It is probably not what you think. It is not strategy, leadership skill, opportunity or execution - and I believe in all of these. It is the power of a prayer team behind you, lifting you and your ministry before the throne of God on a regular basis.
I don't meet many believers who have a prayer team and that makes me sad. I am convinced that it is those who pray regularly for Mary Ann and me who are responsible for whatever ministry success is seen or advances that are made.
If we truly believe what Paul says in Ephesians six that there are spiritual forces at work behind the scenes to thwart God's work, then it is spiritual weapons we need and prayer is one of the most powerful.
It is my conviction that every believer needs others who regularly pray for them. It is also my conviction that those of us who are in Christian leadership are foolish to do what we do without a strategic prayer covering for protection against the evil one. And, the greater the press into Satan's territory, the more concerted prayer we need.
As I travel the globe in ministry leadership, I usually bring a prayer partner with me as part of my team. It is a significant annual expense but that expense is small compared to the benefits.
In our organization we encourage each staff member to develop a small prayer team of trusted and trustworthy friends to pray for personal needs (a group you can share anything with) and a larger team who desire to pray regularly.
I usually send a monthly prayer update with me calendar so that the teams can pray specifically for the activities that I am engaged in. It is these teams that have prayed me through some very significant times including two life threatening illnesses.
So convinced am I of the spiritual battle that rages around us, I will not enter into any major ministry initiative, trip or engagement without my prayer teams going there with me. If you don't have one, don't wait long to develop your team.