Bridges to Grace: Innovative Approaches to Recovery Ministry  -     By: Liz Swanson, Teresa McBean
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Bridges to Grace: Innovative Approaches to Recovery Ministry

Zondervan / 2011 / Paperback

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Product Description

Many pastors feel ill equipped to address the family issues, the addictions, the pain of abuse and loss, as well as the myriad other secrets that people in their churches and communities hide in their lives. Church leaders know they have a message that offers hope and healing, but they struggle to put structures in place that allow for focused recovery care. Recovery ministry is uncharted territory for many churches, but the need for it isn't going away any time soon. Churchgoers who struggle with personal pain, in the meantime, begin to wonder if they are slipping beyond the power of God.

Ministries of healing and renewal are the bridge they need to access God's boundless grace and the encouragement of a life-giving community that can offer support and counsel. Liz Swanson and Teresa McBean share their extensive experience working with recovery ministries and tell the stories of success and failure. They show how churches and leaders are providing recovery assistance to hurting individuals and how the ministry of recovery is being used for kingdom purposes, providing lost and hurting people with a bridge to the healing power of hope and forgiveness found in the gospel of God's grace.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 208
Vendor: Zondervan
Publication Date: 2011
Dimensions: 8 X 5.31 (inches)
ISBN: 0310329671
ISBN-13: 9780310329671
Availability: Usually ships in 24-48 hours.
Series: Leadership Network Innovation

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Publisher's Description

Discover the power of recovery ministry for your church. Churchgoers who experience painful family issues, addictions, abuse, loss, mental illnesses, and other secret sorrows begin to believe they live beyond the grip of God’s redemptive hand. Pastors often feel ill equipped to help with such problems and refer people to resources outside the church. People badly need Christ-centered counsel and encouragement, but few church leaders even know where to start. Bridges to Grace is an inspiring introduction highlighting the stories of churches across the country that are thinking systematically and organizationally about the ministry of recovery. The authors share how this ministry is bringing God’s grace to hurting individuals. They relate both success and failure, and best of all, they demonstrate how God uses recovery ministry powerfully for his kingdom purposes.

Author Bio

Liz Swanson is the Project Director for Tango Family Initiative, an organization committed to helping build healthy families and marriages through changed lives. Before coming to Tango, Liz served for five years with Leadership Network as the National Leadership Community Director for Recovery Ministry. As a result of her research into recovery, Liz lead and convened 55 churches who are leading the charge for recovery in the church. Liz taught Communications at Colorado State University and Front Range Community College. Before embarking on her teaching career she served for 22 years with Campus Crusade for Christ. She resides in Louisville, Colorado with her husband Eric. Teresa McBean is the Executive Director of the National Association for Christian Recovery, an organization providing resources, training, and hope to Christian organizations and individuals serving addicts and their families. Her passion for recovery is expressed through her service as minister of NorthStar Community (NSC), a position she has held since 1999. NSC is a recovery ministry of Bon Air Baptist Church in Richmond, Virginia. She and her husband, Peter, have three children.

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  1. Greenville, SC
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: male
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Book Review: Bridges to Grace
    August 5, 2011
    Ministry Design Coach
    Greenville, SC
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: male
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Book Review: Bridges to Grace: Innovative Approaches to Recovery Ministry by Liz Swanson & Teresa McBean

    The authors ask the question: "_where is the church in the world of recovery"? They answer their own question by providing the reader with 9 examples of churches that are addressing the brokenness of sin in their communities, drugs, gambling, sexual and various other addictions that cripple people from all walks of life. They state "we need a realistic understanding of how to work through our issues, our struggles with sinful behavior, so we can experience more than just relief from our struggles. We all need recovery in different ways, for different reasons, but we all want to see lives restored and healed by the grace of God."

    Their collaboration of research and experience are put to good use revealing one example after another of innovative approaches to recovery ministries developed by churches. They clearly realize that there are different approaches to recovery ministry in the church today and there is no "one size fits all" pattern for effective and transformative ministry. Each church must go on their own journey to discover and develop God's plan for their particular situation. "Instead of simply highlighting one or two models for ministry, this book shows the remarkable diversity of church recovery models, making it a unique resource unlike any other work written on the subject of recovery."

    I believe you will find this book challenging, inspirational and educational. That is the author's purpose and I believe they have accomplished that in this book that is written in story form. They address the book to pastors, ministry and recovery leaders hoping to answer the following questions:

    • Why do churches start recovery ministries?

    • How do we begin this type of ministry, and what are the options?

    • What have other churches learned that might help us?

    I would encourage you to go on this journey with the stories of these nine churches that stretched themselves to serve the Lord in a difficult and much needed area. Perhaps the Lord would have you to be stretched as well. One that provides for others a "place of hope, healing, and transformation, a true bridge to grace".
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