Books I’d Like To Borrow


Okay…I’ve decided I can’t buy everything (and those are words to live by!).

I’m working my way through a set of books by Frank Viola.  Read Pagan Christianity when it first came out and then Reimagining Church.  Currently working on his brand new release Finding Organic Church.  Turns out, though, this last one completes a series of five.  Along the way I’ve missed The Untold Story of the New Testament Church and From Eternity To Here.  My local library is woefully deficient.  Anybody want to loan these my way for a while?

Also, I’d really like to find a copy of Rob McAlpine’s Post-Charismatic.


Books and Books…


I love and hate to read.


I love taking in books, considering points of view, challenging my faith, stretching my knowledge, and gleaning insights from others.  As the old adage says, "So many books, so little time…"  And thus, my love love/hate relationship with books.  I don’t have near enough time to read everything that I’d like.


Recently, I finished two books by Mark Steele:  flashBANG and Half-life/die already.  Both were fun, interesting and insightful.  The latter one, however, hit me right between the eyes. I highly recommend it!


Currently, I’m reading The Shack by William P. Young, loaned to me by a friend.  I’m just in the first part, but am already greatly intrigued.  This book has generated a lot of buzz over the last year, both by people who have been positively transformed by how it depicts the heart of God and by those who decry it for  supposedly having an unbiblical presentation.  I have no opinion yet, as I’ve have most of it to yet read, but must admit it’s got my attention!  And that it has been endoresed by a lot of people whose opinion I respect.


Soon I hope to also tackle Reimagining Church by Frank Viola.  This book is the followup to his earlier work, Pagan Christianity, co-written with George Barna.  I found that book frustrating as it worked to point out all that was wrong in the modern day church.  At times I thought it was insightful, but in other moments I felt like it completely overstated positions and reached conclusions that were a bit of a stretch from the supposed supporting evidence.  Many aspects, however, challenged me deeply and caused me to rethink various facets of church life.  Of course, the ultimate frustration was that it did nothing to offer solutions, remaining deconstructive in intent.  Reimagining Church is the new companion piece that apparently offers some new direction.  We’ll see!


Finally…I must say that LWC’s own Graham Old simply rocks!  Back in August, he offered a tremedous book sale.  The trick, though, was in trying to find an affordable way to ship things from where he is in Northampton to where I am in Ohio.  Though I’m sure it was a bit of a hassle, Graham found a way to get things here.  In an attempt to keep costs as low as possible, I ended up opting for what was presented as the slowest shipping method offered.  In September, I received part of the order (much sooner than I expected, I might add) including: Listening To The Beliefs of Emerging Churches: Five Perspectives, Never Call Them Jerks, Spirit and Power, and Why Revival Tarries.Today, I was ecstatic to receive the other book I ordered from Graham, Renewal Theology by J. Rodman Williams.  This book combines the three separate works of Williams systematic theology into one volume.  I first became aware of it back in the late ’80’s when volume one was first published, but never opted to make the purchase (It was pretty pricey at the time!  And not much cheaper now!).  But I am fairly excited to finally have my hands on this attempt at a systematic theology from a charismatic perspective.  All in all, THANKS GRAHAM!  Your gracious sale allowed me to pick these books up for about half of what I would have had to pay here in the States, even with the overseas shipping.


So…I’ve got some reading ahead of me…not to mention my efforts to continue my chronological study through the scripture, where admittedly, I’ve got just a bit of catch up to do if I am going to stay on track to finish by the year’s end.


How ’bout you?  Read any good books lately?

Quote and thoughts from "Half-Life, Die Already"


A friend of mine wrote a book recently.


I suppose that’s not entirely honest.  He did write a book (it’s his second, actually), it’s just that  I’m not sure I can casually call him my "friend."  But I want to.


Suffice it to say that there’s this guy I knew back in college who recently and graciously allowed me to add him to my Facebook friends’ list.  I guess that makes him my friend, though I don’t know his wife, have never met his kids, have never been in his house, or had more than a few sentences of typed conversation in almost two decades. 


But I am reading his book.



Good To Great, Part Three


This is part three in a discussion of the Good To Great material by Jim Collins.  The earlier pieces can be found here:  Part 1, or Part 2


After writing the original Good To Great, Collins discovered that anywhere from a third to half of his readership were from non-profit sectors (schools, hospitals, charitable foundations, community organizations, churches, etc.) . These groups were finding the material immensely helpful, with a few exceptions and/or questions about how to apply the concepts to their setting, since they worked outside the arena of the traditional business model.  Collins then opted to pusue greater research on the concepts of Good To Great and their specific implications for non-profits.  First thinking he would make his findings available as a new chapter in later editions of the book, Collins instead chose to release the research as a small companion piece called Good to Great and the Social Sectors (Why Business Thinking Is Not the Answer).  Below is a summary of my interacton with this material.

Good To Great, Part Two


For a variety of reasons, I’ve been reading through a variety of strategic planning type material and asking the Lord if there are applications that I should make to church setting.  As part of that, I’ve been reading Jim Colllins’ Good To Great (Why Some Companies Make the Leap…and Other’s Don’t).

In an earlier post, I briefly summarized the first half of this work.  Here’s the continuation, covering the rest of the book.


2007 Reading List


2007 Reading List

Archived from the left column of this blog, here is a partial list of books I read in 2007.

Good To Great, Part 1


I have a huge stack of books that I’m trying to work through.  Actually, It would be more accurate to say I have "stacks" of books.

Lately, the particular stack I’m working on is filled with books on strategic planning and organizational structure/identity.

Currenlty, I’m about half-way through Jim Colllins’ Good To Great (Why Some Companies Make the Leap…and Other’s Don’t).

Although the book is about public companies that were able to make enormous, sustained moves from "good" to "great," I’m wondering if some of the concepts/questions/principles will translate to the church.