Trying to come up with a pithy and catchy subject line to this post.... trying to get the words mad, church, anne, jackson, and disease into the same subject line. Not sure I achieved what I was going after in the appropriate order.... I am not mad at Anne Jackson, obviously. And her Church doesn't have a disease. I hear Pete Wilson, the pastor at Cross Point, is a super cool guy, even though we've never met in person.
How do I give a proper synopsis on Anne's new book Mad Church Disease? There is a major blog blitz going on right now among all the cool bloggers regarding the book, and for good measure. This book rocks. Most of the more well known bloggers have already posted their comments on their pages, so now it's my turn. So in order to not copy, I revert to my steady standby- the top ten list.
So here is why I think Anne's new book Mad Church Disease is a book worth mentioning, and a book worth reading.
1. She compares Mad Church Disease to Mad Cow Disease, and I worked on a ranch after college and know lots about cows.
2. Anne is my friend, and I like to highlight projects that my friends are doing.
3. She is a carrier of MCD. Her father was a pastor, she grew up in the church, and has worked in church environments her whole life. Someone like me who has never worked in a church has no credibility nor is considered a carrier. Her being a carrier gives her credibility.
4. We both consider ourselves Oklahomans... ok maybe not, but it sounds good. I having grown up there and Anne spent only six months in the Great State. But even though she spent 23 years in Texas, I would venture to say she considers herself an Oklahoman, and cheers for the Sooners. Who wouldn't want to say they're from a state where the license plates say "Oklahoma is OK......" But Anne is great.
5. The book includes very cool sidebar interviews with a number of leaders talking about their own journey and struggles- these are entitled "second opinions." Bill Hybels, Perry Noble, Mike Foster, and many others.
6. Anne gives us a prescription for how to not only overcome burnout from working in the Church, but also how to create unity in the Church and with our brothers and sisters around the world as well as in our congregations. Very important.
7. She gives us five principles for fighting mad church disease tied to relational health. You'll have to get the book to know what they are. But one includes sleeping more, which is always a positive.
8. Anne talks about weight and calls out those in ministry to get in shape. A much needed challenge. She also gives practical ways to do this.
9. This is her first book, so she hasn't become stale and repackaged yet as an author. Not that this ever happens to others......
10. I really like stories. Especially personal stories. And ultimately, this is Anne's story. Her personal journey with all of its ups and downs.
Being real, honest and vulnerable is not easy, especially when you are doing that publicly in book form.
Thanks Anne for sharing your story. A story that so many can relate to who have also been hurt, burned out, and thrown out by the church. The great thing is, stories always help us to realign and to be inspired. Especially when they are stories of people who are just like us.
If you are a pastor, go and buy this book for your staff. And if you are a lay leader, go and buy this book for your pastor. Chances are, many of them are suffering from MCD. They need our help.
Order the book pronto.