Wednesday, February 1, 2012

I Am a FOLLOWER by Leonard Sweet

"It's never been about leading" appears in very small print on the cover of this book. And that's the initial message. How did we Christians ever get so obsessed with leadership when Jesus explicitly asked us to be followers? In I Am a FOLLOWER: The Way, Truth, and Life of Following Jesus, Len Sweet asks that question and provides a framework for a return to "followership."

We should strive to be followers, guides, or coaches, people who follow Jesus and help others be followers, too. A leader usually is more accomplished and/or knowledgeable than the followers. To be a follower of Jesus (or "first follower"), all you have to do is follow, model yourself after Jesus. Then, as you follow, invite others to go with you. No special credentials required.

I chose this book because I heard the author speak at a writers' conference a couple of years ago. I was impressed with his knowledge of theology and the Bible. I think I bit off more than I could chew. It took me a long time to read it. I felt that he was saying the same thing over and over, just with different words and illustrations. He goes into great detail, even providing what he calls interactives at the end of each major section to help drive home his point. The interactives might include scripture to read, quotes from poetry, discussion questions, hymns to learn, URLs for videos online, and quotes from other authors.

I AM a Follower is not light reading, but it does have an essential message for today's church. I think it appeals more to theologians and pastors than "regular" people. However, I think it would be a great resource for a small group study.

Check it out on Amazon here.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their  book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255  : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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