Leadership Resources

Recommended Reading List For Leaders

Someone has said, "leaders are readers" and it's true!  We read to strengthen our own leadership.  We read to sharpen our thinking.  We read to encourage our spirits.  Below is a list of recommended reading for leaders at Faith.  There is a list of essential books and then a categorized list of all kinds of great books for leaders.  Keep strengthening that leadership gift that Jesus has given you through great books and let me know if you come across a great book for leaders that we don't have in this list yet!  By the way, you can click on the book and it will take you to a place where you can order that book directly.

~Pastor Brad


Essential books for leaders at Faith:  These are some of the "best of" books that have been read by leaders at Faith over the years.  We want all of our leaders to read a few of these before you move on to the others.

By:  Larry Osborne

Serving as a church leader can be a tough assignment. Whatever your role, odds are you've known your share of the frustration, conflict, and disillusionment that comes with silly turf battles, conflicting vision, and marathon meetings. No doubt, you've asked yourself, 'How did it get this way?' With practical and accessible wisdom, Larry Osborne explains how it got this way. He exposes the hidden roadblocks, structures, and goofy thinking that sabotage even the best intentioned teams. Then with time-tested and proven strategies he shows what it takes to get (and keep) a board, staff, and congregation on the same page.


By:  Mark Driscoll

Mark Driscoll knows something about church leadership. He founded Mars Hill Church in Seattle in 1996, and it is now one of the largest, fastest-growing, and most prolific church-planting churches in America. Writing out of his personal experience and biblical conviction, Driscoll examines six important areas of church leadership and answers 17 common questions about leadership and membership. He also includes a list of recommended reading for further study, helping readers grow in their understanding of God's design for the church.



 By:  Mark Driscoll

Blending timeless truths from Scripture with aspects of contemporary culture, such as multi-campus churches and the latest forms of technology, Driscoll and Breshears help churches learn to effectively reach people with the gospel.





Leadership Books:  These books focus on leadership principles that are at work in all kinds of organizations including the Church.  Some are written from a general organizational perspective and some are more specific to dynamics within the Church.  All of them will be helpful in your understanding of leadership.


By:  Marcus Buckingham

Marcus Buckingham, coauthor of the national bestseller "First, Break All the Rules," and Donald O. Clifton, Chair of the Gallup International Research & Education Center, have created a revolutionary program to help readers identify their talents, build them into strengths, and enjoy consistent, near-perfect performance. At the heart of the book is the Internet-based StrengthsFinder(R) Profile, the product of a 25-year, multimillion-dollar effort to identify the most prevalent human strengths. The program introduces 34 dominant "themes" with thousands of possible combinations, and reveals how they can best be translated into personal and career success. In developing this program, Gallup has conducted psychological profiles with more than two million individuals to help readers learn how to focus and perfect these themes.


By: J. Oswald Sanders

In these pages, J. Oswald Sanders presents the key principles of leadership in both the temporal and spiritual realms, illustrating his points with examples from Scriptures and the biographies of emenent men of God.





By: Jim Collins

"Built to Last, " the defining management study of the nineties, showed how great companies triumph over time and how long-term sustained performance can be engineered into the DNA of an enterprise from the very beginning. 

But what about the company that is not born with great DNA? How can good companies, mediocre companies, even bad companies achieve enduring greatness?



 By:  Jim Collins

Drawing upon a six-year research project at the Stanford University Graduate School of Business, James C. Collins and Jerry I. Porras took eighteen truly exceptional and long-lasting companies and studied each in direct comparison to one of its top competitors. They examined the companies from their very beginnings to the present day -- as start-ups, as midsize companies, and as large corporations. Throughout, the authors asked: "What makes the truly exceptional companies different from the comparison companies and what were the common practices these enduringly great companies followed throughout their history?"


By:  John Wooden

John Wooden’s goal in 41 years of coaching never changed; namely, to get maximum effort and peak performance from each of his players in the manner that best served the team. Wooden on Leadership explains step-by-step how he pursued and accomplished this goal. Focusing on Wooden’s 12 Lessons in Leadership and his acclaimed Pyramid of Success, it outlines the mental, emotional, and physical qualities essential to building a winning organization, and shows you how to develop the skill, confidence, and competitive fire to “be at your best when your best is needed”--and teach your organization to do the same.


By:  Bill Hybels

This book resonates with this conviction: that leaders such as you have the potential to be the most influential forces on planet Earth. Yours is the staggering responsibility and the matchless privilege of rallying believers and mobilizing their spiritual gifts in order to help people who are far from God become fully devoted followers of Christ. Life transformation and the eternal destinies of real people depend on the redemptive message entrusted to the local church. Are you willing to do whatever it takes to lead your church effectively so God's message of hope can change the world? Then this book is for you.


By:  Jack Welch

Jack Welch knows how to win. During his forty-year career at General Electric, he led the company to year-after-year success around the globe, in multiple markets, against brutal competition. His honest, be-the-best style of management became the gold standard in business, with his relentless focus on people, teamwork, and profits.




Ministry Books:  These books are written to help you think through the mission, vision, and strategy of the Church.  They will help you understand the dynamics of local church ministry.


By:  Kouzes and Posner

Grounded in Jim Kouzes and Barry Posner’ s time-tested research, this book offers practical guidance and inspiring examples of how Christian leaders can have a powerful impact in their workplaces, communities, and congregations by bringing their faith into their leadership. In addition, the book brings together a remarkable collection of leaders– including Patrick Lencioni, Ken Blanchard, John Maxwell, and others– who share their personal insights on faith and leadership.



By:  Andy Stanley

Like your own personal trainer, 7 Practices of Effective Ministry is an insightful guide for any leader who yearns for a simpler, more effective approach to ministry. Here are seven strategic principles that when put into play will bring focus and clarity to everything you do and turn your ministry into a winning team.




By:  Thom Rainer

Simple Church guides Christians back to the simple gospel-sharing methods of Jesus. No bells or whistles required. Based on case studies of four hundred American churches, Thom Rainer and Eric Geiger prove the disciple-making process is often too complex. Simple churches thrive by taking four ideas to heart: Clarity. Movement. Alignment. Focus.



By:  Rick Warren

Every church is driven by something. Tradition, finances, programs, personalities, events, seekers, and even buildings can each be the controlling force in a church. But Rick Warren believes that in order for a church to be healthy it must become a purpose-driven church, built around the five New Testament purposes given to the church by Jesus.



By:  John Stott

At the 150th anniversary of the dedication of his church, John Stott gave voice to his dream for all souls everywhere: "I have a dream of. . . a biblical church. . . a worshiping church. . . a caring church. . . a serving church. . . an expectant church.  Reflecting on his more than sixty years of service at All Souls and a worldwide ministry that led Time magazine to acknowledge him as one of the "100 Most Influential People in the World," Stott alerts a church that is in transition to the marks of a church that is living.


By:  Andy Stanley

Nearly 2,000 years ago, Jesus started a movement that has grown like wildfire throughout history. Author and pastor Andy Stanley draws from Scripture and over 25 years of pastoral experience to bring to life the irresistible nature of this movement known as the Church. In Deep and Wide, Stanley identifies some of the key decisions and strategies behind the founding of North Point Community Church in 1995, describing how and why it continues to flourish.



Personal Spiritual Development Books:  This is a broad category of books to help you grow spiritually as a leader which begins with growing as a Christian.


By:  Richard Foster

Hailed by many as the best modern book on Christian spirituality, "Celebration of Discipline explores the "classic Disciplines," or central spiritual practices, of the Christian faith. Along the way, Foster shows that it is only by and through these practices that the true path to spiritual growth can be found. 




By:  David Platt

In Radical, David Platt challenges you to consider with an open heart how we have manipulated the gospel to fit our cultural preferences. He shows what Jesus actually said about being his disciple--then invites you to believe and obey what you have heard. And he tells the dramatic story of what is happening as a "successful" suburban church decides to get serious about the gospel according to Jesus.




By: Bill Hybels

Believers universally affirm that evangelism is a vital part of what God calls them to do, but very few make a practice of doing it. They feel awkward and ill-equipped, either because they've never been trained, or because their lack of interaction with non- Christians prevents them from using and developing the skills they do have. Bill Hybels addresses these concerns and signals the next era in personal evangelism with Just Walk Across the Room. Drawing on fresh perspectives from the author's own experiences, as well as time-tested and practical illustrations, Just Walk Across the Room encourages and equips readers to routinely initiate spiritual conversations with those who don't know Christ. This is the Participant's Guide for participating in group study.


By:  Mark Driscoll

In Doctrine: What Christians Should Believe, Driscoll and Breshears teach thirteen essential elements of the Christian faith. This comprehensive yet accessible overview of basic doctrine will help Christians clarify and articulate their beliefs in accordance with the Bible.




By:  Randy Alcorn

Flip-Flop Your Concept of Giving! Bestselling author Randy Alcorn introduced readers to a revolution in material freedom and radical generosity with the release of the original The Treasure Principle in 2001. Now the revision to the compact, perennial bestseller includes a provocative new concluding chapter depicting God asking a believer questions about his stewardship over material resources.


Biographies: A good leadership biography can be more valuable than ten books on leadership principles.  The ones listed below are guaranteed to challenge and encourage you as a leader.


By:  John Pollock

The official biography of Billy Graham, expanded and updated by his official biographer.






By:  Eric Metaxas

Dietrich Bonhoeffer February 4, 1906 – April 9, 1945 was a German Lutheran pastor and theologian. He was also a participant in the German Resistance movement against Nazism, a founding member of the Confessing Church. His involvement in plans by members of the Abwehr (the German Military Intelligence Office) to assassinate Adolf Hitler resulted in his arrest in April 1943 and his subsequent execution by hanging in April 1945, shortly before the war's end. His view of Christianity's role in the secular world has become very influential.



By:  John Foxe

Foxe's Book of Martyrs is a record of the protestant martyrs, beginning with Stephen and ending during the reign of Queen Mary. Foxe was an educated martyrologist and was, himself, on the run from persecution for a period of his life. This collection of stories is an inspirational volume of the power of faith.




By:  Norman Grubb

C.T. Studd's life stands as some rugged Gibralter-a sign to all succeeding generations that it is worth while to lose all this world can offer and stake everything on the world to come. His life will be an eternal rebuke to easy-going Christianity. He has demonstrated what it means to follow Christ without counting the cost and looking back. This book is the story of his life, from cricketer at Eton to a pioneer missionary in the heart of Africa.




By:  Alfred Lansing

Shipwrecked and marooned for months, an ill-fated voyage becomes a triumphant story of indomitable courage and faith in the face of astounding obstacles.






By:  George W. Bush

In this candid and gripping account, President George W. Bush describes the critical decisions that shaped his presidency and personal life. 
Decision Points brings readers inside the Texas governor's mansion on the night of the 2000 election, aboard Air Force One during the harrowing hours after the attacks of September 11, 2001, into the Situation Room moments before the start of the war in Iraq, and behind the scenes at the White House for many other historic presidential decisions.


By:  Arnold Dallimore

This fast-paced, easy-to-read narrative reveals how God used one man of great courage, discipline, and humility to bring countless souls to Christ. 

God's accomplishments through George Whitefield are to this day virtually unparalleled. In an era when many ministers were timid and apologetic in their preaching, he preached the gospel with aggressive zeal and undaunted courage. In the wake of his fearless preaching, revival swept across the British Isles, and the Great Awakening transformed the American colonies.


By:  Brother Andrew with John and Elizabeth Sherrill

The story of Brother Andrew, a Dutch believer who risked his life to smuggle Bibles behind the Iron Curtain.






By:  Roland Bainton

With sound historical scholarship and penetrating insight, Roland Bainton examines Luther's widespread influence. He re-creates the spiritual setting of the sixteenth century, showing Luther's place within it and influence upon it. Richly illustrated with more than 100 woodcuts and engravings from Luther's own time, Here I Stand dramatically brings to life Martin Luther, the great reformer.




 By:  Stephen Mansfield

What made Winston Churchill one of the most extraordinary leaders of the twentieth century? What enabled him to inspire nations while those around him were losing hope? This volume in the Leaders in Action series is a remarkable study of Churchill's leadership and character.





By:  Courtney Anderson

This compelling story of unwavering faith traces the conflicts of Judson's early life to the hardships he endured in Burma.






By:  Doris Kearns Goodwin

This brilliant multiple biography is centered on Lincoln’s mastery of men and how it shaped the most significant presidency in the nation’s history.





By:  Eric Metaxas

In "Seven Men," "New York Times" best-selling author Eric Metaxas presents seven exquisitely crafted short portraits of widely known--but not well understood--Christian men, each of whom uniquely showcases a commitment to live by certain virtues in the truth of the gospel.




What Makes a Leader by:  Daniel Goleman

The Work of Leadership by: Ronald Heifetz & Donald Laurie

What Leaders Really Do by: John P. Kotter

The Coherence Premium by: Paul Leinwand & Cesare Mainardi

Level 5 Leadership - The Triumph of Humility and Fierce Resolve by: Jim Collins

One More Time - How Do You Motivate Employees?  by: Frederick Herzberg

7 Transformations of Leadership by: David Rooke & William R. Torbert

Managers and Leaders - Are They Different?  by:  Abraham Zaleznik

What Makes an Effective Executive?  by: Peter F. Drucker

Discovering Your Authentic Leadership by: Bill George, Peter Sims, Andrew McLean and Diana Mayer

Why Should Anyone Be Led By You?  by:  Robert Goffee & Gareth Jones

Due to copyright laws we cannot post these articles on the Faith website.  If you would like a copy of any of the above articles, please email jmurray@faithefc.org and specify the title.







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