Monday, October 31, 2005

Books

Readers are leaders. This is because reading gives you the benefit of "organized thought." Someone can speak without thinking, but they cannot write without thinking.

I try to read at least two good books per week. (I wish I could read one a day, but that doesn't seem to fit my schedule.) Over the years, I have read some really awesome stuff. Here are some of the books and authors that have proven the most insightful.

Orthodoxy G.K. Chesterton Brilliant mind explains, defends Christianity.

The Fifth Discipline Peter Senge Systems, and how they work.

The Coming Church Revolution Carl F. George Church architecture by groups – fundamental to the CTK story.

Leadership is an Art Max DePree Leadership primer from a corporate guy with soul.

Future Edge Joel Barker Futurist talks about paradigms.

The Living Company Arie de Geus Organizations are alive, and should be treated like people.

Seven Habits of Highly Effective Stephen Covey How to live well, from the inside out.

Rediscovering Church Bill Hybels The church is the hope of the world.

The Leadership Engine Noel Tichy What we really need to produce: leaders.

The Jesus Style Gayle Erwin The way up is down.

The Tipping Point Malcolm Gladwell How little things can make a big difference.

Execution Larry Bossidy The art of getting things done.

Primal Leadership Daniel Goleman Leading with emotional intelligence.

The Careless Society John McKnight Professionals can’t deliver what communities can.


You might notice from my list that secular books outnumber religious. I believe that “all truth is God’s truth.” While I read the typical Christians books and authors (I think I’ve read everything Lucado’s ever written), I have found fresher thoughts reading in adjacent disciplines (leadership, personal growth, organizational development, etc.) than in religious categories (pastoral, church, etc.). This may be because there is a lot of “group think” in the evangelical community. I used to say that “all evangelicals are children of Dallas Seminary.” Then I started saying, “All evangelicals are children of Dallas Seminary and Willow Creek.” Now I say, “All evangelicals are children of Dallas Seminary, Willow Creek and Saddleback.” There’s a little more diversity of thought now than there used to be, but not much. For now, anyway, the “fresher” ideas are coming from business and science.

Another book I am enjoying all over again is (drum roll please) the Bible. Best leadership book ever written. Best book on personal and organizational growth, too. I’ve been delving into Paul’s travels in Acts, and seeing his ministry through new eyes. I’ve come to realize that Paul was a church planter (singular) instead of a church planter (plural). I believe now that Paul was only involved with one church – Christ’s. It was just convening in many places and at many times.

When do I read? I have several places and times. First, I keep a book and a couple magazines by my bed. Before I go to sleep I typically read for an hour. I read first thing in the morning – the Bible and then something else. I keep a book in the bathroom (‘nuff said). I keep a book in my back pack. I keep a book in my truck. So that if I ever have “spare” time, I can redeem it by stimulating my heart, mind and soul.


Here’s what’s on my night stand currently.....

Think Big, Act Small Jason Jennings How to keep the start-up spirit alive.

The World is Flat Thomas L. Friedman Overview of the sweeping changes in the past 15 years.

How to Speak Like a CEO Suzanne Bates A consultant talks about the communication process.

Blink Malcolm Gladwell Intuition as a legitimate source of information.

The Joy of Work Dennis Bakke Bringing Christian principles into the workplace.



What are you currently reading? Anything good? If so, email me with your recommendations.

2 comments:

Barefoot Guy said...

Hello,
I am a musician who has been heavily influenced by Keith Green. I would be honored if you would check out my music. All music on my site is free for download.

I don't mean to be a pest, so if this message is an annoyance, please delete it and accept my humblest of apologies. I just want to share my music with people who love Jesus.

Thanks,
-Sean
______________
www.SeanDietrich.com
"All my music is free."

Dave Browning said...

Sean,

I can definitely hear the influence of Keith Green in your music, and that's a good thing.

Thanks for sharing with me.

God bless you,

Dave