Acts 20:1-6 (JDV)
Acts 20:1 After the uproar stopped, Paul sent for the disciples, encouraged them, and after saying farewell, departed to go to Macedonia.
Acts 20:2 And when he had passed through those areas and offered them many words of encouragement, he came to Greece
Acts 20:3 and stayed three months. The Jews plotted against him when he was about to set sail for Syria, and so he decided to go back through Macedonia.
Acts 20:4 He was accompanied by Sopater son of Pyrrhus from Berea, Aristarchus and Secundus from Thessalonica, Gaius from Derbe, Timothy, and Tychicus and Trophimus from the province of Asia.
Acts 20:5 These men went on ahead and waited for us in Troas,
Acts 20:6 but we sailed away from Philippi after the Day of the Unleavened. In five days we reached them at Troas, where we spent seven days.
The ministry of Paul and his team appears to have evolved from primarily church planting, to primarily establishing and equipping churches already planted. Also, the team has morphed into ostensibly two teams, which allows team B to stay behind to continue the equipping, and then to meet up with team A for reporting on the accomplishments of the mission, prayer and the next assignment. The text is not exactly clear who comprises team A, but it at least includes Paul and Luke.
If we want making disciples for Christ to be our primary focus as a church, we need to build flexibility into our ministry structures. This is difficult to do in most churches because we tend to adopt rigid leadership structures, even defending them against other structures. But the New Testament reflects a variety of leadership and ministry structures. If our eye is on the goal, we should be flexible enough to organize ourselves practically, in order to meet each objective toward that goal.
Lord, mold us into teams that accomplish your Great Commission.