Collin Hansen wrote an outstanding blog entry on the Gospel Coalition blog last week called "Gospel Integrity and Pastoral Succession." 

Being right in the middle of this kind of transition, I'm admittedly biased, but I agree wholeheartedly with the heart of what Hansen says.

Very few churches do intentional transitions. Sometimes they resist because the outgoing senior pastor's ego will not allow it. Sometimes they resist because many young leaders prefer to start from scratch through church planting as opposed to inheriting bureaucracy and sacred cows from another generation. Sometimes they resist because it's just plain hard.

Our transition hasn't been easy; it hasn't been clean, cut, and dry. And whether or not we're successful won't be known for a few years after the baton is formally passed. Even still, though intentional transition is not for the faint of heart, I remain absolutely committed to the model as the wisest, most responsible way for a local church to transition to the next generation. And, I've already begun praying for the person who will take the baton from me, hopefully 30 years from now.