For over a decade, I’ve been involved in full-time ministry. If I had chosen another profession, I suspect I might feel pretty competent by this time. But to be honest, more often than not, I still feel like I’m in way over my head.
I haven’t had much formal training in Bible, preaching, or ministry, but I have been blessed with (what I consider to be) an even greater form of training. I’ve been blessed to learn from countless seasoned gospel preachers. Whenever I spend time with these fellow preachers I’m taught, encouraged, and challenged.
I just finished reading the new book, Fit for the Pulpit and I couldn’t be more thankful for what I gained by reading it. If you’re a preacher, this book will teach, encourage, and challenge you. It is written by an all-star lineup of phenomenal gospel preachers: Chris McCurley, Neal Pollard, Jacob Hawk, Jay Lockhart, Jeff A. Jenkins, Adam Faughn, Dale Jenkins, W. Kirk Brothers, Michael Whitworth, and Steve Higginbotham. When you finish reading, you will feel like you had a long chat with these men, and you will most definitely benefit from the words they have to say.
Make no mistake, this is no light, fluffy, feel-good book about ministry. This book is like being in a locker room at halftime, having several star players grab you by the shoulder pads, and explain to you – in no uncertain terms – what you need to work on when you get back on the field! You’ll put this book down, saying to yourself, “I can – and will – be a better man of God! I will be better in the pulpit, in my home, in the office, and everywhere God expects me to be!”
Although this is primarily a book for preachers, it would be beneficial for any Christian to read. This book would help elders, deacons, and members learn to appreciate the man in their pulpit. You probably already know, but no matter how great your preacher is, you don’t have a perfect preacher. But chances are, you have a preacher who is striving to be the best he can be. This book will help you recognize some of the unique challenges and pressures he faces. It will give you some insight and perspective on preaching and help you better support the preachers in our brotherhood.
Here are just a few of my favorite quotes:
“If you feel discouraged in your ministry, find other ministers in your area. I guarantee that they feel discouraged from time to time as well. They haven’t faced a challenge you haven’t faced, and vice versa. They can probably shed some life for you or gain knowledge from you. You don’t have to be a lone man stranded on an island. You are swimming in a sea of preachers who want to help you…Today, I don’t know the exact number of preachers who are lifting up the cross of Christ, but this I do know—it’s more than one. It’s more than you or me. Find them.” – Jacob Hawk
“If you have been charged by God and hired by men to be a voice and teacher of a congregation, your life must be adequately and proportionately consumed by study. Nothing, absolutely nothing, can compromise that period of growth.” – Jacob Hawk
“We can seek to restore New Testament Christianity in our worship, our leadership structures, or in any other category. But if we don’t love, we have no legitimate claim to the ‘of Christ’ designation on our church signs.” – Michael Whitworth
“It is vital that we understand who we work for. It is not the members. It is not the elders. It is God. May his will always be done!” – Chris McCurley
“Be weak and vulnerable. Share your struggles with your elders or a close friend in the church. You’re not superman. Don’t pretend you are. Take off the mask and be real” – Chris McCurley
I love you and God loves you,
Disclosure: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Also, the Amazon links above are affiliate links.