Recently I’ve made a commitment to read more, especially as it relates to ministry. I spend a lot of time (not as much as I would like) reading God’s Word and I spend time reading blogs, emails, and the occasional article, but I’ve been slack in my book readings.
So, I’ve started back. I picked an awesome one to start with. In the midst of my busyness I read a book ironically called Simple Churchby Thom Rainer and Eric Geiger. Gustaw, the head of the Polish Baptist Union and our contact in Poland, suggested it to me on our recent mission trip to Poland. It was exactly what I needed to hear. I’ve read The Purpose Driven Life and The Purpose Drive Youth Ministry and a dozen other church leadership books – but this is one of the first that has been so crystal clear about the importance of streamlining ministry and programing to be only the essential things. And that those things should all be moving someone along in the process of becoming a disciple. Finally, a book that’s not suggesting new or more programs, but offering solid statistical evidence for a “less is more approach.” Check it our some time. It’s a good read.
Our church went through Simple church last spring and it revolutionized us moving forward in ministry. One of the key learnings is that being a simple church isn’t simple. It has to look and be simple for those in the church. But being on staff and being on the inside of the process and design, I have seen that there is a lot of complexity in being simple.