Means, James E. Leadership in Christian Ministry Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House, 1989
‘Fostering Effective Leadership in Today’s Church’ is an e-book that is based on Christianity. It is written by Dr James Barkley and published in 1989. The book profoundly evaluates the problem of leadership in the church.
It explains the true meaning of leadership and guides leaders how to carry themselves while leading the congregation.
It is meant for those who truly believe and follow Christ. It brings out leadership in Christianity as service to the Christian community directed by a calling rather than an authoritative post.
Dr James’ book targets the Christian community in general but most importantly the church leaders as it mentors them on how to be a real leader that unites the church and leads in a way that pleases Christ.
‘Fostering Effective Leadership in Todays Church’ observes that today’s leaders no longer follow the example of Christ as a leader who led by service. Church leaders have instead become dictators who instead of working with the congregation for the good of the Christian community expect the church to be subjected to them. Effective leadership is all about empowering people with broader vision.
This book compares the church to the holy trinity. It explains that since the holy trinity works together; father, son and Holy Spirit, the Christian community should also work together for the better good of the church.
Dr James says that the church is supposed to be mutually submissive and dependence recognizing Christ as the only leaders and the rest as his servants. The author encourages the church leaders always to ensure their attitude towards their role in the church as positive.
This is because the wrong approach leads to the failure of both their leadership and the church. The book also disapproves the mentality that leaders are gauged according to their contribution to the church.
The author says that this belief leads to the downfall of the Christian community. In this book, the author analyses various literature on leadership and concludes that servant leadership is more efficient than headship in both the church and secular world since it brings about the feeling of responsibility and obligation.
He encourages church leaders to be perseverant, visionary, and disciplined. Dr James also discourages mediocrity and pessimism among the church leaders.
Dr. James goes ahead and explains the six phases a church leader should undergo as he grows spiritually from sovereign foundation to the afterglow.
This book has managed to mentor the reader on how church leadership should be handled to ensure the Christian community continues to prosper by explaining the do’s and dont’s for a leader. The book has used references from both the bible and other renowned Christian authors.
This has ensured that the content of the book is relatable to Christians and it is accurate. I think the book is well written and will play a significant role in nurturing leadership to whoever reads it; whether a Christian or secular leader.