Friday, December 5, 2008

Reflections On Being a Pastor

Alistair Begg and Derek Prime have given us a real gift and resource in this book. Here is a book that dispenses real practical wisdom to Pastors. The real advantage of this book is the wide variety of topics that it addresses.

I found the chapters discussing the devotional life of pastors to be very challenging and helpful. The chapters on the practical ministry of the pastor was also very helpful, the focus on the priority of study and preaching was challenging. The concluding chapters on family and leisure were very hard because it is so easy to say yes to the concerns that feel so pressing, but we cannot neglect our families. Also the discussion of the challenges of the wife of a pastor was really an eye-opener. I felt really convicted to make some changes to intentionally benefit her. It has also helped me to pray for her.

The concluding chapter on the perils and privileges of ministry was a little scary. Completely true but scary. There were twenty pages on perils and only two pages on the privileges. More balance would have been encouraging but it was good to be reminded that there are challenges to ministry that we need to be realistic about.

There are a few drawbacks, at times the advice appears to be based on a culture that is foreign to ours, the Scottish church culture that Derek Prime is so different that the advice isn't all that helpful. Also the chapter on delegation seemed to coming from a couple of pastors that are from large churches who are unfamiliar to the reality of small-church ministry.

But overall what we receive here is a picture of ministry that is word-centered and focused on benefiting the people of God, the undersheperds and enhancing the glory of God. Highly recommended.

PS - this would also be a good read for church members because it would help them understand the pressures their pastors are under, and how they could better encourage them and pray for them.

1 comment:

Joshua Owen said...

Jamie, thanks for the review. What is the retail price of the book and who publishes it?