Tuesday, July 29, 2008

A Change in Focus

I have been blessed over the past several years to have a significant part of my ministry to be focused on teaching and mentoring other pastors at the beginning of their ministries. I have cherished the relationships that have come out this and have grown in working with them. This focus has primarily come from teaching in the Course of Study at Emory during the summer and as Director of the Residency program for our Conference's Board of Ministry.

I am at Emory now, finishing up the second week of classes on Worship and the Sacraments, and have finally resolved that I will not return next summer. There is a change in the scheduling in the works which would mean I would be teaching earlier in the summer. Rather than change some things on my calendar I will take this opportunity to let someone else enjoy what I've been doing. After five years though, the letting go is not easy.

Furthermore, I have made plans to work with a colleague this year in leading the Residency program, with the plans of turning it all over to her at the end of the year. It is time for fresh leadership for that program and I need to step out of the way.

Wish I could say what it is brewing inside me that tells me these are right actions. In spite of the wavering feelings about letting go, I believe God will bring my interests into a new focus. (Sometimes when you are trying to focus a camera, things get fuzzy before they become clear.)Hopefully, many of the friendships made on this journey will continue to bless me even as changes in my involvements occur. There now, it's on my blog - it must be real.


Judy said...

Hmmmm I have been blessed to be in 2 of your classes and I know you will be truly missed! Thanks for your "caring" for us as we embark on this new phase in our lives. You have been a wonderful "mentor" in the short weeks we were in your class. Thanks also for the "God moments". Blessings to you in your new and future plans... Shalom, Judy S.

Steve said...

That is sounding exciting, Stephen! Best wishes as those decisions lead to further insights.

Jim Elder said...

No, no, say it isn't so!

When I knew I was moving to SC because of my wife, there were two reasons why I looked forward to coming - you and Tim McClendon.

Of all the instructors/guides/facilitators that I have had at COS, I grew the most under your's and Tim's tutelage.

I have no doubt that God has something in store for you and will praying for that revelation to come.

Stephen Taylor said...

Thank you judy, steve and jim, you are all great encouragers.

Kristen said...

I'm a little late to comment, but I just must say...

You've done a wonderful job, and I appreciate the compassion and care you shared with me as I was going the process more than you could know!