Augsburg Fortress

Called by God to Serve: Reflections for Church Leaders

Called by God to Serve: Reflections for Church Leaders

Church councils and leadership groups will discover ten helpful devotional reflections and discussion starters for a three-year cycle, focusing on the task of serving from a biblical and theological perspective. Insights from family systems theory provide a framework for the reflections. Through discussion of theory and by encountering and responding to real-life situations, participants will ponder aspects of what they are called to do together.
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  • Publisher Augsburg Fortress
  • Format Paperback
  • ISBN 9780806651729
  • eBook ISBN 9781451415605
  • Brand Lutheran Voices
  • Age/Grade Range Adult
  • Dimensions 5.25 x 7.75
  • Pages 96
  • Publication Date August 31, 2004


"I believe that pastors and congregations will find Called by God to Serve a most helpful study and devotional guide for their council time together. Over the past two and a half years, these two pastors have led dozens of Healthy Congregation workshops. For a three-year cycle of meetings they now share what they have learned through Healthy Congregations and set them within the framework of the duties and visioning of congregational leaders. I believe this is an excellent resource."
— Bishop James F. Mauney, Virginia Synod, ELCA

"Soren Kierkegaard prayed, 'Lord, Give us weak eyes for things which are of no account and clear eyes for all thy truth.' And the Lord gave us the clear eyes of this book! Based on the useful insights and strategies of systems theory, these devotional meditations are for parishes, leadership groups, and individuals everywhere in North America. The focus is faithful mission. Examples from Scripture and parish life are revealing and appropriate. Reflection questions are stimulating and helpful. The authors have so evidently been grasped by Jesus, so deeply love the church, and so urgently care about the world that they draw others to Jesus in the church for the world."
— Walter R. Bouman, Edward C. Fendt Emeritus Professor of Systematic Theology, Trinity Lutheran Seminary

"Called By God To Serve offers lessons in church leadership couched in the form of brief devotions. These Bible-based materials are both spiritually enriching and eminently practical, ready for immediate use in most Christian congregations. They will help typical council members to discern the way of God in dealing with real-life scenarios involving budget decisions, plumbing problems, and pouting teenagers. Above all, they will help congregational leaders to view their church as a family of faith, to keep their focus on the mission of Jesus Christ to which they are called, and to trust God with enthusiastic hope in the promises of the gospel."
— Mark Allan Powell Professor of New Testament, Trinity Lutheran Seminary

Table of Contents


Year One: The Church as a Journey
The Gods We Worship
Joyful Generosity
Sin in the Church
The Burden of Leadership
The Heart of Faith
Apathy in the Church
The Gift of God's Word
Christ Is Risen! He Is Risen Indeed!
Variety in the Body of Christ
Called by God to Serve

Year Two: Planning for Mission
Focus on Mission
What Do You Manage?
How We Act as Leaders
Faithful Leadership Hurts
What Makes Us Strong?
Being Gracious People
On Not Being Ourselves
Speaking the Truth in Love
Your Mind and the Mind of Christ
Who Do You Say That I Am?

Year Three: Facing Difficult Challenges
Just a Complaint Department?
In Dying We Live
How Do We Grieve?
Right, Wrong, or Forgiven
Spreading like Wildfire
Faithful Leaders Challenge People
Deciding Who Are the Ministers
Lead with Patience and Calm
Being an Immune System