Astonished: Recapturing the Wonder, Awe, and Mystery of Life with God

Mike Erre

In Astonished, Pastor Mike Erre calls Christians away from simplistic formulas to honest and rugged faith in the mysterious and unpredictable God. God is more about deepening the mystery of faith, not removing it. Jesus should get bigger the longer we walk with him. Life and faith should grow to be more profound and wondrous, not less.

In Astonished, you will see how we are far more comfortable with tips, steps and techniques for living, than we are with ruthlessly trusting the mysterious God of the Bible. God asks us to follow Him into tension, frustration, and difficulty because He wants our trust, not just our intellectual agreement. He calls us to seek Him even as we live in awe of all that is yet to be known about Him.

Autopsy of a Deceased Church: 12 Ways to Keep Yours Alive

Thom S. Rainer

No one wants to see a church die. And yet, far too many churches are dying. For more than twenty-five years, Dr. Thom Rainer has helped churches grow, reverse the trends of decline, and has autopsied those that have died. From this experience, he has discovered twelve consistent themes among those churches that have died. Yet, it’s not gloom and doom because from those twelve themes, lessons on how to keep your church alive have emerged.

Whether your church is vibrant or dying, whether you are a pastor or a church member, Autopsy of a Deceased Church will walk you through the radical paths necessary to keep your church alive to the glory of God and advancement of Christ’s Kingdom!

Beyond Boundaries: Learning to Trust Again in Relationships

John Townsend

How do you know you’re ready to trust again … and what does it take to be ready? Painful relationships violate our trust, causing us to close our hearts. But to experience the freedom and love God designed us for, we eventually have to take another risk. In this breakthrough book, bestselling author Dr. John Townsend takes you beyond the pain of the past to discover how to re-enter a life of intimate relationships. Whether you’re trying to restore a current relationship or begin a new one, Townsend gives practical tools for establishing trust and finding the intimacy you long for.

Church Unique: How Missional Leaders Cast Vision, Capture Culture, and Create Movement

Will Mancini

Written by church consultant Will Mancini, expert on a new kind of visioning process to help churches develop a stunningly unique model of ministry that leads to redemptive movement. He guides churches away from an internal focus to emphasize participation in their community and surrounding culture. In this important book, Mancini offers an approach for rethinking what it means to lead with clarity as a visionary. Mancini explains that each church has a culture that reflects its particular values, thoughts, attitudes, and actions and shows how church leaders can unlock their church’s individual DNA and unleash their congregation’s one-of-a-kind potential.

Crisis Leadership: Personal Accounts From Leaders Who Found Their Way and Thrived

Scott Barfoot and David Fletcher

Crisis Leadership takes a fresh and compelling look inside the hearts, minds and personal stories of nine remarkable leaders who battled challenging crises in the frontlines of life and ministry. This short read is packed full of vital wisdom, hope and encouragement to help you be even more effective in your own place of leadership. Chances are if you are reading these words there are three remarkable things true about you. First, you are a leader. Not just any kind of leader, but a growing leader that recognizes and values the collective wisdom gleaned from those who have gone before you. Second, you are a leader engaged on the front lines of ministry marred by conflict, complexity, ambiguity, and uncertainty. Third, you are courageous! You will find a wealth of treasured insight shared in each of the chapters.

Death by Church: Finding Our Way Back to Jesus

Mike Erre

The church is Jesus’ hands and feet today. But critics see it as hypocritical, irrelevant, and unloving. Materialism and consumerism abound. Mike Erre, teaching pastor and author of Jesus of Suburbia and Why Guys Need God, reveals how this has happened and how Christians can more effectively demonstrate Christ’s presence by again becoming …

  • Incarnational—allowing Jesus to live in and through His people.
  • Eucharistic—reenacting the ministry and sacrifice of Jesus to the world.
  • Baptismal—dying to old ways of thinking and presenting the resurrection of Jesus as the beginning of the renewal of all things.
  • Communal—correcting an overly individualistic spirituality by living as the community of God.
  • Eschatological—presenting a more helpful and hopeful interpretation of the end of our story.

Readers will discover how the church can cooperate with Jesus in the world in which they live.

I am a Church Member: Discovering the Attitude that Makes the Difference

Thom S. Rainer

Best-selling author and ministry leader Thom S. Rainer drew an exceptional response when he posted a 500-word declaration about church membership to his daily blog. “I Am a Church Member” started a conversation about the attitudes and responsibilities of church members—rather than the functional and theological issues—that previous new member primers all but ignored.

Thoughtfully expanded to book form, I Am a Church Member begins to remedy the outbreak of inactive or barely committed church members, addressing without apology what is expected of those who join a body of believers. When a person’s attitude is consistently biblical and healthy, matters of giving, serving, and so forth will fall into place more naturally.

Innovating Discipleship: Four Paths to Real Discipleship Results

Will Mancini

Everyone is talking about discipleship, but too many churches stick to business as usual. Sunday comes and Sunday goes. The preacher preaches, the band worships, money gets put in the plate and people get back to their busy, unaffected lives. Hasn’t God called us to more? Will Mancini thinks so, and that’s what Innovating Discipleship is all about. Innovating Discipleship is for church leaders who have growing discontent for “best practicing” and “fast following.” Is God calling you to re-dream and re-invent beyond the ministry models that were handed to you? If so, this short read will bolster your courage and stoke your imagination. In this potent book, Mancini uncovers the primary obstacle in the minds of pastors that keeps discipleship stuck—revealed through thousands of hours of coaching with church leaders.

Invest: Your Gifts for His Mission

Sutton Turner

This book will challenge you to invest your life in the greatest cause of all—the kingdom of God. Sutton describes, with great transparency, the journey God led him on from being a successful entrepreneur to discovering significance in living and serving for a higher purpose. This is also one of the few books that offers practical insight into the role of the executive serving their local church. When I served as an executive pastor, there was no training manual or guidebook to help me. It’s no surprise, knowing Sutton, that he will dedicate this book to help current executive pastors, and those who will one day find themselves in this role.—David Branker, Pastor

Managing the Nonprofit Organization: Principles and Practices

Peter Drucker

The groundbreaking and premier work on nonprofit organizations. The nonprofit sector is growing rapidly, creating a major need for expert advice on how to manage these organizations effectively. Management legend Peter Drucker provides excellent examples and explanations of mission, leadership, resources, marketing, goals, and much more. Interviews with nine experts also address key issues in this booming sector.

Mission Creep: The Five Subtle Shifts that Sabotage Evangelism and Discipleship

Larry Osborne

Evangelism and discipleship aren’t rocket science. When Jesus sent out a ragtag team from Galilee with the expectation that they would evangelize and disciple the world, they pulled it off as a natural and spontaneous outworking of their faith. Yet 2,000 years later, this same natural and spontaneous process has been turned into a complex and highly programmed skill left to the professionals. Pastor and author Larry Osborne exposes what has gone wrong and the five subtle shifts that sabotage our best efforts to reach the lost and bring them to full maturity.

Next: Pastoral Succession that Works

William Vanderbloemen and Warren Bird

Every church and ministry goes through changes in leadership, and the issue is far bigger than the wave of pastors from the Baby Boomer generation who are moving toward retirement. When a pastor leaves a church, ministries are disrupted and members drift away. If the church is already struggling, it can find itself suddenly in very dire straits indeed. But the outcome doesn’t have to be that way.

What if when a pastor moved on, the church knew exactly what to do to find a suitable replacement because a plan and a process had been in place for some time? While there is no simple, one-size-fits-all solution to the puzzle of planning for a seamless pastoral succession, Next offers church leaders and pastors a guide to asking the right questions in order to plan for the future. Vanderbloemen, founder of a leading pastoral search firm, and Bird, an award-winning writer and researcher, share insider stories of succession successes and failures in dozens of churches, including some of the nation’s most influential. Through case studies, interviews, and real-time research, the authors demystify successful pastoral succession and help readers prepare for an even brighter future for their ministries.

The Optimized Church

Allen Ratta

Church health and growth are not unfathomable mysteries. There are always practical reasons why a church is growing at its present rate. The Optimized Church takes you on the journey of the modern church in its quest to reach the lost and create disciples. It provides much-needed context for church leaders who want to optimize their church processes and be maximally effective at growing deeper and wider. A process map is unfolded that forever changes the way church leaders look at and lead their church.

People Patterns—Discovering Giftedness in the Sunlight and Shadow of Relationships

David Fletcher

We all have Sunlight and Shadow in our lives. Artists and great authors have painted pictures with oils and words to show the light and dark in human relationships. Rembrandt van Rijn, the great Dutch artist, often painted using a strong light source, creating deep shadows on his subject. Some of the uniqueness that is you is easy to see. Another part of you is much harder to understand. If we make light and shadow into a metaphor, we can better understand what is easy and challenging to see about ourselves. In the sunlight we show our strengths for all to see. The parts of us that are much harder to see are in shadows. Our Shadow contains our weaknesses and limitations, things that are awkward or harder for us to do. In the bright sunlight we see our strengths and in the shadows we see our limitations. Sunlight and Shadow form the People Pattern.

The Real Win: A Man’s Quest for Authentic Success

Colt McCoy and Matt Carter

Every man wants to succeed. But for so many, life seems to get in the way. We all have friends—good men, followers of Christ even—who start out well but before long, they’re failing at relationships, bending ethical standards, or driving themselves so hard at work they’re losing the hearts of their wife and kids.

In The Real Win, Colt McCoy and Matt Carter wrestle deeply and personally with this challenge, then deliver down-to-earth, biblical answers. Based on their personal experiences and a close study of Scripture, McCoy and Carter show men:

• Why so much depends on who you trust and who you serve.
• Why every man is called to lead and why every man can.
• How to man up to temptation—and conquer it.
• How to find the “win” even in your biggest failure.

Zondervan 2015 Church and Nonprofit Tax and Financial Guide

Dan Busby and J. Michael Martin

The Zondervan 2015 Church and Nonprofit Tax and Financial Guide annual reference guide continues to be one of the few resources offering tax and financial advice to churches and nonprofit organizations. Issues of financial accountability, receiving and maintaining tax-exempt status, accounting for charitable gifts, and other crucial topics receive careful and full discussion. The 2015 edition also contains a thorough description of tax laws affecting churches and other nonprofit organizations, ensuring compliance with all regulations. The book includes expert advice on handling charitable gifts, sample policies and procedures, easy techniques for simplifying financial policies and procedures, insights on medical expense reimbursements, key steps in sound compensation planning, and examples of required IRS filings.

The Vision Deck: Companion Tool for Church Unique

Will Mancini

The Vision Deck is a companion tool for Will Mancini’s book, Church Unique. Included are 52 exercises to inspire visionary teams. The deck is available for purchase for $20. See Tami to pay or to request an invoice to be sent after the seminar, for payment from your church office.