Summer is a great time to catch up with the latest and greatest books on ministry. Check out these bestselling titles below. They are consistently hitting the top ten list for ministry.
Before You Go: A Few Sneaky-Good Questions Every Minister Must Answer Before Moving to a New Church by Wade Hodges You have decided that you’ve done everything you can do at your current church and it’s time to move on to a new one. In fact, you’ve completed a weekend interview with a prospective church and they’ve offered you the job. You’re excited, but you haven’t officially said “yes” yet. Later that day you have a coffee meeting with me on your calendar. You come into Starbucks and begin to tell me about your new opportunity. I respond by asking you a few questions about the new church, the interview process, and your mindset as you prepare for a new ministry. My questions aren’t meant to take away your excitement or talk you out of taking the job. Instead, they’re meant to help you clarify your thinking about the opportunity before you. Maybe they’ll cause you to ask a few more questions of the search team or to go off to a quiet place where you can reflect on what you’re moving toward and what you’re moving away from. More than anything, I’ll challenge you to make sure you’ve asked and answered the best possible questions.This book is not for ministers only. I hope search teams and Elder boards will read it as well. I believe it will fund better conversations and lead to deeper levels of discernment among all involved in a minister search process. BUY HERE
Tortured for Christ by Richard Wurmbrand Months of solitary confinement, years of periodic physical torture, constant suffering from hunger and cold, the anguish of brainwashing and mental cruelty–these are the experiences of a Romanian pastor during his 14 years in Communist prisons. His crime, like that of thousands of others, was his fervent belief in Jesus Christ and his public witness concerning that faith. Meeting in homes, in basements, and in woods–sometimes daring to preach in public on street corners–these faithful souls persisted in their Christian witness knowing full well the ultimate cost of their actions. This is their story–a classic account of courage, tenacious faith, and unbelievable endurance. This history of the Underground Church reflects the continuing struggle in many parts of the world today. BUY HERE
Small Groups With Purpose: How to Create Healthy Communities by Steve Gladen Over the past fifteen years, small groups have become a vital way to build community in large churches. Nowhere has this been more apparent than at Saddleback Church. Now Steve Gladen, pastor of small groups at Saddleback, shares the secrets of that ministry’s incredible success in creating small groups with purpose. This practical book walks church leaders through the questions they need to answer to develop their own intentional small group strategy. Built around the most commonly asked questions, Small Groups with Purpose outlines the step-by-step process of creating a successful small group ministry. Because it is built upon principles and not methods, this plan can be implemented in any size church. Each chapter ends with a list of questions for readers to answer to help them assess their current situation and their desires for the future. Personal stories, Scripture, and examples ground the discussion and show the system in action. Pastors and small group leaders will find this book instrumental in making small groups work in their churches. BUY HERE
The Wounded Healer by Henry Nouwen The Wounded Healer is a hope-filled and profoundly simple book that speaks directly to those men and women who want to be of service in their church or community, but have found the traditional ways often threatening and ineffective. In this book, Henri Nouwen combines creative case studies of ministry with stories from diverse cultures and religious traditions in preparing a new model for ministry. Weaving keen cultural analysis with his psychological and religious insights, Nouwen has come up with a balanced and creative theology of service that begins with the realization of fundamental woundedness in human nature. Emphasizing that which is in humanity common to both minister and believer, this woundedness can serve as a source of strength and healing when counseling others. Nouwen proceeds to develop his approach to ministry with an analysis of sufferings — a suffering world, a suffering generation, a suffering person, and a suffering minister. It is his contention that ministers are called to recognize the sufferings of their time in their own hearts and make that recognition the starting point of their service. For Nouwen, ministers must be willing to go beyond their professional role and leave themselves open as fellow human beings with the same wounds and suffering — in the image of Christ. In other words, we heal from our own wounds. Filled with examples from everyday experience, The Wounded Healer is a thoughtful and insightful guide that will be welcomed by anyone engaged in the service of others. BUY HERE