A ministry colleague and friend recently asked me: “When you are leading leaders, what is your main focus?”

This is a great question. Anytime I’m working with a leader to equip and empower them, I always begin with the heart.

Too often, we focus immediately on skills and strategies. Every leadership role does require new skills, but acquiring skills is secondary.

The more important thing is having a heart that is continually being shaped by the Word of God.

When we develop high-level leadership skills and fail to cultivate an upright heart, we have the capacity to become corrupt and manipulative leaders (even if others can’t see it). But if we cultivate an upright heart before God—as we grow in our leadership skills—we will be the kinds of leaders who lead like David, and more importantly, like Jesus.