By Adam Clarke
Simplicity. This is probably not the first word you want to hear when you are deciding on reading a resource book, or when reviewing it. However, in this case, Dr.Frank Pageʼs The Nehemiah Factor: 16 Characteristics of a Missional Leader is just that- a simple read. Do not let that fool you as this book packs spiritual, emotional and personal punches that cause you to become lost in his uncomplicated writing, and which can cause you to ask of yourself: Is this where I am? Can I be a missional leader in my church?
The layout of the book is very logical as it takes the reader on a journey from an original calling to ministry to the final victory of a successful ministry and relationship with God, with all the Godly steps needed to fill in the holes of any wishful missional leader. For myself, the chapter entitled A Missional Leader is a Person of Christlike Concern establishes itself well beyond the rest. It creates an atmosphere that the reader can call into question – motives, callings and purposes of vision – without making one feel overwhelmed or inadequate in their leadership skills. Instead, it allows the reader to make personal connections into the missional ideals of Nehemiah and Jesus in order to enhance the skills and hindsight with which they entered the chapter. The book, primarily, does a fantastic job at clearing up questions about the whole missional movement. Answering these questions that many leaders have about the whys and hows of a true missional church will only further understanding. For instance, I have used the chapter on communication for my camp staff to help them understand the importance of it in a leadership position within a missional driven ministry.
I would recommend this book to youth workers or anyone that is in a leadership position. Whether you are a cheerleader or not for the popularity of the term “missional,” the concepts and skills addressed in this book cannot be overlooked. Another thing that I enjoyed about this book was its abundance of Scripture references beyond the book of Nehemiah, especially when Dr. Page notes a concern that could arise in the area being covered and it is noted through Scriptural reference. Lastly, one chapter that I did find lacking comprehension was that discussing “time conflict.” I though that it was covered too quickly with not enough detail going into explaining both how to be an effective time manager as well as why it is important to have this asset. Overall, a great read that any leader (new or old) should pick up for their library.