• Mike Ironside

Suggested Resources for Missionary Development

Updated: Aug 17, 2020

Editor’s note: Mike is the Director of Cohorts for The Upstream Collective. He is leading an online cohort this fall and next spring. If you’re interested in joining, click here to find out more information and to register.

In my last two articles, I talked about helping missionaries attain emotional health and training them in multiplicative discipleship. With these ideas in mind, we have a few resources suggestions for how to help walk alongside a group of potential missionaries in a church to develop this personal health and ministry skill.


In the book, Emotionally Health Spirituality, Peter Scazzero lays out the biblical foundations for emotional health. Ministry positions and emotional health issues are not identical, yet are linked (Matt 22.37). The state of a sinful world has resulted in brokenness (Rom 8.18-26). God desires spiritually and emotionally healthy missionaries and pastors (John 14.27; Phil 4.4ff; Heb 4.14-16; Prov 12.25; Ps 30.11).

Emotional health issues can be debilitating for Christian leadership and witness (2 Tim 1.3-7). Scazzero helps us look to the past and discover the pattern and motivations that drive us daily and how to redeem them. He’ll teach us how to correctly deal with conflict and be true peace-makers. He’ll help us to become aware of what may trigger emotionally unhealthy behaviors and motivations and redeem them. The contents of Emotionally Healthy Spirituality will help develop the emotional health in missionaries needed for long-term perseverance and flourishing.



Spiritual Multiplication in the Real World lays a foundation for evangelism, discipleship, and church planting that will produce reproducing disciples in the absence of an attractional church model. It helps create ministry patterns that are cognizant of how to create a multiplying church movement that is culturally relevant to the people, place, and time of that people group, city, and nation that you are trying to reach. Without the principles of this book, we have too often seen missionaries try to reproduce Western church models with initial success, but little long-term impact.

Other Books to Consider for Missionary Development

Apostolic Church Planting by J.D. Payne

This book helps inform what type of ministry we are looking to do overseas. It wouldn’t need to be done chapter by chapter. You could take multiple weeks with individual chapters.

Younique by Will Mancini

This is a pretty incredible book on discovering who God has made you to be. Lots of exercises on how to create a life purpose and vision.

Cross-Cultural Servanthood by Duane Elmer

A great book on getting to know cultures and relating to people of differing cultures.

You Can Change by Tim Chester

This is a great book on personal repentance. This might be a good d-group book.

Mike Ironside is Missions Pastor at Cornerstone Church in Ames. He has served on staff with Cornerstone since 2006 in varying roles from college ministry to pastoral staff to being an overseas missionary sent from Cornerstone for 2 years. Mike is the Director of Cohorts for the Upstream Collective. He also serves as chairman of the board for Campus to Campus, a missions organization dedicated to getting US college students connected to church planting movements amongst college students worldwide.

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