Anyone running a Christian camp, college Christian Union or entering the ministry should read this excellent, authorized biography by another Christian leader - Tim Dudley-Smith.
Time discipline, God and principles drive the man. Meticulous attention to scholarship, biblical interpretation and evangelism characterize Stott's life. Even the Christian schoolboy camps he organized as a scholar and student were superbly run. Here is a great primer for Christian camp leaders. One doesn't usually think of the immaculately dressed and well spoken John Stott as a camper, but this book covers both his professional and personal life.
The book has extensive quotes from correspondents and writers, as well as Stott himself. As Buddism has the Dalai Lama, Christianity has John Stott. John Stott is one of the few who has the intellectual capacity, clarity of exposition and genuine enthusiasm to lead the thinking person to Christianity. This book shows that he's been at it since his conversion at Rugby School, during his student days at Cambridge and continuing through his long association with All Souls Langham Place, London and various Langham Partnership organizations.
Dudley-Smith describes how Stott received his call to ministry, diligently studying both the Bible and his academic books. Stott's avid enthusiasm for bird-watching, which has peppered his sermons on occasion, is woven into the book's fabric.
CICCU (Cambridge), OICCU (Oxford), Inter-Varsity and other Christian student organizations owe a debt to John Stott. Any student Christian leader can gain ideas and insights from this biography.
The many groups that use John Stott's numerous Bible study books would also profit from learning about the man, his motivation and his friends. In particular, his friendship with Billy Graham was described in some detail and together they helped evangelize the student world.
If you are considering being a pastor or missionary, you will learn what a Passion for Mission means from John Stott.
My one criticism is that Tim Dudley-Smith tends to write less efficiently than John Stott, some anecdotes are repeated. But this is a minor flaw and the writing is never weak from this great hymn writer. It is a very human account of a global Christian leader that deserves a larger audience. Take a Sunday afternoon and go to a quiet place like John Stott's Welsh retreat - the Hookses - and be inspired as you read this manuscript. When I bought this book I was stuck after the first chapter, but when I heard John Stott, in his 80s still going strong and speaking at a 30th anniversary John Stott Ministries dinner, I picked up the book again and once I was into chapter two (the chapters are long, but broken into subsections) I could not put it down.