Why I left Ministry

I get asked, rather often, why I left ministry.  My response is always the same, I didn’t.

That being said, I did step back from located ministry for a while. First, let me say up front, that I firmly believe that being in located ministry is a call on my life.  And, although I am not currently leading in a local church, God continues to give me opportunities to serve those around me and help the local church whenever  I can.

A while back I shared with many of you my struggles with arrogance (read post here) and my initial decision to step back from leadership in ministry. That moment in my life has served as a catalyst in many ways.

In willingly stepping back I was forced to take stock of where I was, where I was headed, and where I wanted to be.  This was and is an eye opening experience as I discovered quite a few things that I felt needed to be dealt with.

They are, in no particular order – debt, healthier living, and balance.  At the crux of those three things is personal and family discipline.

I don’t believe, in anyway, that Christ expects perfection, because it is through him that I am made perfect.  However, it is my conviction that I am to give my very best to God and His Church and although some of those things may be life long struggles, they still need to be addressed.

With that in mind, Leanne and I are working on getting rid of debt, I continue to learn about and make healthier decisions, and I am learning what it means to have balance in my life.  In many ways I am experiencing joy in ways I never have before but, there is also that ache in my soul for ministry.

I have no doubt that, when the time comes, God will provide the open door for me to be back in located ministry.  I look forward to that day as I miss it like crazy.  Until that time however, I will dive head first into how God is refining me.  I will swim in his unfailing love as I embrace the reality that located ministry or not, I am called to serve those around me and make His name famous.

Thanks for your continued prayers and encouragement

Until next time…

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4 thoughts on “Why I left Ministry

  1. Topher, thanks for sharing! One of the hardest things I find to do, is to honestly sit back and see how God is trying to use something in my life to refine me! I pray for a good clarity from Him for y’all and for us! Enjoy the journey!
    Matt

  2. Hey Chris & family! I had kind of lost track of what you guys were doing in the past few years, but happily I came across this post on Facebook. I didn’t know you were now in Nashville! What prompted the move? (or maybe I’ll read more blog and find out…) Anyways, just wanted to affirm your decision to step away from ministry to seek balance and health. I did ministry in a city that was not my home, without my normal support system, for about 3 years, and by the end of it was suffering broke-ness, burnout, and depression, as well as health problems. God was telling me to move on, but something in me… maybe pride? was keeping me from letting go and stepping down to rest. I was visiting a church back home, and man came and prayed over me and told me that his son had been in the same situation— he had burned out and had to withdraw from his ministry, but that a few years later, God had renewed that call and now was doing even bigger things. So …. anyways, this obviously struck a familiar chord with me!

  3. Hey Chris,

    Thanks for your transparency and authenticity. Great post! I appreciate you my friend.

    Love ya dude.

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