Every year I create a list of books I think you should read. Sometimes the books I include are very purely about small group ministry, discipleship or spiritual formation. Other times, the books I include may seem pretty far afield (innovation, design, leadership, or strategy). You’ll just have to trust me. I wouldn’t include a book I didn’t think would be added to your toolbox and contribute in a trajectory-altering way.
That said…here is this my 2014 Christmas Reading List:
Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less by Greg McKeown. I’m about halfway through this one and have already begun to apply some of the practices McKeown identifies. If you regularly find yourself trying to figure out how to do everything you’ve committed to do…this is a book you need to begin reading today.
The Change Monster: The Human Forces that Fuel or Foil Corporate Transformation and Change by Jeanie Daniel Duck. This is not a new book, but it’s one that will help you understand the process of change and provide many of the tools you need when a change process is in order.
Creativity Inc.: Overcoming the Forces that Stand in the Way of True Inspiration by Ed Catmull. Catmull, co-founder and president of Pixar provides an inside look at the development of an already legendary creative shop. The principles he provides are transferable and will no doubt find their way into what you do.
The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg. I’m about 15% into this one and can see many ways it will have an influence on the work we are doing in discipleship. In addition, some of Duhigg’s ideas will have direct application into the team we are building.
Switch on Your Brain: The Key to Peak Happiness, Thinking and Health by Dr. Caroline Leaf. Dr. Leaf delivered a highly rated talk at the Catalyst conference earlier this fall. Her discussion of thinking patterns, detailed in the book, has some very interesting and potentially productive connections into the change process that accompanies discipleship and spiritual growth.