Deep and Wide by Andy Stanley

November 12, 2012

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Today  I am reviewing Andy Stanley’s most recent book, Deep and Wide: Creating Churches Unchurched People Love to Attend. Andy’s book is predominately geared towards pastors, church leaders, or church planters to help them reach the unchurched through their churches.

I am not a pastor, church leader, or church planter.

And I love this book.

The premise of the book is to discuss how church can be more inviting to the unchurched while not compromising on the essentials.

I really enjoyed reading the story of Andy and his father Charles. Charles Stanley is a very popular and successful pastor in his own right in the Southern Baptist denomination. The story of how Andy stepped out of his shadow and into his own path is compelling.

With someone as popular as Andy Stanley, it is easy to assume the path his ministry took was paved with gold. Realizing it included hardship, pain, and accusation brings another side into view. We see the current place of his ministry and often do not realize what went into it. Andy weathered family crisis and talk of trying to steal his father’s congregation.

This built the platform for the heart of the book. Andy pulls back the curtain and allows readers to access a behind the scenes look at his successful church, North Point Community Church.

As someone who has listened to Andy for years, I could think of countless times when he used the methods he mentioned.

I love his presentation of tensions to manage. The Christian life is a paradox. We often have two seemingly opposite things which come together in our faith.

“These are not problems to solve but tensions to manage.”

This is really central to the issue of how to attract pre-believers while still feeding the flock of actual believers in your church. A healthy church has both elements in operation.

I recommend this book to anyone actively involved in church leadership.

Honestly, all Christians could benefit from the methods in Andy’s book as they relate to co-workers and other unchurched people.  I highly recommend this book.

(the link above is an affiliate link to buy this book)

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Chris

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A missionary teacher for 21 years currently living in South Africa. I am a recovering superhero, daily in need of the grace of God