Survive or Thrive, Six Relationships Every Pastor Needs by Jimmy Dodd

Jimmy Dodd is founder and president of PastorServe, an organization devoted to aiding pastors in their lives and ministries.  Survive or Thrive details how PastorServe attempts to fulfill its mission.  Dodd founded PastorServe in 1999  to “provide care, coaching and crisis support to pastors” (p. 29).  The present problem, as Dodd sees it, is that most pastors’ gifting exceeds their maturity, a point the author demonstrates in the first section of the book.  In general, Dodd views most pastors as a mess, hiding behind a professional façade and trying to never disclose their brokenness.  The following generalization, toward the end of part one of the book, expresses his sentiments. I know that the pastor is fragmented and weak.  He has a temper, is generally a slob, and does not have the respect of his staff.  Sadly, he is commonly disrespectful of his spouse and he secretly abhors poetry.  And to…

The Pastor as Public Theologian, Reclaiming a Lost Vision by Kevin J. Vanhoozer and Owen Strachan

The Pastor as Public Theologian is the latest in several recent books calling pastors back to their role as theologians.  This one, interestingly, is written by two academians, neither of whom is a pastor: Kevin Vanhoozer, Research Professor of Systematic Theology at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, and Owen Strachan, Professor of Christian Theology and Church History at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and Boyce College.  Perhaps for this reason they wisely asked twelve pastors to make contributions to the book, each providing a short essay on a variety of pastoral related subjects. The burden of the book is that “theology is in exile and, as a result, the knowledge of God is in ecclesial eclipse” (loc. 168).  The solution is for pastors, churches and seminaries to reclaim a lost vision for the pastor ministering as theologian (loc. 174-186).  The claim that something is lost implies that something once existed.  To that…

Senders: How Your Church Can Identify, Train and Deploy Missionaries by Paul Seger

Paul Seger is the Director of Biblical Ministries Worldwide, a conservative mission agency with hundreds of missionaries serving throughout the world. Prior to taking the helm at BMW Paul was a missionary in South Africa for 17 years and grew up as a missionary kid in Nigeria. With this background Seger is well-equipped to offer insight into sending missionaries in the 21st century. Seger discusses to some extent the qualifications and job description of missionaries (pp. 89-93, 103-104), although it should be noted that he targets missionaries on the frontlines of church planting and discipleship with little attention given to support missionaries. Presumably, missionaries who work in maintenance, IT, construction, etc. would not require the same skills as those starting churches. Seger also clarifies that those devoted to social justice issues are not missionaries in the biblical sense, even though they are engaged in meaningful work, because they are not…

The Pastor as Scholar and The Scholar as Pastor, Reflections on Life and Ministry by John Piper and D. A. Carson

More attention is being given of late to the value of theology and scholarship in the life of the pastor. Much of this apparently stemmed from a 2009 gathering by the same name as this book, and by the same men, at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, coming on the heels of the Gospel Coalition National Conference (p. 15). This meeting, along with the Society for the Advancement of Ecclesial Theology, has fueled renewed interest in the pastor-theologian concept that was far more common in the past. This little book contributes to the conversation. The two authors have had long and successful ministries. Both were born in 1946 and both received their doctorates from liberal European schools: Piper (university of Munich), Carson (Cambridge). Carson began his ministry as a pastor and shifted to the academy, while Piper originally was a Bible college professor who became a pastor. Both have spent their…

The Pastor Theologian, Resurrecting an Ancient Vision by Gerald Hiestand and Todd Wilson

There was a time, as Hiestand and Wilson document, when local pastors led the church theologically. They preached doctrinally solid sermons, wrote theological works and interacted with the scholarship of their day. But all that began to change with the rise of the university prior to the Reformation (p. 33). Ultimately the role of theological study and development shifted to the academy and to professors who devoted themselves to scholarly endeavors. Pastors gave ground to the seminary and professional theologians and contented themselves with the more practical details of church life. In many cases pastors stopped attending to theology altogether, except for the basics. As a result, in recent days, it has become rare to cite a pastor who devotes much of his attention to the study and teaching of theology. Almost nonexistent is the pastor who is engaged in current theological debate with academic scholars or who actually writes…

A Pastor Prays for His People by Wendell C. Hawley

When Kent Hughes retired as pastor of College Church in Wheaton, Illinois, Wendell Hawley was asked to write and deliver the pastoral prayer each Sunday morning. This book is a collection of 73 of those prayers. There is one for every Sunday of the year plus others for special occasions. Many of those reading A Pastor Prays use extemporaneous prayers almost exclusively, and that by conviction. Nevertheless, reading Hawley’s prayers is both uplifting and educational. The prayers might be read at local churches but, if not, they serve as a wonderful model of worshipful, theological and practical public praying. Sharp distinctions between prayers appropriate for the Old Testament and the church age are sometimes lacking (such as frequent mentions of the church being God’s house), and there are a few Scriptures taken out of context. But the majority of the content is biblically sound and edifying.  (Tyndale House: Carol Stream,…

Shattered Shepherds Finding Hope in the Midst of Ministry Disaster by Steve Swartz

Pastor Swartz has written a helpful resource to offer hope to pastors who have faced (or are facing) difficult times, even disasters, in their ministries. He writes to help wounded pastors gain traction with the hope that they will stay on the battlefield as shepherds of the local church. It is obvious that Swartz is writing as one who has been in the furnace himself, but autobiographical illistrations are few. Swartz breaks his little book into two clear parts: what the struggling pastor must stop doing and what he must start doing. Five practical things the hurting pastor must stop doing are highlighted. He must: stop blaming others, defending himself, worrying constantly, succumbing to anger, and viewing himself as a hero. In each of the categories Swartz provides practical and biblical insights and directives. In part two Swartz directs his readers to genuinely trust the sovereignty of God, accept the…

The Trellis and the Vine, The Ministry Mind-Shift That Changes Everything, by Colin Marshall and Tony Payne (Australia: St Matthias Press, 2009) 202 pp., paper $9.99

The Trellis and the Vine is an excellent resource, not only concerning the importance of concentrated discipleship efforts in the church but also for ideas, methods and the practical “how to” in developing disciples. The authors see the church’s mission as “a commission that makes disciple-making the normal agenda and priority of every church and every Christian disciple” (p. 13). The thesis of the book could be stated this way: We will be arguing that structures don’t grow ministry any more than trellises grow vines, and that most churches need to make a conscious shift—away from erecting and maintaining structures, and towards growing people who are disciple-making disciples of Christ (p. 17). The authors further flesh their thesis out in comments such as these: The first is that the growth of the gospel happens in the lives of people, not in the structures of my church. Or to put it…

Finding the Balance in World Missions, by Steven E. Ray (Steven Ray: 2012) 130 pp., paper $14.95

Steven Ray, founder and director of Messiah Missions, seeks to offer a biblical balance to the ever changing world of missions. I believe in many ways he succeeds. He first, and rightly, deals with evangelism, offering clear insights and analysis of various evangelistic approaches (pp. 13-26). He shows the dangers of syncretism (combining Christianity with other religions) which is becoming more acceptable in evangelism today (pp. 37-42). And Ray deals extremely well with the social gospel and compassion ministries (pp. 43-68), showing that social concern should be a natural fruit of the gospel but it is not the gospel (p. 46). The author also gives a valuable understanding of and need for the indigenous church (pp. 109-122). In all these areas, I believe Ray offers much that needs to be contemplated and digested by all interested in missions—home and abroad. Unfortunately, I believe he stumbles in some matters. He takes…

Surviving Shattered Dreams, a Story of Hope after Despair by Yvonne Partyka and Joanne Klinger, (Enumclaw, WA: WinePress Publishing: 2009), 133 pp., paper $16.95

Many who enter pastoral ministry do so with romantic and idealistic dreams that defy reality. The pressure of ministry can lead to tragic ends if responded to incorrectly. Both Partyka and Klinger experienced the shattered dreams as wives of pastors who gave into temptations which ultimately led to divorce. Along the way these men were unfaithful, abused their daughters and yet continued the façade of godly pastors and perfect home lives until all came crashing down. Beside telling two interesting if terribly sad stories, Surviving Shattered Dreams serves notice that all is not as it seems in the family life of clergy. Good marriages do not just happen because people are in the ministry. In fact, the added expectations, temptations and tensions faced by ministers of the gospel make good marriages and family life all that more difficult. Young couples entering ministry should be made aware of this and these…

Well-Driven Nails, the Power of Finding Your Own Voice, by Byron Forrest Yawn (Greenville, SC: Ambassador International, 2010) 124 pp., cloth $16.99

Byron Yawn, pastor of Community Bible Church in Nashville, TN, wrote this little volume to deal with a common struggle for all pastors—delivery (p. 13). Believing that the root problem for most preachers lies in the areas of clarity, simplicity and passion or a combination of all three, Yawn sets out not only to discuss these three obstacles to great preaching, but to provide examples of those who have overcome them and who excel in delivery. Yet Yawn rightly warns that his readers should not attempt to become clones of great preachers. We can learn much from them, but we must find our own voice, that is be ourselves (pp. 28, 37-39). The author selects John MacArthur as his example of clarity. Here is a man who studies at the level of a scholar and communicates at the level of a friend (p. 56). For simplicity Yawn chooses R. C.…

Short-Term Mission, An Ethnography of Christian Travel Narrative and Experience,by Brian M. Howell (Downer Grove: IVP Academic: 2012) 256 pp. paper, $12.00

Short-term missions (STM) is all the rage in Christian, and even secular, environments. The author suggests that over two million Americans per year, many of those teens, take a STM trip, with over 50 percent of Christian college and seminary students having gone on such trips (p. 27). While STM trips can be longer most are “designed to fit into the windows of time North Americans (particularly U.S. Americans) have for vacation travel…typically…a maximum of two weeks” (p. 47). Such trips involve construction projects, medical aid, temporary relief of poverty, work in orphanages, evangelism and discipleship, or a combination of these elements (p. 38). Given the popularity of STM there has been relatively little research and analysis on its effectiveness and value (p. 9). Howell seeks to address this void with this volume. Howell writes from the perspective of a trained anthropologist (he is a professor of anthropology at Wheaton…

Dangerous Calling, Confronting the Unique Challenges of Pastoral Ministry, by Paul David Tripp (Wheaton: Crossway, 2012), 227 pp., Hardcover $22.99)

Paul Tripp, who has ministered as a pastor, seminary professor, counselor, conference speaker and author, is the president of Paul Tripp Ministries and executive director of the Center for Pastoral Life and Care in Fort Worth, Texas. With this wide range and depth of ministry as a backdrop, Tripp is certainly one who would understand well the dangers of the pastorate. Having talked with thousands of pastors throughout the world, as well as examining his own experience, Tripp knows how easy it is to fall into various traps that can greatly diminish, or even destroy, the servant of God. He has written Dangerous Calling to warn about and evaluate those traps and prescribe a biblical solution. He calls this work a diagnostic book “written to help you take an honest look at yourself in the heart- and life-exposing mirror of the Word of God” (p. 11). More specifically Tripp says…

Strength for His People, a Ministry for Families of the Mentally Ill, by Steven Waterhouse (Amarillo: Westcliff Press, 1994, 2002) 121 pp., paper, free upon request of the publisher

Pastor Steven Waterhouse writes this book dealing with mental illness, principally schizophrenia, from the backdrop of his own experience. His younger brother Mark has been diagnosed with schizophrenia resulting in many years of hospitalization and other supported housing. Steven and his brother grew up in an excellent church but found that their congregation, like many others, was uninformed and ill-equipped to minister to their family in helpful ways. Waterhouse believes the church should be the ultimate support group (p. 11) and writes this book to aid God’s people in this ministry as well as provide insight to believers and their families who face schizophrenia. Concerning psychology, Waterhouse sees it neither as voodoo nor virtue, but as having limited value (pp. 11, 13). It is only the Word of God that is sufficient, but medical research into mental illness is necessary (p. 3). Waterhouse makes a strong case for schizophrenia being…

The Jesus You Can’t Ignore by John MacArthur (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 2008) pp. 234 plus xxxvii, hardcover $16.00

In MacArthur’s preparation for writing his book Truth War he found a common theme throughout much of his reading: “That if Christians want to reach unbelieving people in a postmodern culture, we need to be less militant, less aggressive, less preachy and less sure of our own convictions” (p. ix).  MacArthur determined as a result to write this volume to show that Jesus’ approach was just the opposite.  This is a book that needed to be written, but MacArthur is fighting an uphill battle.  The mood of the moment is indeed as he described.  Even those with excellent biblical discernment are hesitant to speak out or offer honest critique in fear of being accused of being negative or mean-spirited.  We are often told that even serious evaluation is received as militant and rejected by postmodern young people.  Yet, interestingly enough, these very young people, and their leaders, very openly and…

Broken Down House: Live Productively in a World Gone Bad by Paul David Tripp

Paul David Tripp.  Broken-Down House: Living Productively in a World Gone Bad.  Wapwallopen, Penn.: Shepherd Press, 2009.  223 pp.  $12.99 (paperback). Ministry can be a very frustrating endeavor, especially when it is unclear where the ministry is heading.  In one of his latest books, Paul David Tripp makes the case that all Biblical ministry is headed towards the restoration of fallen sinners and maybe even more than that.  In his own words, Sin has ravaged the beautiful house that God created.  This world bears only the faintest resemblance to what it was built to be.  It sits slumped, disheveled, in pain, groaning for the restoration that can only be accomplished by the hands of him who built it in the first place.  The Bible clearly tells us that the divine Builder cannot and will not leave his house in its present pitiful condition.  He has instituted a plan of restoration,…

Practical Aspects of Pastoral Theology, General Editor Christopher Cone

This volume, authored by 17 different individuals, is exactly what it claims to be, a guide based on Scripture for the practical aspects of pastoral life and ministry.  Nineteen topics are addressed, from what a pastor is to priorities in the ministry to the role of the pastor’s wife to church discipline to missions to the dangers of pornography.  While the writing is a bit uneven and there exists some overlap, expected in multi-authored works, most chapters are quite helpful.  Pastors and church leaders will find themselves returning to specific chapters which speak to their need of the moment. The authors all hold to a high view of Scripture which shape both their theology and practical application.  Arnold Fruchtenbaum’s chapter, “Israelology and the Pastoral Role,” offered the most controversial claims.  Not all would agree that, even today when presenting the gospel in a new area, it must first be given…

Strengthening the Soul of Your Leadership by Ruth Haley Barton

Barton is a well-known contemplative church leader who has served on the staff at Willow Creek Community Church and is now president of her own organization, The Transforming Center.  The Transforming Center attempts to “shape and care for the souls of clergy” mainly through teaching them spiritual disciplines (p. 229).  This particular book is published by InterVarsity Press’s formatio division which is dedicated to spiritual formation through following the “rich tradition” of the spiritual disciplines as formulated and propagated by Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox monks, nuns and the “desert fathers.” With this background, it is not difficult to imagine where Strengthening the Soul is headed, even before opening the book.  Barton states the thesis as, “To guide you into encounters with God in the places where you need it most in the context of your leadership” (p. 17).  While this is a rather benign thesis, and while Barton offers…

Growing Souls, Experiments in Contemplative Youth Ministry by Mark Yaconelli

  Mark Yaconelli, in conjunction with San Francisco Theological Seminary and with the financial support of the Lilly Endowment, began in 1997 The Youth Ministry and Spirituality Project for the purpose of developing, field testing and promoting a mystical/contemplative approach to youth ministry. That the aims of the project have been successful is evident in Yaconelli’s conclusion: Ten years ago you would’ve been hard pressed to find a labyrinth or even a candle in a youth room…Taizé music, lectio divina, and spiritual direction were all viewed with suspicion and regarded as a return to ancient pagan practices. We’ve come a long way, baby. Now youth ministry conferences and catalogs offer labyrinth kits, scented prayer candles, and journals with orthodox icons on the cover and quotes from [mystical] classics (pp 278-279). Exactly what is this contemplative approach to the Christian life? It is hard to say, for as Roman Catholic monk…

Contemplative Youth Ministry by Mark Yaconelli

Yaconelli has drunk deeply from the cesspool of Roman Catholic mysticism. Unfortunately, he has only sipped at the well of Scripture. What can I say? This book, written by the son of Youth Specialties founder Mike Yaconelli, is a handbook for mysticism (with traces of the emerging church) adapted for youth ministry. It is virtually devoid of biblical passages but absolutely full of references to mystics and their mystical teachings and practices. Every so often Yaconelli ventures into Scripture, but almost always with disastrous consequences. It amazes me how someone who is devoted to “professional ministry” is capable of fumbling every passage of Scripture he handles. It is obvious that Yaconelli has no concept of hermeneutics or true understanding of God’s Word, but he is adept at all things mystical. Avoid like the plague.

Words on Target by Sue Nichols

Words on Target is an excellent little work designed for all who wish to communicate more effectively with twentieth-century Americans. In the first chapter the author reminds us that we are not speaking and writing to past generations who perhaps had greater attention spans and abilities to listen. We are communicating the Christian message in a world of increasing competition. Our audience is not trained to wade through complex speech and difficult verbiage. Their training has come at the hands of ABC, slick magazines and mindless paperbacks. How are we to compete? With economy, energy and subtlety. Nichols goes on to give sound advice, helpful suggestions, and sane counsel. The information given will be best understood and applied by seasoned communicators who are trying to tune up, rather than the novice, but would be helpful to anyone. This little volume is worth several readings.

The Supremacy of God in Preaching by John Piper

Piper has written an excellent inspirational book on the subject of preaching. This is not a book on the techniques or mechanics of preaching; rather it could be best described as an encouragement for preachers to focus their messages on the greatness of God. I found the volume delightful and plan to read it often. The Supremacy of God in Preaching is divided into two sections. The first part handles with skill the question of why God should be supreme in preaching. Fashionable preaching today focuses on tips and techniques, stories and “practical themes.” Piper challenges this fad and urges the preacher to give their hearers God in all of His glory. The author suggests that people are starving for God (whether they know it or not) and someone, at least once a week, “needs to lift up his voice and magnify the supremacy of God” (p.11). The second half…

The Puritan Pulpit: Thomas Watson by Edited by Don Kistler

This contribution to The Puritan Pulpit series, published by Soli Deo Gloria, is a good sampler of Puritan sermons. Thomas Watson, one of the best known and most beloved of the English Puritan “devines,” lived from 1620 to 1686 during a time of great political and ecclesiastical turmoil. He endured imprisonment and other hardships because of his convictions, but his enthusiasm for the preaching of the Word was never dampened. This book contains ten sermons that Watson preached. They are typical of Puritan sermons: long, saturated with Scripture, God-centered, beginning with exegesis and concluding with application. They are also more topical than expositional in nature. By that I mean Watson would normally structure a sermon around a single verse of Scripture, then travel all over the Bible exhausting the main thought of that verse. On the positive side, the Puritan style of preaching exposed the listeners to massive amounts of…

The Majesty of God in the Old Testament by Walter C. Kaiser, Jr.

This fine little book is, as its subtitle suggests, “a guide for preaching and teaching.” While the reader will gain much information concerning the majesty of God, and the book is valuable for that alone, its real purpose is to instruct teachers in the best homiletical approach to the Old Testament. In this regard, Kaiser promotes the “big idea” method, in which the preacher/teacher discovers from the text the central theme and then arranges his message around that theme. I concur with Kaiser that this is the best homiletical methodology. As a matter of fact, if I were to teach a course on how to preach the Old Testament I would make The Majesty of God required reading. Kaiser’s introduction alone is worth the price of the book. Here he gently rejects the common view that all biblical texts focus on Christ and thus “all preaching is really about getting…

Rediscovering Pastoral Ministry by John MacArthur and the Master’s Seminary Faculty

This is a relatively fine book geared toward, as the title would indicate, the pastor and his ministry. Many excellent concepts and scriptural instructions are given that would surely enhance the ministry of any pastor. I would recommend the reading of this four hundred-page book to both novice and veteran pastors, but not without some cautions and concerns. I will devote the rest of this review to those concerns with the reader keeping in mind that my overall endorsement is positive. First there is the problem that usually accompanies any volume with multiple authors – an unevenness in both the writing and the content. Twelve different men contributed to Rediscovering Pastoral Ministry , and I would suspect that many of them would not agree with some of the things their co-authors wrote. There is also the problem of overlap as the authors often take up the same subjects in their…

Preaching with Passion by Alex Montoya

This little book on preaching is a mixed bag. On the one hand the author is a solid man of God who loves to preach, and to preach with passion. He takes the art of preaching seriously, offering many practical helps and guidelines to enhance the preaching of his readers. Without question, in my opinion, his chapter on preaching with compassion is the high water mark of the book. The best preachers are not just wordsmiths; they are men who speak for God from broken hearts. They preach to the sinner, the wounded, the dying, the lost and the hurting. And the minute they forget this fact a great measure of power is lost from their sermons. I have personally known some wonderful preachers that had no real heart and concern for their people – they just loved to preach. Mercifully such men usually don’t last long in the ministry.…

O Worship the King by Joni Eareckson Tada, John MacArthur, Robert & Bobbie Wolgemuth

This team of authors has provided us with an inspirational volume focused on twelve excellent hymns of the faith. Hymns selected include “A Mighty Fortress Is Our God,” “It Is Well With My Soul,” “O Worship The King” and “Be Thou My Vision.” Each hymn is examined doctrinally by MacArthur, with the circumstances behind the writing of each hymn detailed by the Wolgemuths. Joni provides an experience in which each hymn has influenced her life. Put it all together and we have a book that will encourage and bless all who love the hymns and the truths they proclaim. As an added bonus the book comes with a CD on which Tada and MacArthur sing each hymn. At least that’s what I’ve been told—the person who gave me my copy apparently snitched the CD. O Worship the King would make an excellent gift. It could also supply the backgrounds of…

Feed My Sheep, a Passionate Plea for Preaching by Edited by Don Kistier

Feed My Sheep is a compilation of articles written by eleven of the best preachers of modern times: e.g. John MacArthur, John Piper, and Sinclair Ferguson. Topics covered include: expository preaching, the foolishness of preaching, preaching to the mind, preaching to the heart and preaching with authority. As with any book written by a number of authors, this one is uneven in quality. In my opinion, the chapters vary from good to mediocre, but none are outstanding. The book as a whole is interesting and valuable, and its emphasis on biblical preaching is sorely needed. However, Feed My Sheep was just not that inspirational, nor instructional. The reader would be better off turning to MacArthur’s and Haddon Robinson’s books for instruction, and John Piper’s and Warren Wiersbe’s for inspiration.

Famine in the Land by Steven J. Lawson

While many in evangelicalism are calling for the demise of the sermon, and many others have forgotten what a biblical sermon is to be, others are making a passionate plea for a return to exposition of the Scriptures. Steven Lawson is one of those, opening Famine in the Land with a quote from D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, “The most urgent need in the Christian Church today is true preaching; and as it is the greatest and most urgent need in the Church, it is the greatest need of the world also.” Lawson is serious about preaching. What follows Lloyd-Jones’ quote is biblical support for preaching, numerous examples of great preaching and a treasure chest of quotes and illustrations designed to encourage preaching. While there is much illumination in Famine in the Land, its purpose is more in line with inspiration. Lawson desperately wants his readers to understand that true doctrinal, expositional…

Family-Based Youth Ministry by Mark DeVries

This is one of the most refreshing books that I have read in years on the subject of ministering to young people in the context of the local church. DeVries’ thesis is that the most successful youth programs in the long run are not those that offer endless entertainment and stimulation, but those that involve the young people in the overall life of the church, and most importantly, with dedicated Christian adults. There is in Family-Based the usual smattering of psychological jargon and concepts – these must be filtered out. But the overall concept of the book is well worth pondering and implementing.

Comforting the Bereaved by Warren W. Wiersbe and David W. Wiersbe

In this little volume the Wiersbes have provided pastors with a most wonderful, practical and useful guide for helping those facing the death of loved ones. From the funeral service, to the funeral sermon, to encouraging the grieving, Comforting the Bereaved deals insightfully with all of these issues and more. This is not a book to be read and placed on a shelf. Rather it should serve as a constant resource, often consulted, and its advice pondered. Even with all the valuable information contained in this book there is one negative – the Wiersbes sprinkle purely psychological advice throughout. For those who can filter out this unfortunate information, no harm will be done. For those who can’t, the book could take them in some misguided directions. My counsel is: ignore their pop-psychology and zero in on their biblical and practical instruction and you will be greatly helped.

Come Alive with Illustrations by Leslie B. Flynn

Illustrations are an important, and too often neglected, component of Bible teaching and preaching. Illustrations serve to shed light on the Scriptures, explain difficult concepts and open the door to application. Therefore books like Flynn’s, which teach us how to find, use and file illustrations, are valuable. The first half of the book is particularly useful for those who need to be encouraged and instructed concerning the above-mentioned aspects of illustrations. The second half of the book provides numerous illustrations categorized by various subjects. Unfortunately, many of Flynn’s examples are tired, old and unverified stories and anecdotes of questionable value. As a matter of fact, so dated were many of his stories that I checked the copyright date (1988) at least twice, thinking that surely this book is at least 50 years old. My evaluation is that the first part of Come Alive with Illustrations is helpful if not great.…