Book Briefs June 2020

July 22, 2020

I love to read. In an effort for me to remember what I read, here are some book briefs from June.

#1 Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win by Jocko Willink and Leif Babin

Big Idea: Leaders take extreme ownership for everything that happens. The discipline of taking responsibility leads to freedom.

Audience: Written for a secular audience interesting in improving leadership skills.

My Summary: A motivation book. I really enjoyed how each chapter told stories from the war in Iraq. It gave me a deeper appreciation for all who serve. Also the book providing application into the business world.

#2 The E-Giving Guide for Every Church by Richard Rogers 

Big Idea: Digital tools are available to help your ministry better serve your people and community.

Audience: Church leaders exploring digital tools to help steward resources. 

My Summary: A great guide to help leaders understand the tools available to collect revenue. Rogers does a great job of breaking down the small steps to take to implement online giving for a church at all experience levels. I appreciate the author’s use of a ski trip metaphor for the process of implementing digital giving.

#3 Joel and the Egyptian Cat by David Dudley

Big Idea: A life with God is full of adventure.

Audience: Lovers of fiction.

My Summary: A fun adventure novel. I was honored to read an advance copy of this book. I have loved every novel I’ve read by David.

#4 Books of the Bible finished in June.

I am following a Bible reading plan where I read several parts of the Bible all at once. In June I finished 1 and 2 Timothy, Philemon, Esther, and Ezra.

Inspiration for my format of summaries are from Kevin DeYoung’s blog.

Bible to Church Habit IMage

I had someone tell me, “Go ahead and decide what you want to change about worship so you can change it before you start back with church.” I pondered what I would change and here is what I came up with: Nothing. I want so desperately to go back to way things where before we took our Coronavirus break.

As I pondered more I did come up with something I would like to see different as we return. I would love for people to bring their Bibles to church. We are blessed to have great projection technology and volunteers to help us with worship. Unfortunately, I think it has made us over dependent on reading scripture off the wall instead of in our own Bibles.

Here are five thoughts on why you should bring your own personal Bible to worship.

#1 – Having your own Bible helps you realize more detail. As good as projection is you still will miss nuances that are easier to see on a page. Think about this, lyrics projected on the wall can tell you the words to sing. If you really want to see how to sing, the music, to sing louder or softer, higher or lower, you really need to see the music page in a hymnal. In the same way see where you are in your Bible gives you more detail.

#2 – The scripture projected is not for you. I am afraid something good like projected scripture has made us neglect bringing our Bibles. Here is a secret, the projectors are really aimed for people who are new to faith and have not learned to bring their Bibles yet. It is also for people with small children in worship who physically can not hold a child and a Bible.

#3 – Having your own Bible helps you keep notes. I really encourage you to underline in your Bible and take notes. I actually just bought my wife this NRSV Journal the Word Bible that has space to take notes.

Side Note: I am preaching out the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV). The main reason is it is the translation of our pew Bibles so it will be easiest for guests to pick up and follow along with us.

#4 – Having you own Bible helps you follow along with the preacher. I’m sure you are super spiritual and never have a problem following along. In case there is a Sunday where it is harder to follow, having your Bible open can help you see what the preacher is talking about or where he is.

#5 – Having your own Bible is a visual reminder that the Word of God is important. If you carry a Bible you are not going to magically become a Christian. However, when you bring a Bible with you are communicating to others… and even yourself that these words are important and at least worth investigating.

I can remember something formative in my life was seeing my father spend time in prayer and scripture reading each morning. I also remember him taking his Bible to church. His consistent example spoke to me about the importance of scripture in his life in Christ.

My prayer for my church members and myself is that we bring our Bibles, we get caught by our families and friends treasuring God’s Word, and that Jesus continues to change us through this means of grace.

If you want to know more about reading the Bible check out the David Donnan Podcast. Season one is about steering toward scripture.