Judson Press best-seller updated, expanded for 20th anniversary

VALLEY FORGE, PA (ABNS 1/21/21)—Celebrating its 20th anniversary, Judson Press’ best-seller “Rest in the Storm: Self-Care Strategies for Clergy and Other Caregivers” by Kirk Byron Jones, Ph.D., D.Min., M.Phil., M.Div., has been updated and expanded.

The title denotes that turbulence and troubles are natural occurrences in the life of clergy and caregivers. What are practical and innovative resources available to assist caregivers in resting during stormy times? Jones provides unexpected and keen insights that challenge the caregivers’ character and processes when giving care to others, but not to themselves. He presents familiar biblical characters to highlight possible reasons why caregivers process and respond to their self-care or lack of self-care. Are you up for changing or redirecting your caretaking energy for yourself?

Jones creates spiritual, physical and emotional tools for seminarians, pastors, chaplains and others that will help them find more balance in ministry and in life. Ministers and lay leaders will learn new and sustainable ways to develop and engage in rest and renewal periods.

This guide examines how ministry has changed through the years, and that this rest is vital in today’s society, now more than ever. If clergy and caregivers do not take care of themselves, what happens? Caregivers can escape or neglect their mental, physical, emotional or everyday life problems by becoming overly “caring” for others. The complexity of life’s challenges, in addition to the pandemic, requires individuals to obtain periods of rest. New chapters on relationships/friendships and renewal bring forth creativity.

Available is a supplemental resource, “Rest in the Storm Creativity Journal,” for personal reflection.

The book is perfect for clergy and faith leaders as well as Christian counselors, caregivers, seminary professors and seminarians.

Author Jones has been a pastor for more than 30 years. He was founding minister of Beacon Light Baptist Church, New Orleans, and senior minister at Calvary Baptist Church, Chester, Pa.; Ebenezer Baptist Church, Boston; and First Baptist Church, Randolph and Tewksbury, Mass.

Jones taught at Andover Newton Theological School, Newton, Mass.; Union Baptist Theological Seminary, New Orleans; The Center for Urban Ministerial Education of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, Hamilton, Mass.; and Boston University School of Theology. He has served as a guest preacher and teacher at churches, schools and conferences throughout the United States and abroad.

His writings have been published in various journals, including The Christian Century, Leadership, Gospel Today, Pulpit Digest and The African American Pulpit, a quarterly preaching journal that he co-founded in 1997. Jones is the author of many books for clergy and all individuals seeking spiritual growth in a changing and challenging world.

“In this anniversary edition of ‘Rest in the Storm: Self-Care Strategies for Clergy and Other Caregivers,’ Kirk Byron Jones provides us ‘Martha’ types with access to the ‘Mary’ within us [Luke 10:38-42],” says Sarah Birmingham Drummond, founding dean, Andover Newton Seminary at Yale Divinity School. “Specifically, his exegesis of Martha and Mary’s conflict with each other and of their encounter with Jesus opens up new possibilities for Marthas like me. Jones writes that Martha was many different things, not just a one-note housekeeper, but was actually a person who had room for rest in her heart. But she needed to make the transition from being open to rest that lets Jesus into making Jesus the one thing she prioritized highest.

“The lessons one finds in ‘Rest in the Storm’ disrupt old caricatures that exhaust ministers,” she continues. “For instance, the stereotype that there are ‘deep’ ministers who let others do their work for them and ‘worker-bee’ ministers who lack theological depth cannot survive Jones’ nuanced and generous perspective on self-care. The book itself is both deep and practical—Mary and Martha, together—and a classic.”

Founded in 1824, Judson Press is a publishing ministry of American Baptist Home Mission Societies, American Baptist Churches USA. It is committed to producing Christ-centered leadership resources for the transformation of individuals, congregations, communities, and cultures. 

American Baptist Home Mission Societies partners with American Baptists to promote Christian faith, cultivate Christ-centered leaders and disciples, and bring healing and transformation to communities across the United States and Puerto Rico.

American Baptist Churches USA is one of the most diverse Christian denominations today, with approximately 5,000 congregations comprised of 1.3 million members across the United States and Puerto Rico, all engaged in God’s mission  worldwide.