I remember reading in a John Maxwell book several years ago that he used to plan his family vacations to cities where a leader he admired lived. During the trip he would ask the leader for an hour of their time and learn from them. His point was that leaders should be learners.

That’s the great thing about books. It would be incredible to sit down with every author, leader, or innovator you admire and learn from them. But, a book is really better because the author takes everything they know about a given subject, writes it down, edits it, critiques it, edits it again, has other people edit it, and finally, when it’s perfect, they offer it up for public consumption. So, in many ways, it’s kind of like spending time with them to learn, only better.

So, since it’s Thanksgiving week, here are five books I’m thankful for, written by people I admire greatly, that have had a huge impact on my thinking…

“Good to Great” by Jim Collins – Technically, this is a business book. But, the principles apply to almost everything.

“Communicating for a Change” by Andy Stanley & Lane Jones – If you ever give speeches, you NEED to read this book.

“Simple Church” by Thom Rainer & Eric Geiger – This is the most enlightening, yet simple, book on church leadership I’ve read.

“Think Orange” by Reggie Joiner – Nothing has influenced my thinking on youth ministry more than this book.

“The Making of a Leader” by Robert Clinton – This book completely changed the way I see leadership.

  6 comments for “Books

  1. November 21, 2011 at 11:10 am

    Great list! I’ve read every one of these books and completely agree they’re some of the most helpful and practical books out there for Christian leaders.

    • November 21, 2011 at 2:20 pm

      Thanks for chiming in Chris? Are there any books you’d add?

  2. Jovan
    November 21, 2011 at 11:47 am

    I’ve read two out of the five. Communicating for a Change and Simple Church. Great books. Andy’s book has forever shaped the way I view sermon development and delivery. I always recommend it.

    • November 21, 2011 at 2:19 pm

      I agree about the Andy Stanley book. I have a degree in speech and it’s the best thing I’ve read! You really should read “Good to Great.”

    • November 21, 2011 at 2:21 pm

      BTW, I meant to ask…what would you put on your short list of important books on leadership?

      • Jovan
        November 21, 2011 at 4:34 pm

        Andy Stanley’s – The Next Generational Leader. Developing a Vision for Ministry by Aubrey Malphurs.

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