Question: Our pastor recently presented his ministry plans. He
has resigned to accept a position in another church. His explanation to the congregation sounded
spiritual, but vague: "God is leading me to another ministry." I wonder what his real reasons
were. (Chapter 14)
Answer: The brief, cryptic explanation has some advantages-to the
minister. The biggest one is the implication that this was not a personal choice. "God is
responsible, so direct any further questions to Him, not me."
But if you hide under the refreshment table at a pastors' conference, you will hear no such
euphemisms. This same pastor will share with fellow-shepherds the specific reasons not spelled
out in the resignation letter. Most of what the eavesdropper will hear is not bitter complaint,
but ministry wisdom-wisdom that is shared freely with other shepherds, but not the sheep.
Paul did not tell everything he knew, but he did reveal the spiritual reasons for his
priorities. And so the Romans were given the privilege of watching mature decision making in
action. With wisdom and care, spiritual leaders could do the same today.