youth ministry blogger austin mccann wrote a nice review on his blog of my last book, A Beautiful Mess: What’s Right About Youth Ministry. here’s most of it:
It seems like every time you turn around there is a new youth ministry book that is promoting a new “model” or “philosophy” of youth ministry. Don’t get me wrong, I am not against these types of books and many of them have been instrumental in shaping my own philosophy of youth ministry. But far too often as youth pastors and youth workers, we look to the next “big thing” and quickly abandon what we are doing for the sake of doing youth ministry differently. This is not always bad because in a changing youth culture, we must be changing the way we minister to students in that culture. But we must not get caught up in what’s wrong with our youth ministry and quickly jump to trying something new. We need to realize a lot of what we are doing is working and actually making a different in the life’s of students for the sake of the Gospel!
This is why Mark Oestreicher’s book, A Beautiful Mess, was such a breathe of fresh air for me! Finally, a youth ministry book that didn’t talk about what is wrong with youth ministry, but actually explained what is right with youth ministry! Mark explains some of the current things in youth ministry that are working and bringing fruit in the life’s of our students. He helps us see that the glass is half full, not half empty. This book allows youth pastors and youth workers to be encouraged and walk away feeling like they are making a difference, because they really are making a difference! Mark admits that we must not resist change because we always need to be changing the way we do student ministry, but we must not change for the sake of change. We are doing some things right in youth ministry and let’s see the glass half full and continue serving students with the love of Christ.
I would recommend this book for anyone involved in youth ministry. This book will help you identity some of the things we are doing right in student ministry and encourage by reminding us we are making a difference!