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5 Stars Out Of 5
Ministry is more than seminary
July 3, 2012
I am a preacher. But I do more than preach - I reach broken people both in and out of the pulpit. This book focuses on the work that the pastor does outside his or her pulpit ministry.
Eclov begins by focusing on the preparation that the pastor receives outside of the traditional seminary by saying, "God sometimes enrolls us in His own kind of underground seminary to school us in grace before He even clears His throat for a call." Lee Eclov's experienced that in the years prior to entering Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. (I was surprised to learn that Lee attended TEDS at the same time I was in attendance; though, now, 30 years later, I do not remember meeting him.)
But as he has prepared us to serve, he uses us as pastors to build his "temple", the church. Much as a woodworker can transform a dilapidated house into a mansion worthy of a king, the pastor is called to rebuild the "people of God whom we serve" into the "specifications of His holiness and mercy in Christ."
Eclov is very much aware that the church is built with broken people. This is very true in two distinct ways. First, it implies that the builders are themselves broken. They come with burdens that are deep and hurt. But they also work within a community of broken people. The result is a broken church. Pastor Eclov spends much of his book discussing how the broken pastor, working with broken people, can rebuild a broken church. But it is clear that what he discusses is not unique to his experience - but seen throughout the church.
To do this, the pastor must be prepared - he must be experience grace himself. A pastor who is experiencing God's grace is able to dispense that grace to God's people.
The book's strength comes from Pastor Eclov's use of very real experiences from his own ministry. It provides evidence that he knows what he is talking about.
The book is recommended for the pastor in training and for the experienced pastor seeking some refreshment for his or her ministry.
This review is based on a free electronic copy provided by the publisher for the purpose of creating this review. The opinions expressed are mine alone.
Even though this book was meant to be read by pastors I think it is an excellent book for all church members to read as well. I enjoyed the personal examples and felt the author wrote this book with love in his heart towards pastors. It is a very uplifting book and will be an encouragement to everyone who works in the ministry.
As a church member reading this book will help you better understand all your pastor goes through each week to bring you the message you need from the pulpit. The author shows how pastors go through battles of their own every day. From learning to turn to God for all they need, to letting the Lord work in their own hearts a pastor goes through some of the same struggles we do.
After reading this book you will have a better understanding of how alone a pastor can feel. You will also have a better understanding of how to pray for your pastor. As a pastor reading this book, you will realize you are not alone and have some great principles to learn from and be encouraged by. I gave this book 5/5 stars because it was short, easy to read and a real eye opener of what pastor's can encounter during their ministry.
I would like to thank NetGalley and the publisher for the copy of this book I enjoyed reading. I gave an honest review based on my opinion of what I read.