the shape of leadership

Reading Recommendations for Church Leaders

Three titles to add to your list

George P Wood on March 6, 2019


Reviving Evangelism

Barna Group (

“Nearly half of Millennial practicing Christians say it is wrong to evangelize,” states Barna Group in its new report. A similar percentage of non-Christians say they would be “more interested in Christianity if they had more evidence (44 percent)” or if “the faith had a better reputation (34 percent).” Thus, “evangelism erosion” among Christians meets “fertile soil” among non-Christians, to use Barna’s terms. “Real opportunities remain for evangelism, but effective faith-sharing today looks different from the past” [emphasis added]. Drawing on original public opinion research and expert insight, Reviving Evangelism outlines the characteristics of effective evangelism in this generation.


The Soul of a Team

Tony Dungy with Nathan Whitaker (Tyndale Momentum)

“What separates the truly great teams from the mediocre ones?” asks former NFL coach Tony Dungy in The Soul of a Team. His answer is “four simple yet highly effective principles — selflessness, ownership, unity, and larger purpose.” To illustrate these principles, Dungy narrates the turnaround of a fictional football team in desperate need of a winning season. The principles themselves are transferable to any endeavor that requires teamwork, however, including ministry. Throughout the book, Dungy’s leadership advice is rooted in his Christian faith. This book is written in the vein of Patrick Lencioni’s “leadership fables.” If you like Lencioni’s books, you’ll like Dungy’s too.



John C. Maxwell (HarperCollins Leadership)

“Every advance you make as a leader will require a leadershift that changes the way you think, act, and lead,” writes John C. Maxwell in Leadershift. He goes on to enumerate 11 specific changes, which he illustrates with stories from his own leadership journey. Maxwell also provides practical advice to help readers make necessary shifts in their leadership practices. Though written for a broad audience, Leadershift contains illustrations and applications directly relevant to church leaders. “If you want to be successful as a leader,” Maxwell writes, “you need to learn to become comfortable with uncertainty and make shifts continually.”

This article originally appeared in the March/April 2019 edition of Influence magazine.


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