Step

Re:Verse reading–Acts 20:17-38 (day three)

“They would never see his face again.”  The Spirit’s here, and we look forward to Christ’s appearing and the resurrection at the end of the age, but there sure are a whole lot of people who’ve left the scene.  And there’s still a church to lead, character to form, a cross to bear, and a world to seek.  It seems we could have used a few more years with the ones who made it happen.  Yeah, yeah, yeah, we know: We would become so dependent on them that we wouldn’t ever develop the strength we need to do the work at hand.  But it’s probably worse than that.  Forget depending on them; we might just leave it to them altogether.  Something about absence forces a choice, though: Step into the gap, or step down.  Paul’s gone.  Where are you?

Author: Bryan Richardson

Bryan Richardson is the Associate Pastor to Pastoral Ministries & College and Single Adults at FBCSA.

One thought on “Step”

  1. Paul was a visionary. He knew the danger in working for the Lord and prepared his flock for days or years without him. Great leaders are caring and have concerns for the organization, the mission and those who work alongside with them and prepare them either directly or indirectly to advance their organization missions both in times of opportunities and in times of troubles. Paul obviously was one of the greatest during his missionary journey. Good parents care, show concerns for and prepared their children for both opportunities and possible hardships. Paul was a great example of a charismatic and a servant leader during his time.

    Paul definitely prepared his flock for his absence in my view. His team/flock saw how he worked for Christ and how much he loved Christ despite his physical ordeals and emotional sufferings. The Lord was his goal and Paul found personal satisfaction in serving the Lord, in spreading the Good News and building the Gospel. Paul succeeded in his workforce planning and strategic planning to spread the Good News and to advance the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

    We all would be forced to think strategically in the absence of a key leader, either in a family setting or in an organizational setting for survival and for sustainability. Who will carry on the family legacy and the family business, if any? Who will be best to carry on and to advance the mission of the organization? A good leader will prepare for the next steps in his or her absence.

    None will stay on forever. There is always a beginning and an end. Without advanced preparations, all the opportunity doors will be closed! Without advanced preparations, our ending can be a total disappointment! From my perspective, Paul’s absence for whatever reason, could be a performance test and an on-the-job training from God for Paul’s companions!

    The message of Good News has continued to spread until today. It could not have been achieved if Paul did not lead by examples and set up the ground work for Christ’s gospel expansion during his missionary journey.

    I totally agreed with this observation, “Something about absence forces a choice, though: Step into the gap, or step down.” I am sure stepping down or stepping away is not a final choice. Living for the Lord requires all followers to step in, to step up or to step down or away, if needed, and to close the mission gap.

    What is the gap that we, Christ’s followers, need to fulfill? How large or small is that gap? Can we make it before Christ returns?

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