Saturday, June 13, 2009

Summer Reading List

Like most folks, I find summer a good time to catch up on my reading. My summer reading list comes from personal interest, suggestions of friends, and professional needs. Some fit in more than one of these categories.

I am reading two books that I plan to use for my seminary course in “Formation for Christian Ministry” this fall. One is What to Expect in Seminary: Theological Education as Spiritual Formation by Virginia Cetuk. This book has been around for awhile, but the author articulates well the commitment of most theological educators today to see seminary education not as a strictly academic enterprise but an opportunity for the student’s personal spiritual formation. Malcolm Goldsmith’s Knowing Me, Knowing God uses the Myers-Briggs categories to help persons understand how their personal type influences the way that relate both to God and to other people.

Two of the books deal with the globalization of the church and the opportunity we have to see the Gospel through the eyes of other races and nationalities. A friend recommended Justo L. Gonzalez, Santa Biblia: The Bible through Hispanic Eyes as a good introduction to a Hispanic way of reading scripture. The other is The Monkey and the Fish: Liquid Leadership for a Third-Culture Church by mega-church pastor Dave Gibbons. Gibbons, who will be one of the speakers at Willow Creek Association’s Leadership Summit this summer, writes from the perspective of pastor of a multicultural, multisite church.

There are some business writers who are favorites of mine, and I always read their new books. One of these is Jim Collins, co-writer of Built to Last and Good to Great. His new book is a slim volume that is particularly relevant right now-- How the Mighty Fall and Why Some Companies Never Give In. Much of what Collins has written in the past applies to churches and church judicatories. I think this does, too.
Another friend recommended Reverse Mentoring: How Young Leaders Can Transform the Church and Why We Should Let Them by Earl Creps. This was recommended by a young leader, so I am interested in what caught his attention.

Finally, just for fun, I am reading Kim Stanly Robinson’s Mars trilogy-- Red Mars, Green Mars, and Blue Mars. Although these were written in the 1990’s, Robinson deals with subjects (such as terraforming) that address ecological and human concerns today. This is as much science as it is fiction.

There may be additions along the way, but I think these will keep me busy for awhile. If you are interested in any of these books, check out my link to on the right for additional information and to order.

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