leading off the map

Leaders who are curious about new ideas will lead us into the future.

Curiosity as a child is a fantastic thing.  Last night at dinner, our family question was, “what is your earliest memory as a child.”  One of the kids said they remembered being born, which was frightening and funny at the same time.  Some of my earliest memories are filled with curiosity.  I asked question after question.  One day I was asking my dad so many questions that it appeared I had frustrated him. It was a series of never-ending “why” questions. As I grew a little older, my curiosity began to die off. Isn’t this typical for teenagers and young adults?  We go through the stage where we know the answers; what more could someone else tell us?


Pastors and leaders can come to the same place in their life.  They have the training, some experience, and maybe a few victories in life and ministry.  Curiosity begins to fade, and we stop searching for answers, ideas, and a new way forward.  


But what if yesterday’s answers are today’s problems?  I am not speaking theology here, but methodology.  I am speaking of the vehicles we use to transport truth and ministry.  We are in a new environment, a new era.  We have found ourselves as rookie missionaries learning a new culture in a new world.  


When you find yourself in a new environment with no map, curiosity is your best friend and leads you to new ideas. When Lewis and Clark headed west with orders from Thomas Jefferson to find a water route across the continent to the Pacific, they realized that the maps and ideas of the landscape available to them had to be set aside. Lewis and Clark had to become curious to lead into unchartered territory.


Here are Five Reasons why leaders who are curious about new ideas will lead us into the future.

1. Curiosity fights cynicism, and no one wants to follow a cynic.


2. Leaders filled with curiosity eventually break the cycle of insanity, doing the same things repeatedly with the same results.


3. Leaders who live in curiosity realize the 1980s are not coming back, except for 80’s cartoons and toys to market to parents. Callabunga!


4. Leaders who live with curiosity are not afraid to go off the map and explore.


5. Leaders who live with curiosity are on a journey and refuse to stay back at camp.

When we have a curiosity gridlock, it keeps us stuck in old systems, using old maps and outdated strategies.  A leader filled with curiosity learns to see things from a new perspective.


Leaders who strive for curiosity are expert experimenters. When was the last time you tried something new? Grab your compass, put on your hiking boots, and lead us into the future!