To develop your heart, invest the time to get to know Jesus and the people in your life.  Cooperate with the Holy Spirit by caring about and serving others as Jesus commanded.  That includes taking the time to get to know and serve your spouse, children and parents, your fellow believers at church, your colleagues at work, your friends, and the less fortunate in your midst who have nothing to give back to you. Ask questions such as, “How are you doing these days?,”  “What’s going on in your life?,” “Where did you grow up?,” and “What do you enjoy in life?”  

Slow down and listen closely.  Find out about people’s hopes and dreams, and look for ways to help them. If you’re a leader, you can develop the heart of the people you lead by bringing them together to serve at a local charitable organization in your community that helps the less fortunate.  By getting to know and serve Jesus and the people in your life, your community and the world at large, you will develop a heart that connects, strengthens and grows the body of Christ.

To learn about one of the most effective churches in the world that intentionally develops hearts, read Alpha Church: The Church Flourishes When People Connect. You might also enjoy learning more about two leaders who have developed heart and who inspired the people they led: Bono of the rock band U2 and Admiral Vern Clark, the second-longest serving chief of the United States Navy.  We also recommend Howard Behar's book It's Not About the Coffee. Howard Schultz will be speaking next week at the Willow Creek Global Leadership Summit.

Pankau and Stallard are co-authors of the bestselling book Fired Up or Burned Out: How to Reignite Your Team’s Passion Creativity and Productivity (Thomas Nelson).  Jason Pankau is president of Life Spring Network, a ministry that helps pastors and church leaders develop holistic, transformational, disciple-making communities, and he is the author of Beyond Self Help: The True Path to Harnessing God’s Wisdom, Realizing Life’s Potential and Living the Abundant Life (Xulon Press). Michael Lee Stallard is president of E Pluribus Partners, a leadership training, consulting and coaching firm that helps leaders develop “Connection Cultures” that boost productivity, innovation and performance. September 13, Michael Lee Stallard will be speaking with Admiral Vern Clark in Washington, D.C. at breakfast and lunch events sponsored by the Wharton Club of D.C. This Fall both will be speaking and teaching workshops on the topics of leadership, connection and character at the Connected Church Conference, the NASA Johnson Space Center, the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Scotiabank, Texas Christian University and the Young Presidents’ Organization.