Spiritual Maturity: Preserving Congregational Health and Balance

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Like all human bodies, the body of Christ that we call "church" needs to attend to its health or it may become ill. Renowned pastor, preacher, and teacher Frank Thomas believes that many congregations exhibit a number of dysfunctional habits in conducting business that lead to rifts, divides, and even congregational splits. Often they are caused by leadership styles that are ineffective and controlling. Thomas examines how poor congregational leadership is often the result of personality conflicts among leaders and how many key leaders-both clergy and lay- participate in keeping unhealthy methods alive. Thomas's book will help lay and clergy leaders improve the health of their congregation by taking a close look at the styles of church leadership, methods of information flow, and levels of participation that exist within the body. Thomas offers a holistic solution based on a model of spiritual maturity for creating and preserving a healthy congregation.About the Author

Frank A. Thomas is Senior Pastor of Mississippi Boulevard Church, Disciples of Christ, located in Memphis, Tennessee. A prominent preacher and speaker on subjects of church administration and homiletics, he has also authored They Like to Never Quit Praisin' God: The Role of Celebration in Preaching (1997).
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Product Details

Table of Contents

Introduction 1
Module 1 The Call to the Victorious Christian Life 5
Lesson 1 The Call to the VCL 5
Lesson 2 The Few, the Proud, the Victorious 7
Lesson 3 Overcoming the Fear of Freedom 9
Module 2 The Mature Self 15
Lesson 1 The Sin of Playing Victim 15
Lesson 2 The Sin of Playing Savior 18
Lesson 3 The Dance of Immaturity 22
Lesson 4 Walk into the Storm 24
Module 3 The Mature Church Member 27
Lesson 1 The Privilege of Participation 27
Lesson 2 Love and the Privilege of Participation 34
Lesson 3 Abuse by Secrets 36
Lesson 4 Abuse by Scapegoating 41
Lesson 5 The Illusion of Participation 44
Lesson 6 Separation Anxiety 48
Lesson 7 Mobilizing by Initiative 51
Module 4 The Mature Church Leader 57
The Story 59
Lesson 1 Prayer as the Vehicle to Clarity 66
Lesson 2 Decisiveness Is Faith at Work 69
Lesson 3 The Courage to Lead 71
The Mature Leader 86
Epilogue 91
App The Statement of Health, Balance, and Maturity in Congregational Life 93
Notes 97
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