EM039_ International Leadership Development with Lee HeywardLee Heyward is the president of Brooklink. Their focus is on developing indigenous leaders around the world. But that’s not where he started.

Lee came to Christ while attending a military academy. After a short career in the marketplace, God called him to full-time ministry. He planted and pastored a church in Wisconsin for over 2 decades before leaving to found BrookLink.

Over the decades, he’s seen his share of challenges and God’s faithfulness through it all. What God has done and is doing in his life will inspire you.


Life in Ministry

Lee is based in the US and travels to many of the developing areas of the world to develop indigenous leaders at their invitation.

[Tweet “Missions is very creative. God is very creative.”]

Key Quotes

[Tweet “If you’re invited and you’re available, you go.”]
[Tweet “We don’t just barge our way in if we’re uninvited.”]


When Lee planted a church, it grew quickly with people coming to Christ – it was a great birthing of what God was doing. However, after a couple of years, there was an attempted hostile takeover that led to a church split.

Lee was devastated and wanted to leave but God wouldn't let him. Every time they’d pray about the situation, God would say, “No, I’m not finished.”

It was only by God’s grace that he stayed in that role and was able to see what God did as He slowly rebuilt the church.

It was a hard season that’s given him the ability to speak to pastors going through difficult times.

[Tweet “If you want to throw in the towel, continue to make that a matter of prayer and seeking God.”]
[Tweet “God may want to keep you in that hard place because He’s got something greater for you in the future.”]


On a trip to Nigeria in 2005, God began to show Lee what some of his brothers and sisters in developing areas of the world dealt with. On that trip, he encountered a dilapidated generator that God used as a catalyst in his life. That week became a defining moment in his life.

[Tweet “In that moment he heard a whisper of the Spirit, “You can do something about this.””]

Current Ministry

Now, Lee is based in the US and travels globally. He's able to meet and hear the stories of many compelling men and women of God all around the world.

[Tweet “I am more inspired than any inspiration I could ever bring to them.”]

They have seen amazing fruit by focusing their efforts on “Movement Leaders.” They’re able to multiply their efforts and expand their investment in leadership development. But they’re not a “fly-by” organization; they always try to develop relationships with leaders.

Significance in the Marketplace

In so many areas of the church, we still have this false sacred vs. secular dichotomy. But it’s not like that at all. There’s no evidence of that in Scripture.

We need people in business, government, education, medicine, law. Everywhere.

As an example, Lee points to the Apostle Paul. He shares how important it is for us to know and understand our communities and to meet people where they are to share the Gospel.

[Tweet “God wants to bring His Kingdom to bear on every sector of society”]
[Tweet “God’s concerned about every part of society and all people, wherever they are”]

Level Up

Lee shared how the image of a signpost can help us minister effectively wherever we are.

Speed Round


  • How raising funds and building relationships is different than his pastoral work.

Best Advice

[Tweet “Knock on doors, walk through the doors that have opened for you, but don’t kick any doors down.”]

Personal Success Habit

[Tweet “Put my nose in The Book before I put my head in the bed.”]

Internet Resource

Book Recommendation

Cross-Cultural Ministry

Lee shared the story of a Muslim man. A neighbor brought him to church. After Lee met him, he discovered a mutual friend was ministering to him.

Because of that connection, he and several others were able to share a lunch and their testimonies with him.

Parting Advice

[Tweet “Keep your eyes open to your context.”]
[Tweet “Look for people who are different from you.”]
[Tweet “Dare to step across your discomfort zone.”]
[Tweet “Reach out to people.”]

Contact Info



If you'd have any comments or questions, you can always leave a comment in the show notes, leave a voicemail with SpeakPipe, or send an email to feedback@engagingmissions.com.
Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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