‘As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.’ (Prov 23:7)
One of the areas of your life that you need to constantly be aware of is your mindset. I want to share with you a few statements that have helped to shape me and how I respond to various things in ministry and life in general. Some of these come from a woman named Vanessa Russell, one of my youth pastors, who had a tremendous impact on my life.
1) Thick Skin
In ministry you will have the opportunity to get offended on a regular basis. Why? Because offense produces division more quickly than ANYTHING. And the devil knows it. You need to grow thick skin quickly and early on so that you don’t take every little thing personally.
If you don’t learn this early you will take even things that weren’t meant to cut you as insults. They will eat you up inside and you will give WAY too much thought to them. Learn now to brush it off and let critics become coaches. This will keep you from becoming bitter, which will lead to your ministry’s demise. It’s okay to get hurt…it’s not okay to stay that way.
2) Pray Like Nothing Else Matters
Pastor Vanessa would say ‘pray pray pray’ all the time. It’s amazing to me just how little prayer goes on in ministry. Your ministry programs and ideas should not come out of staff meetings and brainstorm sessions. They should come out of the private place of devotion and through intercession with your team.
The prevailing mindset in ministry is not one of prayer it is one of production. This mindset will make you die to ‘immediate results’ in favor of finding the heart of God and what He desires to accomplish.
3) 80% of Ministry is Setting Up Chairs
This one quote from Pastor Vanessa changed my life. Leadership is built on the foundation of service. Very little of what we call ministry has anything to do with altar calls and microphones. This mindset ensures that you remain humble and remember that you are part of an upside down Kingdom.
I tell my peers and other young leaders this. ‘If you think you are above cleaning a toilet, then you don’t deserve a microphone.’ What does that mean? It means your authority and the voice you have must come from a place of remembering that you are a servant above all. Jesus (read GOD) washed his disciples feet! How are you washing the feet of those that you serve? How are you washing the feet of your leaders?
4) Expect the Supernatural
God rarely moves in a place where faith is not stirred. When expecting the supernatural becomes a mindset and not a Sunday morning platitude you begin to look for opportunities for Him to move!
We all have moments where we draw off of the faith of others, but a mindset of expecting God to move is engrained in our everyday lives. You expect blessing. You expect miracles. You expect presence. And this will not only make you a vessel that God will use on a regular, but it will really make the overall condition of your life better because faith infuses your life with hope and joy!
5) Laziness is Craziness
If there is one thing I can’t stand in people it’s a lack of initiative. I believe in praying like nothing else matters, but that doesn’t mean nothing else matters! It means your foundation is intercession and once God speaks you RUN full speed after what he says!
Good ideas never did anything alone. I think many Christians sit around dreaming and eventually talk about an idea so much that they feel like they’ve actually done it. God doesn’t give dreams for you to just sit on. He gives dreams so that we can accomplish them and advance His Kingdom. Quit wasting His dreams.
What are some mindsets that you believe are important for ministry?