Four Good Reads Helping Us Define Church

Depending on where you look, you can find a number of quotes that talk about how few adults really read after graduating from high school.  Since you are reading this now, maybe it is safe to assume you are not one of those persons. Of course, this is not a book.

Anyhow, I am hoping you may appreciate a few book recommendations.

Last week, I mentioned we are starting the Church Unique journey. It is the process of seeking clarity for a God given, unique, purpose here at Barnitz and Mt. Zion. We had a great first session. One of the things that really stood out to me was the fact that very few churches take the time to seek God’s purpose. This journey of seeking God’s clarity and unique purpose is based on the book:

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

It seems like such a “no-brainer” to take time and think about what God wants us to do, and not to do, as a church. Churches can get too busy, and we can forget to ask why we are doing what we are doing. When you know the why, you then have to know the how.  How do all of the pieces fit together?  This leads me to my next book:

Simple Church: Returning to God’s Process for Making Disciples, by Thom S. Rainer and Eric Geiger

Simple Church is by far one of my favorite books. Church does not have to be complicated. You need to know why you are there, Church Unique, and you need to know how you live it out, Simple Church.

What does it look like to live this out? Hopefully you realize it is much more than gathering together on a Sunday morning. A very helpful book that paints a number of pictures for what the church lived out looks like is this one:

The Church of Irresistible Influence: Bridge-Building Stories to Help Reach Your Community, by Robert Lewis with Rob Wilkins

It is a beautiful thing to see the church come together to be there for the community. As I mentioned in last week’s post, we continue to do this more and more. There is more to being the church than service. There is hope. There is love. There is grace. There is the Gospel that fills us with life.  Our current sermon series is taking a lot from this book:

One Way Love: Inexhaustible Grace for an Exhausted World, by Tullian Tchividjian

In case you did not realize it, the above is more than a recommended reading list. It really is a summary of the key parts helping us define what it means to journey together as the community of Christ followers, the Church.

Blessings,

Pastor Matt

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