A Practical Guide for Current and Future Leaders
Over the past thirty years, I have had many experiences as a member, deacon and elder in the Lord's church that allowed me to build a substantial library of material relating to that work. Over the last year, I often stared at the boxes of material in my office and wondered if there was truly a need for a book that discussed the practical application of biblical principles that elders must take seriously as leaders of their congregations. There are a number of excellent books on church leadership like Tom Holland's "Encouraging Elders" and Bobby Duncan's "The Elders Which Are Among You". These books provide a thorough analysis of the spiritual principles that should guide every eldership. I came to see, however, the need for a book that talked about the everyday challenges facing elders in overseeing the numerous ministries involved in a congregation. Although each congregation is autonomous, it is my hope that multiple eldership can benefit from the same source of ideas about how to organize and effectively implement various ministry activities.
It is quite possible that your congregation will not have a need for everything I have outlined for each ministry mentioned in this book or agree with the methods suggested. Hopefully it will provide useful guidance and stimulate ideas about how eldership can be more effective in carrying out their day to-day responsibilities. I have been directly involved in or am fully aware of the success of each ministry organization discussed in this book. The structure and activities have been proven effective without a large professional staff to design and implement them.
Reading this book will take you from an overview of the current crisis in leadership within the church to the practical aspects of overseeing the everyday work of leading a congregation that is dedicated to carrying out God's mission for His church. In addition to the information provided in the chapters, there are exhibits referenced throughout the book that the reader can review in the appendix. The exhibits include, among other things, sample letters, procedural forms, outlines, and charts that elders may wish to use for their respective congregations. Readers can modify the documents to suit local needs.
This book is a tremendously practical book on the responsibilities and functions of elders (Shepherds, Pastors, Bishops) in the Lord's Church--the church of Christ. There is a shortage of qualified elders who are fully accomplishing their work in congregations. This book, if used, will go a long way to fixing that problem. What's the best thing about this book? The EXHIBITS!!! Practical organization helps, bible class information, letters, outlines, and so much more that will give any eldership ideas on how to improve their work and help their congregation grow!
-Aaron Cozart- Minister. Gospel Broadcasting Network
Here is a book you should purchase right now for each of your elders and for each man among you who desires to be an elder in the Lord's church. It is biblical, thorough, and totally practical. This book is bulging with concepts and practices which will make any eldership stronger as they lead the Lord's church. I'm so happy Jim is publishing this now. The need for wise and godly elders is so great in our generation. Our congregations cannot rise above their leaders, and leaders must be groomed for service. This book will go a long way in that important preparation. Any person who loves the church of our Lord will have a hard time putting this down.
--Glenn Colley elder and pulpit minister, West Huntsville Church of Christ, Huntsville, Ala.