Ron Abbot Retired
24 This is it that belongeth unto the Levites: from twenty and five years old and upward they shall go in to wait upon the service of the tabernacle of the congregation: 25 And from the age of fifty years they shall cease waiting upon the service thereof, and shall serve no more: 26 But shall minister with their brethren in the tabernacle of the congregation, to keep the charge, and shall do no service. Thus shalt thou do unto the Levites touching their charge. (KJV)
The only scripture I can find regarding ministry retirement is the one above. But it is at least as relevant as Hebrews 10:25, and we certainly use that one often enough.
Retirement! What a lovely thought on business meeting night. Well, it may not be as wonderful as you might suppose. It is downright boring at times. I should know because I am an expert. You see, I retired a full three weeks ago.
If I might be serious for a moment, I know many friends who are facing the prospect of an end to ministry. Some are looking for relief and others are dreading the end. I can tell you that you will experience both. I retired from a 23-year tenure at Calvary Baptist Church in Bowie, Texas. I have many friends not only in the church but in the community. I had one man confront me in a restaurant and, in what seemed to be anger, challenged my decision to retire. This was a good man and a believer. While he did not attend my church, he groaned at the loss of my influence in the community. That is very satisfying though troubling.
If you are seeking advice, I would certainly pray! Consider the impact on your congregation. What pressures will this put on your family? Lack of income is always a consideration and needs no mention here. Try to imagine ways to continue serving God.
I have decided to do some pulpit supply work and, in anticipation of that, I have remarketed myself as “Minute Man Ministries.” I am still waiting for that first phone call and am considering a new name for my ministry called “The Rusty Musket.”