“Transforming Church In Rural America: Breaking All The Rurals!” By Shannon O’Dell

“Transforming Church In Rural America: Breaking All The Rurals!” By Shannon O’Dell

I have got to say that I was very surprised by this book!  I have read many books about transforming, revitalizing and growing the church, and while many make bold promises, very few actually succeed in what they advertise!  I had never heard of Shannon Odell, but was intrigued by the title and knew that I had to read this book.

This book is the story of Shannon O’Dell’s call from ministry in the city to ministry in the country.  He tells how God has used and is using him and a growing handful of faithful to do just what the title says:  “Transform The Church In Rural America!”

If you have ever pastored, then you will relate almost immediately to much of what the author talks about.  I enjoyed the way he made his points by sharing his personal journey and the journey of the church/churches to whom he gives leadership.

Shannon goes to great lengths to help the reader know and understand the values that shape a growing rural ministry.  This book encourages the reader to consider the various possibilities of where God has called you to serve.  It will motivate you to think about, dream and pursue with greater passion the call of God upon your life!

The book is divided into three sections.  The first deals with the way it all began.  It helps the reader to see that while it is not easy, it is also not impossible to grow the church to make a difference in the community and world.  The second section lays out and provides the values that help to shape rural ministry into church with purpose and potential for growth.  The third section provides the reader with the structure necessary to maintain and sustain the growth of a ministry that desires to reach up and out.

This is a very interesting book.  I enjoyed reading it and especially appreciated the conversational style in which it was written.  I believe that it would be a great help to anyone who is serving in any type of ministry and an encouragement to anyone that loves the church and desires to see it do more and to do it better!

Disclosure: This book was provided to me by Thomas Nelson Publishing for review purposes only. I was not required to give a positive review or compensated in any fashion.


One Thing!

I am a big believer that small things have the ability to have a big impact in, on and through our lives.  On the days when I can get myself to focus on what really matters, I do the small things and my life is better for it!  If you think about it, then you have to know that it is true for your life as well.

You may be thinking:  “Yes, but my problem is not the small things, but the big thing that I have to get done!”  Have you not realized that most big things are really a series of small things clumped together?  Figure out what those small things are and start taking them on one at a time and before you know it, you will be accomplishing the purpose for which you were created for!

Take a few moments today to make a “One Thing List!”  Put on this list as many of the “one things” that you can think of.  Seriously – Get a piece of paper and a pen and start making that list!  Now that you have your list, look at it and pick the top three things that need to be done and that you believe you can do today.  Got your top three?  Now go to work on #1, then #2 and finish with #3!  If these did not take you all day and they probably won’t, then make a new list of three and go for it!

A question that I will sometimes ask myself when looking at my list is this:  “If I could only get one thing accomplished today off of this list – what one things is the most important and would make the most difference?  That is usually the thing I tackle and when I am finished, I find that I am motivated to take on even more!

Hope this helps you!  Go get your one thing!

P.S.  Comment, DM me on Twitter @mjharvell or inbox me on Facebook and let me know what your “One Thing!” is for today and I’ll say a prayer asking for God’s blessing on your success!