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Anxiety is having a moment. Compared to prepandemic rates, for example, anxiety has doubled in young people. The increase feels daunting and downright scary at times as Christians struggle to determine how to help.
Enter Curtis Chang, theologian, consulting faculty member at Duke Divinity School, and senior fellow at Fuller Theological Seminary. Cohost of the Good Faith podcast, executive director of Redeeming Babel, and cofounder of The After Party with Moore and David French, Chang is also an author. His new book, The Anxiety Opportunity: How Worry Is the Doorway to Your Best Self, invites readers to understand anxiety as a doorway to spiritual transformation rather than a sin to overcome.
On this episode of The Russell Moore Show, Chang explains that the root of anxiety is the fear of loss. He and Moore discuss their personal experiences with anxiety and the importance of paying attention to the signals our bodies send us when under stress. They talk about shame, the biblical passages that address worry, and how Jesus related to people who faced anxiety. Their conversation also covers social media, the role of medication in addressing mental health struggles, and various spiritual practices for responding to anxiety.
Finally, Chang and Moore introduce their new project, The After Party, which calls Christians toward their higher allegiance to Jesus, transcending partisan loyalty—and partisan anxieties.
Resources mentioned in this episode include:
- The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma by Bessel van der Kolk
- “The Future” by Leonard Cohen
- “This Too” by J Lind
- “Social Media is a Major Cause of the Mental Illness Epidemic in Teen Girls. Here’s the Evidence.” by Jonathan Haidt
- “The truth about Gen Z - and the rest of us (with Jean Twenge)” on the Good Faith podcast
- “Opinion | The Sandwich Generation Is Getting Squished” by Jessica Grose
- “For Millennials Making Their Way, a Detour: To Caregiving” by Susan B. Garland
- “The Agony of Putting Your Life on Hold to Care for Your Parents” by Jaeah Lee
- “Cat’s in the Cradle” by Harry Chapin
Pre-order Russell’s new title, Losing Our Religion: An Altar Call for Evangelical America, here!
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