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‘Heart’ needed for effective ministry, national leader tells pastors, staff

GLORIETA, N.M. (BP)–A few years ago Mike Miller realized he had lost his heart for ministering to his church.

During a period of personal renewal, the director of the church leadership group of LifeWay Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention sought help from the Bible. Miller shared his personal journey and the biblical truths that rekindled his heart in his session, “Keeping Your Heart for Ministry,” during the National Conference for Church Leadership at Glorieta, a LifeWay Conference Center, in New Mexico.

“I lost my passion for seeing people come to know Christ,” Miller told the group.

He explained that a person must first look for characteristics of a lost heart before any change can begin. Hearts that are hard, perverse, deceitful or proud have pulled away from God.

“I realized that I can’t do ministry effectively without my heart in it,” Miller said. “I had to go before God and have a personal revival.”

Miller outlined four principles for keeping a heart for ministry: maintaining a heart for God, having a heart for the kingdom, having a heart for the church and having a heart for the world.

“I spent a lot of time thinking about my own little kingdom rather than the kingdom of God,” Miller said. “I saw that my heart for God must be dealt with before I tried to do any more of his work.”

Miller concluded by encouraging the group to continue in their ministry and not lose heart by knowing, seeking, trusting, pleasing and following God.

“Don’t forget that our hearts are made to seek God,” Miller concluded. “We must rely on God’s power for our work and walk by faith.”

Miller will expand on this subject in a book also titled, “Keeping Your Heart for Ministry,” scheduled for publication in the spring of 2001.

LifeWay’s church leadership group and the pastor-staff leadership department sponsored the National Conference for Church Leadership, July 10-14.

    About the Author

  • Bill Seaver