Books Pastors Should Read
There are plenty of resources about becoming a sending church. For starters…here are a few books you might consider for your reading list:
Gaining by Losing
J. D. Greear, Zondervan, ISBN 978-0310533955
People are leaving the church J.D. Greear pastors, The Summit Church in Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina. Big givers. Key volunteers. Some of his best leaders and friends. And that’s exactly how he wants it to be. When Jesus gave his disciples the Great Commission, he revealed that the key for reaching the world with the gospel is found in sending, not gathering. Though many churches focus time and energy on attracting people and counting numbers, the real mission of the church isn’t how many people you can gather. It’s about training up disciples and then sending them out. The true measure of success for a church should be its sending capacity, not its seating capacity. But there is a cost to this. To see ministry multiply, we must release the seeds God has placed in our hands. And to do that, we must ask ourselves whether we are concerned more with building our kingdom or God’s.
Senders: How Your Church Can Identify, Train and Deploy Missionaries
Paul Seger, ISBN 978-1517154110
If your church wants to send missionaries from your congregation, this book will provide a template to establish a strategy. The study guide is designed to help the leadership team determine a way forward in identifying, training and sending missionaries from your church.
The Sending Church: The Church Must Leave the Building
Pat Hood, B&H Books, ISBN 978-1433681769
When crowds refused to disperse at Elvis Presley concerts in hopes of another encore from the king of rock and roll, the announcement that “Elvis has left the building” had to be made. Pastor Pat Hood recalls from childhood one such performance that came to his hometown, and with his new book The Sending Church he makes a similar declaration: “The church must leave the building.” Indeed, our lives should be “sent” in worship to the King of kings, spreading out from our weekly gathering places to extend God’s Kingdom worldwide. To that end, Pastor Hood shares stories from his experiences at LifePoint Church, a congregation with small-town roots that has also planted churches in Bangkok, Thailand, and Brussels, Belgium, among other places.
What is the Mission of the Church?: Making Sense of Social Justice, Shalom, and the Great Commission
Kevin DeYoung & Greg Gilbert, Crossway, ISBN 978-1433526909
Kevin DeYoung and Greg Gilbert believe there is a lot that evangelicals can agree on if only we employ the right categories and build our theology of mission from the same biblical building blocks. Explaining key concepts like kingdom, gospel, and social justice, DeYoung and Gilbert help us to get on the same page—united by a common cause—and launch us forward into the true mission of the church.
Well Sent: Reimagining the Church’s Missionary Sending Process
Steve Beirn, ISBN 978-1619582118
Well Sent provides an image of a missionary sending process that rests in the hands of the local church. It acknowledges the many challenges mission agencies face due to an increasing number of unreached peoples throughout the world and the current increase of retiring missionaries. Well Sent equips local churches with scalable guidance.
Millennials and Mission: A Generation Faces a Global Challenge
Jim and Judy Raymo, William Carey Library, ISBN 978-0878085361
This book focuses on the passing of the torch in cross-cultural missions and church ministry to the Millennial generation. Jim and Judy Raymo grapple with big questions and concerns in Millennials and Mission, while giving an in-depth look at this up-and-coming generation of young people and the future of missions in its hands. They highlight the strengths and weaknesses of this populous group born between 1982 and 2000, comparing and contrasting its characteristics with those of the Baby Boomers and Gen Xers. In spite of the challenges ahead, Millennials and Missions gives a clearly optimistic picture of the Millennial generation’s potential contribution to accomplishing the Great Commission.