doves (more on that later).

However, did you know that the book of Esther is the only book of the Bible to not mention God by name? When I first heard that, it felt, I don’t know, a little unbiblical to me. Does this mean that we should question Esther’s place in the biblical canon? Isn’t the entire point of the 4-part biblical story that everything is centered on God and ultimately demonstrated in the person of Christ? While it’s true the Bible is God-centered, and not man-centered, I think the point of Esther is that God is always working, sometimes out in the open in big, miraculous ways—parting the Red Sea, causing the sun to stand still in the sky—but God is also always working behind the scenes, sovereignly orchestrating people and events, both extraordinary and commonplace, in order to accomplish His divine purposes.

There are many theological motifs in Esther that allude to God’s sovereign work. In contrast to the feasting and party culture of the day—I live in Tampa, known for its beach/college town/party culture, but even the wildest frat house spring break party couldn’t hang with King Ahasuerus’ 180-day feast—Esther and her fellow Jews devoted themselves to extended periods of fasting, a clear reference to seeking God in prayer. In Esther 4:14, when Mordecai reminds Esther of her position of influence, there is a clear reference to God’s sovereignty in delivering his people, “If you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?”

So, maybe the lesson of Esther is that we should work for shalom wherever we are at, using the gifts and opportunities we have been given to create for change, and in so doing, yield ourselves to God’s working in and through us, but we should resist the idea that verbal proclamations—though important at the right place, in the right way, and at the right time! —are not a substitute for faithfully yielding to God’s timing.

Speaking So Others Will Actually Listen

The Speak-Up Fallacy of cultural engagement is simple: if I just speak out with boldness, at any time, and in any way, then I can consider myself to have faithfully engaged with culture. The corollary is usually: and if they don’t listen to me, then so what? I’ve done my job. While there is a certain grain of truth to this, because only God can truly change hearts, is that the right approach for us to take?

So many questions naturally follow. Standing up for the truth is important, and it’s often necessary to speak up and share your beliefs, but is it enough? Is it always the most appropriate tactic to take? Is there a right way and a wrong way to speak up? Is there a right time and a wrong time to speak up? Can speaking up in the wrong way or at the wrong time do more harm than even just staying strategically silent? Have we done our job as culture-makers just by speaking up/speaking out/standing against something in culture? What about creating for change and our picture of the good life? What about our creation mandate from our Creator? And what about shalom?

Clearly, from both a pragmatic and theological perspective, there appears to be something missing when we relegate faithfulness in cultural engagement to merely speaking up for what we believe in, without any other qualifications or guidelines. To play a thought experiment, one wonders if a modern-day Esther wouldn’t so much think long term and strategic, carefully garnering favor with those in authority in order to cleverly speak up at just the right moment, as she would first call for a news conference to blast her opponent’s schemes, the more strident and polarizing the language the better—after all, that gets the most media attention, right? Why waste time inviting the King and Haman to one banquet after another, nothing is being accomplished if you aren’t speaking up and letting your voice be heard, right!? One wonders if she would enlist her inner circle for public demonstrations, social media activism, and picketing rather than fasting, prayer, and private appeals to power.

A Call for Wisdom, Not Cowardice

It’s important to note that pointing out the existence of a right and wrong time and a right and wrong way to speak up does not give us license to never speak up. This is not permission for cowardice, but a call for wisdom. Queen Esther spoke out, bravely and at great risk to her personal safety. Even though she spoke out at the right time, and in the right way, all while begging God for guidance, the only clarity she received was that she must do something. There is no indication that God revealed to her that her personal safety would be protected, only that the timing and manner was right for her to take a risk and speak out. Unfortunately, in contrast to Queen Esther, we often get it exactly backwards.

Shrewd as Snakes, Harmless as Doves

It seems obvious, but most Christians don’t like being compared to snakes. Though recognized, albeit reluctantly, as coming from our good Creator God, snakes have a sinister connotation they’ve never been able to shake ever since Genesis. So, it might seem strange when Jesus, in His usual thought-provoking way, sends out His twelve disciples with this charge, “Look, I am sending you out as sheep among wolves. So be as shrewd as snakes and harmless as doves.” [1]

It’s important to first clarify what Jesus is not saying. Jesus is not advocating that His followers use deception, or any form of sinful behavior modeled by Satan in the garden. Snakes are not moral creatures—okay, you don’t have to love them, but sorry, they aren’t evil! —so even though our minds immediately jump to thoughts of the personified snake in the garden tempting Eve, we need not, and should not, ascribe moral significance to the snake as mere creature.

So, what is Jesus saying? The first part of the verse, and the surrounding verses, clue us in. The context for this charge is that Jesus is sending His followers—the “sheep”—out into an actively hostile environment—the “wolves”—and He wants to provide instruction on the manner in which they engage the aggressively anti-Christian culture around them (seem appropriate for us today?). The question then becomes, “In such an openly hostile environment, how can we speak up boldly for Christ while incorporating the shrewdness of the snake and the harmlessness of the dove?”

Jesus, a Study in Contrasts, and Our Perfect Model

Jesus, of course, modeled this perfectly for us. Jesus was gentle, kind, and patient; he prioritized time with children and random, filthy beggars, many of whom used Him for their own benefit and then forgot about Him or even to say thank you when He healed them; He allowed his busy schedule to be interrupted by “strangers” in a crowd; He spent time with tax cheats, thieves, prostitutes, and other “nobodies” scorned even by those closest to Him. He was a man of peace, of suffering, a servant who was willing to have His kingly rights trampled by those who hated him.

And yet…

He matched wits with the brightest minds of his day, often publicly humiliating those who challenged his authority—all done with style and grace, never a touch of sinful pride or arrogance—he used clever storytelling techniques that often singled out certain groups in the audience and turned them into the brunt of a joke; he was accosted by philosophers, lawyers, religious leaders, lawmakers, and scholars, each with something to prove, and He refused to be caught in any of their traps, whether verbal or literal; when the occasion warranted, He spoke loudly and with assertiveness, even famously grabbing a whip and overturning tables in the temple to prove the seriousness with which He took His Father’s house and His mission. And yet, he wisely read the audience before Him, rarely speaking the same way to different groups of people. He challenged those full of themselves, while meekly nodding his head and scrawling in the dirt before a penitent woman caught in sin.

Jesus, our King and Savior, the Suffering Servant, the Lion and the Lamb, is a study in contrasts, and our model for being as shrewd as a snake and as harmless as a dove when we interact with the culture around us.

The Wrong Way to Speak Up

In contrast, the Speak-Up Fallacy seems to encourage us to be the very opposite of that example. We have adopted a mode of cultural engagement that is as shrewd as the dove, and as peaceful as the snake. We blunder into arguments that may win us short-term gain, but at great long-term cost. We burn bridges, only to discover we’ve traded persuasion for isolation. We are speaking up for what we believe in, but then we look around us and realize no one is listening. And when our strident argumentation brings consequences, as much for our tone and disposition as for the content of our message, then we chalk it up to “persecution”, and go back to doggedly haranguing our “friends” on social media.

Should we expect to face persecution that is verbal, emotional, and even physical for boldly following Christ? Yes. Matthew 10 is clear on that. Some will listen, and others will even welcome the message, but many will try to arrest you, falsely accuse you, betray you, persecute you, and even kill you. All of those outcomes are on the table when committing to boldly proclaim the name of Christ. But boldness is not at odds with wisdom.

Is it possible that in our desire for speaking up at all costs that we have sacrificed the wisdom, persuasiveness, and even shrewdness that Jesus demonstrated for us? Is it possible that sometimes people persecute us not just because they dislike our message, but because we have made ourselves unlikable people?

Influencing Hollywood

Dr. Ted Baehr, founder and Editor-in-Chief of MOVIEGUIDE® and the Chairman of the Christian Film and Television Commission® began working in 1985 just outside of Los Angeles, CA, to “redeem the values of the entertainment industry, according to biblical principles, by influencing industry executives and artists.” [2] With a mission to influence an industry described by legendary pop singer and actor Pat Boone as “treacherous, unpredictable, fickle, and unfair” [3] and populated by “very unscrupulous and charming and even satanic people” [4] how can a Christian speak up in a way that is even heard, let alone results in real cultural change?

In over thirty years of patient, day-by-day persuasiveness, hosting the Annual Faith & Values Awards Gala & Report to the Entertainment Industry attended by well renowned Hollywood guests, presenting analysis that family-friendly movies are more profitable at the box office, teaching scriptwriting workshops, and praising the good, true, and beautiful in movies with the annual MOVIEGUIDE® awards, Dr. Baehr and MOVIEGUIDE®’s effect on the entertainment industry has been nothing short of transformational. Dr. Baehr recounts, “When we started, over 80% of the movies in the box office were rated R and now 34% of all movies are rated R. In 1985, only 6% of the movies were aimed at families; by 2008, almost 40% of the movies released in theaters were aimed at families. Along with less R rated movies there has been a great increase in Christian content in movies.” [5]

How have Dr. Baehr and MOVIEGUIDE® managed to build and maintain such an influential presence in the modern-day Babylon of Hollywood? In contrast to the Speak-Up Fallacy that equates decibel level with faithfulness, Dr. Baehr and MOVIEGUIDE® have built longstanding relationships in Hollywood based on mutual shared interests—Dr. Baehr is himself a successful producer of hundreds of television programs and former president of the organization that produced the Emmy-award winning television adaptation of the C.S. Lewis’ The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe—while committing to the patient cultural transformation that only happens over time.

Commending What is Praiseworthy

MOVIEGUIDE®’s commitment to commend what is praiseworthy in movies stands in stark contrast to the strident and combative stance most Christian cultural critics and commentators take. When we do nothing but criticize is it any wonder those in positions of power stop listening? Many Christians sound off on social media about what they dislike in the media, but have we stopped to think that approaching a Hollywood decision maker in humility with a carefully reasoned argument for our position might bear more fruit over the long term?

Many of us never get the opportunity to cultivate these types of culturally transformative relationships because our abrasive and off-the-cuff mode of “speaking up” short circuits these relationships before they can even happen. We have traded real influence for sound bites, outrage that is more cathartic than prophetic, and a faux boldness that “speaks up no matter the cost” while true culture shapers from Queen Esther to Dr. Ted Baehr are creating for change by building relationships and speaking up in the right way at the right time and to the right people.

We should paint a picture of A Light So Lovely, and Create the Good Life, as a way to point to The Ultimate Creator.

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Right Time, Right Way, Right People

Okay, so stories of faithful culture shapers like Queen Esther and Dr. Ted Baehr are inspiring, but what about those of us who don’t have the ear of royalty or Hollywood elites? How are we supposed to know how to speak up in the right way, at the right time, and to the right people for our specific circumstances? And is this even biblical? Or is this just an excuse to remain silent and take the easy way out?

There’s a commonly used (and misused) quote often repeated by Christians. Maybe even by you. The original quote is attributed to St. Francis of Assisi—founder of the Franciscan Order—and seems to be custom crafted for social media sharing even in its inception hundreds of years ago.

“Preach the Gospel at all times. Use words if necessary.”

The sentiment behind this quote is commendable: both our actions and our words should line up with the Gospel. But though true that both our actions and our words matter, does this somehow negate our responsibility to speak up? Ed Stetzer writes in the aptly titled Preach the Gospel, and Since It’s Necessary, Use Words that “good intentions cannot overcome two basic problems with this quote and its supposed origin. One, Francis never said it, and two, the quote is not biblical.” [6]

Mark Galli, Managing Editor of Christianity Today and author of Francis of Assisi and His World writes that not only did Francis not say it, he didn’t live it either, often preaching up to five times per day, traveling to one village after another, speaking in such an animated way that this “fiery little preacher from Assisi” would often attract a crowd because his delivery was so passionate that “his feet moved as if he were dancing”. [7] Duane Liftin, President Emeritus at Wheaton College, writes that, “it’s simply impossible to preach the gospel without words. The gospel is inherently verbal, and preaching the gospel is inherently verbal behavior.” [8] Paul emphasizes the necessarily verbal nature of the gospel to the believers in Rome: “How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? How will they believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how will they hear without a preacher?” [9]

Speaking Up is Necessary

Clearly then, while our words and deeds should not be at cross-purposes, speaking up is biblical and necessary. But how does our mandate to be wise as serpents and harmless as doves inform the way in which we speak up? Colossians 4:3-6 provides needed context.

“Pray for us, too, that God will give us many opportunities to speak about his mysterious plan concerning Christ. That is why I am here in chains. Pray that I will proclaim this message as clearly as I should. Live wisely among those who are not believers and make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be gracious and attractive so that you will have the right response for everyone.” [10]

Speak Up at the Right Time

First, there is a right time to speak up. This might seem self-evident, but this then also means there is a wrong time to speak up. At the risk of sounding heretical, Jesus did not share the good news of who He was in every conversation, and neither should we. Jesus, in His perfect wisdom, spoke with people exactly where they were at, and never resorted to a wooden and monolithic “gospel presentation.” In fact, He even instructed the disciples to knock the dust off their feet and leave a town completely if that town was not receptive to the gospel message.

Now, I realize that most of us should speak up more, not less, but tucking a bushel of tracts (remember those?) in your shirt pocket and blanketing your neighbor’s lawns, hiding them in gas station bathrooms, and tucking them inside your restaurant server’s tip might not be as effective as we had hoped. Let’s not speak up at the wrong time, and then think we’ve done our duty. Before you blast out your opinion on social media, before you write that screed on Facebook, before you launch into that jeremiad on YouTube, maybe consider there are other, better opportunities.

The key, from Paul’s letter to the Colossians, is that we are to pray that “God will give us many opportunities to speak” and then we should be ready to “make the most of every opportunity”.

Speak Up in the Right Way

Then, once we receive that right time from God, we then need to speak up in the right way. At the risk of sounding repetitious, this means there is a wrong way to speak up. Here is where St. Francis of Assisi’s non-quote comes into play. When we speak, our actions should match up with our words. Very true.

Think of this as the church bumper sticker rule. If you are a pastor or church leader then you have probably already thought through the ramifications of issuing your congregation bumper stickers with your church’s name and logo on them. You weigh the additional exposure in the community with the thought that you know first-hand how some of your members drive… And it’s self-evident why we don’t see too many church bumper stickers.

But even more than having congruence between our words and deeds, Paul highlights that the way we make the most of the opportunities to speak is to “let our conversation be gracious and attractive.” Much of this is uncommon common sense. More flies with honey, and all that. It’s worth noting though that speaking up in the right way and at the right time does not guarantee favorable circumstances. After all, Paul is writing this from prison!

Speak Up to the Right People

Thirdly, when we speak up at the right time, and in the right way, we should do so to the right people. Here, Paul specifically mentions living wisely among unbelievers, but then describes wanting to have the right response for everyone. In other words, the right response for one person might be much different than the right response for someone else. Again, Jesus is our perfect example here in the various ways he interacted with different types of people in different circumstances and with different needs and levels of receptivity.

Is it possible that we don’t have the ear of unbelievers because we never take the time to build relationships with them and live wisely among them?

Is it possible that we have adopted a one-size-fits-all model of cultural engagement that is very formulaic and presentation-driven as opposed to relational, organic, and opportunity-driven? (And ultimately Spirit-driven).

Maybe we should rethink trying to create culture just for other Christians?

Pleasantly Persuasive

We could do worse as Christians than to spend a little less time in worldview training and apologetics classes and instead simply be kind, interesting, and maybe even funny when we are trying to win people over to our point of view. Pleasant is persuasive. Masters of the pleasantly persuasive craft include the theologian and author G.K. Chesterton, Professor John Lennox of Oxford University, and apologist and author Ravi Zacharias.

But, as Os Guinness writes in Fool’s Talk: Recovering the Art of Christian Persuasion “not all Christian debaters have displayed that same blend of love, truth, and grace… there are far too many Christians of whom it has been said that they won the argument but lost the audience. Their logic outran their love… Far too many an audience has been left either impressed or offended by Christian apologists, but not won over.” [11] Proverbs 16:21-24 describes how pleasant is persuasive.

“The wise are known for their understanding, and pleasant words are persuasive. Discretion is a life-giving fountain to those who possess it, but discipline is wasted on fools. From a wise mind comes wise speech; the words of the wise are persuasive. Kind words are like honey—sweet to the soul and healthy for the body.” [12]

The Heart Must be Won

In some ways, the melding of the Culture War Fallacy with the Speak Up Fallacy is what produces this unbiblical idea that our speech should be combative and antagonistic rather than gracious and pleasant. Have you ever stood up for what you believed in, and even though the encounter did nothing to change hearts or minds, your takeaway was less about making your speech more winsome and compelling and more about the obtuseness of the other side? Did you consider yourself faithful merely for speaking up? In other words, speaking up is not enough if we do so in the wrong way, or at the wrong time, or to the wrong person. “The mind can be convinced but the heart must be won.” [13]

Blaise Pascal in his masterwork Pensées, suggests that “Eloquence… persuades by sweetness, not by authority… Eloquence is an art of saying things in such a way — (1) that those to whom we speak may listen to them without pain and with pleasure; (2) that they feel themselves interested, so that self-love leads them more willingly to reflection upon it.” [14]

The beauty of creating for change is that we can often obliquely lead others to see things in a new way without resorting to beating them over the heads with propositional truth claims. “People are generally better persuaded by the reasons which they have themselves discovered than by those which have come into the mind of others.”

Logos, Pathos, and Ethos

Of course, those of you with any classical debate training recognize that this discussion goes back at least as far as Aristotle. Students of classical rhetoric are familiar with the categories of logos, pathos, and ethos, each important if one intends for their communication to persuade rather than coming across like a clanging cymbal or a banging gong. Logos is the element of communication that deals with logical arguments, proofs, and rational, carefully reasoned truth propositions—certainly an important and necessary ingredient! However, where debate beginners, Christian and non-Christian alike, often fall short is in recognizing that there are two other necessary ingredients to delivering persuasive communication: pathos and ethos. Pathos is the element of communication that uses emotion to persuade, and ethos refers to the character and ethics of the person making the argument.

Logic Alone is Never Enough

It’s easy to discount the power of an emotional appeal or the importance of character, but if we are honest, are we ever convinced by logic alone, especially if the person delivering the argument is unexceptional, or worse, repugnant? Think about the most powerful change-inducing communication you have experienced—a speech, a sermon, an impassioned plea from a friend, family member, coach, or someone else close to you—and they will all likely have elements of logos, pathos, and ethos.

Douglas Wilson in The Rhetoric Companion writes “ethos and pathos are greatly neglected and disparaged in our day. It is assumed that they are what make sophistry wrong, and that what we should strive for is a talk or composition that is a masterpiece of logical perfection, delivered with all the energy of a computer printout. But this is seriously misguided.” [15]

Whether we will admit it or not, we are usually convinced first to feel like changing our opinions, and then we will look for facts to support how we feel. The opposite is also true: if we feel that the other side is unpalatable, or the arguer too brutish, then we will decide we don’t want to change, and look for facts to support that belief. Pathos and ethos are necessary ingredients to add to logos in order to persuade the whole man, mind and heart.

Persuading the “Whole Man”

No doubt some of us still recoil from the notion that we can persuade and should be persuading with emotional appeals and being a “good man speaking well”. We think we know better. Just the facts, please. And holding fast to facts and truth is a very good thing, a very Christian thing. Thy Word is truth. Jesus is the Truth. And yet, maybe the hidden cultural bias of our day, the blind spot we all have, is this post-Enlightenment, rationalist conceit that we are primarily “fact-receptacles” and “logic-processors”.

If God made man in His own image, and created us as a whole being—spirit, soul, and body—and commanded us to love Him with our whole being—heart, soul, and mind—then to reduce man to merely a mind, is that not a very stunted Christian anthropology? Thus, when we speak up with an aim to persuade, we must necessarily appeal to the whole man, not just the intellect.

James K.A. Smith asks, “What if, instead of starting from the assumption that human beings are thinking things, we started from the conviction that human beings are first and foremost lovers? What if you are defined not by what you know but by what you desire? What if the center and seat of the human person is found not in the heady regions of the intellect but in the gut-level regions of the heart? How would that change our approach to discipleship and Christian formation?” [16]

And how would that change our approach to speaking up? Here is where the Head Triad Creative Types can learn from and appreciate the Heart Triad and Gut Triad Creative Types and grow into recognizing God has made us whole beings and we should serve and worship him with our whole selves (Read More: The Creative Enneagram).

Virtue Over Volume

The Speak-Up Fallacy equates volume with faithfulness, but if we truly want to create for change and build lasting shalom then real faithfulness requires speaking up at the right time, in the right way, and to the right people.

What if, though, in our desire to create culture and speak up, we find that we are only creating for and speaking to ourselves?

(Read more Culture Change Fallacies: The Culture War Fallacy, The Top-Down Fallacy, and The Christian-Culture Fallacy)

Get Your Culture Change Score

We are all called to create for change. How well are you changing the culture around you? Take this free assessment to get your Culture Change Score and find out.

[1] Matthew 10:16 NLT

[2] Ibid.

[3] Dr Ted Baehr How to Succeed in Hollywood: A Field Guide for Christian Screenwriters, Actors, Producers, Directors, and More WND Books, April 22, 2016 p. 163

[4] Ibid.

[5] (Last Accessed September 19, 2019)

[6] Ed Stetzer Preach the Gospel, and Since It’s Necessary, Use Words

(Last Accessed September 26, 2019)

[7] Mark Galli Speak the Gospel, Use Deeds When Necessary (Last Accessed September 26, 2019)

[8] Duane Liftin Works and Words: Why You Can’t Preach the Gospel with Deeds

(Last Accessed September 26, 2019)

[9] Romans 10:14

[10] Colossians 4:3-6 NLT

[11] Os Guinness Fool’s Talk: Recovering the Art of Christian Persuasion. IVP Books, 2019. p. 170

[12] Proverbs 16:21-24 NLT

[13] Simon Sinek Together is Better Penguin Portfolio, September 2016 p. 108

[14] Pensées Blaise Pascal

[15] Douglas Wilson & N.D. Wilson The Rhetoric Companion: A Student’s Guide to Power in Persuasion Canon Press, May 17, 2011. pg. 78

[16] James K.A. Smith You are What You Love: The Spiritual Power of Habit Brazos Press, March 29, 2016 p. 8

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Joel Ohman

Joel Ohman is a serial tech entrepreneur, author, and the chief creator at Created for Change. You can connect with Joel at or via LinkedIn.