John’s Books

The Radical Pursuit of RestThe Radical Pursuit of Rest: Escaping the Productivity Trap (InterVarsity). In a world where work is an end in itself, rest is a radical idea. The rest that Christ offers comes only as a gift. It is both and identity and a location.  This book explores many of the barriers that keep us from becoming people of rest and presents a unique perspective on how pursuing rest leads us to the heart of God. With honest, biblical reflections on trends in our culture and churches, The Radical Pursuit of Rest exposes our misconceptions regarding the concept of rest, as well as offering correction and practices to align our ideas with God’s ideal. Each chapter includes questions for personal reflection as well as discussion questions for small group study.

sgcover3The Surprising Grace of Disappointment: Finding Hope When God Seems to Fail Us (Moody). Disappointment is a feeling everyone knows well – failed relationships, buyer’s remorse, unmet expectations. In a broken world disappointment surrounds us, but Christians know that Jesus will never disappoint us, right? Wrong. John Koessler explains how Jesus disappoints everyone. He never fails, but he does disappoint. We come to Jesus with false expectations, demanding or expecting things he doesn’t promise and then when he doesn’t deliver we are disappointed by Him. Yet disappointment may be the best thing for us. Disappointment takes our wrong expectations and sets them straight, bringing us closer to Jesus and into a deeper understanding of his very surprising grace. This book is a resource for people struggling with life’s hard times as well as for counselors or pastors seeking to help others. Foreword by John Ortberg. Order your copy now at at, Barnes & or


fgpsmallFolly, Grace & Power: The Mysterious Act of Preaching (Zondervan) Named “Book of the Year” by, this book is a reminder of the sacredness of the “job” of being a preacher, as well as a how-to that reveals the key to speaking powerfully on God’s behalf. Folly, Grace, and Power is a must-read for pastors, seminarians, and lay leaders charged with the task of preaching God’s word.  Why does one sermon have a powerful effect on the audience while another falls flat? Why should listeners heed what the preacher says? Is human language adequate for facilitating an encounter with God? Read Folly, Grace & Power and rediscover the sacred challenge of speaking for God. Foreword by Dr. Bryan Chapell. Order your copy now at at, Barnes & or You can check out the book’s web page at


A Stranger in the House of God by John Koessler (Zondervan). This poignant and often humorous spiritual journey explores the Christian faith through one man’s pilgrimage. From early beginnings outside the church, through charismatic and contemporary evangelical churches, to being a ministry professional, John Koessler sheds light on the nature of the Christian life and the fundamental struggle every believer faces in the life of the church. Order now at, Barnes & or

 The Moody Handbook of Preaching, John Koessler General Editor (Moody) Unnatural.  Supernatural. A gift. Hard work. Exhilarating. Terrifying. These words only begin to describe the challenge and reward each pastor experiences. So what can assist today’s pastors in such an endeavor? With contributors like Michael Easley, Joseph Stowell, and George Sweeting, these pages will reinvigorate you with an energizing love for preaching. And with topics such as evangelism, homiletics, and historical narrative, this book will equip you to be effective in today’s postmodern age. Order now at, Barnes & or

True Discipleship: The Art of Following Jesus by John Koessler (Moody)  Most of us would answer “No” when asked if we were like Jesus. How do we become more like Jesus? John Koessler believes the answer is by understanding and developing the marks of a true disciple in our lives. In True Discipleship and the available workbook, he provides a straightforward presentation of the characteristics Jesus laid out for His disciples. Readers will be stretched in their thinking and encouraged in their journey. Order now at, Barnes & or Order the companion workbook at, Barnes & or

God our Father by John Koessler (Moody).

This profound, simple question reverberates down through the centuries. It is a question that not only finds delight, but a kind of wonder, in the shocking and surprising answer found throughout Scripture: God is a Father.

God Our Father is written in an understandable, pastoral manner, carefully walking the reader through the various aspects of God’s character an purposes as Father.

Foundational Faith, John Koessler, general editor. The New Testament describes the Church as the pillar and foundation of the truth. What is the nature of that truth which the Church has been called to proclaim, uphold and defend? Foundational Faith examines the core beliefs of the Christian faith, often referred to as the Fundamentals. Each of the contributors focuses on one of the fundamentals of the faith. Topics include: the authority of Scripture, the virgin birth, the deity of Christ, the substitutionary atonement and the bodily resurrection and physical return of Christ. Order now at, Barnes & or

 nolittleNo Little Places: The Untapped Potential of the Small Town Church by Ron Klassen and John Koessler. Listed as one of the “Best Books on the Small Church” in the Spring 1998 issue of Leadership Journal.  This book describes the authors’ successes and their failures as pastors in the small town setting. Their personal stories will make you laugh and cry. Most of all, they will encourage you to expect God to do great things in a small place. Originally published by Baker, this book is now available at

 John has contributed chapters to the following books:

The Art & Craft of Biblical Preaching edited by Haddon Robinson & Craig Brian Larson (Zondervan).






The Master’s Perspective on Pastoral Ministry edited by Richard L. Mayhue and Robert L. Thomas (Kregel).






Inside the Small Church edited by Anthony G. Pappas (Alban Institute).