I.11: How do I think about What’s Next? (retirement, relocating, retooling ministry skills)

A Story

Many pastors and leaders that I have coached and who are my peers are coming into that time of pondering whether they should retire or not. They have invested many years in their present work whether it is in a secular career or in a ministry or church responsibility. The work has been fulfilling but they sense that they should move on. Many fears can entangle a leader when he faces this decision. There are many questions:

  1. What will I do after I retire or transition from my present job?
  2. Will I have enough income?
  3. Who will take over my work and lead it to the next level? Can I trust them?
  4. Will my next work be significant?
  5. Will I be forgotten?
  6. Will I become bored in my retirement or change?

Digging Into The Bible

Philippians 3:7-16:

But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ—the righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith. 10 I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, 11 and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead. 12 Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. 13 Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.

Following Paul’s Example

15 All of us, then, who are mature should take such a view of things. And if on some point you think differently, that too God will make clear to you. 16 Only let us live up to what we have already attained.

Discussion & Discovery

  1. What observations do you make from these words of God from the apostle Paul?
  2. What was the value shift from former things to eternal things?
  3. How does one go about doing that in all transitions?

Application & Accountability

  1. When this value shift occurs how do you think it will affect your transition or retirement questions?
  2. What would you like your next part of Christ’s mission to be?
  3. How will this passage guide you?
  4. What would be a key step to take to get a clear picture of how to transition?

Digging In Deeper

  1. What is the most important part of this lesson to you? Explain.
  2. How do you see applying aspects of this lesson to your life?
  3. When do you feel would be the best time to make that application?
  4. What do you hear the Lord speaking to you about this right now?

Similar Verses In The Bible

List similar verses in the Bible: