Acts 13 is the transition point between the Apostle Peter’s ministry “in Jerusalem, Judea, and Samaria” in the first half of the book and the soon to be Apostle Paul’s ministry “to the ends of the earth” in the second half. The church at Antioch was the first major church planted in those “ends” and things were going well. The church was growing fast and being discipled. Their leadership team, which included Barnabas and Saul, grew too, from 2 to 5 in just a few years.
But one day everything changed. While the church was “ministering to the Lord and fasting” the Holy Spirit sent orders for Barnabas and Saul to leave and set out for a new work. The leadership dream team was broken up and the church at Antioch had to adjust.
As the rest of the Barnabas and Paul’s ministry played out in the book of Acts, it’s important to realize God removed them from a good situation and placed them in a better one. God led both men, especially Paul, into an unprecedented mission ministry throughout the known world. Not only did Paul plant church all over the known world, he wrote half the New Testament. But none of that would have happened if they hadn’t left Antioch.
Changing your ministry responsiblity or location can be hard, but it helps to remember that when God removes us from a good situation, He places us in an even better one. And sometimes that situation is even better than we can imagine.