Today's minister needs to be encouraged, for discouragement is rampant. Gone are the days when pastors were in a high prestige/low stress calling. Today it is more likely that ministers feel like they are in a high stress/low prestige job.
The Word of God, and more specifically Second Timothy is rich with insights on how to stay in the fight. The author has identified helpful themes from this pastoral letter, presenting each as a conversation. Reflecting on his own journey where he was tempted more than once to throw in the towel, he speaks of the transforming influence that Second Timothy had on his life. The biblical truths embraced will rekindle the dream, the vision for making a significant (and joyous) contribution to the kingdom of God.
This book will be profitable for any who might read it solo style. Given the twenty-nine conversations, it can be used as a one month devotional guide. It is full of outstanding quotes, illustrations, and questions for further personal reflection. For the alert reader there are numerous ideas and thoughts that are immediately transferable to preaching and teaching.
But its greatest benefit will come to those who choose to use it in a small group discussion setting with other pastors. Each conversation is followed up with insightful questions designed to generate life giving conversations. Those best positioned to not only survive pastoral ministry, but even to thrive in it, are those who have a significant support network. The shaping of this book as a small group discussion guide makes it a unique offering to the pastoral support literature.
For those suffering from an ongoing sense of the Monday morning blues, and possibly even thinking of checking out of ministry, they may first want to check out this book.
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About the Author
From Throwing in the Towel to Staying in the Fight is an expression of a calling to bring encouragment to pastors. The book is marked by an unstoppable, yet gentle call, to stay and fight the good fight of faith. The book grew out Pastor Harry's own struggles with discouragement, and the temptation to leave pastoral ministry. Through his memorization and reflection on 2 Timothy, he found the capacity to do more than just survive, but thrive in pastoral work.
He became a dedicated follower of Christ through the ministry of Dr. Henry Blackaby, author of the bestselling book Experiencing God. Of Pastor Harry and his book, Henry Blackaby writes: "I first met Harry when I was the pastor of Faith Baptist Church in Saskatoon. I had the privilege of baptizing him and performing his wedding. Those were exciting days as I have described in Experiencing God. Harry became an avid follower of Christ. It has given me great joy to see how God has used his life in ministry for many years. In this book, Harry shares keen insight out of his many years of rich pastoral experience as well as compassion for those in church leadership. I know you will be blessed as you read it."
Pastor Harry and his wife Judy have been married for over thirty-three years. Together they have four adult children (five with their son-in-law), as well as two grandchildren.
Educationally he has a Doctor of Ministry degree from Fuller Theological Seminary; a Master of Divinity from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary; and a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Saskatchewan.
His main hobbies include: reading; playing tennis; gardening; watching movies; cyclying; following the financial world; and more reading.
He is actively involved in his community as a Rotarian. He also gives leadership to the ministerial in his city. He and his wife reside in Saskatoon, Canada.