Top books for people sensing a call to ministry

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image credit: CreationSwap user Agatha Villa

Sensing a call to ministry?

Then it’s time to start getting prepped now. Nothing can substitute for doing the work of ministry. But picking up and working through a handful (or two) of good books will help you more than you could ever know.

These are some of my favorites. Some I read in seminary. Others I’ve read since I’ve been working full-time in the local church.

I hope they help you as much as they’ve helped me.

 

Ministry

Small Groups with Purpose by Steve Gladen (e-book)

Deep and Wide by Andy Stanley (e-book)

Sticky Church by Larry Osborne (e-book)

Sticky Teams by Larry Osborne (e-book)

Lectures to my Students by CH Spurgeon (e-book)

Creating Community by Andy Stanley (e-book)

UnChristian by David Kinnaman and Gabe Lyons (e-book)

 

Leadership

21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership by John Maxwell (e-book)

How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie (e-book)

Tribes: We Need you to Lead us by Seth Godin (e-book)

Good to Great by Jim Collins (e-book)

The 5 Dysfunctions of a Team by Patrick Lencioni (e-book)

 

Theology/Spiritual Growth

The Explicit Gospel by Matt Chandler (e-book)

Knowing God by JI Packer (e-book)

Christian Beliefs: 20 Basics Every Christian Should Know by Wayne Grudem (e-book)

ESV Study Bible

The Attributes of God by AW Pink (e-book)

Desiring God by John Piper (e-book)

Of the Mortification of Sin in Believers by John Owen (e-book)

Let the Nations Be Glad by John Piper (e-book)

The Me I Want to Be by John Ortberg (e-book)

 

Anything you’d add?

 

My top 3 books for 2011

image credit: Creation Swap user Jamie Current

I’ve read a lot in 2011. And there are three books that rose to the top for me.

1. How to Win Friends and Influence People, by Dale Carnegie

This is an old book, but it’s still unbelievably applicable today. Because relationships are still vital to whatever you do, whether that’s at work, home, or church. This book oozes practical wisdom.

2. Small Groups with Purpose: How to Create Healthy Communities, by Steve Gladen (blog)

I know, it’s niche. But it’s good. If you’re overseeing small groups, this book is gold for you. Steve has laid out the method that Saddleback Church has pioneered in launching thousands of small groups. And he’s broken it down where churches who are much smaller can learn from the principles that Saddleback has used.

3. Sticky Teams, by Larry Osborne

Our staff read through this book together and it was so, so good. Osborne packs this book full of the wisdom he’s learned in leading his teams of staff members at North Coast Church. If you’re a team leader, or plan on being one, especially in the church, this is a must-read.

Question:

Have you read a must-read this year?

 

 * image credit: Creation Swap user Jamie Current

 

5 church planting gurus you should follow

Since Grace Community Church, where I serve on staff, is going multi-site in early 2011, I thought it fitting to mention some of the people who are influential in the world of multi-site churches.  You can read the rest of my “Follow Friday” series HERE.

Mac Lake – Mac is the Chief Launch Officer of The Launch Network, a new church planting network based out of West Ridge Church in the greater Atlanta, Georgia area.  You can read his blog HERE, and follow him on Twitter HERE.

Greg Surratt - Greg is the founding pastor of Seacoast Church, one of the early adopters of the multi-site model. Located in Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina,  Greg is also a founding board member of the Association of Related Churches (ARC).  You can read his blog HERE and follow him on Twitter HERE.

*While you’re at it, go ahead and follow his brothers on Twitter, too: Chris Surratt (small groups pastor at Cross Point Church in Nashville, TN) and Geoff Surratt (pastor of ministries at Sea Coast, co-author of The Multisite Church Revolution and A Multisite Church Roadtrip; you can read his blog HERE).

Larry Osborne – I was introduced to Larry through his book, Sticky Church.  It was basically a book about how to add a stickiness (encourage people to continue attending your church) to your church through small groups.  Larry is the pastor at North Coast Church in Vista, CA, one of the pioneers in the video venue church services.  You can follow him on Twitter HERE and read his blog HERE.

JD Greer – Pastor at Summit Church in Raleigh, NC, a church that meets in multiple locations, and does small groups incredibly well.  You can follow him on Twitter HERE, and read his blog HERE.  If you care…their small groups pastor is a good friend of mine, and you can follow him on Twitter HERE, blog HERE.

Darrin Patrick – Pastor at The Journey Church in St. Louis, and author of Church Planter.  Darrin is a leading voice in the Acts 29 network of church planting, a network that has planted over 300 churches in the last 10 years.  You can follow him on Twitter HERE.

Who did I leave out that I should have included?