Reading recommendations | September 2019

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Stuck in a rut about what to read next?

Let our District staff help you!

Visit each department’s page—under “Our Work” in the main navigation—to find out what our staff recommends adding to your reading list.

Below are some highlights from the current staff recommendations.

Staff book study

As a District staff, we gather for weekly Bible study and weekly book study.

Over the last year, we’ve been working through 1 & 2 Samuel. Each week, the text comes alive as we consider the historical context and lasting significance of Israel’s first kings. A consistent theme has been what it means to be a humble, God-focused leader.

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Starting in October, we will also be reading through The Program by Eric Kapitulik and Jake MacDonald. This new book “offers a road map that contains illustrative examples, ideas, and approaches for improving teammates and leaders at all levels within an organization of any size or type.” We look forward to growing stronger as a team as we work through this book with our “Lutheran glasses” on.


For Bible study leaders

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The Art of Teaching Sunday School by Laura Langhoff Arndt

If we want to equip Christians to equip and bless others with knowledge of the Bible and the confidence to go into the world, live their faith, and share the Gospel, we must train those who teach and lead Bible study at all ages.

Click here to learn more about The Art of Teaching Sunday School: Preschool - Adult.


For discouraged congregations

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God’s Not Done with Your Church by Mark Hallock

This book gives congregations a vision of what God can and is doing in dying and declining churches. Pastor Hallock offers encouragement and tangible strategies to create new life in congregations that are struggling to survive—especially through the ministry of church replanting.

Click here for a free e-version of this book!


For every congregation

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Built on the Rock: The Healthy Congregation by Ted Kober

Note: this book will be used in our spring 2020 leadership summits—on March 7 and April 4!

“Church leaders and members [will gain] an effective prescription for building and sustaining healthy congregations. . . . Churches [will] identify the root cause of their condition and regain church health.”

Click here to learn more about Built on the Rock.


For new and seasoned pastors alike

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The Care of Souls: Cultivating a Pastor’s Heart by Harold Senkbeil

“Pastors care for a soul in the way a doctor cares for a body. In a time when many churches have lost sight of the real purpose of the church, The Care of Souls invites a new generation of pastors to form the godly habits and practical wisdom needed to minister to the hearts and souls of those committed to their care.”

Click here to learn more about The Care of Souls.


For science-lovers

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Darwin Devolves by Michael Behe

“Critically analyzing the latest research, Behe gives a sweeping tour of how modern theories of evolution fall short and how the devolving nature of Darwin’s mechanism limits them even further. If we are to get a satisfactory answer to how the most complex, stunning life-forms arose, it’s time to acknowledge the conclusion that only an intelligent mind could have designed life.”

Click here to learn more about Darwin Devolves.


For those who want to support their pastors and other church workers

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Holding Up the Prophet’s Hand by Bruce M. Hartung

The book helps congregations understand the stressors and pitfalls of professional church workers and offers helpful strategies for how congregations can come alongside their church workers in a consistent way.

Click here to learn more about Holding Up the Prophet’s Hand.


What’s on your reading list?