Deep & Wide by Andy Stanley – Full Book Review

Last Update 6th October, 2016.

Book: Deep & Wide: Creating Churches Unchurched People Love to Attend
Author: Andy Stanley
Lowest Price Online: Amazon
Published: 2011 by B&H Publishing Group
Available Formats: Hardback, Paperback, Kindle, Audio
Read Customer Reviews: Here

From the Author

What Deep & Wide Is About

The author, Andy Stanley, is the pastor of North Point Community Church in Atlanta, US where he has grown 5 churches to date with over 33,000 in attendance every week.

His ministry has planted a further 25 churches outside of Atlanta with a combined weekly attendance of 15,000 members. But it wasn’t always this way…

Deep & Wide starts with Stanley’s refreshingly honest and vivid experiences as a pastor.

The author takes you right back to the beginning and describes in great detail how he pulled through a number of struggles including a church split and a high-profile divorce.

His church didn’t just survive – it thrived.

He shares very openly about his relationship with his father, Charles Stanley, how he never intended to be a pastor and he admits he has made mistakes along the way.

He’s had to learn a lot of things the hard way and he wants you to know that.

Far from a biographical tale, Andy Stanley spends the biggest chunk of the book explaining step by step what he’s done to attract the unsaved, unchurched into his church and made disciples of them.

Andy Stanley:

What began as a movement, dedicated to carrying the truth of Jesus Christ to every corner of the world, had become an insider-focused, hierarchical, ritualized institution that bore little resemblance to its origins.” (p.63)

Pastor Andy’s contagious passion for the Great Commission challenge is backed up with practical, applicable steps you can take in your local setting to grow your church in numbers and impact.

Reading Deep & Wide, you’ll learn how to create ‘Irresistible Environments‘ and ‘Taking the Right Approach‘ – this book looks at the strategy North Point Community Church follow to make their church the church where unchurched love to attend.

Stanley shares the underpinning principles that guide his preaching, programming and processes.

He shares practical wisdom applicable to any church setting, large or small.

Andy believes it is possible to have a church that is relevant to the community it’s in without watering down the message in any way.

My Take on Deep & Wide

Reading this book was my first encounter with Andy Stanley; I had not seen him preach or heard any of his teachings.

Andy Stanley really is leading the discussion on disciple making.

I really believe God has given Him the gifting of a pastor and a teacher and he is strengthening the worldwide body of Christ with it.

A lot of the concepts and ideas shared here at GrowChurch have been inspired by his teachings on Church growth and Christian leadership.

I love this book’s heart for the lost and dying.

I love it’s Biblical conclusions and most of all I love it’s provoking call to action.

Deep & Wide was a book of two extremes for me…

On one hand it was really easy to read, and yet, 2 years on I am still trying to digest and apply the concepts it introduces. Our church leadership read it and we’re still discussing it and working out our action steps in our local church setting.

My favourite quote from the book:

Our goal is to create weekend experiences so compelling and helpful that even the most skeptical individuals in our community would walk away with every intention of returning the following week…with a friend!

If there is one thing that Andy Stanley is passionate about (and writes well about) it is the fact that most churches need to do everything they can to reach people that are not in church.

The end of the book is all about vision, a vision of getting back to where we need to be, to where the early church was.

A vision consisting of a bunch of people like you and me who, together, reaches every sub-culture, every nation, every people people group to tell them that Jesus is God and He rose from the dead.

There are still so many people who do not know…

Pastor Andy’s contagious passion for the Great Commission challenge is backed up with practical, applicable steps you can take in your local setting to grow your church in numbers and impact. 

What I love about Deep & Wide is that it has the vision, the reasons, the motivation; the ‘WHY‘ but it is totally reinforced with the practical steps, the methods, the blueprints, the ‘HOW‘.

A lot of church growth books I have read are big churches telling other big churches about how to get bigger, this is not the case with this book. You can absolutely apply this to a small church level, in fact, it’s exactly what you need to know.

My Rating


I have never given a book a 5/5 before but this book is worthy of it.

Whether you’re a Children’s minister, senior pastor, church planter, youth leader, or if you’re the one who mops up after we’ve all gone – READ THIS BOOK.

Warning: This is not a book you read and put back on the shelf. Rather than a one time read it’s more like a ministry reference book you’ll refer back to again and again.

If you are a volunteer in your church and you believe in evangelism and want to see your church growing and being filled with new believers and growing believers, get this book and read it.

Then get an extra copy and give it to your pastor – heck, get your whole leadership team reading it and heading in the same direction together.

I do not care if you believe in a church model like North Point.

All that I want for you is to be in a church that is reaching people for Christ.

This book makes me want to reach out and do more…

You can buy Deep & Wide or browse other reviews here.

Your Turn

Have you already read the book? What did you think? Leave your own review in the comments below. 

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