Worship Leaders, We Are Not Rock Stars
By Stephen Miller (Moody, 2013)

The Facts: For some worship leaders, success looks like a rabid fan base, radio airtime, and a record deal. Stephen Miller, worship pastor at The Journey in St. Louis, Missouri, hopes to rewrite that definition by asking worship leaders a simple question: What are we? His answers to that question range from the obvious—we are worshipers, liturgists, and artists—to the unexpected—we are theologians. Ultimately, his definition, while multi-dimensional, is profoundly straightforward: worship leaders are simply Christians, using their particular gifts and passions to worship God and bless Christ's body. Included with the short book is a free download of Miller's new album, All Hail the King, which combines his original compositions with several revamped hymns.

The Slant: The glare of the Sunday-morning spotlight has obscured the true nature of the worship leader's true calling, Miller believes. He seeks to remove the veneer, uncovering the true splendor of this holy calling. His conversational tone and timely illustrations make this a perfect gift for young, up-and-coming worship leaders, but any pastor feeling trapped by the culture of "celebrity preachers" will benefit from Miller's wisdom, too.—Kyle Rohane

Church Zero
Raising 1st century churches out of the ashes of the 21st century church
By Peyton Jones (Cook, 2013)

The Facts: Peyton Jones, founding coach of New Breed Church Planting, calls for a restructuring of the church around church planting. Jones believes business thinking and megachurch models are hurting the church. He challenges churches to replace their empire-building mentality with a cutting-edge, risk-taking, rebel approach.

The Slant: Jones's prose is extremely conversational and teems with pop-culture references (particularly from the 80s, from Batman to Voltron, He-man, and Gallagher). His writing will appeal to young pastors frustrated with the status quo. Don't expect nuanced arguments—this is a rallying cry for complete reformation of the church, with some advice on how to build a church leadership team for planting, and how to move into a community and develop self-sustaining churches.—Kyle Rohane

Book Bits

Bringing Discipleship Back to the Local Church
By Randy Pope (Zondervan, 2013)

"… we discovered that the 'chosen beginnings' of life-on-life discipleship were counter-intuitive. We chose real substance over impressive branding. We chose impact over success. We chose small over big. We chose slow over fast." (pg. 146)

Accidental Pharisees
Avoiding Pride, Exclusivity, and the Other Dangers of Overzealous Faith
By Larry Osborne (Zondervan, 2012)

"The new legalism no longer cares what's in your fridge. It cares what's in your driveway." (pg. 91)

The Pastor's Family
Shepherding Your Family though the Challenges of Pastoral Ministry
By Brian and Cara Croft (Zondervan, 2013)

"In the heart of every pastor is an innate wiring … to fulfill his desires and meet the demands of life in broken, selfish, and sinful ways. This is the fundamental problem that leads a pastor to neglect his marriage and his children. It's a problem that dates back to the first marriage and the first family — to Adam and Eve." (pg. 43)

Fall 2013: Sexual Tensions  | Posted
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