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Communicating for a Change: Seven Keys to Irresistible Communication (North Point Resources) 1st Edition

4.7 out of 5 stars 328 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1590525142
ISBN-10: 1590525140
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Andy Stanley  
Communicator, author, and pastor, ANDY STANLEY founded Atlanta-based North Point Ministries in 1995. Today, NPM is comprised of six churches in the Atlanta area and a network 30 churches around the globe collectively serving nearly 70,000 people weekly.
 
As host of Your Move with Andy Stanley, with over five million messages consumed each month through television and podcasts, and author of more than 20 books, including The New Rules for Love, Sex & Dating, Ask It, How to Be Rich, Deep & Wide, Visioneering, and Next Generation Leader, he is considered one of the most-influential pastors in America.
 
Andy and his wife, Sandra, have three grown children and live near Atlanta.
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Product Details

  • Series: North Point Resources
  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Multnomah; 1 edition (June 1, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1590525140
  • ISBN-13: 978-1590525142
  • Product Dimensions: 5.7 x 0.7 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (328 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #10,003 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Amazon Customer VINE VOICE on July 31, 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A casual reader might glance through this book and think Stanley is suggesting watering down the gospel in an effort to be pragmatic. This is not accurate. This is not a book about Biblical exegesis or scholarship. This style of preaching does not preclude in depth study. Study for sermon preparation simply is not what this book is all about.

This is a book about delivery. About half of all younger Christians today attend the top 10% of churches. These churches have learned to communicate in ways that are simple and relational. We pastors need to speak in a language that people can understand.

I went through this book and applied its communication principles to a "test" sermon. My preparation was no different than I might have done at any other time, except my delivery intentionally followed patterns laid down in this book. The results were electric. People were engaged. They didn't want to leave after the message, and conversation continued as people slowly left for home.

These principles will not be comfortable for everyone, but they are still worth wrestling with. We pastors spend the largest portion of our lives preparing for or communicating publicly. We must constantly stretch and learn new methods. Buy the book. Read the book. If these principles do not fit your communication style, fine. But make sure you know why they don't fit and that you are correct. Don't refuse to consider them just because they are new and novel.
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Format: Hardcover
Anyone who has heard Andy Stanley preach knows that he is an effective communicator. Now, Stanley and coauthor Lane Jones let us in on the secrets of effective preaching in Communicating for Change.

The first half of the book is a fable about a discouraged preacher, Pastor Ray Martin, who is desperate for help. He meets with an acquaintance, a successful businessman, who flies him by helicopter to meet Will Graham, a truck driver who has just the answers that Ray needs. By the time Ray leaves, he has a new approach and new hope for his preaching.

The second half of the book explains this model of preaching, covering topics like the goal of preaching, how to outline the message relationally, and how to engage the audience.

The model offered by Stanley and Lane has two main strengths. First, it centers preaching around one central idea, taken from the text. This is more effective than other approaches, which fail to capture the central idea of the text. In trying to communicate everything, they communicate nothing. Haddon Robinson and others have also written on the importance of the big idea in preaching.

Second, Stanley and Lane also present a relational outline approach to preaching. Their outlines are built around "the communicator's relationship with the audience rather than content." They remind us that "the way we organize material on paper is very different from how we process information in a conversation." This relational approach can lead to better communication of the Biblical idea of a passage.

The book is not without its problems. The leadership fable, in which an unlikely hero rescues a hapless practitioner, may be an overused approach.
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Format: Hardcover
After finishing this book, I was reminded of the following verse in 2 Timothy 2:15 - Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth. Not everyone is called to preach or to give Bible studies but this book, at the very minimum, allows us to see how much work and thought is involved when a pastor gives a sermon/Bible study. Because of that, I very appreciate my pastor who must have worked really hard to preach God's word. Here are the takeaway lessons that are transcribed verbatim from the book for each of the relevant chapters. In order to see how these points were derived, you'll need to read the book which I highly recommend:

1. Determine your goal
1a. Our approach to communicating should be shaped by our goal in communicating.
1b. Our goal should be life change. Specifically, to teach people how to live a life that reflects the values, principles, and truths of the Bible.
1c. When you commit to preach for life change, your preparation is not complete until you have answered two very important questions: So what? and Now what?

2. Pick a point
2a. In a one point message it is essential for the communicator to know the answer to two questions: What is the one thing I want my audience to know? What do I want them to do about it?
2b. For most communicators, the biggest challenge will not be finding the one idea, but eliminating the other three.
2c. The process for developing a one point message is as follows: 1) Dig until you find it. 2) Build everything around it. 3) Make it stick.

3. Create a map.
3a.
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Format: Hardcover
I feel compelled to warn fellow Christian Communicators. This book may make you angry. It just might inspire you to change the way you communicate the life-change message of hope.

I suppose whether you are angered or inspired depends upon what your goal is. Is your goal to teach the Bible to people? Or, is it your goal to see people changed as they apply the life-changing message of the Bible?

If you are comfortable with people telling you "Nice message..." as they leave; If you really don't want to disturb those who sit under your preaching/teaching; If you are satisfied with merely reading your three points to your people and expect that they'll "get it" because it is a sermon then you might want to take a pass on this book.

However, If you are like me and have a burning desire to see people CHANGED having heard the crucial message you want to give them then you will want to read this book (several times) with a legal pad and pen!

I can hear my seminary preaching professor even now in my mind, "This is against all convention!" That would be a correct assessment to be sure.

I'll confess the title caught my interest so I picked up the book. Once I started reading this book I literally could NOT put it down. Please know that I have read many books on the art and science of preparing, and delivering sermons. I have had several preaching classes in seminary, but NONE of them challenged me to make ONE point! Andy Stanley did... give him a fair hearing. I know this: I will never communicate Biblical truth the same way ever again! As Stanley correctly states, there is so much that is at stake!
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