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Paperback Mad Church Disease: Healing from Church Burnout Book

ISBN: 0991373537

ISBN13: 9780991373536

Mad Church Disease: Healing from Church Burnout

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Book Overview

Does serving in the church hurt your relationship with Christ? That question may have saved author Anne Marie Miller's life. She believes it could save yours, too.As the daughter of a pastor, Anne saw firsthand the struggles leaders face and the toll it takes on their families. She vowed her life in ministry would be different.Yet, years later, as a church leader, she was hospitalized because stress began wreaking havoc on her body. She had burned...

Customer Reviews

4 ratings

Every church leader should read this.

I recently finished up the Kindle version of Anne Jackson's new book, Mad Church Disease. First of all, let me reiterate that I love reading and taking notes using the Kindle. Completely changes how I engage a book. Secondly, this book in particular is one of those books that every person on staff in a ministry should read. If you aren't currently facing the "disease" of which Anne writes, you probably will. Here are some of the highlights from my reading: * "I had allowed spending time with God to be replaced by spending time doing things for God." * "The fear of letting people down, especially in spiritual matters, can often cause us to feel obligated or pressured into meeting unrealistic expectations, or worse, spending more time doing things for God instead of being what God wants us to be." * "If the leader is exhausted, then the people following that leader will feel exhausted." -Bill Hybels * "There are a lot of Christ-followers who haven't taken the time to figure out what their holy discontent is, and so they're doing a gradual slide into apathy and complacency--and that is unconscionable in a broken and lost world." -Bill Hybels * "My experience is that it's really easy to trash-talk churches or methods that aren't what we think they should be." * "There are no perfect churches to serve in, no perfect pastors to work for, and no perfect environments." * "I could have prayed to be healed from depression, but if I hadn't taken the necessary steps, I would have never come out of it." * "An unguarded strength can become your greatest weakness." -Wayne Cordeiro * "You are responsible both for the choices you've made in life and for seeking God's plan for your healing." * "You should design your ministry around your family values." -Craig Groeschel * "One of the most important words in your healing--'NO!' You may feel guilty for saying it. People may get angry at you for saying it. But you must say it!" * "The leaders who were the healthiest were the ones who never disrespected the people who hurt them." * "We believe lies that tell us that our worth is in our productivity." * "We cannot be dependent on ourselves and on God at the same time. When we consider the practice of rest unnecessary, we will also inevitably lose sight of the necessity of God." Aside from the great insights, Anne is obviously a gifted writer. I think you will enjoy and be challenged by this book.

what do cows and church people have in common?

What? Cows and church people have something in common? According to my friend Anne Jackson we do, and it isn't just how we eat or how we moo or get sledgehammered on the head when we go with the crowd too mindlessly. We also share a common risk of disease. Anne's new book Mad Church Disease is about the way we tend to keep secrets about our own weaknesses. I asked her about this: Me: Anne, from the first day I heard of your study on this, I have loved the name you chose for it. I'm curious to know what made you choose the name. What correlation do you see between Mad Church Disease and the more familiar Mad Cow Disease? Both seem to be lethal yet preventable, but are there other parallels you see? Anne: When the time came that I knew the book HAD to be written, it was shortly after a friend and mentor had confessed a long term affair. I was ANGRY. Too many leaders had been taken out and too many lives were left devastated. Initially, my first idea for a title was birthed out of that anger -- I wanted to call it Death by Ministry. I ran it by a few close friends and my husband and none of them were in love with that. It was too negative. I didn't care. I was still angry. I googled "Death by Ministry" (just to make sure there wasn't a book already titled that) and realized Mark Driscoll had an article with the same title. I emailed him to ask what he thought about me using that title for my book, and he said that he was fine with me doing whatever I thought was right. Yet I decided I couldn't use the title in good faith since Mark had already built some ideas around it. Shortly after this happened, I was watching a documentary on the BBC about Mad Cow Disease and as they listed four characteristics of the disease that somehow (and don't ask me how) made a direct parallel in my mind about burnout in churches. They are: 1. The disease lies dormant for a given amount of time, going unnoticed. It can be a period of months to a few years before the disease is found. (Burnout can also go unnoticed -- both by the one experiencing it and the people around that person. It's an accumulation of stress over time). 2. Mad cow disease is caused by a mutated protein that attaches itself to the cow's central nervous system, thus affecting the cow's brain and responses (hence the name). Essentially, it turns the cow's brain and spinal cord into a spongy-type matter. Slowly, the cow's mental and physical health begin to deteriorate. (Mad Church Disease also afflicts all areas of a person's health -- mental, physical, relational and spiritual. Even cows in the final stages of Mad Cow Disease isolate themselves from their herd. Sounds familiar doesn't it??) 3. Mad cow disease is transmitted by cows eating the suspect protein. Since cows are often fed the remains of other cattle (something yummy called meat-in-bone meal), it's easy for an entire herd to become infected at once if they share the same food source. (Burnout is terribly contagious! Have you ever

Mad Church Disease

First time authors like Anne Jackson are few and far in between. Her blog, is one of the top-ranked blogs for Christian leadership. In a recent list of the top 60 of those blogs, she is #18, and one of only three women on the list. She has an amazing heart for God's people and unity within his Church. As unique as she may be, she is not at all alone in the journey she is on. Her newly released book, Mad Church Disease: Overcoming the Burnout Epidemic, is both a refreshing confession and a hard look at the struggle of burnout, its symptoms, and the dangers it brings into the church and its leaders. This book isn't just for pastors. The symptoms of burnout affect everyone from the senior pastor to the worship team to the greeters at the door. Jackson starts the book by opening up and sharing her story in order to both introduce herself and to allow her story to be something with which the reader can relate. Anne is a pastor's daughter, and her family has been hurt by the church over and over again. When she was sixteen, she prayed a bold prayer, telling God that she would leave the church entirely, unless he gave her a way to bring unity back into it. Lucky for both her and us, after years of silence, He answered her prayer. Anne dives right into the issue of burnout, or as she puts it: "mad church disease." She shares the correlation between mad cow disease and its traits to the symptoms of burnout within the church and its leaders. Between attacking through hidden and internal methods or laying dormant until it is too late, gravity is quickly brought to the real dangers of ministry burnout. "Cows don't have much hope when they are infected with mad cow disease," she elaborates. "Even though the process can take years, they die. There's no vaccine. We're a bit more fortunate. Satan's sole purpose in life is to ruin us - but God's sole purpose in life is to redeem us. Cows don't get a second chance - but we are promised a second chance, and more." Through in-depth examination and reflection of "mad church disease," Anne guides the reader through the different ways that we are attacked. Our physical, mental, social, and spiritual health suffer when burnout is raging inside. At the end of each chapter, she provides a place for serious reflection on the risks of burnout and a second opinion in the form of an interview with an "expert in the field," such as Willow Creek's Bill Hybels. Thankfully, unlike most books on the dangers of ministry, there is much healing to be found within these pages. Between finding that you're not alone on the battlefield and the redemption that God has had for us all along, these words have the potential to cover the deepest wounds. Jackson devotes a large amount of the book to finding remedy for and preventing burnout and its attacks on our bodies, minds, relationships, and souls. Towards the end of the book, Anne dives into a pursuit of restoration, forgiveness, and living life to the full. I really don't have

Mad Church Disease is an absolute must read!

If I had unlimited resources I would hand this book to every single pastor I have ever met. I would give a copy to their wives or husbands, their children and their volunteers. I would put this book in the hand of anyone who has ever been in ministry both church and para church. I truly believe this book is that important. I am not famous or popular. Many far more influential and inspiring Christian Authors have written things about this book. However, I am guy just like many of you who have been involved in ministry over the years and I have experienced burnout. A few months ago I was introduce to Anne's blog and have been a fan ever since. Anne's writing style is what draws thousands to her blog. She is both honest and transparent without being proud or pretentious. Her honesty hits home with church leaders and church attendees a like. The world needs a fresh dose of really honest people. Anne is one of them. I think that is what makes her upcoming release Mad Church Disease so special. After finishing an advanced copy of Anne's book on a flight to Michigan from Las Vegas I jotted the following in back pages of the book . . . "I just finished reading the advanced copy of Anne's book. I don't even know where to begin. I don't know if I have ever read a book and written `ME' next to as many paragraphs as this one. I don't know what it is about my past, churches or my life but I know I have experienced burnout. There are so many parts of this book that are relevant to my life right now and in the past. I feel that many lay leaders, volunteers and pastors will be able to relate to both the subject and the author." "There are parts of this book that I read quickly because it strikes too deep at my heart and challenges me too much. Anne's honesty and writing style are so encouraging and engaging that it frustrates me. I am left with a pit in my stomach and a smile on my face. I don't want to take the hard steps necessary to better my life in ministry and in life. But I know that I need too. I know that God is on my side and he wants me to have an abundant life - as a result of this knowledge I have a smile on my face because I know that God is up to something very big." Jackson's first book is about burnout. A subject rarely talked about in ministry circles and hardly ever mentioned in staff meetings but one that affects us all. Anne's book tackles both the problem and the solution. The thing I love about Mad Church Disease is that it is a book that does not leave one hanging without a plan of what to do next. Jackson does a marvelous job of presenting the problem in a relevant way through her own personal experience. She then offers some great tools for evaluating where the reader falls on the scale of burnout or stress. Once the problems have been defined the only thing left to do is the hard work of how to change. Anne' spends the next five chapters doing just that. As a reader I am taken on an enjoyable ride where one highlighter is not su
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