7 Questions I Asked Before Resigning

Questions

I’ve been thinking about resigning for about a year. About a month ago, I came across a list of questions to ask before resigning your church. It was helpful to me. And maybe answering these questions may be helpful to you:

  1. Have you given 100% of your effort and energy?
  2. Do you have a sense that you have completed what God sent you to do?
  3. Are you leaving the church in a good financial situation?
  4. Are you considering leaving because you are tired or frustrated?
  5. Are all relationships, as far as it depends on you, in peace?
  6. Have you discussed this with your inner circle?
  7. Do you have a clearance from God that you are released from your ministry?

 

I think those are great and fair questions. Here are my brief answers:

  1. Have you given 100% of your effort and energy?
    Yes, I have. There is no question that I have. I think anyone who knows me well or even casually will know that I haven’t given anything but my best. This is one of the qualities my dad instilled in me – work hard – every day.
  2. Do you have a sense that you have completed what God sent you to do?
    I know there is a huge difference between restless and finished. I am not restless. I could do this for the rest of my life. I thought I would do this for the rest of my life, but I know that I have completed what God sent me here to do. And it is hard for me to admit that.
  3. Are you leaving the church in a good financial situation?
    Yes. The church is in a very healthy state. I am very thankful for that. Until we find a church a new home church in Houston, my giving will continue to go to Northridge Church. I am praying that God’s people will continue to be generous. In a situation like this, some fringe people will fall away. If they were only here for my teaching, they won’t stick. However, I believe a majority of Northridge will stay and be equally as generous in the coming months and years.
  4. Are you considering leaving because you are tired or frustrated?
    No. There is a tiredness that goes along with the job. My exhaustion hasn’t risen in recent years. If anything, my responsibilities have gotten smaller as the church has grown. I am not tired or frustrated. If I thought this was the issue, I would have kept the plan for the sabbatical and see how I felt when that was over. But I cancelled that, knowing that wasn’t the issue – and by our policies, I can’t take a sabbatical if I know I may be resigning within one year of the sabbatical.
  5. Are all relationships, as far as it depends on you, in peace?
    Yes. I believe so. There are many people who have left the church over the years unhappy with me and the direction of our church. As far as it depends on me, I’m at peace with each one of them and have longed for them to find a church where they can grow and the church is thriving. I wish nothing but the best for them.
  6. Have you discussed this with your inner circle?
    I have done that, but probably not as early as I should have. As soon as something like this gets “out” – there is no taking it back, and if I wasn’t sure I was leaving, having it slip out would have forced a decision before I was ready to make it. My first serious discussion (besides my wife) with someone outside of the church was this past summer. I probably held onto it for too long after that – fearing the consequences – or maybe fearing the reality of the pain it would cause others, my family, and me if I decided to leave.
  7. Do you have a clearance from God that you are released from your ministry?
    Yes. I have no doubt that I do. As painful as it is.

Well, those are my answers to questions that were originally posed by Dan Reiland.

 

8 comments
  1. Hey, you said you hope to write. Do you know what you would write about? Church organization? Apologetics? Christian Living?

    And if you do someday get published, I think you may have an obligation to come back to give a lecture and then do a book signing, and maybe even sell your book at our book store at a discount. Just sayin’…

    Go get ’em.

    • Kyle – Probably a church leadership book. But I’ve also already been working on a book based on my series last summer on homosexuality. We will see what comes out first.

  2. Thank, David, for taking the time to continue sharing about your decision to leave. It somehow helps it sink in and see how it had been developing for awhile. The loss I feel and so many are feeling is really painful. You’re correct though, you are confident this IS God’s will, so He will be faithful to provide NR with great leadership and teaching. It doesn’t make this easier now, but walking in faith will get us all through it. Loss is painful- no way around it… but through it.
    Your series on Homosexuality was so well thought out and Biblical …with heart. I would love you to write about that .
    How about you continue your blog from Houston and keep it going like you have been. You share so much great info and insight! THAT would be awesome! Any chance??

  3. David, I admire your honesty and openness through this process. Hearing about the raw process you are going through, not sugar coating things, shows your internal struggles in coming to this decision. So even in this time of change for Northridge, you are continuing to teach and lead, just through writings such as this.

    As much as you will be missed by the church, as good followers of Christ, we can’t be selfish and keep you to ourselves. It’s time for us to share what we’ve been blessed to enjoy for many years.

      • I’m so thankful for Brian’s comment. It’s so true and accurate! Your transparency has been one of the many qualities I immediately saw in you that earned my deep respect. How you are handling this entire process is indeed a teaching in itself ! I do think for many it takes time to process such a loss and to regain our footing spiritually. We certainly don’t want to be Peter with Jesus having to say “get behind thee,satan” … holding on to you. God knew exactly what He was doing when He called you to serve the big ” C “. You giftedness was also made for this new calling. It’s a perfect fit. The conference growth proved that over and again! I pray for great blessings for you and your family . I believe there is no limit to the souls that will become followers of Jesus because of this new calling! I’m moving out of my own loss into real excitement for what you will be doing for the Church of Christ! Thank you, David, for giving NR ( us) your very best , 100 % all the time! How blessed we have been. And no doubt , great days and years are ahead for Northridge Church!

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