Saturday, July 31, 2010

The Trellis and the Vine, Marshall & Payne

I had read some rave reviews of this book and so when I spotted it at the International Conference I decided to lighten Tom's van for the return journey home. The book lived up to the publicity hype. At the start I thought - not much new here - but the author's have that way of sucking you in and then wham I was caught. So much so that I sat engrossed in it for the entire two hour journey back on the boat last night. It is about ministry in the church. The basic premise is that if we do one man ministry in the church the wheels will come off or the church simply won't grow as she should. It is really down to a II Timothy 2v2 approach - training others to make disciples How I wish I had read this 20 years ago when training for the ministry. I kept thinking that this book could have so many provocative sub titles - why Go teams produce so little fruit, why RP church plants struggle, why RP congregations plateau out at 60 people, why reformed churches have ministerial casualties, why we are not getting the men we need in the ministry, why established congregations spend so much energy on keeping the structures of the past in place. If any of these sub title strike a chord - read and buy. You will not agree with all that these guys say - but you certainly will be challenged, perhaps humbled and hopefully changed

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