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What does it take to have fruitful ministry over the long haul? The stresses of pastoring are well known and can be a match for even the best-prepared, most experienced in ministry--multiple tasks, long hours, taxing responsibilities and, yes, some challenging personalities. Too often the results can be burnout, being run out or just feeling worn out. To find out how pastors can thrive as well as survive, the authors undertook a five-year in-depth research project among working pastors. Here in this ground-breaking book is the distilled wisdom of dozens of pastors who have been on the front lines of ministry. We hear from them what works, what doesn't and what distinctive issues people in ministry face. The authors uncover five key themes that promote healthy, sustainable ministry that lasts--spiritual formation, self-care, emotional and cultural intelligence, marriage and family, leadership and management. These themes are unpacked from the vantage point of ministry on the ground. Questions for personal evaluation and reflection are included throughout the book to bring home the significance of each section. This is the perfect companion for a peer cohort of pastors to read together. It can also be of value to church boards and others who want to better understand how to help sustain their pastors in ministry. In short, this is a book pastors can't live without.
Published: InterVarsity Press on Nov 30, 2012
ISBN: 9780830864614
List price: $13.99
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A very helpful book on areas that pastors need to be concerned about if they want to have a fruitful ministry of years, not months. I had heard Bob Burns speak several times on aspects of this research, so some of the information and quotes were not new. I think the money chapters of this book are the ones dealing with emotional and cultural intelligence and the ones dealing with leadership and management, all areas that most pastors, such as myself, received little to no training on in seminary. Those chapters are worth the price of the book.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
(Disclaimer: The author of this review is a former pastor and former Church member. Objectivity may be a bit...strained.)This book sets out to define specific difficulties in a pastor's work and develop ideas for dealing with them, while enabling the minister to continue a high level of service in his/her profession.There is nothing particularly fresh about the problems defined or the strategies for dealing with them. There have been articles and books on the subject for at least the past couple of decades. What is new is the depth of research; a large number of actively serving pastors over a seven year period of time.I am a bit dubious about the helpfulness of the strategies in this book. The fact is, in accepting a pastoral position, you are painting a gigantic bullseye on yourself, your family, and your life. It's not a question of whether you will take hits, only how hard and fast they will come. If they come fast and hard enough, this book will be of no help. If they occur few enough and far enough between, there are things in this book that can help lessen the blow, and other things that can help restore and heal. the book only deals with the pastor's attempts to work through these issues; the multitude of things outside thier control, such as congregational actions or denominational issues which contribute to the problems, are not dealt with in the book.The main point of the book, of course, is to further the acedemic career and reputation of the authors. In this, it will succeed. The hemorrhaging of pastors from the church is an up and coming hot topic, and this book should ensure an increase in the currency of those involved, whether the book helps individual pastors or not.The institutional church is a pastor-destroying juggernaut. If this book can help a few pastors keep from having thier souls crushed by the lambs of God, it will have done well. But I don't know...read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.

Reviews

A very helpful book on areas that pastors need to be concerned about if they want to have a fruitful ministry of years, not months. I had heard Bob Burns speak several times on aspects of this research, so some of the information and quotes were not new. I think the money chapters of this book are the ones dealing with emotional and cultural intelligence and the ones dealing with leadership and management, all areas that most pastors, such as myself, received little to no training on in seminary. Those chapters are worth the price of the book.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
(Disclaimer: The author of this review is a former pastor and former Church member. Objectivity may be a bit...strained.)This book sets out to define specific difficulties in a pastor's work and develop ideas for dealing with them, while enabling the minister to continue a high level of service in his/her profession.There is nothing particularly fresh about the problems defined or the strategies for dealing with them. There have been articles and books on the subject for at least the past couple of decades. What is new is the depth of research; a large number of actively serving pastors over a seven year period of time.I am a bit dubious about the helpfulness of the strategies in this book. The fact is, in accepting a pastoral position, you are painting a gigantic bullseye on yourself, your family, and your life. It's not a question of whether you will take hits, only how hard and fast they will come. If they come fast and hard enough, this book will be of no help. If they occur few enough and far enough between, there are things in this book that can help lessen the blow, and other things that can help restore and heal. the book only deals with the pastor's attempts to work through these issues; the multitude of things outside thier control, such as congregational actions or denominational issues which contribute to the problems, are not dealt with in the book.The main point of the book, of course, is to further the acedemic career and reputation of the authors. In this, it will succeed. The hemorrhaging of pastors from the church is an up and coming hot topic, and this book should ensure an increase in the currency of those involved, whether the book helps individual pastors or not.The institutional church is a pastor-destroying juggernaut. If this book can help a few pastors keep from having thier souls crushed by the lambs of God, it will have done well. But I don't know...
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
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