Category: Relationships

How Do “Lives Matter”?

“Black lives matter.” “All lives matter.” “Blue lives matter.”These activist slogans are causing a stir. What is the matter with “lives matter”? How can such affirming statements be so divisive?Lives Do Matter. But How?Each slogan claims worth and value for
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How Honor-Shame Cultures Confess Sins

How should people confess their sin? What form should confession take?I was raised Catholic, so the the word “confession” means reliving those experiences as a mischievous little boy shuddering in a confessional booth saying, “Forgive me father for I have
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Making Peace like Jesus, not Germany

The diplomatic tiff this week between Germany and Turkey is the same thorn bush that often entangles Western missionaries.The German Parliament adopted a symbolic resolution declaring the killings of Armenians by Ottoman Turks in 1915 a “genocide.” The Ottomans killed over 1 million Armenians,
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How David Sinned with Bathsheba

When David slept with Bathsheba (2 Sam 11:1-13), why was that sin? David thought nothing was amiss, “but the thing that David had done displeased Yahweh” (2 Sam 11:27). Exactly why was God displeased? Despite common assumptions, the Bible does not portray David’s
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To Be, or Not To Be … a Patron?

This post is part of the online conversation “Leading and Ministering in Honor-Shame Contexts” in April 2016. Click here to read reflections and insights from mission practioners. In many countries, patronage is the de facto socio-economic system.Patronage can be defined as “a reciprocal relationship between unequals.” The
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Resolving Conflict…Without Shaming

This post is part of the online conversation “Leading and Ministering in Honor-Shame Contexts” in April 2016. Click here to read reflections and insights from mission practioners. Have you heard (or personally experienced) this story before?  Once upon a time…a national Christian worked for a Western ministry
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An Answer for Addiction

What is addiction? How is addiction healed? This new TED talk—“Everything You Think You Know About Addiction is Wrong”—connects these questions about addiction to shame and honor (granted, it uses language besides “honor” and “shame” to do so). Research shows
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How Dignity Resolves Conflict

“Our desire for connection is deep in our genes. We are living in a false state of alienation. The quality of our lives and our relationships could be vastly improved if we learned how to master the art and science
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3 Ways To Apply Restorative Justice

Our previous post introduced the idea of restorative justice. Here are three applications of restorative justice. 1-Cross-Cultural Relationships Here is a common scenario Western missionaries face: When I confronted a national believer over the problem of _________, he felt shamed and
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“Honor > Life,” Says Humanity

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5 Facts about Asian-American Shame

Sam Louie (M.A., Clinical Psychology) is a therapist and speaker near Seattle, WA. He published Asian Shame and Addiction and Asian Honor, and blogs at Psychology Today.As a therapist specializing in shame and addictions within the Asian-American culture, here are 5
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5 Shameful Things Westerners Say

Readers enjoyed Colin E. Andrew’s earlier post “5 Rude Things Honor-Shame Cultures Say.” In this post, he turns the tables. Here are 5 “rude” things Westerners say, even when trying to be polite. 1. “My friend!” “Hey Rafshan! This is my
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Do You Want to Change the World?

“Honor is very important in bringing about change in the world.” If you want to bring about change in the world, I suggest this engaging  3 ½ minute video “The Honor Code” with Princeton professor Anthony Kwame Appiah.In his book
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5 Rude Things Honor-Shame Cultures Say

Guest Colin E. Andrews has lived in Central Asia for 10 years and Southeast Asia for 4 years. Every culture has unwritten rules about what is rude and what is polite.  Conflict in cross-cultural communication happens when two cultures have a
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JANGLED–Short Film by Cru

Cru recently released JANGLED, a short film of 6 minutes dealing with the topic of shame. The film is not an “evangelistic presentation” per se, but a nicely produced “conversation starter” that can easily turn into a spiritual discussion about Jesus.
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How (Not) To Guest Well

Over the last year, our family has become friends with a refugee family from Russia (they are ethnically Central Asian, but lived in Moscow 10+ years and recently were resettled in Atlanta). Knowing that New Year’s is a huge Russian
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LeBron Dishonors (Touches) The Royal Princess!

The media buzzed this week when LeBron James broke royal protocol—he touched the Royal Duchess Kate of Cambridge. The incident is a classic clash of honor codes.The USA Today reported: At the NBA game Monday night in Brooklyn, James either forgot,
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New book: THE 3D GOSPEL

Learn how the gospel speaks to all cultures. Western theology emphasizes legal forgiveness of sins, but people in the Majority World seek honor or spiritual power.  In today’s globalized world, Christians need a three-dimensional gospel. Learn how the Bible speaks to cultures
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Understanding Guilt, Shame, and Fear Cultures

“We have to reckon with three different types of reactions to transgressions of religiously sanctioned codes: fear, shame, and guilt.” (Eugene Nida, Customs and Cultures [1954], p. 150)Christian missiologists identify three responses to sin in human cultures: guilt, shame, and fear.
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TheCultureTest.com – A New Tool

To make it easier for people to learn about Honor-Shame cultures, I have developed: TheCultureTest.com is a free assessment tool for learning your group’s culture type – guilt, shame, or fear.  It is like a personality test, but for groups
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