Thursday, December 2, 2010

Looking for Holiday Reading?

I realized that it has been awhile since I updated my Recommended Reading List to the left. If you are looking for something to read over the holidays, I recommend all of them on my list of 10, but would like to call attention especially to the last 5.

LeaderShift by Don Cousins will simultaneously challenge and encourage you. Cousins has us consider our leadership motives and he makes a call for a more biblical model of Ephesians 4 equipping.

Transformational Church is cutting edge research on the factors of church health. Stetzer is the research leader at LifeWay and this book unpacks one of the most significant projects in the country in some time. He and Rainer counter the doom and gloom about the American church and unveil the factors that are at work in churches that are thriving.

Seven Practices of Effective Ministry and Simple Church go together. The former comes from Andy Stanley and his team at North Point church, one of the fastest growing churches in America. They unpack how they have streamlined programming and aligned it with their mission to ensure that they are fulfilling the Great Commission. Simple Church, written a couple of years later, uses research of 400 Southern Baptist churches and validates everything that North Point has said. These two works go hand in hand and they are influential.

Finally, I have been meaning to read about the Shackleton adventure for years. I recently had an opportunity to listen to the audio book on a long road trip. If you think your circumstances are difficult and want to gain some perspective, read this book. If you are wrestling with organizational and leadership matters, read this book. In 1914, Shackleton set out to do a land mass hike across Antarctica with 27 others. 80 miles from land his ship became locked in an ice pack and it eventually sank. This began a two year ordeal in which he had to reorganize his team several times, innovate, endure, and adjust. Remarkably, everyone survived! The lessons and takeaways from this book are more significant than I can express.

Blessings on you and yours this Christmas season. If you need to read to relax and be blessed, read! If there are other ways that you will be refreshed and renewed, choose those things!

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