Futurecast, by George Barna - Book Review

I despise our current culture’s mantra “It is what it is.” It’s like throwing your hands in the air and saying “whatever”.  It’s an excuse to do nothing and just accept the world as it is.  Perhaps sometimes this is an appropriate response, but it’s never the place to end.  It can be the beginning point for moving forward.
George Barna, renowned researcher and founder of a leading research firm focused on the intersection of faith and culture, explains there are three types of people: 1) those who will watch what happens, 2) those who will make it happen, and 3) those who will wonder what happened.  In his book Futurecast: What Today’s Trends Mean for Tomorrow’s World, he challenges the reader to understand the societal changes in our world of readily-accessible information at the touch of a finger and to decide which type of person you will be. 
In this book, Barna explores American trends in the areas of lifestyles, hopes and aspirations, family life, relationships, attitudes and values, media and entertainment, technology, religious beliefs and behavior, churches, and demographics.  Using statistics from his research, he explains what is happening in various aspects of each of these areas and then reflects on what this means for the Christian.
I loved Barna’s discussion on the trend toward mediocrity, but my favorite chapter in the book was the last one in which he explains how we can redirect these trends. However, this chapter was much too short – I wanted to read more!  While the statistics could easily plummet you into depression, the author offers encouragement by suggesting that we allow God to transform us through a dynamic relationship with Him instead of the world, a starting point for impacting the world for Him. 

If you are interested in the current trends of our culture and how they may possibly shape the future through a Christian perspective, this book is a good read. I received a complimentary copy of this book for review purposes from Tyndale House.

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