Real Power

Dr. Arthur Rouner’s heads the Pilgrim Center which has a reconciliation ministry to African countries that have suffered genocide.  Dr. Rouner is a well known Congregational minister for over fifty years.  His last church was in The Colonial Church of Edina, Minnesota. He has published about twenty books over his career.  His latest book is titled “Spirit Leadership” published in 2006 by Iuniverse Inc.

Using himself and his experiences as a minister and church leader Dr. Rouner defines what a church leader should be.  One of his key points that he gently presses is that a Pastor can not minister out of his own resources though many in today’s churches are doing just that.  In one example he describes a hospital visit by a fictional Pastor who uses the latest counseling technique to help the patient deal with his painful and somewhat frightening situation.   After an hour of listening and asking proscribed questions with the appropriate “I hear what you are saying”, “I believe this is what your are saying” the Pastor leaves with a quick prayer at the end hoping that the patient is better equipped to deal with his lonely and challenging situation.

By contrast Dr. Rouner then describes the Pastor filled with and led by God’s Spirit who comes to the patient’s bedside ready and willing to hold a hand, and to pray a prayer empowered by the Holy Spirit that speaks to that person’s deepest needs and ministers to the person God’s healing power.  In this case the Pastor leaves in fifteen minutes assured that he has done all he could in his role as pastor.

Dr. Rouner makes it clear that this presence of the Holy Spirit is Pentecostal in nature and goes beyond the presence of the Spirit that we all received when we come to Christ.  This Spiritual anointing comes when we seek it specifically and it is given to empower a wide variety of ministries within the Body of Christ.

“Spirit Leadership” is a challenge to many pastor’s who’s theology has come to reject this special anointing of the Spirit for ministry.  Dr. Rouner’s warning along with a very graphic example is that when God’s Spirit is rejected then some other spirit will fill the void with devastating effects .

If you are looking to serve the church as a lay leader or as a formally ordained pastor I highly recommend this book.  Listen to this man who has walked the walk and talked the talk in the Spirit for much of His ministerial career.  He speaks out of a heart for the Lord and a knowledge of the power that is available to lead the Body of Christ.

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