I've always heard that if a young man desires to go into ministry, you need to try and talk him out of it. If it's a true calling, you can't talk him out of it, but if he's not called...he better get talked out of it! This book could do that. Even after being on staff in churches for the past 33 years, this book was discouraging...but honest. Marshall Shelley uses real-life experiences of pastors from every denomination (names changed to protect the guilty) to show that the largest battle we face as a church is from within. Very sad. There are dragons within the church--people who either don't know how to articulate what they want and just cause trouble trying to get it or are control freaks who want to usurp authority and take a church hostage. These real-life stories may shock the layman but anyone who has been in church work very long will have stories of their own to add.
The encouraging part of the book is in the last four chapters. Mr. Shelley, again using testimony from pastors, offers solutions and ways to tame the dragons...or to at least habitate peacefully with them.
If you're a pastor, about to become a pastor, or someone who loves your pastor...you may want to read this book. I'll warn you: you might become discouraged to know the state of the church. But if you're a pastor, you can learn a lot from people who have gone before you.
I'd give this book 5 out of 5 stars. It's informative and offers solutions and is an easy read.
Thank you to Bethany House for providing this book for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255