In light of my recent article at Lifeway Leadership, here are a few books I recommend reading if you feel exhausted by ministry, lackluster about the church, or distant from Jesus:
On The Brink – This book blends empathy, challenge, and biblical exhortation very well. An excellent help to anyone who feels “on the brink” or wants to better understand what pastors, in particular, often face.
Leading on Empty – This book combines science with sage advice. It contains some great best practices from an experienced pastor.
Near Unto God – A life-giving devotional by Abraham Kuyper. His brief devotional entries are packed with spiritual insight and stir religious affection.
I loved this book. It haunted my thoughts, inspired my writing, challenged my leadership, stirred my desires, stimulated my mind. Get it now.
We’re just finishing up our second round of Deacon interviews. I’ve been overwhelmed and the godly caliber of men and women who have gone through our training process and eagerly aspire to be lead servants in our church. As the elders interviewed each candidate, we asked them 5 main questions:
1. Based on the character qualifications of 1 Tim 3, where are you the weakest?
- We followed their answer up by asking for specific examples.
- We inquired how they are experiencing growth and change in this area.
- We looked for a personal and specific application of the gospel to their weaknesses and helped them with this, which created a great pastoral moment to exhort, encourage, & counsel
2. Do you have a budget and how much debt do you currently have?
- If deacons are exemplary servants, they need to be exemplary with their money.
- If they are handling finances for the church, we should be handling it well at home.
- Follow up questions about good vs. bad debt and plans to pay off.
3. Are you in a Fight Club (discipleship group)?
4. Do you have time in your schedule to commit to being a deacon?
- We laid out general expectations and emphasized flexible but regularly monthly commitment.
- Monthly deacon team meetings work to create collaborative environment for ministry.
5. Why do you want to serve as a deacon?
- This gets to the heart and allows us to see if this is all duty or a calling.
- Was a blessing to hear some of the responses.