No, the irony is not lost on me that my last post was called ENOUGH: Put Down Those Ministry and Self-Help Books and Pick Up A Novel.
But remember my caveat:
So you don’t have to give up on your ministry and self-help books, but put them down for a season, and pick up a novel.
I have put them down since November and have ploughed my way through novels ever since. So I decided now was the time to pick up a ministry book that intrigued me, and it just so happened that Steering Through Chaos: Mapping a Clear Direction for Your Church in the Midst of Transition and Change, was the book I picked up. The book is written by Scott Wilson who is the Senior Pastor of The Oaks here in Dallas.
Honestly, one of the things that intrigued me about the book was the title, specifically the word “transition.” If you haven’t noticed before, my blog title is “Transitioning Life’s Journey” because I think that we are always in a state of transition, and that effective leaders know how to guide their churches, organizations, et cetera, through these times of transition.
In the book Scott does a great job of mapping out a direction for church ministry, and yet he does it in a very personal narrative style based on his own experiences, while not saying this is the way to do ministry, but rather, here are some principles that can be effective for each and every ministry. That is just one of the things that I found refreshing in this book.
There are numerous topics in the book that will attract varying readers, but the one chapter that resonated with me the most was Chapter 8: The Leadership Gap. I have been in ministry for 15 years, and I’m also a full-time marriage and family therapist now. And one of the things that I think has been missing in many ministries is the willingness, or humility, to bring other key leaders along for the journey. As ministry leaders we often take a Lone Ranger approach and go out alone, rather than seeking counsel and help. I like Scott’s take on finding someone to help you map out your direction, and at the end of the chapter he lays out some great suggestions for getting started.
Steering Through Chaos is a fun and informative read, and there are lots of companions in it for the journey as Scott takes time out to listen to the wisdom from various pastors around the country. I highly recommend it to those of you who are looking for some more ministry clarity as you guide your church through the next transition.