Book Tour! Day 4 – Designed to Lead

Welcome to my 10 Day Book Tour.  I love to read, and I am often given books to read for review.  Over the last year, I determined that I didn’t want to turn my blog into a book review site.  However, I can’t help that I LOVE books.  I truly do.  They add so much value to my life, because I learn from them and glean new perspectives from the authors who put their hearts to the page.  So, I’ve decided that each quarter, I’m going to do a 10 Day Book Tour.  What have I been reading, what do I honestly think about the book, and to whom I would recommend it.  Each day, for ten days, you will get a peak into my bookshelf.

I received Designed to Lead from B&H Publishers and Lifeway Stores, for the purpose of review.  The thoughts and opinions are my own.

DAY FOUR:  DESIGNED TO LEAD by Eric Geiger an Kevin Peck

My ministry work revolves around the training of other leaders, therefore it is vital that I am reading books on leadership, team building, etc.  I read these books to learn to lead better myself, but also to convey to others more effective way we can lead in our ministries (and even businesses).

Leadership development is something that has been on my mind lately.  I’ve been looking at various churches and trying to understand why their Associate Pastors are hired in from outside, and not being developed within the church.  Curious as to why we need a Pastor Search Committee for a new Head Pastor, when we have a team of Associate Pastors that should move into place.  Contemplating why it throws a ministry into havoc when a leader steps down, shouldn’t there be someone ready to take over that position?

I’ve heard many leaders suggest that if we are a Paul (a leader) that we need to be training up our Timothy (eventual replacement).  Yet, I’m seeing very few upper tier leaders who are walking the talk.  Are our churches lacking the conviction to develop strong leaders?  Or, do they simply not know how to do it.  Is it one thing to train someone to become the next small group leader, but a totally different thing to train someone to be a Pastor or ministry leader?  If you are a Pastor, I wonder… how many people in your church are you personally mentoring because they feel called to the role of Pastor?  How many people from your church have answered the call to Missions, and how have you prepared them for that call?  Or, are you sending them off to some organization to do the work for you?

I’ve had the pleasure to bear witness to churches who HAVE been purposeful in not just encouraging leaders, but also developing them and encouraging them toward that call.  I’ve also scratched my head and wondered why the members of a church have no idea that leadership positions are being advertised on staffing sites, and not offered to qualified people in the church.  I’ve seen churches HIRE someone from another state, when a qualified person sits in their pews every Sunday who would do the job for free as a service to the church, using their talent to bless the church.

This is why I am a big fan of Designed to Lead, because the authors share that same vision.  A vision of not just developing strong leaders but creating a culture that also encourages those leaders.  A building structure that isn’t waiting  around for someone to say “hey, I’d like to be a leader”, but is instead INTENTIONAL on identifying those leaders and creating a system to develop them in to the best leader that they can be.

I must admit that I am tired of watching people LEAVE their church as the only way they can LEAD in the church.    If we had an intentional and systematic plan in place to develop leaders in the church, would we ever need a Pastor Search Committee again?  Would we ever need to put out a classified ad for a Ministry Leader?  Would we need to pay relocation expenses, or help our new hire find housing?  Wouldn’t we also create a place where we are creating jobs for our community of believers?

A woman once shared with me that a position opened up in her church, that she was qualified for, but she only found out after the church hired in a woman from another area.  The woman was not only qualified for the job, but currently unemployed.  That job would have been a blessing to her family, and her experience would have been a blessing to the church.

Designed to Lead walks us through the type of Leadership we need to encourage, creating a culture for leadership development by intentional pathways, and keeping a focus on the biblical models and expectations of leaders.  As you work through the text, there are questions that will prompt you to explore your own thoughts and the needs for your church.  There are diagrams to help visual learners understand the concepts being shared.

Ultimately, this is a great book for leaders who desire to build up other leaders.  It is also a challenging book for those who haven’t created that culture within their church or ministry.  I would recommend taking your time to read through the book and really examine your own positions on the subject and respond to the challenges and convictions.

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