Equipping the Church for the Sake of the World. Foreword by Alan Hirsch. Once upon a time, Moses had had enough.
Exhausted by the challenge of leading the Israelites from slavery to the Promised Land, Moses cried out to God, "What have I done to displease you that you put the burden of all these people on me? . . . If this is how you are going to treat me, please go ahead and kill me" (Exodus 11:11, 15).
If that sounds hauntingly familiar to you, you may be the senior pastor of a contemporary church. The burden of Christian leadership is becoming increasingly unbearable--demanding skills not native to the art of pastoring; demanding time that makes sabbath rest and even normal sleep patterns seem extravagant; demanding inhuman levels of efficiency, proficiency and even saintliness.
No wonder pastors seem and even feel less human these days. No wonder they burn out or break down at an alarming rate; no wonder the church is missing the mark on its mission.
In Creating a Missional Culture, JR Woodward offers a bold and surprisingly refreshing model for churches--not small adjustments around the periphery of a church's infrastructure but a radical revisioning of how a church ought to look, from its leadership structure to its mobilization of the laity. The end result looks surprisingly like the church that Jesus created and the apostles cultivated: a church not chasing the wind but rather going into the world and making disciples of Jesus.
- Helps churches learn to distribute the work of ministry and mission more evenly between pastors and laiety to avoid pastor burn-out
- Includes clear definitions and examples of the "five equippers" in a church: apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers
- Provides insights and guidance for cultivating more missional discipleship in your church
Part 1: The Power of Culture
1. What Is Missional Culture and Why Does It Matter?
2. How Culture Works
3. What's Going On in the Culture of the Church You Serve?
4. Polycentric Leadership and Missional Culture
Part 2: A Leadership Imagination That Shapes Missional Culture
5. Facing Today's Challenges
6. Hearing the Story
7. Deepening Theological Roots
8. Embracing Emotional Health
9. Relinquishing the Need to Control
Part 3: The Five Culture Creators
10. Jesus the Archetypical Culture Creator
11. Apostles: Dream Awakeners
12. Prophets: Heart Revealers
13. Evangelists: Story Tellers
14. Pastors: Soul Healers
15. Teachers: Light Givers
Part 4: Embodying a Missional Culture
16. The Cultural Web and the Neighborhood Church
17. Cultivating Missional Environments
18. Cultivating an Equipping Ethos
19. Polycentric Leadership at Work
Appendix 1: Equippers and Their Roles
Appendix 2: Equipper Candidate Reference Form
Appendix 3: Equipper Candidate Interview
"A decade ago, Alan Hirsch and I explored the idea that the fivefold leadership matrix was essential to unleashing the missional church. Now JR Woodward goes further by detailing how this matrix of leadership fosters a learning, healing, welcoming, liberating and thriving missional culture. This book is beautifully written and well researched, and it gets at complex issues in a readable and accessible way. This book is a gift to the missional conversation." â€”Michael Frost, coauthor, The Shaping of Things to Come, and author, The Road to Missional
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