with Dick Mills
The ministry of Dick Mills is characterized by the unique gifts with which God blessed him. One of the foremost authorities on Bible scholarship, Dick ministered words of wisdom, edification, and encouragement from the Holy Spirit both to individuals and congregations. With his wife, Betty, Dick ministered around the world in thousands of churches of varied backgrounds. He was also a gifted writer and served as an adjunct professor at six Schools of the Bible and Seminaries. In 2002, we were honored with the opportunity of interviewing Dick for OSPN. Ten years later, on May 25, 2012, Dick Mills went home to be with the Lord. To learn more about the ministry and legacy of Dick Mills, visit his website.
the most important thing that you would like for other spiritual
leaders to know about prophetic ministry?
thing I use as a role model is Jesus in Luke 2:52 where the Bible
says He increased in wisdom and in stature, and He was in favor
with God and with man. When it says He increased in wisdom, this
is intellectual development. Then, when He increased in
stature, it has to do with physical growth. Youve
got to make sure you exercise, and keep your physical health up.
Then, He was in favor with God, which is spiritual development,
and in favor with people, and thats emotional development.
Jesus had the emotional ability to relate to people. He related
to His Father as a spiritual relationship. He increased in intellectual
development and physical development.
look at life in those four components: I have a spiritual walk,
a physical walk, an emotional walk, an intellectual walk. The
big secret in life is to make sure that none of this gets out
of balance. Im not a person whos always balanced,
and thats where a good wife comes in. If I get a little
too concentrated in one area, Betty can reel me in. Ill
be upstairs with six boxes of books, writing, and she wants me
to come down and have supper with her. Im splitting infinities
and God wants to remind me Ive got a family! Betty reminds
me to stay balanced.
else does your wife bless and assist you?
and I travel together and we work together when I minister to
people at the personal level. She has a writing pad, and when
I give prophetic promises to people, she writes these promises
down. Were in sync. Sometimes, because of the excitement
and spontaneity of the moment, Ill get emotional and misquote
a scripture. My minds racing but if I quote a scripture
wrong, Betty can correct it. Thats a great blessing.
things have happened like where a man gave a lady in the congregation
who was very insecure a word, and the person writing it down on
a piece of paper wrote it down one chapter off. The lady took
the promise, went home and looked it up, and it said "So
I prophesied and that night my wife died." She went into
a state of shock! You have to be accurate or you can really mess
it up bad. Bettys accuracy in these areas saves me a lot
do you and your wife make time for your marriage when youre
both so busy with ministry?
consider ourselves on a forty-five year honeymoon. Years ago,
somebody said, If you want to stay happily married, treat your
mate after you get married the same way you treated them before
you got married. So we prioritize our time. Its interesting
that some years well have 300 services, sometimes in 100
different towns. That means a lot of packing and traveling, and
yet we always manage to arrange prime time together that we just
go off and have fun. When we were first starting out, wed
finish a meeting in one town on a Sunday night and open up in
another town on Tuesday, so Monday was a travel day and Monday
night was family fun night.
just decided that God invented the family before He invented
the church, and we want to keep everything in proportion.
not married to my ministry; Im married to Betty.
some cultural mentalities, the man has a wife and a mistress.
There are men that let the ministry do this to themthe ministry
becomes their mistress. His wifes the Madonnashe raises
the children. But hell do things for the ministry that
hes not doing for his family. Typical pastorif
the roofs leaking in the parsonage and the roofs leaking
in the church, hell patch the roof in the church. Typical
situation is if the hot water heaters rusted out in the
parsonage; hell buy a new hot water heater for the water
baptismal unit. Maybe their car is falling apart, but he gets
a new wagon for the church. If his wife says, "Our water
heaters out; you only baptize people two or three times
a month," hell say, "Well, Im doing it
for the Lord."
means the ministry is his mistress. Youve got to make sure
that doesnt happen. Men become married to their ministry
because the ministry is a reflection of themselves. If the
ministry succeeds, they succeed, and its easy for the person
to get absorbed in all the peripheral things that go with the
and I have been in it for forty-five years, and its getting
better all the time! We stepped on an airplane recently and I
said to the flight attendant, "We want the butter-up
treatment. Were on our honeymoon." The stewardess said,
"Isnt that wonderful." She put us in the best
seats and brought us coffee. "When did you get married?"
she asked. "Oh, forty-five years ago," I said. "Were
still on our honeymoon!"
person can be in the ministry and have a happy marriage, but they
cant take the marriage for granted You have to work
at it. Vacations are BIG with us. Were outdoor people,
we go camping. Thats a big event in our lives. Our Thanksgiving
and Christmases are big events for our family. Weve got
seven grandchildren and theres something about those times
that are awesome, so I try not to have services on Christmas.
Most churches dont want visiting speakers on Thanksgiving
or Christmas anyway. So its worked out real good for us.
is one of the biggest hindrances for leaders?
feel like theres a danger of taking yourself too seriously.
I think maintaining a good sense of humor [is vital].
thing I found out years ago is that fanatics cant laugh.
Mussolini couldnt laugh. Hitler couldnt laugh. Stalin
couldnt laugh. Tito couldnt laugh. Because they were
absorbed with their own importance.
really feel people should maintain a healthy ability to enjoy
life and not get so absorbed that our emotions become stilted.
Laughter is an index of normalcy. People that are religious fanatics
cant laugh either. People who have the religious spirit
are legalistic, hypercritical and joyless, plus they resent anybody
else that has joy. So I have a personal aversion to people that
have the religious spirit because theres a falsity to the
take yourself too seriously.
The Scripture is so practical. It says "Rejoice with those
who rejoice, and weep with those who weep." Were not
laughing all the way to heaven. Its not just a comedy routine
from here to glory, but it isnt crawling on your hands and
knees crying every inch of the way either. We do what the situation
calls for. People need to be able to relate to people who
are hurting. And then be able to enjoy people who are succeeding.
takes time. Every weekend in church, people are going to gather,
and youre going to have a lot of good newssomebody
got a job, somebody got married, somebody had a baby, somebodys
got a new housethose are happy things. But then youre
going to hear about people whove had deaths in the family,
accidents, job losses, and so youve got to be able to relate
to people right where they are.
think Jesus was the most normal person. The thing that impressed
me about Jesus is how He was able to function at any age level
with people and relate to them. He wasnt just scholastic;
when the disciples were arguing as to who was going to be the
greatest, He turned around and took Peters son, who was
three years old, and put him on His lap. Jesus is bouncing him
on His knees while everyone is arguing as to whos going
to be the greatest. Finally when they got through, Jesus said
"This is what the kingdoms like, and except
you become like this child, youre not gonna make it."
was quite a lesson for them too.
keeps a leader grounded?
are four faces to every pastor: Theres the face that
he sees when he looks in the mirror. First Corinthians says
nobody knows whats inside that man except that man himself.
Theres no way anybody else can know.
theres the man that his family sees because they
live with him. They see him at his best, they see him at his worst,
they see him elated, they see him depressed, they see him with
high highs, they see him with low lows.
theres the face that the congregation sees.
a fourth Person who is seeing him, and thats how he looks
to the Lord. Its not always easy to balance this all
out, but there is such a thing as living in a way that maintains
integrity with your family, integrity with people, integrity with
the Lord, and then your own self-respect and sense of self-worth.
Everybody should realize they have four faces.
know my ambitions, aggressions, desires, and pursuits, and I see
myself, but the big thing is, how does the Lord see me?
That weighs heavy on my heart, because it says in Habakkuk 1:13
Gods eyes are purer than to behold iniquity. David says,
If I regard inquiry in my heart, the Lords not even going
to notice me. Its imperative to have a good relationship
to the Lord.
was a Pentecostal group that lost a large number of ministers
over a twenty-year period to adulterous relationships. They hired
someone to go around and interview these men whod lost their
ministries, their families and their self-respect because the
organization wanted to know how to prevent it from happening again.
they found a similar pattern to every one of these situations.
When the ministers first started out, they were totally dependent
on the Lords giftings, help and blessing. They were conscientious
and sincere in the disciplines of their personal walk with Godprayer
time, Bible study. As time went on, things began to grow, numbers
increased, money increased, prestige and status increased. And
they began to let up on the thing that had got them to where they
man told the interviewer, "I had so many people in the church,
the only time I ever said a prayer was when I was in the hospital
calling on sick members and they asked if I would say a prayer
for them." Another said, "We just had so many things
going for us that the only time I ever read my Bible was at ten
oclock Saturday night, trying to get something to say for
had let down on their Bible study, and they let down on their
prayer lifetheir intimacy with the Lord was replaced
with busyness. They got so busy that it caught up with them.
This may not have been what caused all the ministers to fall,
because greed moves in also and causes people to do things that
are questionable, but for the most part, the main thing was they
were too busy.
I could say anything to ministers, it would be: Dont
ever lose your time with the Lord.
© 2002 Jack W. Hayford, The Kings College and Seminary,
Van Nuys, CA 91405