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Every once in a while, I get a question from those trying to improve themselves, like:
What steps should I take to increase my functioning in life and ministry? And what should I read?
And while I’m not prone to “giving advice,” I’ve come to regard the question as sincere and an opportunity to provide some playful challenge.
Here’s my response:
This is more a matter of intentionality than magic. 90% of the time, folks don’t actually DO what is necessary. But here we go.
Create your own list for increasing your functioning in your life and ministry. You know yourself better than I.
As to readings, there’s plenty out there; all are better than some and worse than others. But first, read Mortimer Adler’s How To Read A Book. Reading for the outcome you seek is a different kind of reading.”
What would you add to the list if a friend were to ask you the question?
Israel Galindo is Associate Dean for Lifelong Learning at the Columbia Theological Seminary. He directs the Pastoral Excellence Program at Columbia seminary. He is the author of the bestseller, The Hidden Lives of Congregations (Alban), Perspectives on Congregational Leadership (Educational Consultants), and A Family Genogram Workbook (Educational Consultants), with Elaine Boomer & Don Reagan, and Leadership in Ministry: Bowen Theory in the Congregational Context.
His books on education include Academic Leadership: Practical Wisdom for Deans and Administartors, Mastering the Art of Instruction,The Craft of Christian Teaching (Judson), How to be the Best Christian Study Group Leader (Judson), and Planning for Christian Education Formation (Chalice Press).