Revitalization Print Resources

Suggested Reading for Missions, Church Health, and Revitalization

Mission to North America (MNA) recommends that you carefully consider the following books and articles. Although they do not all necessarily represent Presbyterian and reformed standards, their content falls within the theological boundaries of the broader evangelical community. This recommendation does not imply agreement with or endorsement of the practices or beliefs of the authors.

Many of these titles can be purchased through Christian Education & Publications (CE&P).

Revitalization/Evangelism/Church Health

Aldrich, Joseph. Lifestyle Evangelism: Crossing Traditional Boundaries to Reach the Unbelieving World, Multnomah, 1999.
Aldrich discusses how we can build genuine, caring relationships with nonbelievers that will open their hearts to the Gospel message.

Ammerman, Nancy, Jackson Carroll, Carl Dudley, and William McKinney, eds. Studying Congregations: A New Handbook, Abingdon, 1998.
Provides a step-by-step process for analyzing a congregation’s theology, context, culture and identity, dynamics, resources, and leadership.

Anderson, Leith. A Church for the 21st Century, Bethany House, 1992.
Guide for lay leaders and pastors on creating changes in their churches that will meet the challenges of the 21st century.

Arn, Charles. How to Start a New Service, Zondervan, 1997.
Whether a church is already growing or simply maintaining the status quo, this book will answer questions about how to more effectively bring the gospel to your community.

Barna, George. Turn-Around Churches: How to Overcome Barriers to Growth and Bring New Life to an Established Church, Regal, 1993.

Suggestions to help your church avoid decline and begin a path to new growth.

Bennett, Ron, and John Purvis.The Adventure of Discipling Others: Training in the Art of Disciplemaking,NavPress, 2003.
Read how the influence one person can effect the life of another and how to develop a passion for life-to-life discipling.

Bierly, Steve. Help for the Small-Church Pastor, Zondervan, 1995.
Provides pastors with how to motivate their churches toward positive change and true growth.

Bubna, Donald. Building People Through a Caring, Sharing Fellowship, Tyndale, 1984.

Bullock, Richard, and Richard Bruesehoff. Clergy Renewal: The Alban Guide to Sabbatical Planning, Alban Institute, 2000.
A useful guide to sabbatical planning.

Buttry, Daniel. Bringing Your Church Back to Life: Beyond Survival Mentality, Judson Press, 1988.
Help in understanding the mindset of church leaders serving in a congregation that has experienced decline.

Callahan, Kennon. New Beginnings for Pastors & Congregations: Building an Excellent Match Upon Your Shared Strengths, Jossey-Bass, 1999.
Presenting practical, concrete wisdom for both pastors and congregations on how to begin a healthy pastorate or create a new beginning for an ongoing ministry.

Coleman, Robert. The Master Plan of Evangelism, Revell, 1963, 1993.
An insightful, useful book for those interested in evangelism and mentoring.

Cook, Arnold. Historical Drift: Must My Church Die?, Christian Publications, 2000.
Historical drift is the inherent tendency of human organizations to depart over time from their original beliefs, purposes, and practices that in the Christian context results in a loss of vitality.  This book provides encouragement in making a difference.

Dever, Mark.Nine Marks of a Healthy Church, Crossway, 2000.
A recommendation of how to assess the health of your church using nine critical qualities that are neglected by many of today’s churches.

Eims, LeRoy. Keeping Off the Casualty List, Victor, 1986.

Eims, LeRoy. Laboring in the Harvest, NavPress, 1985.

Fryling, Alice. Disciplemakers’ Handbook, InterVarsity, 1989.
A handbook for those who need help and encouragement in discipling and in reaching out to others.

Gordon, S.D. What It Will Take to Change the World, Baker, 1984.

Green, Michael. Evangelism Through the Local Church: A Comprehensive Guide to All Aspects of Evangelism, Thomas Nelson, 1992.

Greenway, Roger, ed. The Pastor-Evangelist: Preacher, Model, and Mobilizer for Church Growth, P&R, 1987.

Habig, Brian, and Les Newsom. The Enduring Community: Embracing the Priority of the Church, Reformed University Press, 2001.

Haugk, Kenneth C. Christian Caregiving: A Way of Life, Augsburg, 1984.
Learn what can happen when you care in a distinctively Christian way.

Laurie, Greg. Upside Down Church, Tyndale, 1999.
A no-nonsense approach that focuses on the biblical model for local church ministry.

Lewis, Robert. The Church of Irresistible Influence, Zondervan, 2001.
This book will show how your church can become a strong, well-traveled link between heaven and earth in your community.

Lovelace, Richard. Dynamics of Spiritual Life: An Evangelical Theology of Renewal, InterVarsity, 1979.
A major contribution to help in understanding God’s actions in the church and in history.

Macchia, Stephen, Gordon McDonald, and Haddon Robinson. Becoming a Healthy Church: 10 Characteristics to pursue in the Process, Baker, 1999.
This book is designed to be a practical, hands-on manual to launch you and your church into a process of change.

Malphurs, Aubrey. Pouring New Wine into Old Wineskins: How to Change a Church Without Destroying it, Baker, 1993.
How to be a church change agent without destroying the congregation.

Mann, Alice. Can Our Church Live?: Redeveloping Congregations in Decline, Alban Institute, 2000.
Practical options for congregations, leadership challenges for laity and clergy, and ways to work with denominations are detailed and engaging discussions provide a basis for congregational planning.

McIntosh, Gary L. Biblical Church Growth: How You Can Work with God to Build a Faithful Church, Baker, 2003.
This book stresses that biblical beliefs, attitudes and teachings are for the long haul and are superior to simply using popular and various methods alone.

McLaren, Brian. The Church on the Other Side, Zondervan, 2000.
Thirteen strategies are offered for navigating modern/postmodern churches.

McManus, Erwin. An Unstoppable Force: Daring to Become the Church God Had in Mind, Group Publishing, 2001.

Challenges the reader to see God’s vision for the mission and purpose of the church.

Metzger, Will. Tell the Truth: The Whole Gospel to the Whole Person by Whole People, InterVarsity, 1981.
A training manual to help people care about truth and to face the truth about Jesus.

Miller, Jack. Outgrowing the Ingrown Church, Zondervan, 1986.
This book offers an unparalleled challenge to be evaluated, revitalized and then used by God for the work of ministry.

Miller, C. John. Repentance and 20th Century Man, Christian Literature Crusade, 1975.

Muller, Wayne. Sabbath: Restoring the Sacred Rhythm of Rest, Bantam, 1999.
Finding rest, renewal, and delight in our busy lives.

Olson, C. What in the World Is God Doing? Global Gospel, 2003.
Provides the essentials in the crucial areas that comprise missiological study:  theology, history, the church in its context, and mission strategy.

Ortlund, Raymond C. When God Comes to Church: A Biblical Model for Revival Today, Baker, 2000.
Explains what God can do to revive His people and what we must do to prepare ourselves for revival.

Oswald, Roy, and Robert Friedrich. Discerning Your Congregation’s Future: A Strategic and Spiritual Approach, Alban Institute, 1996.
The idea of discerning rather than planning the future direction is presented as the way to go.

Oswald, Roy, and Speed Leas. The Inviting Church: A Study of New Member Assimilation, Alban Institute, 1987.
Equipping every new member of your church to discover the right place of ministry.

Packer, J.I. Evangelism and the Sovereignty of God, InterVarsity, 1991.
Noted scholar and writer J.I. Packer shows that a right understanding of God’s sovereignty is a powerful incentive for evangelism.

Parrish, Archie and R.C. Sproul. The Spirit of Revival: Discovering the Wisdom of Jonathan Edwards, Crossway, 2000.

Phillips, Roy. Letting Go: Transforming Congregations for Ministry, Alban Institute, 1999.

Pope, Randy. The Prevailing Church: An Alternative Approach to Ministry, Moody, 2002

Answers the call for a solid, biblical resource to guide pastors, elders, and students through the minefield of church growth. Topics range from the practical, such as Realistic Goals and Cultural Relevance, to the theological, such as Holiness, and Discipleship.

Rainer, Thom. Breakout Churches, Zondervan, 2005.
Rainer sets out to discover how churches that were once healthy but had stagnated in growth have broken out to become great churches impacting lives and entire communities.

Rainer, Thom. Surprising Insights from the Unchurched: And Proven Ways to Reach Them, Zondervan, 2001.
A comprehensive study of the formerly unchurched explodes some common myths as to what it takes to reach people and provides insight into how the Christian church can develop effective approaches to reach the growing number of unchurched in North America.

Rainer, Thom. The Unchurched Next Door: Understanding Faith Stages as Keys to Sharing Your Faith, Zondervan, 2003.
Rainer concludes that the unchurched are different in how they respond to the Gospel and that there are many variables that exist when it comes to how open people are to the Christian message. Once you’ve recognized which stage your unchurched friends and family are living in, you can much more effectively connect them with Christ.

Reeder, Harry. From Embers to a Flame: How God Can Revitalize Your Church, P&R, 2005,

Harry Reeder has long specialized in church revitaliz  ation. He alerts us to potential problems in our churches, helps us to recognize our weaknesses and opportunities, and guides us in applying biblically based strategies for rekindling the flames of godly growth.

Ross, Mike. Preaching for Revitalization, Christian Focus, 2006.

Churches in need of revitalization need revitalized pulpits. The challenge is for pastors to lead the revitalization of congregations through the primacy of the pulpit. This book examines historic and contemporary preaching and assesses which changes are necessary for church revitalization.

Rupprecht, David, and Ruth Rupprecht. Radical Hospitality, P&R, 1983.

Russell, Bob. When God Builds a Church: 10 Principles for Growing a Dynamic Church, Howard, 2000.

With his son Rusty, Bob Russell, pastor of Southeast Christian Church—one of the largest and fastest growing churches in America—shares the ten principles upon which this remarkable church was founded. Throughout the book, you will see God’s mighty power at work in a church that began in 1962 with only 50 members and has now grown to over 14,000 and has become a bustling “city on a hill” whose faith powerfully impacts its community and the world.

Rybka, Michael S. Rediscovering God’s Intended Identity and Purpose: A Workbook for Dramatic Revitalization in the Local Church, DMin Dissertation, RTS, 5/2000.

Ryken, Philip. City on a Hill: Reclaiming the Biblical Pattern for the Church in the 21st Century, Moody, 2003.
Christianity is no longer the prevailing influence on the mind and heart of our culture. It is imperative that Christians understand and embrace the biblical pattern for the church. Ryken provides readers with a deeper understanding of how to live for Christ in the twenty-first century by returning to the model set out in the first century.

Schaller, Lyle. From Geography to Affinity: How Congregations Can Learn from One Another, Abingdon, 2003.
Schaller suggests the establishment of affinity networks within denominations to help churches extend their mission and improve the effectiveness of their ministries.

Schaller, Lyle. Activating the Passive Church: Diagnosis & Treatment, Abingdon, 1981.
Diagnoses the causes of church passivity and formulates a method for combating the problem.

Schaller, Lyle. The Middle-Sized Church: Problems & Prescriptions, Abingdon, 1985.
Middle-sized churches (100-200 worshipers) have always been unwieldy and difficult to grapple with. They are not close-knit families, like small churches. They are not staff-centered and highly structured, like large churches. Schaller grapples with these issues and proposes some solutions.

Schaller, Lyle. The Small Church Is Different!, Abingdon, 1982.
Examines four major areas of concern affecting small churches: self-esteem, youth ministries, the financial base, and church growth. Looks at church staffing and discusses the key role of the Sunday school.

Schaller, Lyle. The Small Membership Church: Scenarios for Tomorrow, Abingdon, 1994.
Schaller believes the small membership church has a bright and promising future if the leaders will adapt to new roles in the culture. He presents 44 alternative scenarios that can lead to a better use of resources and more focused energies in ministry.

Schaller, Lyle. The Very Large Church: New Rules for Leaders, Abingdon, 2000.
Written for those congregational leaders who recognize that their old rule-book is obsolete and who are eager to learn how to participate effectively in the very large church in a context that is defined by the culture, the societal context, clearly defined expectations, a theological belief system, a passion for evangelism, a high level of competence, creativity, innovation, and a new and different set of rules, rather than by local traditions, geographical boundaries, or yesterday’s stereotypes.

Sitze, Bob. Not Trying Too Hard: New Basics for Sustainable Congregations, Alban Institute, 2001.

Sjogren, Steve. Conspiracy of Kindness: A Refreshing New Approach to Sharing the Love of Jesus, Regal, 1993, 2003.
The premise of this book is that loving deeds done by unassuming Christians convince more people of the love of God than all the words in the world. If evangelism doesn’t seem to be your gift or you’re burned out on trying to share the Gospel, try Servant Evangelism.

Sjogren, Steve, and Rob Levin.Community of Kindness, Regal, 2003.
A practical, real-world guide to successful church planting that is focused on problem solving.

Stott, John R.W. Our Guilty Silence, InterVarsity, 1967.

Webber, Robert. Ancient-Future Evangelism: Making Your Church a Faith-Forming Community, Baker, 2003.
A key resource for “younger evangelicals” and others who wonder how early Christian practices can be applied to a postmodern church.

Webber, Robert. Ancient-Future Faith: Rethinking Evangelism for a Postmodern World, Baker, 1999.
The fundamental concern of Ancient-Future Faith is to find points of contact between classical Christianity and postmodern thought.

Webber, Robert. Planning Blended Worship: A Creative Mixture of Old and New, Abingdon, 1998.
A guide to planning creative worship for congregations that follows the traditional fourfold pattern of worship (gathering, word, table, and dismissal), as well as for those who prefer a free-church, evangelical style or more contemporary or blended approaches to worship.

Webber, Robert. The Younger Evangelicals: Facing the Challenges of the New World, Baker, 2002.
Explores how a generation of emerging leaders is bringing sweeping change and renewal to the twenty-first century evangelical church.


Anderson, Leith. Dying for Change, Bethany House, 1998.
Leith Anderson has successfully guided his own church through a process of extraordinary growth and change. His experience, research, and presentations are the source of the material for this book.

Bloesch, Donald. The Struggle of Prayer, Helmers & Howard, 1988.
Bloesch distinguishes between the evangelical and mystical traditions of prayer, clarifying the tradition of the Reformers and calling for a purified mysticism.

Boa, Ken. Conformed to His Image, Zondervan, 2001.
Offers a comprehensive, balanced, and applicable approach to what it really means to know Christ. Boa examines a variety of pathways in the spiritual life and shows how each of these pathways can contribute to the dynamic process of spiritual growth.

Chapell, Bryan. Praying Backwards: Transform Your Prayer Life by Beginning in Jesus’ Name, Baker, 2005.
Urges readers to use the routine phrase, “In Jesus’ Name” as the premise and basis for prayer rather than merely tacking it on at the end. He answers tough questions—Why bother to pray? Why does God want persistent prayer? How can we know God’s will?—with sound, biblical answers.

Cymbala, Jim. Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire, Zondervan, 1997.
Cymbala’s own church, the Brooklyn Tabernacle, was a struggling congregation of twenty. Then they began to pray and God began to move. Today they are eight thousand strong. The story of what happened to this broken-down church in one of America’s meanest neighborhoods points the way to new spiritual vitality in the church and in your own life.

Eims, LeRoy. Prayer: More Than Words, NavPress, 1982.

Forsyth, P.T. The Soul of Prayer, Regent, 2002.
In 1878 Forsyth experienced a conversion from, in his own words, “being a Christian to being a believer, from a lover of love to an object of grace.” A profound awareness of pastoral responsibility was awakened, which radically altered the course of his ministry, leading in particular to a recovery of the theology of grace.

Gale, Stan. Community Houses of Prayer Ministry Manual, Deo Volente, 2002.
Community Houses of Prayer involves and trains Christ’s disciples in strategic prayer outreach over a 12 to 16 week period. Participants commit themselves to weekly group meetings and daily private prayer, resulting in an increased awareness of their people environments, a heightened sense of personal involvement as witnesses, and a greater level of activity in verbal witness.

Getz, Gene A. Sharpening the Focus of the Church, revised edition, Victor, 1984.
An insightful, biblical treatise on church renewal, focusing on New Testament principles as applied to the unique needs of contemporary culture and rooted in the perspective of the history of the church.

Grieg, Pete, and Dave Roberts.Red Moon Rising: How 24-7 Prayer Is Awakening a Generation, Relevant, 2003.
From Communist China to Washington, DC, and from the ranks of the Salvation Army to anarchic German punks, the 24-7 Prayer movement has been interceding continually, night and day, since 1999, in more than fifty countries. This is their story.

Gurnall, William. The Christian in Complete Armour: Daily Readings in Spiritual Warfare, Moody, 1999.
Written in the seventeenth century by Gurnall and compiled into 365 readings by editor James Bell, this devotional supplies Christians with tools for spiritual triumph.

Hallesby, Ole. Prayer, Augsburg, 1931, 1994.

This classic treatise on prayer by one of Norway’s leading Christian teachers and devotional writers is a practical and trustworthy guide into a life of friendship with God.

Henry, Matthew. Method for Prayer, Christian Heritage, 1994.

Hybels, Bill. Too Busy Not To Pray, InterVarsity, 1988.
Hybels shows how to slow down to pray, listen to God, respond to what we hear, practice the presence of God and overcome prayer barriers.

Kelley, Douglas. If God Already Knows, Why Pray?, Wolgemuth & Hyatt, 1990.

Laubach, Frank. Prayer: The Mightiest Force in the World, Spire, 1959.

Lewis, C.S. Letters to Malcolm: Chiefly on Prayer, Harvest Books, 2002.
In the form of letters to a close friend, Lewis meditates on many puzzling questions concerning the intimate dialogue between man and God. Lewis also considers practical and metaphysical aspects of private prayer, petitionary prayer, the Lord’s Prayer, and other forms of prayer.

Lewis, C.S. The Screwtape Letters, HarperSanFrancisco, 2001.
In this humorous and perceptive exchange between two devils, C. S. Lewis delves into moral questions about good vs. evil, temptation, repentance, and grace.

Lloyd-Jones, D. Martyn.The Christian Soldier: An Exposition of Ephesians 6:10 to 20, out of print.

Lutzer, Erwin W. The Serpent of Paradise: The Incredible Story of How Satan’s Rebellion Serves God’s Purposes, Moody, 1996.  

Examines how Satan fits into God’s scheme of things.

MacArthur, John Jr. Alone with God: The Power and Passion of Prayer, Chariot Victor Publishing, 1995.
Helps the reader discover the power and passion that can be found in truly biblical prayer.

MacIntyre, David. The Hidden Life of Prayer, Evangelical Press, 1991.
A classic that opens the door to the “secret place” of many historical prayer warriors and helps readers discover the aspects that make for a special prayer relationship with God.

Omartian, Stormie. The Power of a Praying Husband, Harvest House, 2001.
Instructs husbands how to change their lives by praying for their spouses.

Owen, John. Mortification of Sin, Banner of Truth, 2004.
Puritan instruction in righteousness.

Parrish, Archie. The Spirit of Revival, Discovering the Wisdom of Jonathan Edward, Crossway Books, 2000.
Jonathan Edwards’ classic on signs of revival is made more accessible through this modernization of the complete text, with footnotes and introductions added.

Parrish, Archie. Improve Your Prayer Life, 2d ed., Serve International, 2002.
A training manual on prayer that will transform your instinctive, reactive prayer into biblical, proactive, kingdom-focused prayer.

Parrish, Archie. Intercede For and With Your Family, Serve International, 2000.

Parrish, Archie. Invigorate Your Church, Serve International, 2001.
Insight on how to pray with kingdom focus for the leaders and workers of your church so that it becomes all God desires it to be.

Parrish, Archie. Impact Your World, Serve International.

Parrish, Archie. A Simple Way to Pray, Serve International, 2005.
Luther’s classic biblical structure for prayer put in the context of his disciplined life and reflections on the Psalms.

Piper, John.A Hunger for God: Desiring God Through Fasting and Prayer, Crossway Books, 1997.
Invites the reader to sharpen his or her appetite for God by turning away from the dulling effects of food and the dangers of idolatry and drawing closer to God through simple fasting and prayer.

Pratt, Richard L. Jr. Pray with Your Eyes Open: Looking at God, Ourselves and Our Prayers, P&R Publishing, 1987.
Help in developing a sound, systematic, and satisfying prayer life. Covers form, freedom, fasting, and more.

Snyder, Howard A. Radical Renewal: The Problem of Wine Skins Today, Touch Publications, 1996.
What kinds of church structures are most compatible with the Gospel in our modern, techno-urban society? Snyder addresses these questions and provides some challenging answers.

Snyder, Howard A. Liberating the Church: The Ecology of Church and Kingdom, Wipf & Stock, 1996.

Snyder, Howard A. The Community of the King, InterVarsity Press, 2004.
Penetrating look at the relationship between the kingdom of God and the church that explores its implications for the church in daily life. The church, he argues, is part of God’s dramatic plan to reconcile all things to himself. The church that is true to its calling will emphasize the God-given gifts of all its members and develop structures and strategies that reflect God’s reign in the world.

Tremper, Longman III, Daniel G. Reid, and Willem A. Van Gemeren. God Is a Warrior, Zondervan, 1995.
The metaphor of God as warrior is one of the essential metaphors for understanding salvation in both Old and New Testaments.


Anderson, Leith. Leadership that Works: Hope and Direction for Today’s Pastors and Parachurch Leaders in Today’s Complex World , Bethany House, 2002.
Hope and help for church leaders seeking guidance in today’s complex world. Defines changes required in leadership and the perplexing issues to be faced.

Barna, George. A Fish Out of Water: 9 Strategies Effective Leaders Use to Help You Get Back into the Flow,Integrity, 2002.
Drawing on years of research and thousands of interviews with respected leaders, Barna outlines practical concepts and actions that will help you discover your God-given potential and unique leadership style so you can be the effective leader you are called to be.

Bennis, Warran, and Burt Nanus.Leaders: Strategies for Taking Charge, 2d ed., Harper Business, 2003.
The authors reveal the four key principles every manager should know: Attention Through Vision, Meaning Through Communication, Trust Through Positioning, and The Deployment of Self.

Biehl, Bobb. Thirty Days to Confident Leadership, Broadman & Holman, 1998.
Being a good leader doesn’t mean always having the right answers, but having the right questions—about yourself and the work you do. Bobb Biehl teaches you to ask the right questions, which is a key to success.

Blanchard, Ken. Leadership and the One-Minute Manager: Increasing Effectiveness Through Situational Leadership, William Morrow, 1999.
Teaches managers the art of Situational Leadership—a simple system that refutes the conventional management mandate of treating all employees equally. Here, you’ll learn why tailoring management styles to individual employees is so important; why knowing when to delegate, support, or direct is critical; how to identify the leadership style suited to a particular person; and how consistent use of the One Minute techniques will produce better management and enhanced motivation on all levels.

Blanchard, Ken. The Servant Leader, J. Countryman, 2003.
Reveals the meaning of servant leadership modeled after Jesus Christ. Based on Blanchard’s and Hodges’ Faith Walk seminars, business leaders come to realize that teams are more powerful than the sum of the individuals and to recognize their people as appreciating assets.

Blanchard, Ken, Bill Hybels, and Phil Hodges. Leadership by the Book: Tools to Transform Your Workplace, William Morrow, 1999.
Draws on the model and messages of Jesus as the source of practical lessons in effective leadership.
Clinton, Robert. Leadership Emergence Theory: A Self-Study Manual for Analyzing the Development of a Christian Leader, Barnabas Resources, 1989.

Clinton, J. Robert. The Making of a Leader, NavPress, 1988.
Clinton identifies the patterns God uses to develop a leader. By studying the lives of hundreds of historical, biblical, and contemporary leaders, Dr. Clinton has identified six stages of leadership development, and he establishes checkpoints to discover where you are in the process.

Cohen, William A. The New Art of the Leader: Leading with Integrity and Honor, Prentice Hall, 2000.
Using “the combat model of leadership,” this book demonstrates how to apply the winning tactics of the military to business while maintaining absolute integrity. Cohen showcases the skills and drive of remarkable leaders such as director Steven Spielberg, Intel CEO Andy Grove and Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz as well as military commanders from ancient times to today.

Collins, Jim. Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap . . . and Others Don’t, Collins, 2001.
Based on an extensive five-year study conducted by Collins and a research team, this book defines and analyzes the practices that allowed 11 companies to make the rare transition from solid to outstanding performance.

Covey, Stephen. First Things First: To Live, to Learn, to Love, to Leave a Legacy, Free Press, 1996.
Guide to managing your time by balancing your life. Emphasizes relationships rather than control.

Covey, Stephen. Principle-Centered Leadership, Summit Books, 1991.

Crocker, H.W. III. Robert E. Lee on Leadership: Executive Lessons in Character, Courage, and Vision, 3d ed., Three Rivers Press, 2000.

Robert E. Lee was an extraordinary leader who inspired an out-gunned, out-manned army to legendary heights. This book presents Lee’s story in a way that today’s business leaders and managers can use to achieve executive success.

DePree, Max. Leadership Is an Art, Currency, 2004.
In what has become a bible for the business world, the successful CEO of Herman Miller, Inc., explores how executives and managers can learn the leadership skills that build a better, more profitable organization.

Drucker, Peter F. The Effective Executive, HarperCollins, 1993.
Drucker reminds us that the measure of success for an executive is the ability to “get the right things done.” This usually involves doing what other people have overlooked as well as avoiding what is unproductive.

Drucker, Peter F. Managing the Non-Profit Organization, Harper, 1992.
Drucker gives examples and explanations of mission, leadership, resources, marketing, goals, people development, decision-making, and much more. Included are interviews with nine experts that address key issues in the non-profit sector.

Eims, LeRoy. Be a Motivational Leader, Cook, 2002.
Learn how to fire up a group and equip them to be and do their best for Christ.

Eims, LeRoy. Be the Leader You Were Meant to Be: Growing into the Leader God Called You to Be, Victor, 2002.
Presents what the Bible says about leadership in a down-to-earth and practical manner.

Engstrom, Ted W. The Pursuit of Excellence, Zondervan, 1994.

Engstrom presents a challenge to shun mediocrity and reach toward the standards of excellence called for in the Bible. He uses examples and motivational skills to show us how to become stronger people.

Ford, Leighton. Transforming Leadership: Jesus’ Way of Creating Vision, Shaping Values & Empowering Change, InterVarsity, 1993.
Ford calls his readers to recognize the unique and refreshing vision of leadership modeled by Jesus. a model of leadership that does not paralyze, but empowers.

Gladwell, Malcolm. The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference, Little, Brown, 2002.
Defining that precise moment when a trend becomes a trend, Malcolm Gladwell probes the surface of everyday occurrences to reveal some surprising dynamics behind explosive social changes. He examines the power of word-of-mouth and explores how very small changes can directly affect popularity.

Greenleaf, Robert. Servant Leadership: A Journey into the Nature of Legitimate Power & Greatness, 25th Anniversary Edition, Paulist Press, 2002.
Greenleaf developed his theory of servant leadership while an executive at AT&T, and he subsequently lectured at MIT, Harvard Business School, Dartmouth College and the University of Virginia. The Center for Applied Ethics, which he founded, eventually became the Robert K. Greenleaf Center, located in Indianapolis.

Gretz, Karl, and Steven Drozdeck. Empowering Innovative People: How Managers Challenge, Channel and Control the Truly Creative and Talented, Probus, 1992.

Hendrix, Olan. Three Dimensions of Leadership: Practical Insight on Management, Finance and Boards for Churches and Christian Organizations, Church Smart Resources, 2000.

Hendricks, William. Exit Interviews: Revealing Stories of Why People are Leaving the Church, Moody, 1993.
William Hendricks interviewed dozens of church “dropouts” across the country and made some remarkable and troubling discoveries.

Hughes, Kent, and Barbara Hughes. Liberating Ministry for the Success Syndrome, Tyndale, 1987.
Why do so many ministers abandon their churches in frustration? These concepts and biblical lessons can turn lives and ministries around.

Jennings, Ken, and John Stahl-Wert. The Serving Leader, Berrett-Koehler, 2003.
Ken Jennings and John Stahl-Wert use a story about an estranged son, his dying father, and a remarkable group of innovative leaders in business, volunteer organizations, and civic groups to illustrate five pragmatic principles of servant leadership.

Katzenbach, Jon, and Douglas Smith. The Wisdom of Teams: Creating the High-Performance Organization, Harper, 1999.
Explores the benefits of teams at all levels of the organization. The authors provide dozens of real accounts and case studies that illustrate successes and failures and demonstrate what can be learned from these examples.

Kouzes, James, and Barry Posner.Leadership Challenge,3d ed., Wiley, 2003.

With a research base of sixty thousand leaders and constituents, this edition captures the continuing interest in leadership as a critical aspect of human organizations. It offers a broader scope for viewing leaders in every industry and all walks of life, including the education and nonprofit fields.

MacArthur, John. The Master’s Plan for the Church, Moody, 1991.

Malphurs, Aubrey. Values-Driven Leadership: Discovering and Developing Your Core Values for Ministry, Baker, 1996.
Designed to help church and parachurch leaders understand the concept of organizational core values, which are the key to a high-performing ministry. Malphurs offers important insights on new research in the field of leadership and delineates techniques for implementing those insights in practical ways.

Rendle, Gilbert. Leading Change in the Congregation: Spiritual and Organizational Tools for Leadership, Alban Institute, 1998.
A guide for dealing with the dynamics of change—spiritual, intellectual, and emotional. Helpful differentiation between “management” and “leadership” and the kinds of situations when each style is appropriate.

Sanders, J. Oswald. Spiritual Leadership: Principles of Excellence for Every Believer, Moody, 1967.
The principles of leadership in both the temporal and spiritual realms are presented and illustrated both from Scripture and from biographies of men of God.

Schaller, Lyle. The Change Agent: The Strategy of Innovative Leadership, Abingdon, 1972.
The author considers all aspects of the process of change, including styles, tactics, and the nature of change, the place of power, the possible points of conflict, and the avoidance of polarization. Mr. Schaller also offers an introduction to the skills of organization development, teaching the effective change agent to identify and evaluate alternative courses of action so new purposes can be formed and effected.

Schaller, Lyle. The Decision-Makers: How to Improve the Quality of Decision-Making in the Churches, Abingdon, 1974.
Schaller analyses the frame of reference for decision-making—taking into consideration the lay-clergy gap, the understanding of original sin, and the power of the Holy Spirit. He discusses the pressures of institutionalism, the revising of structure, the influence of the political process, and forms of interchurch cooperation. He also goes into the important issues of evaluation and accountability, and suggests major points of increased tension in the future.

Southerland, Dan. Transitioning: Leading Your Church Through Change, Zondervan, 2000.
Takes readers through a step-by-step process that can help any church make the transition from being program driven to purpose driven.

Stanley, Paul D., and Clinton, J. Robert. Connecting: The Mentoring Relationships You Need to Succeed in Life, NavPress, 1992.
In ourselves, none of us are fully equipped to excel in life, which is why connecting with others plays such an indispensable role in healthy development. Having access to the wisdom, experience, vision, and direction of those who have gone before can put you way ahead of where you’d otherwise be. In addition to enhancing your own potential in all of life’s growth areas (spiritual, emotional, professional, relational, etc.), the things you’ll discover will equip you to help others as well.

Thrall, Bill, Bruce McNicol, and Ken McElrath. The Ascent of a Leader:How Ordinary Relationships Develop Extraordinary Character and Influence, Jossey-Bass, 1999.
This book takes a deep and engaging look at the “how” of character development, guiding leaders in all sectors through a conscious, proactive, step-by-step process for developing both personal character and the network of important relationships that enable character to win out despite setbacks, adversity and temptations.

Tichy, Noel. The Leadership Engine:How Winning Companies Build Leaders at Every Level,HarperCollins, 2002.

Provides companies with the vital information they need to create a business where leadership abounds from the bottom up.

Missions/Church Planting

Allen, Roland. Missionary Methods: St. Paul’s or Our Own?, Eerdmans, 1962.
Roland Allen, an Anglican missionary in China from 1895 to 1903, discusses what the Bible has to show us about how to carry out the mission of the church, whether in our own culture, in ministering cross-culturally in our own backyard, or planting churches across an ocean.

Chaney, Charles. Church Planting at the End of the Twentieth Century, Tyndale, 1986.

Conn, Harvie. The Urban Face of Mission, P&R, 2002.

Conn, Harvie, and Manuel Ortiz.Urban Ministry: The Kingdom, the City, & the People of God, InterVarsity Press, 2001.

Elmer, Duane, and Lois McKinney, eds. With an Eye on the Future: Development & Mission in the 21st Century, MARC, 1996.

Faircloth, Samuel. Church Planting for Reproduction, Baker, 1991.
Faircloth, a former missionary to Europe and Portugal, maps out a strategy for planting churches that reproduce themselves. Utilizing Hesselgrave’s “Pauline Cycle” and Patterson’s “Obedience Oriented Teaching,” he develops a PERT chart to evaluate program effectiveness.

Fudor, John. A Heart for the City, Moody, 1999.

Chapters are written by people active in urban ministry. Filled with illustrations and case studies, this book is a useful handbook for those in urban ministry or those who want to understand how to more effectively serve in the city. Each chapter also includes questions for group discussion.

Hesselgrave, David. Planting Churches Cross-Culturally: North America and Beyond, 2d ed., Baker, 2000.
Uses cultural and experiential data to facilitate the founding of new churches in North America and throughout the world.

Malphurs, Aubrey. Planting Growing Churches for the 21st Century, Baker, 1992.
Aubrey Malphurs fervently believes that the church will awaken and thrive in the twenty-first century—but in nothing like its twentieth-century form. Revised and updated, this second edition emphasizes the importance of ministry’s core values, mission, and strategy. Sixteen accompanying worksheets are included, and new chapter-end checklists aid in review. This creative handbook shows church planters how to focus on the essential ingredients for success: a Great Commission vision, strong servant-leadership, a mobilized lay army, culturally relevant ministry and evangelism, authentic worship, and a robust network of small groups.

McQuilkin, Robertson. The Great Omission: A Biblical Basis for World Evangelism, Gabriel, 2002.
A thorough investigation of why so few Christians attempt to carry the Gospel to the unreached. Outlines the Bible’s basis for evangelism in practical ways. McQuilkin is well-versed on trends and strategies in world missions and knows how to present the challenge of world evangelism in an unforgettable way.

Miller, Darrow L. Discipling the Nations: The Power of Truth to Transform Cultures, YWAM Publishing, 1998.
Miller examines the connection between Christianity, discipling, worldview and everyday life. His concept of discipling the nations goes beyond evangelizing our neighbors and reaching unreached people groups and challenges us to live Coram Deo—with all of our lives before the face of God.

Moore, Ralph. Starting a New Church: the Church Planters’ Guide to Success, Regal, 2002.

Ralph Moore maintains that perhaps our greatest responsibility is to evangelize our own generation, and that established churches are unable to do that. In fact, rising generations of Americans live in ignorance of Jesus Christ and have no moral absolutes. The answer, according to Moore, is aggressive church planting, because new churches focus on the needs of each new generation and present biblical truth in the cultural context that best reaches those people.

Piper, John. Let the Nations be Glad! Baker, 1993.
Testaments, Piper demonstrates that worship is the ultimate goal of the church and that proper worship drives missionary outreach. He describes prayer as the fuel of missions work because of its focus on a relationship with God rather than the needs of the world. He goes on to illustrate that while suffering is the price of missions, God is worthy of any sacrifice. He examines whether Jesus is the only way to salvation and discusses the extent of the missionary enterprise, seeking to define the scope of the task and the means to reaching “all nations.”

Redeemer Presbyterian Church. Church Planting Manual.

The Redeemer Church Planting Manual is an extensive compendium of outlines, lectures, essays, exercises and other materials that prepare learners for church planting especially in an urban setting. As with other similar manuals this one shares the conviction that church planting is the single “most effective evangelistic methodology known under heaven” (C.P. Wagner). But most books on new church development are either too general (telling us why to do church planting but not how to do it) or too specific (telling us how to reproduce just one particular kind of church model). This manual will equip the reader to think creatively about how to start churches in any context, culture or people group.

Schaller, Lyle. 44 Questions for Church Planters, Abingdon, 1991.
Answers the question “Why start new churches?” and shows how to reverse the decline of new church development. Schaller offers tested advice based on more than thirty years of working with leaders responsible for developing new churches.

Shenk, David, and Ervin Stugzman. Creating Communities of the Kingdom: New Testament Models of Church Planting, Herald Press, 1988.
A guide for putting New Testament missionary principles into practice.

Stetzer, Ed, and David Putnam, Breaking the Missional Code.

A clarion call for churches in the US to act among their local communities as missionaries would in a foreign land. For, in fact, the message of Jesus Christ is still foreign to many who stand in teh shadow of American steeples. As our approach to outreach changes, so can countless lives in our own backyards.
Stetzer, Ed. Planting Missional Churches.
In Planting Missional Churches (now updated from its first edition titled Planting New Churches in the Post-Modern Age), Stetzer offers the watershed instruction book for planting biblically faithful and culturally relevant churches. The “how to” and “why” issues of church planting are here, providing practical guidance through all the phases of a church plant while also taking a missions-minded look at existing and emerging cultures.

Stetzer, Ed. Planting New Churches in a Postmodern Age, Broadman & Holman, 2003.

Ed Stetzer lays out a case for missional church planting and then describes the process to plant healthy new churches. He looks at cultures and how to reach persons in those cultures through the tools within the cultures themselves. He also looks at emerging trends in churches reaching postmoderns and provides step by step instructions about how to plant churches in today’s world.

Cross-cultural/Multicultural Ministry

Barna, George, and Harry Jackson, High Impact African-American Churches, Regal, 2004.
Highlights real-life success stories from the African-American church experience. Here the strengths of the African-American church are celebrated and its best practices explored through the study of large and small churches alike. Half of the chapters feature African-American history from the inception of slavery to present day, revealing the influences that have shaped these churches. Readers from any church, in any culture, will learn specific steps they can take and apply to their own churches, achieving successes similar to those found in the African-American Church.

Breckenridge, James, and Lillian Breckenridge. What Color Is Your God? Multicultural Education in the Church: Examining Christ & Culture in Light of the Changing Face of the Church, Bridgepoint, 1995.

Conn, Harvie. The American City & the Evangelical Church: A Historical Overview, Baker, 1994.

Conn, Harvie. A Clarified Vision for Urban Mission, Zondervan, 1987.

DeYoung, Curtiss, Michael Emerson, George Yancey, and Karen Chai Kim. United by Faith: The Multicultural Congregation as an Answer to the Problem of Race, Oxford University Press, 2004.
A multiracial team of sociologists and a minister argue that multiracial Christian congregations offer a key to opening the still-locked door between the races in the United States. They note, however, that a belief persists—even in African-American and Latino churches—that racial segregation is an acceptable, even useful practice. The authors examine this question from biblical, historical, and theological perspectives to make their case. They explore the long history of interracialism in the church, with specific examples of multiracial congregations in the United States. The authors respond in detail, closing with a foundation for a theology suited to sustaining multiracial congregations over time.

Elmer, Duane. Cross-Cultural Conflict: Building Relationships for Effective Ministry, InterVarsity, 1994.
A thorough and practical handbook for conflict resolution across a wide variety of cultures—Asian, Hispanic and African.

Emerson, Michael, and Christian Smith. Divided by Faith: Evangelical Religion and the Problem of Race in America, Oxford University Press, 2001.
Emerson and Smith, who conducted 2,000 telephone surveys and 200 face-to-face interviews in preparing this book, argue that evangelicals have a theological worldview that makes it difficult for them to perceive systematic injustices in society, and therefore many well-meaning strategies for healing racial divisions (such as cross-cultural friendships) carry within them the seeds of their own defeat. Divided by Faith also includes a history of evangelical thought about race from colonial times to the civil rights movement.

Freeman, Samuel, Upon the Rock: The Miracles of a Black Church, Harper-Collins, 1993.

George, Timothy and Robert Smith, Jr. A Mighty Long Journey: Reflections on Racial Reconciliation, Broadman & Holman, 2000.
A collection of essays, sermons, and speeches chronicling the journey to racial reconciliation in the American church. Writers and pastors from various backgrounds reflect on the state of affairs of race relations in the church, the sins of the past, repentance in the present, and redemption for the future. Moving and inspiring, revealing and honest, these reflections will contribute a balm of healing to weary travelers and a well of inspiration for those joining the journey.

Hesselgrave, David. Communicating Christ Cross-Culturally, 2d ed., Zondervan, 1991.
An introduction to missionary communication that examines world views, cognitive processes, linguistic forms, behavioral patterns, social structures, communication media, and motivational sources.

Hesselgrave, David. Planting Churches Cross-Culturally: A Guide for Home and Foreign Missions, Baker, 1980.

Hopler, Thom. A World of Difference: Following Christ Beyond Your Cultural Walls, InterVarsity, 1981.

Lau, Lawson. The World at Your Doorstep: A Handbook for International Student Ministry, InterVarsity, 1984.

Lau draws upon on his own experiences as an international student to explore how Christians can effectively minister to this group. The book includes an in-depth discussion of the experience of culture shock, as well as the common difficulties faced by a student setting foot in a foreign land to start school.

Lingenfelter, Sherwood, and Marvin Mayers. Ministering Cross-Culturally: An Incarnational Model for Personal Relationships, Baker, 1986.
Examines the significance of the incarnation for effective cross-cultural ministry. The authors demonstrate that Jesus needed to learn and understand the culture in which he lived before he could undertake his public ministry.

Lingenfelter, Sherwood. Agents of Transformation: A Guide for Effective Cross-Cultural Ministry. Baker, 1996.
Offers tools for missionaries to help them identify their own cultural biases as well as the biases of those among whom they minister. He urges missionaries to resolve conflicts and develop missionary strategies within the structure of the indigenous culture with an eye to eventually transforming it.

Mayers, Marvin K. Christianity Confronts Culture: A Strategy for Cross-Cultural Evangelism, Zondervan, 1974.

Olasky, Marvin, Herbert Schlossberg, Pierre Berthoud, and Clark Pinnock. Freedom, Justice & Hope: Toward a Strategy for the Poor and the Oppressed, Crossway, 1988.

Ortiz, Manuel. One New People: Models for Developing a Multiethnic Church, InterVarsity, 1996.
Explores how to create a fellowship that crosses racial lines. Includes models from those who have done it and questions to help groups process the material. If you are already in a multiethnic church, you’ll find ideas and principles for improving communication, developing new leadership and managing conflict.

Perkins, Spencer and Chris Rice,More Than Equals: Racial Healing for the Sake of the Gospel, InterVarsity, 1993.
From their own hard-won experiences, the authors insist there is hope for our frightening race problem, that whites and African-Americans can live together in peace. Their hope, presented here in compellingly practical detail, is boldly and radically Christian.

Richardson, Willie. Reclaiming the Urban Family: How to Mobilize the Church as a Family Training Center, Zondervan, 1996.
Practical family ministry for both the churched and the unchurched are the foundation of this book. African-American churches can help prevent dropouts from society and restore those who have dropped out. They can help strengthen single-parent homes and prevent divorce—but it needs the kind of vision and strategies Richardson describes.

Seamands, John. Tell It Well: Communicating the Gospel Across Cultures, Beacon Hill, 1981

Sherman, Amy L. Restorers of Hope: Reaching the Poor in Your Community with Church-based Ministries that Work, Crossway, 1997.
Challenges churches to take up Christ’s command to “love your neigbor” and offers specific, practical advice on reaching out to the poor.

Sider, Ronald. Just Generosity: A New Vision for Overcoming Poverty in America, Baker, 1999.
Looking to the Scriptures for wisdom and motivation, Sider proposes a social policy for working toward the reduction of poverty.

Van Engen, Charles, and Jude Tiersma, eds. God So Loves the City: Seeking a Theology for Urban Mission, MARC, 1994.
What are the most urgent issues facing those who minister in today’s cities? An international team of experienced urban practitioners explore the answers to this important question. Their new methodology reveals the first steps toward a theology for urban mission.

Van Houten, Mark. God’s Inner-City Address: Crossing the Boundaries, Zondervan, 1988.

Washington, Raleigh, and Glen Kehren. Breaking Down Walls: A Model for Reconciliation in an Age of Racial Strife, Moody, 1993.
Washington and Kehrein share their experiences and their triumphs in an effort to extend their outreach of racial harmony.

White, Randy. Journey to the Center of the City: Making a Difference in an Urban Neighborhood, InterVarsity, 1996.
Randy and Tina White left suburbia to join believers living in a disadvantaged area of Fresno. Through their family’s story you will learn more about God’s heart for the city and you’ll see ways you might make a difference, too.


Augsburger, David. The New Freedom of Forgiveness, Moody, 2000.
How many times should we forgive? Our Lord answers clearly: “seventy times seven.” In other words, our forgiveness of others should have no end. David Augsburger knows how difficult this can be. In this newly expanded classic he combines Scripture with personal testimonies to show that forgiveness in everything is the believer’s only option.

Buzzard, Lynn, and Laurence Eck.Tell the Truth: A Biblical Approach to Resolving Conflict Out of Court, Tyndale, 1985

Elmer, Duane. Cross-Cultural Conflict: Building Relationships for Effective Ministry, InterVarsity, 1993.
Pastors, evangelists, businesspeople, missionaries, students—anyone who wants to communicate more effectively with neighbors and colleagues—will find this book immensely helpful.

Leas, Speed. Church Fights: Managing Conflict in the Local Church, Westminster Press, 1977.

Advanced Audio Training, Peacemakers, n.d.

Reconciler Self Study program, Peacemakers, n.d.
Training for all Christians who would like to learn to assist others in dealing with conflict. The Reconciler Self-Study Course includes:
The Peacemaker book
Instruments in the Redeemer’s Hands book
Christian Conciliation Procedures audio/video (available on CD, audiotape, or VHS) with accompanying manual.
– A CD containing template forms for formal/semi-formal mediation settings

Rediger, Lloyd. Clergy Killers: Guidance for Pastors & Congregations Under Attack, Westminster John Knox, 1997.
Offers remedial strategies for pastors and congregations who want to protect themselves against the abuse of parishioners who have personality disorders, mental illnesses, and mean streaks in situations that go well beyond mere church conflict.


Barnett, Betty. Friend Raising: Building a Missionary Support Team That Lasts, YWam Publishing, 2003

An essential resource for career or short-term missionaries.

Dawson, Scott Morton. Funding Your Ministry: Whether You’re Gifted or Not, Media/Navigators, 1999.
How to share your vision for ministry and ask for support face-to-face.

Dillon, William. People Raising: A Practical Guide to Raising Support, Moody, 1993.
William Dillon helps you get beyond developing a donor list to sharing a vision and drawing others into a vital ministry team. It’s a highly practical guide that provides the well-honed tools you need to finance the ministry to which God has called you.

Durall, Michael. Creating Congregations of Generous People, Alban Institute, 1999.
Explores the dilemmas of stewardship, offering a renewed vision of generosity that is as much about growing souls as it is about raising funds.

Ellul, Jacques. Money and Power, InterVarsity, 1984.

Klein, Kim. Ask and You Shall Receive: A Fundraising Training Program for Religious Organizations & Projects, Leader & Participant’s manual, Jossey-Bass, 2000.
Fundraising expert Kim Klein has trained thousands of groups and individuals to cultivate assets that make good works possible. The Ask and You Shall Receive training package is a do-it-yourself, start-to-finish program on jumpstarting fundraising efforts. A peer-led program, the manuals are designed to be used together. They walk you through the most common fundraising scenarios with dependable information, methods, prompts, and preparation guidelines. Realistic time allowances keep the training within reach of busy volunteers.

Sharpe, Robert F., Sr. Planned Giving Simplified: The Gift, the Giver, and the Gift Planner, John Wiley & Sons, 1999.
Charitable gift planning expert Robert F. Sharpe, Sr., demystifies the complex world of planned giving for not-for-profit managers. He provides a detailed blueprint for starting and building a successful planned giving program and develops a rational framework for managing the subtle interplay of legal, administrative, and interpersonal factors involved in the planned giving process. Central to Sharpe’s proven approach is his controversial definition of the effective charitable gift planner as being not so much a fund raiser as an expert at helping potential benefactors satisfy a deeply felt emotional need. Rather than soliciting or closing on planned gifts, the planner’s primary focus should be on forming relationships with donors and providing them with the means and opportunity to fulfill their desire to do good.

Smith, Tim. Donors Are People Too: Managing Relationships with Your Ministries Major Contributors, International Christian Publishing, 2003.
How to take care of your contributors.

Recruiting Volunteers

Senter, Mark. Recruiting Volunteers in the Church, Victor Books, 1990.

Williams, Dennis, and Ken Gangel.Volunteers for Today’s Church: How to Recruit & Retain Workers, Baker, 1993.

Wilson, Marlene. How to Mobilize Church Volunteers, Augburg, 1983.
How do you motivate the volunteers on your staff? Are you “burning out” your best people? What can you do with the pew-sitters? Do you find it hard to ask for help? This insightful, practical book by Marlene Wilson, an international authority on volunteerism, will help you answer these and other questions about volunteers in the church.

Small Groups

Arnold, Jeffrey. Small Group Outreach: Turning Groups Inside Out, InterVarsity, 1988.

As a small group grows in caring for one another, its members also grow outward in their commitment to others. When they direct others to Christ, they are themselves encouraged in faith, and the life of the group becomes richer.

Donahue, Bill. Leading Life-Changing Small Groups, Zondervan, 2002.
For six years Bill Donahue provided training and resources for small group leaders so that Willow Creek could build a church of small groups. Now he is committed to creating tools that will help church leaders pursue the same goal—to provide a place in community for everyone in their congregation. Donahue and his team share in depth the practical insights that have made Willow Creek’s small group ministry so effective.

Mahaney, C.J, ed. Why Small Groups? Together Toward Maturity, Pdi Ministries, 1996.

McBride, Neal. How to Build a Small Groups Ministry, NavPress, 1995.
Written by a small groups expert, this book is designed to help anyone build a small-groups ministry from scratch—or completely revamp an existing small groups ministry. It includes 12 logical steps for organizing and administrating a successful small-group ministry, a case study featuring a local church in the midst of establishing a small-group ministry, and pages of worksheets for developing small-group plans.

Nichlos, Ron, ed. Good Things Come in Small Groups:  The Dynamics of Good Group Life, InterVarsity, 1985.
Ron Nicholas and others discuss how to begin and improve small groups in the church, stressing the need for a balance of nurture, worship, community, and mission.

Waddell, Don. A Place to Serve, College Press, 2001.
This book traces the history of Southeast Christian Church from its humble beginnings as four out-of-work ushers in an efficiency apartment to its current status as the most powerful spiritual organization in Kentucky. Waddell reveals the tactics and maneuvers he employed to achieve this success.

Call to Repentance

DeMoss, Nancy Leigh. Brokenness: The Heart God Revives, Moody, 2002.
Nancy Leigh DeMoss draws readers to a deeper understanding of biblical brokenness. While some may think of it as a sad and gloomy emotional state, Nancy says emphatically,”No.” It’s not how we feel, but a choice we make. It is in this place of humility and contrition before a holy God that we experience true restoration of our hearts.”

Miller, C. John. Repentance & 20th Century Man, Christian Literature Crusade, 1975.
C. John Miller looks at the painful but liberating, humbling but strengthening, consequences of repentance, which he sees as a process continuing throughout the life of the believer, the drawing near to God of the whole person.

Nelson, Alan E. Embracing Brokenness: How God Refines Us Through Life’s Disappointments, NavPress, 2002.
How God uses tough times to bring us to new levels of spiritual maturity and to encourage us to draw closer to Him.

Personal and Family Spiritual Formation

Bridges, Jerry. The Discipline of Grace: God’s Role and Our Role in the Pursuit of Holiness, NavPress, 1994.
Bridges discusses how the same grace that brings us to faith in Christ also disciplines us in Christ, and how we learn to discipline ourselves in the areas of commitment, conviction, choices, watchfulness, and adversity.

Chapell, Bryan. Holiness by Grace, Crossway, 2003.
Chapell argues that God’s grace is the necessary foundation and source for all spiritual growth in the Christian life. He thoughtfully explores the deeply rooted human tendency to turn away from grace, seeking favor and blessing through our own efforts.

Hunt, Susan. By Design: God’s Distinctive Calling for Women, Crossway, 1998.
God did not make a mistake when He made men and women different. He had a distinctive plan and purpose for each. This book is a joyous celebration of that profound fact and an appeal to the church to utilize one of its most valuable resources: its women.

Lloyd-Jones, D. Martin. Revival, Crossway, 1987.
This book testifies to the depth of Martyn Lloyd-Jones’ conviction that without revival in the church there is really no hope for the Western world.

Lovelace, Richard. Dynamics of Spiritual Life: An Evangelical Theology of Renewal, InterVarsity, 1979.

Looks at scriptural principles, examines past revivals, and establishes a theologically sound model for implementing the lessons learned from Scripture.

Murray, John. Redemption Accomplished and Applied, Eerdmans, 1984.
Murray explores the biblical passages dealing with the necessity, nature, perfection, and extent of the atonement, and goes on to identify the distinct steps in the Bible’s presentation of how the redemption accomplished by Christ is applied progressively to the life of the redeemed.

Schoolland, Marian M. Leading Little Ones to God: A Child’s Book of Bible Teachings, Eardman’s, 1995.

This classic volume uses simple, conversational language to discuss such matters as the nature of God, sin, salvation, the Christian life, the church, prayer and the Second Coming. Widely used by teachers and parents, this valuable book contains eighty-six sections, each followed by discussion questions, a suggested reading, a hymn, and a prayer.

Spurgeon, C.H. Morning and Evening A New Edition of the Classic Devotional Based on the Holy Bible, English Standard Version, Crossway, 2003.
This classic devotional guide, written over a century ago, offers readers the best of Spurgeon’s insight and wise counsel on themes that are as relevant to our day as they were in his day.

Willard, Dallas. The Spirit of the Disciplines: Understanding How God Changes Lives, HarperSanFrancisco, 1991.
Willard argues that the key to self-transformation resides in the practice of the spiritual disciplines, and that their practice affirms human life to the fullest. The disciplines are essential to everyone who strives to be a disciple of Jesus in thought and action as well as intention.

A Great Commission Commitment

Allen, Ronald, and Gordon Borror.Worship: Rediscovering the Missing Jewel, Wipf & Stock, 2001.

Beals, Paul. A People For His Name: A Church-Based Missions Strategy, William Carey Library, 1995.

Borthwick, Paul. A Mind For Missions: Ten Ways to Build Your World Vision, NavPress, 1997.
In these pages you’ll discover ten building blocks for sensitizing yourself or your group to the needs beyond our borders. From prayer and giving to current events and lifestyle choices, Borthwick leads you to practical ways of sharpening your world vision right where you live.

Conn, Harvie. Reaching The Unreached: The New-Old Challenge, P&R, 1985.

Greenway, Roger, S., John E. Kyle, Donald A. McGavran, and Tim Penning. .Missions Now: This Generation, Baker, 1991.

Johnstone, Patrick, and Jason Mandryk. Operation World: When We Pray, God Works, Gabriel Resources, 2001.
The 21st-century edition of the definitive prayer guide to the nations, peoples, and cities of the world.

Richardson, Don. Eternity In Their Hearts: Startling Evidence of Belief in the One True God in Hundreds of Cultures Throughout the World, Regal Books, 1984.
How the concept of a supreme God has existed for centuries in hundreds of cultures through out the world.

Winter, Ralph, et al, eds. Perspectives On The World Christian Movement: A Reader, William Carey Library, 1999.
A collection of readings exploring the biblical, historical, cultural, and strategic dimensions of world evangelization. Writings from more than 90 mission scholars and practitioners introduce lay people and students to the astounding potential of the global Christian movement.

Updated on January 8, 2021

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