Monday, January 03, 2011

David Mays Suggests Some Great Books

My friend David Mays reads books, lots of them.  And he writes about what he reads.   A the beginning of the year, he shares the best of what he has read in 2010.  Here are his choices.  Sorry about the fact that the images of the books don't show up in the blog.


The Best Books I Read in 2010
David Mays, January 2, 2010

Hidden Worldviews
Eight Cultural Stories That Shape Our Lives

Steve Wilkens and Mark L. Sanford
InterVarsity Press, 2009, 218 pp.  ISBN 978-0-8308-3854-7

To order, click here.   See my notes here.

Perspectives and habits from our culture creep into our lives and corrupt our worldview without our awareness. These worldviews are hidden in plain sight, popular philosophies that have few intellectual proponents but vast numbers of participants: individualism, consumerism, nationalism, moral relativism, naturalism, the New Age, postmodern tribalism and salvation by therapy.   

Miniskirts, Mothers & Muslims
A Christian Woman in a Muslim Land

Christine A. Mallouhi
Monarch Books, 2004, 184 pp.   ISBN 978-0-8254-6051-7

To order, click here.    Watch for my notes coming.

Christine Mallouhi, an Australian, is married to an Arab Christian.   Her experience can help Christians live honorably among Muslims.   “Conservative Muslims’ sense of right and wrong is more acute than that of Western Christians.  In spite of the fact that we consider ourselves to have a strict spiritual/moral worldview, we are surprised to discover that conservative Muslims do not view us as a spiritual people because of our behavior and dress.  … So, if they recognize godliness and decency by a certain type of clothing then I will wear it while in their country.”  (83-4)

Taking Back Your Faith from the American Dream

David Platt
Multnomah Books, 2010, 230 pp.   ISBN 978-1-60142-221-7

To order, click here.    Watch for my notes coming.

David contrasts what Jesus said disciples would be and do with what we tend to be and do as churches and Christians living in a North American culture.  Exploring the biblical gospel, we will discover that “our life is found in giving ourselves for the sake of others in the church, among the lost, and among the poor.” (21)

African Friends and Money Matters

David Maranz
SIL International, 2001, 240 pp.   ISBN 1-55671-117-4

To order, click here.    Watch for my notes coming.

David describes 90 personal anecdotes, chock full of fascinating and frustrating examples of how Africans view relationships and money.  Most of Africa is made up of collective societies wherein people rely on one another for security rather than on themselves or their government.  The cultural pressures are so strong that breaking the expectations makes one an outsider, the worst possible outcome in a collectivist society.

Operation World small file.jpg
Operation World, 7th ed.
The Definitive Prayer guide to Every Nation

Jason Mandryk
Biblica, 2010, 978 pp.   ISBN 978-1-85078-862-1

To order, click here.    

I plan to pray through this book in 2011.  It is perhaps the most important missions book of the decade. 

Inside the Revolution
How the Followers of Jihad, Jefferson & Jesus are Battling to Dominate the Middle East and Transform the World

Joel C. Rosenberg
Tyndale House, 2009, 551 pp.   ISBN 978-1-4143-1931-5

To order, click here.    Watch for my notes coming.

Joel Rosenberg has a host of friends among top world leaders with enormous inside information.  The Radicals say "Islam is the answer and Jihad is the way."  The Reformers are Muslim leaders who say "Islam is the answer and Jihad is not the way."  The Revolutionaries are Muslim-background believers who say Jesus is the answer - and often risk everything for Jesus.  The first part is terrifying.  The second part is encouraging.  And the third part is simply amazing. 

Lunatic Express
Discovering the World…via Its Most Dangerous Buses, Boats, Trains, and Planes

Carl Hoffman
Broadway Books, 2010, 286 pp.   ISBN 978-0-7679-2980-6

To order, click here.    Watch for my notes coming.

I learned from the descriptions of places, people, and modes of travel that risk avoidance and privacy are luxuries.  For most of the world’s travelers, travel is a punishing, unpredictable, and sometimes deadly work of travail.    

Living Sacrifice
Willing to be Whittled as an Arrow

Helen Roseveare
Christian Focus Publications, 1980, 2007, 138 pp.  
ISBN 978-1-84550-294-2

To order, click here.   Watch for my notes coming.

Helen Roseveare served as a medical missionary in Congo/Zaire from 1953 to 1973.  She passes on the lessons she learned about loving God with all her heart, soul, mind, and strength.  It’s clear that missionaries to Africa in these times had to have great strength of faith and character.  When she was attacked by rebels:  “For twenty years, anything I had needed I had asked of God and He had provided.  Now, this night, the Almighty had stopped to ask of me something that He condescended to appear to need, and He offered me the privilege of responding.  He wanted my body, in which to live, and through which to love these very rebel soldiers in the height of their wickedness.  It was inconceivable, yet true.  He offered me the inestimable privilege of sharing with Him in some little measure, at least, in the edge of the fellowship of His sufferings.  And it was all privilege.  For that night, cost became swallowed up in privilege.” (23) 

Mays TMLT Cvr3-1
The Mission Leadership Team
Mobilizing Your Church to Touch the World

David Mays
The Mission Exchange, 2010, 131 pp.  $12.95 

ISBN 978-0-615-41443-0

Order at  Click on the visitor link, create a profile, and go to the online store. Get a bundle of six for $9.50 each +s/h.  For larger orders contact David Mays.  This workbook provides a stimulating overview of the job of leading mission in a local church, including current issues, practical suggestions, additional helps, space to work, and an excellent list of current resources. Read the Contents, Introduction, and Chapter 1 at  Read my notes here.

Which None Can Shut
Remarkable True Stories of God's Miraculous Work in the Muslim World

Reema Goode
Tyndale, 2010, 165 pp.  $13.99, ISBN 978-1-4143-3720-3

To order, click here.   Watch for my notes coming.

Reema Goode lives and works in a Middle Eastern country in the Arabian peninsula.  In this place becoming a Christian is a punishable crime and families often exact the punishment.  The book is a compilation of experiences of how God is at work in unprecedented ways with her neighbors. 

Here are a few more that I found particularly significant:
Kingdom Without Borders
The Untold Story of Global Christianity

Miriam Adeney
InterVarsity Press, 2009, 294 pp.  ISBN 978-0-8308-3849-3

To order, click here.   See my notes here.

Miriam Adeney describes the growth and practice and struggles of Christianity around the world through stories and vignettes of the lives of people.  Extremely engaging and stimulating.

Cross-Cultural Partnerships
Navigating the Complexities of Money and Mission

Mary Lederleitner
InterVarsity Press, 2010, 230 pp.   ISBN 978-0-8308-3747-2

To order, click here.    Watch for my notes coming.

Mary Lederleitner helps leaders develop processes that will facilitate fruitful partnerships.    After exploring some core cultural concepts and exposing harmful practices, Mary outlines biblical and practical ways to deal with accountability, dignity, mutuality, sustainability, and conflict.

Crucial Conversations
Tools for talking when stakes are high

Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan, Al Switzler
McGraw Hill, 2002, 234 pp.   ISBN 978-0-07-140-194-4

To order, click here.   Watch for my notes coming.

The authors are leading authorities in organizational effectiveness and leadership.  This has been recommended as a breakthrough book in dealing with difficult relationships.

The Three Laws of Performance
Rewriting the Future of Your Organization and Your Life

Steve Zaffron and Dave Logan
Jossey-Bass, 2009, 220 pp.   ISBN 978-0-470-19559-8

To order, click here.   Watch for my notes coming.

The authors introduce a new language and a fresh way of understanding situations in order to re-envision the future for an organization.  The ideas are illustrated by several extensive case studies.  I found the case studies convincing and the principles somewhat difficult to absorb.

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