You Got to Have Go
Impactful leaders have a "go" mindset. What does that mean? Simply put gritty, graceful, and growing leaders aren't afraid to go where their followers have not been.
Cue the Star Trek theme music. Cue the narrator - "...to go where no man has gone before." Gene Roddenberry, creator of Star Trek, seem to understand humanities desire to explore the unknown. But he also understood the fear produced in humans because of that desire. So he created Captain Kirk - the bold leader pushing the boundaries and taking others along with him (literally).
Off the coast of Spain in the Strait of Gibralter lies a rock formation known as The Pillars of Hercules. In the days before Columbus sailed the ocean blue, Spaniards believed this rock formation was the end of the earth. To sail beyond the Pillars of Hercules meant falling into the abyss beyond the horizon. This idea so permeated the Spanish mind it was minted on their coins. Images of the pillars were encircled by the words ne plus altra - no more beyond.
After a successful trip around the globe by Columbus, Spain's worldview got a radical overhaul. They re-minted their coins removing the word ne leaving the words plus ultra - more beyond. I'm not here to argue the politics or ramifications of Columbus' discoveries. What I am here to argue is this - somebody looked over the horizon, swallowed their fears, and launched into a new day.
Leaders who change the world look beyond fear and even past failures to see a world bettered by their boldness. Great leaders not only have vision but also a passion to bring others along on the journey. Impactful leaders not only take people with them, but they also teach them how to steer the boat so they too can be an adventurer.
When I became the pastor of a small rural church on the verge of closure, being a leader with "go" was vital. The church had settled into a fear-based mindset. Instead of a "go west young man" attitude it was "circle the wagons." I knew that if this church would survive and thrive, I had to lead them into places they had not been or were afraid to go. "Going" took on a lot of different forms but common in all was having a presence where we had not had one previously. As I built relationships "out there" I began taking others with me. We had the adventure of a lifetime. In time, fear was replaced with a mindset that God is with us - let's go.
Personally, this meant I had to face some of my own fears and overcome some of my own scarcity mindsets. That's not easy but that's why I had a coach. If I was going to challenge a congregation to think move from no more beyond to more beyond, I would have to go there first in my own worldview. I am glad I did. It led me to finish a Doctor of Education in Transformational Leadership and writing a book that has helped other rural pastors.
Today my wife and I stand on the precipice of a new horizon. Our calling to Uganda, East Africa challenges us to face new fears and doubts. However, our relationship with Christ and the knowledge of His care spurs us on. In our minds, just beyond the horizon are...
Thousands of pastors equipped and deployed.
Thousands of new churches reaching millions of people.
A thriving Bible College serving East Africa.
A church equipped and mobilized to compassionately meet local needs with local resources.
This is all just a dream now - but Sherry and I will go. Do we have fears? Yes. Are their reasons - good reasons - not to go! Absolutely. Yet, the call of God and vision in our heart compels us to set hoist the sails and go beyond.
On the way, we hope you will become a part of our journey.