I just finished 7 Practices of Effective Ministry by Andy Stanley and let me say this upfront: The guys at North Point Ministries really have their act together.
To be frank, I put off reading this book after reading the table of contents. The long narrative section was a real turn off for me and delayed my reading for months. I am so glad i decided to revisit this book! If you decide to pick it up, you will share my gladness. Here are the 7 Practices... just in case you were wondering:
1. Clarify the Win
2. Think Steps, Not Programs
3. Narrow the Focus
4. Teach Less for More
5. Listen to Outsiders
6. Replace Yourself
7. Work On It
Now, I have to warn you... this book is LOADED with baseball analogies, but don;t let that frighten you if you are not a baseball fan. The content is explained and non-baseballic illustrations are plentiful.
I think the opening words of Andy's epilogue not only capture the essence of this short work, but say everything I want to say about it:
Your ministry is perfectly designed to achieve the results you are currently getting.
I highly recommend this book to anyone who takes ministry seriously. And anyone who does not take ministry seriously needs to read this book twice.