by Derwin L. Gray
Next Leadership Network, 2015.
—Reviewed by Dr. Eva I. Shaw-Taylor, executive director, Global Organization for Women & Youth (GOWY) & Global Institute for Tradition & Culture (GLITRAC).
In the twenty-first century in the United States of America, Christ’s Church is in a crisis, whether the Church realizes it or not! The United States of America is representative of the world in that, I would dare to say, almost every country is represented. Due to globalization, diversity has become one of the important factors addressed in this powerful book by Derwin Gray.
Churches in the U.S. are highly segregated—only 13.7% in America are multiethnic. In The High Definition Leader, Gray lays out what church leaders need to do to be reflective of the Church that Jesus envisions. The dynamism of this book lies in the way Gray has been able to use his life as a testimonial of the way the Church in the twenty-first century should look.
What makes this book exceptional is the fact that it can be used as an instructional book for leadership not only in the church, but for all industries. Diversity is all around us and the way Gray systematically lays out steps that a High Definition Leader has to take is inspiring and informative. The questions at the end of every chapter stimulate discussion and sometimes self-examination. It will help and guide up-and-coming leaders in society.
As a melting pot in the world, Gray is urging church leaders in the United States to reexamine themselves and their churches to see if they are reflective of the kind of Church for which Jesus advocated. Gray has a way with words which makes you want to read every chapter. Using current and descriptive words, he gives a clear picture of what he is referring to.
According to Gray, church leaders must shift from “Let’s help the poor” to “Let’s be among the poor and do life with the poor.” He defines a High Definition Leader as
a leader who is so passionate about the glory of God being revealed through the local church that he or she is willing to learn how to be a cross-cultural, gospel-of-grace preaching, organizational-strategizing, leader-developing disciple of people who partners with the Lord Jesus in building local churches that reflects the future of the church in the present. (p.17)
This is a must-read, especially for seminaries and universities grooming our leaders. Unfortunately, a book will only have an impact if the audience it is directed at is willing to read and make the necessary changes.
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EMQ, Vol. 52, No. 4. Copyright © 2016 Billy Graham Center for Evangelism. All rights reserved. Not to be reproduced or copied in any form without written permission from EMQ editors.