It is something of a surprise to me just how many Christians are unfamiliar with Brian McLaren. Although by no means a household name, Brian McLaren is probably one of the top five most influential writers/thinkers within (and to some degree outside of) evangelicalism. While you or your family may not be reading his books or his website, I can almost guarantee that one or more of the leaders at your church are. Initially, McLaren was nearly synonymous with the "emerging" church movement, but lately he has become more independent of this association; not because he has made a deliberate break with them, but mainly because he has outgrown them. And even though he is saying many of the same things as the emerging church, McLaren has a much bigger platform from which to say it.