WarrenBird.com – Books

Book descriptions are listed by publication date, starting with the most current. All may be purchased through such chains as amazon.combarnesandnoble.com, or christianbook.com.

A number of these books have been translated into other languages, including Spanish, German, French, Korean, Chinese, Russian and Portuguese.


29. How To Break Growth Barriers: Revise Your Rolw, Releast Your People and Capture Overlooked Opportunities For Your Church, Carl George and Warren Bird, Baker Books, 2017. Some churches grow rapidly, only to hit a ceiling. Other churches have experienced declining or static attendance–many of them for decades. Frustrated pastors and church leaders want growth methods that work, but without adding to pastoral fatigue. Growth comes only when effective leadership and lay-empowerment skills work hand in hand. This requires a shift of focus from the shepherd as the primary caregiver to shepherd as developer and coach of many caregivers. How to Break Growth Barriers shows pastors how to communicate a vision for the future and then how to lead the congregation into the perspectives and structures necessary for potentially limitless growth. The strategies found in this book are not only tried and true, and taken from a biblical perspective of a “harvest” vision.


28. God Dreams: 12 Vision Templates for Finding and Focusing Your Church’s Future, Will Mancini and Warren Bird, LifeWay (B&H), 2016. Just like a visionary restaurant needs a more specific focus than “serving food,” a visionary church needs something more than biblical generalizations like “loving God, loving people” or “making disciples and serving the world.” By exploring and combining these 12 starting points, your team will experience break-through clarity that makes focus more achievable, aided by the Horizon Storyline idea of how to frame vision over different time periods. Imagine leading with a refreshed sense of freedom and confidence, with a totally new way to inspire your church. Imagine the ability to harness the energy and resources of your people towards a specific dream of gospel impact, in your church and in your lifetime. God Dreams is your passport to leading into a better future.


27. Teams that Thrive: Five Disciplines of Collaborative Church Leadership, Ryan Hartwig and Warren Bird, foreword by Dave Ferguson. InterVarsity Press, 2015. ISBN 978-0-8308-4119-6 (print), ISBN 978-0-8308-9757-5 (digital). Many churches have begun to share key leadership duties, but don’t know how to take their leadership team to the point where it thrives. What does it actually mean to do leadership well as a team? How can it be done in a way that avoids frustration and burnout? How does team leadership best equip the staff and bless a congregation? Using research plus actual church examples, Teams that Thrive presents five disciplines that, if implemented, can enable your team to thrive. The result? A coaching tool for senior leadership teams that enables struggling teams to thrive, and resources teams doing well to do their work even better.


26. Next: Pastoral Succession that Works, William Vanderbloemen and Warren Bird, Baker, 2014, 224 pages, ISBN-13: 978-0-8010-1647-9. Every pastor needs a succession plan because every pastor is an interim pastor. Despite this truth, few churches are planning ahead for the day they will face a transition in leadership, and far too many handoffs in leadership end with a dropped ball. But the outcome doesn’t have to be that way. While there is no simple, one-size-fits-all solution to the puzzle of planning for a seamless pastoral succession, Next offers church leaders and pastors a guide to asking the right questions in order to plan for the future. Through case studies, interviews and real-time research, the authors demystify successful pastoral succession and help you prepare for an even brighter future for your ministry.


25. Wisdom from Lyle E. Schaller: The Elder Statesman of Church Leadership, Lyle Schaller and Warren Bird, Nashville, TN: Abingdon, 2012, 224 pages. ISBN-10: 1426749104, ISBN-13: 978-1426749100. One poll declared him the most influential American church leader of the last 100 years. Lyle E. Schaller has written literally millions of words of insight and advice for church leaders. His books alone number over 90 titles. Now this single volume makes available his best insights, organized by topic and framed with fascinating background perspective of Schaller himself. This volume both introduces Schaller to a new generation of church leaders and is a handy resource for those who grew up on Schaller’s writing and count him as a major ministry influence.


24. Better Together: Making Church Mergers Work. Jim Tomberlin and Warren Bird, Jossey-Bass, 2012, 249 pages, ISBN:978-1-1181-3130-5. Thousands of Protestant churches are perplexed by plateaued or declining enrollments, while other congregations nearby thrive. Is there a way for them to combine forces, drawing on both their strengths in ways that increase their missional impact?  Church merger consultant Jim Tomberlin and award-winning writer Warren Bird makes the case that mergers today work best not with two struggling churches but with a vital, momentum-filled lead church partnering with one or more joining churches. Based on solid research and practical experience, the authors provide a hands-on guide so that lead churches and joining churches can each understand the issues, select an appropriate model, and develop strategies that will create a positive, healthy merger.


23. The Other 80%: Turning Your Church’s Spectators into Active DisciplesScott Thumma and Warren Bird, Jossey-Bass, 2011, 204 pages, ISBN 0470891297. How can you shift more of your church members from sitting to serving, from being spectators to engaging more deeply? Would doing so help more people to grow and develop spiritually? The Other 80 Percent is a practical guide that draws on new research across a broad range of Protestant attenders and churches of all sizes. It proposes practical steps to develop listening and learning teams to assist clergy in uncovering membership patterns, cultural norms, and leadership blind spots common to evangelical and mainline congregations alike.


22. Viral Churches: Helping Church Planters Become Movement Makers, by Ed Stetzer and Warren Bird, Jossey-Bass, 2010. ISBN 9780470550458. Balancing research with inspiring specific examples, this book will inform, guide, and   even catalyze today’s many church planting leaders to create a multiplication movement. The book addresses questions about what to do next in their church planting strategies, in light of research on what’s actually working best. Filled with illustrative stories from successful church planters, this important book outlines practical ideas that are essential to the success of church multiplication networks. Each chapter highlights a different point on such issues as keeping the focus on evangelism; recruiting, assessing, and deploying planters; increasing the survivability of new churches; using a multisite strategy effectively; funding; overcoming obstacles; facing challenges ahead; and many more.


21. Unleashing the Word: Rediscovering the Public Reading of Scripture, Max McLean and Warren Bird, Zondervan, 2009. Book and DVD, 128 pages. ISBN 978-0310292708. This book-and-DVD collaboration from a gifted Bible narrator and an award-winning writer shows how churches can train their laypeople to “unleash the Word of God” while reading the Scriptures, whether during worship, in small groups, or at home. Straightforward and culturally relevant, it helps people proclaim the Bible in a way that communicates its life-changing power. Straightforward and culturally relevant, with practical how-to graphics, this resource provides the necessary tools to teach you how to read the Bible aloud, in a way that communicates its life-changing power!


20. A   Multi-site Church Roadtrip: Exploring the New Normal. Geoff Surratt, Greg Ligon, and Warren Bird. Zondervan, 2009, ISBN 97803103941, 224 pages. Hop on for a guided tour of the multi-site church movement and see why it has become the “new normal” for growing churches. From multiple locations to internet campuses, the multi-site church movement is changing the shape of the church. Your tour guides offer an engaging and humorous journey that shows creative ways churches of all kinds are expanding their impact through multiple locations. Hear the inside stories and learn about the latest developments. Find out firsthand how the churches in this book are broadening their options for evangelism, service, and outreach―while making better use of their ministry funds.


19. Innovative Transitions: How Change Can Take Your Church to the Next Level, Dale   Galloway with Warren Bird, Beacon Hill of Kansas City, December 2007. ISBN 978-0834123397. (Portuguese language under contract by Casa Nazarena, Campinas Sao Paulo Brazil) Change is vital to the life of a church. But when it comes to actually implementing or moving toward a transition, many leaders hesitate. In Innovative Transitions, well-known pastor Dale Galloway and church researcher Warren Bird team up to give church leaders practical methods to move their churches from comfortable maintenance to genuine, vibrant mission. They share 15 inspiring stories of successful turnaround churches. From leadership development to a renewed vision for outreach, the insights and transferable principles apply regardless of church size or denomination.


18. Missing in America: Making an Eternal Difference in the World Next Door, Tom Clegg and Warren Bird, Group, November 2007. ISBN 978-0764435638. Jesus came to seek and save the lost – and he wants you to join him! Increasingly the evangelism “playing field” and “rules” in a postmodern culture have changed dramatically. This book will challenge the way you think about evangelism and will give you a soul-stirring new vision for what it can be. Forget outdated models. Forget heady, forced strategies. People are tired of presentations, but are longing for personal relationships. They want a genuine friendship with someone like you to lead them to the Lord. The book is full of powerful, realistic ways that you and your church can effectively reach out in genuine love to those without Christ in their lives. Within Tom’s personal narrative you will also discover: Current statistics on culture and religion, personal evangelism tips and tools, insights on church transformation, film clips, discussion questions and more.


17. Eleven Innovations in the Local Church: How Today’s Leaders Can Learn, Discern, and   Move into the Future, Elmer Towns, Ed Stetzer and Warren Bird. Regal, June 2007, 286 pages. ISBN 978-0830737864. Take an insider’s tour of the most innovative churches today. These seasoned ministry researchers provide information, insight and analysis about key innovations from the frontlines of American church ministry, plus profiles of various congregations that have implemented them. More than mere show-and-tell, each chapter offers a solid takeaway for church leaders on how to learn and apply new ideas. The authors also offer scripturally-based assessments of both the positive and negatives implications of implementing each innovation, providing guidance and wisdom.


16. Innovation 2007: Connecting Innovators to Multiply. Available free.  Leadership Network, 2007, 64 pages, privately published.This title, offering ten in-depth profiles of compelling trends and literally hundreds of facts and examples, is the biggest compilation of ideas and insights about North American churches ever undertaken by Leadership Network. The project presents a unique catalog and analysis of today’s most promising church innovations including a focus on why churches need innovation, how churches use innovation, commentary on the American megachurch, commentary of how to best utilize talented congregation members, and an extensive list of additional resources.


15. The   Multi-Site Church Revolution: Being One Church in Many Locations, Geoff Surratt, Greg Ligon, and Warren Bird, Zondervan, 2006, 224 pages, ISBN 0310270154. One of the most-discussed issues by leaders of growing churches of all sizes is whether to use multiple formats, venues, and locations to expand the reach of their ministries. Drawing from the examples of churches nationwide, The Multi-Site Church Revolution shows what healthy multi-site churches look like and what motivates congregations to make the change. Throughout, it provide practical steps for churches considering this type of ministry. The Multi-Site Church Revolution offers guidance, insights, and specific action steps as well as appendixes with practical leadership resources and self-diagnostic tools.


14. Momentum for Life: Sustaining Personal Health, Integrity, and Strategic Focus as a Leader, Michael Slaughter with Warren Bird and Kim Miller, Abingdon, 2005, 186 pages, ISBN 0687331919. Momentum for Life is a call to all aspiring leaders to a life of faith, balance, and purpose. Operating on the principle that all leadership begins with self-leadership, the book outlines five crucial disciplines – DRIVE: Devotion to God, Readiness for lifelong learning, Investing in key relationships, Visioning for the future, Eating and Exercise for life. Readers will gain insights and advice for enriching the spiritual, intellectual, interpersonal, missional, and physical areas of their lives, all of which are integral to effectiveness as a leader.


13. Culture Shift: Transforming Your Church from the Inside Out, Robert Lewis and Wayne Cordeiro with Warren Bird, Jossey-Bass, 2005, 240 pages, ISBN 0787975303. (Korean language ISBN 9788957312551, published 2008 by DMI Press, Seoul) Culture Shift, written for church leaders, ministers, pastors, ministry teams, and lay leaders, leads you through the process of identifying your church’s distinctive culture, gives you practical tools to change it from the inside-out, and provides steps to keep your new culture aligned with your church’s mission. Real transformation is not about working harder at what you’re already doing or even copying another church’s approach but about changing church culture at a foundational level.


12. The Emotionally Healthy Church: A Strategy for Discipleship That Actually Changes Lives, and revised edition, by Pete Scazzero with Warren Bird, Zondervan, 2003, 224 pages. ISBN 0310246547.  Something is desperately wrong with most churches today. Many sincere followers of Christ who are passionate for God and his work are unaware of the crucial link between emotional health and spiritual maturity. They present themselves as spiritually mature but are stuck at a level of emotional immaturity that current models of discipleship have not addressed.  Discipleship that really transforms a church must integrate emotional health with spiritual maturity, according to Pete Scazzero. The Emotionally Healthy Churchoffers a strategy for discipleship that does this and actually changes lives.


11. Starting a New Church: How to Plant a High-Impact Congregation, by Dale Galloway with Warren Bird, Beacon Hill Press of Kansas City, with accompanying DVD, 2003, 154 pages. ISBN 0834119854, www.nph.com   Starting a New Churchgives you all the tools you need to successfully plant a high-impact new congregation. It is designed to help a church-planting team articulate their core values and communicate their vision, choose a launch date, prepare for   the first Sunday, and to build from there. The easy-to-use notebook is divided into a leader’s guide and reproducible participant workbook. In addition, this kit includes a DVD designed to stimulate study and discussion.  Each of the 15 chapters is enhanced by a 3-5 minute video clip, usually featuring an actual church planter whose story is told in the chapter.


10. UnLearning Church: Transforming Spiritual Leadership for the Emerging Church, by Michael Slaughter with Warren Bird, Group Publishing, 2002, 221 pages. ISBN 0764422979. You were born to be an original, not a copy. So was your church.  It’s time to break the rules about the church, about leadership, and about penetrating postmodern culture with God’s purposes. It’s time to unLearn “church,” according to Mike Slaughter, Chief Dreamer of the renowned Ginghamsburg Church. Churches that lovingly dare to shoulder spiritual and prophetic leadership in our rapid-change culture will be led by those who are not satisfied with being a leadership “clone.” UnLearning Church will equip you to gaze boldly beyond franchised church models to a clear vision for how the Holy Spirit is empowering you and your church to demonstrate the kingdom of God.


9. On-Purpose Leadership: Multiplying Your Ministry by Becoming a Leader of Leaders, by Dale Galloway with Warren Bird, Beacon Hill, 2001, 119 pages. ISBN 0834118823.  “If you’re not a growing person yourself, your church cannot go to new  places,” says Dale Galloway. “Ninety percent of church leaders never go past their own reach. You must learn to get beyond yourself.”  This book helps you break through the barriers that bar you and your church from achieving a new level of leadership and ministry. It introduces a three-level perspective for developing ministry within the local church that builds on Christ’s own ministry model. Your ministry will multiply exponentially as you encourage and empower your lay leaders who in turn equip others for ministry.


8. Lost in America: How Your Church Can Impact the World Next Door. This book was updated and replaced by Missing in America. See #18 above. by Tom Clegg and Warren Bird, Group Publishing, 2001, 176 pages. ISBN 076442257X.

Jesus came to seek and save the lost – and he wants you to join him! Increasingly the evangelism “playing field” and “rules” in a postmodern culture have changed dramatically. This book will challenge the way you think about evangelism and will give you a soul-stirring new vision for what it can be.


7. Into the Future: Turning Today’s Church Trends into Tomorrow’s Opportunities, by Elmer Towns and Warren Bird, Revell, 2000, 240 pages. ISBN 0800757254.  NOTE: This book recently ceased publication but is available, in entirety, for free download at www.elmertowns.com (select “books” then “online.” This book has received high praise for putting churches in touch with emerging trends, but then also giving hands-on guidance in what to do. It helps each church work through the practical implications and develop a workable action plan. In today’s era of rapid change, where if you sit still you lose ground, your congregation must be proactive, turning today’s church trends into opportunities for more effective ministry. Every chapter bursts with real-life examples taken directly from experts such as Bill Hybels, George Barna, Chuck Colson, Ravi Zacharias, Rick Warren, and Henry Blackaby.


6. Real Followers: Beyond Virtual Christianity, Michael Slaughter with Warren Bird, Abingdon, 1999, 205 pages. ISBN 0687033411. This book leads readers, especially those in a small group together, on a radical quest to expose the   pretender inside – what happens when they’re too superficial in their daily walk with God. It shows you how your personal desires and ambitions can be aligned with God’s dreams for your life. It teaches you how to think God’s thoughts as the key to discerning God’s will. You will realize there are no three-step or ten-step techniques for becoming a real follower of Jesus Christ. “Right now you   can dream God’s dreams and know God’s thoughts so that you can be guided in how to direct your week,” says Slaughter.


5. Nine Keys to Effective Small-Group Leadership: How Lay Leaders Can Establish Healthy Cells, Classes and Teams, by Carl George with Warren Bird, Revised edition Taylors, SC: CDLM, 2007, 216 pages, ISBN 9780979535000, www.metachurch.com. The simple truths of Scripture illustrated in the nine keys presented in this book will unlock and open doors that make the difference in health, growth, vitality, energy, and life in your small group. Don’t just have meetings. Instead, propel your group to a new level of teamwork and fruitfulness for Christ. Learn and apply the simple truths of Scripture   illustrated in these nine keys in order to utilize and open the doors. These nine keys will make a lasting impact in your small group because they will transform the perspective of its leadership team.


3. The Coming Church Revolution, by Carl George with Warren Bird, Revell, 1994, 349 pages. ISBN 0800755286.The Coming Church Revolution describes a significant new direction in ministry that already has revolutionized congregations of all sizes around the world. It gives very specific applications for the metachurch paradigm of leadership development.   It focuses on small groups as “evangelistic care units” and on small-group leadership as the best context for believers to be discipled. Charts and vivid analogies unveil a model of ministry and a fresh attitude that stresses the importance of relationships over programs. “Churches rise and fall on the availability of trained, talented, and Spirit-gifted leadership,” says the author.


2. How to Break Growth Barriers, by Carl George with Warren Bird, Baker, 1993, 232 pages. ISBN 0801038537.This book continually asks, “What if God wanted you to handle twice as many people as you are   ministering to at present?” It deals with churches of every size, showing them the next growth barrier to break and how to cross it, all the while developing a compassionate heart for greater evangelism. Growth comes when effective leadership and training are working hand in hand, when pastors learn how to be makers of other shepherds. If you are frustrated by declining or static church membership, this book will help you discover new keys to growth and vitality. Charts and checklists for self-evaluation are included.


1.Prepare Your Church for the Future, by Carl George, edited Warren Bird, Revell, 1991, 240 pages. ISBN 0800753658. For church leaders who want to be prepared to meet the spiritual needs of our rapidly changing society, Prepare Your Church for the Future (which has sold more than 100,000 copies) describes the metachurch, a body that is large enough to celebrate and small enough to care. Specific guidelines aid pastors and church leaders in making theirs the church of their dreams — a caring, witnessing church where enough lay leaders are present because the pastoral team has focused at every point in raising up leaders. The author draws from his own extensive church-planting and church-growth experience to provide you with step-by-step strategies, based on a biblical understanding of the church and its mission.