Resources for Leader Development

We believe that God has given you a capacity for influence. And in the Kingdom, there are all different kinds of ways to serve and lead others. Not all leadership is hierarchical. In fact, one of the most significant signs of leadership is relational. Which is why Group Leaders come in all different forms. We want to invest in your leadership development in a variety of ways. Not only as a small group leader but also in all the aspects of influence and leadership.

Below are resources across various mediums (books, podcasts, videos) sourced from various sectors of leadership development. Some are included in both Group Study Resource Guide and here. While there are so many incredible resources, we have narrowed this list down for a specific reasons. However, if there is a resource that you have found to be life-impacting, please feel free to send an email to our Group Life Pastors Tim Ghali and Rachel Keeler ( & ).  

Growing as a leader is one of many points of faithfulness and may the Lord work in you and through you as you develop your leadership and serve others.

Leadership Books and Videos

Resource on Reflective Structured Dialogue from Essential Partners (as described in the Groups Training at Relaunch Vision Gathering 2021)

6 Tips for a Great Small Group

Equip small group leaders with practical guidance on creating friendly, efficient, relational group experience. In six short lessons, Bill Search shares simple, proven leadership skills that will help groups stay on task, remain inviting to newcomers, study the Bible well, and foster relationships. Available here.


Leadership University with Dr. Henry Cloud 

LeadU is a best-in-class leadership training platform used by individuals, teams and companies to achieve higher levels of success, both individually and for their corporations. Based on the 12 most important leadership skills any of us can develop, LeadU brings together entertaining content, actionable takeaways and the latest instructional design to give you the tools you need to address the challenges you face as a leader.

It is crucial that you download the free resources that we have provided to work through this material. The written materials will prompt you to watch each video as it fits within the overall structure of this course.”

Each topic has about 5-7 short videos and there are free downloadable worksheets to go along. I value Henry Cloud’s take on influence and relationships and have found these videos to be helpful on numerous fronts. Available here.


IF Gathering 2019: Lead

You are a leader with an important calling: to make disciples. Maybe you know that clearly, or perhaps you are just starting to believe that. Join the women of IF:Lead to recapture the joy of making disciples in everyday circumstances.

The IF:Lead is an annual gathering specifically created to pour into leaders who are creating environments for discipleship in their hometowns. For more information, check out the website here.

Rhythms of Renewal: Trading Stress and Anxiety for a Life of Peace and Purpose by Rebekah Lyons 

Daily struggles with anxiety and stress make it difficult to receive God's peace. Rhythms of Renewal will help you trade your anxiety for the vibrant life you were meant to live through four profound rhythms: rest, restore, connect, and create. With encouraging stories and practical steps, Rebekah Lyons will help you begin an intentional, lifelong journey toward sustained emotional, relational, and spiritual health.

Ready to Rise - Jo Saxton

Ready to Rise tackles the real-life issues—from harassment and sexism to self-doubt and loneliness—that can discourage and derail women from leading in the areas God has called them to. With insights from her own journey and powerful biblical examples, Jo offers practical advice to empower and equip women to transform their communities.
If you’ve ever longed to uncover your true potential, own your voice, and boldly advance God’s goodness in the world, now is the time to start. Get ready to rise!

Reflections on Christian Leadership - Henry Nouwen 

For a society that measures successful leadership in terms of the effectiveness of the individual, Father Nouwen offers a counter definition that is witnessed by a "communal and mutual experience." For Nouwen, leadership cannot function apart from the community. His wisdom is grounded in the foundation that we are a people "called." This beautiful guide to Christian Leadership is the rich fruit of Henri Nouwen's own journey as one of the most influential spiritual leaders of the 20th century. Available here.

Leadership Resources on Anti-Racism/Racial Justice

Be the Bridge Podcast with Latasha Morrison - That Sounds Fun Network.

Latasha Morrison is a best-selling and award winning author, bridge-builder, reconciler, and a compelling voice in the fight for racial justice. This podcast is another step is cultivating conversations that will hopefully lead to real change.

Trouble I’ve Seen- Changing the Way the Church Views Racism - Drew Hart 

What if racial reconciliation doesn't look like what you expected? The high-profile killings of young black men and women by white police officers, and the protests and violence that ensued, have convinced many white Christians to reexamine their intuitions when it comes to race and justice. In this provocative book, theologian and blogger Drew G. I. Hart places police brutality, mass incarceration, anti-black stereotypes, poverty, and everyday acts of racism within the larger framework of white supremacy. He argues that white Christians have repeatedly gotten it wrong about race because dominant culture and white privilege have so thoroughly shaped their assumptions. He also challenges black Christians about neglecting the most vulnerable in their own communities. Leading readers toward Jesus, Hart offers concrete practices for churches that seek solidarity with the oppressed and are committed to racial justice. What if all Christians listened to the stories of those on the racialized margins? How might the church be changed by the trouble they’ve seen?

Free downloadable study guide available here.

Leadership Podcasts

Strengthening the Soul of Your Leadership with Ruth Haley Barton

100 episodes available here

Welcome to Strengthening the Soul of Your Leadership podcast with Ruth Haley Barton. In each 30-minute episode you will discover how forging and maintaining a life-giving connection with God in the midst of leading is the best thing you bring to leadership! Visit for additional resources for pastors, Christian leaders, and the congregations and organizations they serve.

Resilient Leaders Podcast

available here

The Resilient Leaders Podcast offers a variety of topics, perspectives, questions, and tools to help leaders navigate the new reality by growing in resilience. In each episode, J.R. Briggs addresses pressing issues, and offers practical next steps on how to lead with resilience.

We’ll release two brief episodes (8-12 minutes each) every Tuesday and Friday.

Lean in, learn, and explore what it means to be resilient. Because in the new reality resilience is not just a good idea; it’s required.

Lead Stories - Tales of Leadership and Life     

282 episodes available here

Jo Saxton and Pastor Steph O'Brien are both leaders in Minneapolis. Jo is an author and speaker who has opportunities to teach around the world in various contexts. She is passionate about empowering women to realize their potential and purpose. 

Steph is a church planter and pastor of a church plant in the city. She coaches leaders and pastors around the country and is a professor at Bethel University. Passionate about investing in the next generation, Steph, blogs and speaks in order to equip people to live their every day life on mission for the Kingdom of God. 

In this podcast they share stories from their lives and what they've learned. Their hope is that this show will encourage, challenge and share tools with leaders and those who desire to live on mission for the Kingdom of God!

Emotionally Healthy Leader Podcast

Episodes available here.

Many church leaders today feel overwhelmed, exhausted, and frustrated that their churches don’t seem to be making mature disciples. The Emotionally Healthy Leader Podcast explores the paradigms and practices leaders need to transform their church culture and multiply deeply changed disciples.

Advent 2020 Resources

Christianity Today’s Advent Digital Daily Devotional “A Living Hope”

Consider committing as a group to reading this devotional separately and then for your time of study, highlight one day’s reading that stirred you the most. This is something you can do in step with each other, though you may only have a few group meetings. Christianity Today has a beautiful digital resource featuring brilliant writers from various multi-cultural backgrounds that you can preview here. Find link here.

Video Series The Greatest Gift with Ann Voskamp

What was special about this one is that Ann really helps you slow down in and sink in to the peace and serenity of expectation. The videos are beautifully shot and Ann’s teaching content is truly inspiring. It’s a 4 part series with each video ranging between 17-19 minutes. Although we don’t typically recommend that length, perhaps show one or two videos for the month, maybe Videos 1 and 4. Remember you don’t have to complete an entire series to grow. You just need to spend time and energy working through Biblically-rooted Christian content and learn and apply it. Link to the series here.

Hidden Christmas by Tim Keller

This small 130 page book contains a lot of beautiful wisdom on the profound birth of our Savior. For those that want to dig deeper, this is a great resource for you. Though there is no accompanying video curriculum or resource guide, experienced leaders will have much content to draw from to create a lesson for the gathering. Find it here.

Advent 2021 Resources

Advent - Derwin Gray

Why We’re Recommending It:

Former NFL athlete, now pastor, Derwin Gray has created excellent content. In this Advent series, he takes a step back and wonders aloud, "Who exactly is Jesus? What kind of God would come to earth as a human?" As Christmas approaches, the season of Advent offers us a chance to reflect on our savior, his purpose, and the surprising ways he invited people near to him.

This is a five-session study with each session running between 9-15 minutes leaving plenty of time for discussion. This study also includes a free discussion study guide.

Advent of a Savior - Cindy Bunch

Advent of the Savior, LifeGuide Topical Bible Studies: Cindy Bunch: 9780830831364 -

Why We’re Recommending It:

This is a 6 week study guide designed to help groups and individuals to prepare for Christmas. This resource features 6 different angles from which to view the birth of Christ are covered—the perspective of his parents, his aunt and uncle, shepherds doing a day's work, a far-off Magi and nearby despots—even the perspective of the prophets who preceded him by centuries. Leader's notes are included.

Advent - J. D. Greear

Why We’re Recommending It:

The Christmas story, or Advent, is more than a sentimental myth or a quiet manger scene we use to decorate our living rooms. The Christmas story is the good news of God entering into our darkness. Join J.D. Greear in this four-session series as he takes a deeper look at Jesus as Emmanuel, our Wonderful Counselor, the Everlasting Father, and the great I Am. When you know Jesus, you will realize Christmas is more than a nice story—the arrival of Jesus changes everything.

This is a 4 session series with each video running under 12 minutes. It includes a free study guide for discussion as well as a family guide.

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