One of my pastoral heroes is Mark Wilson of the “Revitalize Your Church” blog. I hope it’s a part of your reading list if you’re a pastor. He has a lot of helpful pastor stuff on there (lately posting a sabbatical policy from his church) as well as the kind of stuff that inspires a pastor in his or her daily and weekly work.
Mark just published a a book called Filled Up and Poured Out. I’ve got my copy on my desk right here. I recommend it for any pastors and leaders who find they are depleted and discouraged and are looking for an infusion of energy in their souls that can only come from the Holy spirit, as we know in our heads but forget in our hearts. It has chapters on immersing ourselves in God’s presence and being a blessing to others. It also makes complicated Holy spirit theology grass-roots accessible, helping us understand ideas like Catharsis & Enduement in the context of everyday life and ministry, as he uses story after story from the experiences of those in his church, and from his own internal meanderings and discoveries as a local church pastor for decades.
Mark is kind of the Eugene Peterson of The Wesleyan Church, which is high praise from me, seeing as two of my top 5 favorite ministry books are by “Pastor Pete.” So let me commend Mark to you and his book.
Here’s an interview with him by a Canadian show that’s a bit like a 700 club show, but less campy (Canadians are better at irony than camp).[youtube link=”http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jVOb8vfMdRs&feature=player_embedded&ytsession=BIfvl2H45TGUQuxh6t5U8WaG9P88BxkAOQHsJtbER9BVU5-iVqcwbnpmHEHqELv42Xo-CHbLrt3Iaj38HgSPCmb7myRddERxko8pkr6xVyB15QFwPXcQxQc6M8VuoXhU2xT3zPRNweMjTTAxT7k5x7kEdpLnwbsIzCRtTh30hTlUSfzlh0GE_C5ID5ToP9gZ6Wil2nH76hGdnXvgSXx1C-F192CqzVGUZ2p6vowrnq0″ width=”590″ height=”315″]
Here are some top quotes from his book in my opinion:
“Instead of giving hope, we’ve settled for a tepid and uninspiring religiosity–the bland leading the bland.” p. 31
“A rescue boat can’t assit drowning victims if it springs a leak. In the end, it doesn’t matter how deep the water is, as long as the water stays out of the boat. When we’re airtight, we won’t be uptight. An airtight heart, filled with contentment and peace, is the best possible craft for sailing into deep waters to rescue the perishing.” p. 90
“[Wesley said,] ‘A well of water spring up into everlasting life, and overflowing his soul with peace and joy.’ Holiness is singleness of intent (loving God) with a broadness of spirit (loving others).” p. 125
“It’s time for pastors to quit being the ‘God-pros’ and trust the people to do the real stuff… It’s time to rethink how we do ministry on a daily basis and entrust or people with the most important pastoral moments. It’s time to unleash the church.” p. 178
“Serve in the overflow. This is our glorious mission. Don’t settle for halfhearted religion. The floodgates of relevant revival are opening Are you ready to plunge in?” p. 179