Monday, January 1, 2007

Top 10 Recommended Books in 2006

In my other site I wrote about the top 10 books I enjoyed last year - On this site I do a quick review of the top 10 books I read in 2006 that I recommend for pastors, leaders and disciple makers. These are not really in order of the best or most important, so here they are:

1. Church Planting Movements by David Garrison. Given to me by Rey Corpuz. As the title decalres this book is all about church planting movements. No frivolities or opinions here just a recounting of the experiences of church planters in various parts of the world. From third world, hostile locations, post modern, Western Europe, Middle East, North America, among the Gypsies etc. The best part of the book is the summary of the lessons learned by these movements and how the Bible validates these stories. Also includes the 7 deadly sins of church planting. Once again this book affirms that it is not about formulas or practices but proven principles that God has laid out for us.

2. Courageous Leadership by Bill Hybels. Given to me by Manny Carlos. I could not stop reading this one. I read it so much the book literally fell apart. A must read for the serious leader who wants to impact multi-generations. Hybels is a firm believer in the power and value of the local church to change society. I love the chapter on developing your own leadership style. The biggest mistake people do is to try to copy someone. You can learn from the principles, character and life lessons of a man but you cannot be that man. You will have to find yourself.

3. Advanced Strategic Planning by Aubrey Malphurs. Given to me by Steve Murrell. Met Dr. Malphurs at the Every Nation World Leaders Conference in LA last June. His book is all about how to develop strategies, plans and processes which is so lacking in the church world. Oftentimes leaders think that if I just read my Bible and pray everything will take care of itself. Don't get me wrong I am a firm believer of reading the Bible and prayer. I do it everyday. Malphurs however, explains the importance of writing down your core values (and not just write them they better be true core), roles of the key players - the members of the church, the focus and desired results that we should have as leaders.

4. The Disney Way by Bill Capodagli and Lynn Jackson. Given to me by Dennis Sy. Some of you may be saying, what's this got to do with discipleship? Well Disney disciples its employees on the Disney Way. The book covers everything from how to build together as a team and is full of stories of how Disney welcomes millions of visitors and have them coming back for more. It discusses how this creative company tells its stories so well (makes you wonder why in some places Mickey Mouse is more popular than Jesus). It also touches on how to bring your mission to life by clearly defining it.

5. Don't Waste Your Life by John Piper. The recurring theme of the book is "better to lose your life than waste it". While the book focuses on casting your life to the things of God, inadvertently he ends up talking about enjoying God - "If we try to display the excellence of God without joy in it, we will display a shell of hypocrisy and create scorn or legalism. But if we claim to enjoy his excellence and do not display it for others to see and admire, we deceive ourselves, because the mark of God-enthralled joy is to overflow and expand by extending itself into the hearts of others."

6. Creating Community by Andy Stanley - 5 Keys to Building Small Group Culture. This book confirms many of the things I believe. I remember once I was speaking to a group of leaders in Tallahassee Florida and one of my friends (Chuck Hammett) gave me a comment in connection with something I said. He told me of Francis Schaeffer words: "Our relationship with each other is the critereon the world uses to judge whether our message is truthful- Christian community is the final apologetic." In my own words "discipleship is relatonship." Bullseye Chuck, Stanley repeats the same quote in light of building community.

7. The Volunteer Revolution by Bill Hybels. The book discusses the reality that churches are volunteer organizations with less than 2% on staff. It tells lots of stories about the variety of volunteers at Willow Creek. It also gives a check list on how to nurture, care for, inspire and avoid volunteer burn out. Very practical. I picked up some great ideas which we have successfully implemented at church from this book.

8. Fish! Omnibus by Stephen Lundin, Harry Paul and John Christensen. This bestseller has sold more than 2 million copies in a short span of time. The book revolves around the world famous Pike Place Fish Market in Seattle Washington. This everyday fish market has been the source of inspiration for creating an innovative yet accountable work environment where playful, attentive and engaging attiutudes lead to more energy, enthusiasm, productivity and creativity. The 396 page book ends with a dedication. A surprise of surprises. Very inspiring.

9. Cat and Dog Theology given to me also by Rey Corpuz. See Steve Murrell's review on the book:

10. The Corporate Blogging Book by Debbie Weil. The book that inspired me to blog. As you can tell she really did. Debbie gave me the scary reasons why I needed to do it. Over 50% of teenagers are blogging and less than 3% of my generation are doing it and most of them don't even know what it is. It reminds me of the Age of Enlightenment of 1700's when Christians (except for a few) abdicated and failed to speak up. The result was a handful of wordsmiths and philisophers eneded up exalting the god of reason. "We define god the way we want to."

I believe blogging is an opportunity to effectively engage the world if Christians would rise up and learn this new form of communication rather than be scared of it. Think of it as going to Afghanistan and learning their language. If we're willing to do that why aren't we willing to be so good at engaging the "blogsphere" and do what ever it takes to lead people to our God. They're all here anyway. Every ethnicity, color, creed, age group, profession and ideology. I say we be the best at this. Arise shine for your light has come!

" In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven." Matthew 5:16

1 comment:

ptrryan said...

Very interesting list, I'll definitely get a copy of each book. Thanks pastor Joey. C'mown!