Week 1 Saturday

“Have A Little Faith”

Today’s scripture selection: Romans 1-2

Key verses: Romans 1:16-17

     Life these days requires more than a little faith.  Just to get up in the morning and get out on a typical morning commute requires that.  Sometimes I get the feeling I could switch off the engine of my car and just get pushed along to my destination by the car following me only inches away.  While on that commute, I turn on the radio, only to be reminded that our city is on “high alert” due to the latest terrorist threat.  Friends and family arrive at work and are warned by their employers that “things are tough out there,” and that productivity better be at top levels.  Either that, or there may be a pink slip waiting for them at the end of the day.  Arriving home, a tired and frustrated Mom or Dad learns that their little one isn’t performing up to new “standards” and that they need to schedule a conference with the teacher.  On and on it goes – it takes faith just to get through the day sometimes.

     But the real question is faith in what?  Or to put it even more clearly faith in whom?  Are we to meet the challenges of our day with faith in ourselves; our political institutions; our cleverness or skill set; our spouse; our luck?  That’s what some people count on – not much more than personal attributes or family connections or the simple luck of the draw.  Often I hear someone lament that the “cards” just haven’t been dealt very kindly – and that he or she must just “make the best of it.”

     Well, I have another suggestion.  Have a little faith – not in this world and what it has to offer – but in the One who created it.  Have a little faith in a divine plan that includes you.  Have a little faith in a God who loves you and will provide for you if only can you can muster the trust to rely on Him.  Have a little faith that things, seen from an eternal perspective, make more sense than they appear to from your limited view.

     “The righteous shall live by faith.”  That’s about a lot more than just following religious rules and regulations.  And it’s certainly about more than how to be “righteous” in your own eyes.  It’s about how God cares for you, day in and day out, while on that morning commute; or living in an increasingly violent and unstable world; or meeting your day’s challenges at work; or raising or family; or just making it through another twenty-four hours.  Live by faith – not in yourself; not in the luck of the draw – but in God’s providential, perfect care.



Prayer: Eternal, loving God, each day help me to walk as a person of faith.  And help me to share that faith in bold confidence, not self-righteously, but in gratitude and hope.  Show me those who need to have a word of encouragement; those who may be losing their faith, that I may be an instrument of your grace.  In Christ’s holy name, AMEN.


By Paul Simrell

The Reverend Paul W. Simrell has served for over thirty years in a variety of congregational and institutional settings. He is a recognized minister with standing in the Virginia region of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States and Canada and is nationally endorsed by the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) for specialized ministry in both pastoral counseling and chaplaincy. Ordained in 1982, he has served congregations in Kentucky, Texas, Florida, and Virginia. He currently serves as the pastor of Elpis Christian Church, a small, historic congregation located just a few miles west of Richmond, Virginia. Elpis is the Greek word meaning “expectant hope.” He also serves on the associate clinical staff of the Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care, Richmond, Virginia, both as a pastoral counselor and a ministerial assessment specialist, specializing in executive, clergy and relationship coaching. He is a graduate of the University of Florida and Lexington Theological Seminary and has done advanced clinical training in chaplaincy and pastoral counseling at the University of Kentucky Medical Center in Lexington, Kentucky, Children’s Medical Center and Parkland Hospital in Dallas, Texas and the Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care in Richmond, Virginia. He is a Certified Pastoral Counselor, an ACPE Practitioner, and a member of the American Association of Christian Counselors. He is a Certified Facilitator of the Prepare-Enrich relationship assessment and skills-building program and served as a volunteer chaplain for over twenty years with the CJW Medical Center campuses in Richmond, Virginia. His avocational interests include playing the piano and drawing. He is very happily married to his wife Elizabeth Yeamans Simrell, a free-lance writer, who is also a Certified Facilitator for the Prepare-Enrich program. Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

1 comment

  1. Thanks, Paul! I could hear your calming and reassuring voice I read your devotional. I hope you and your lovely wife are doing well. Craig was awesome this summer. I hadn’t gotten up for 3 years. It was special being up there with Rober Sharp, Jimmy Perkins, Sarah and Andy Trezza (who I actually taught when he was in 2nd grade!), Chris Davis, and lots of new friends as well. I hope you get to get up to the mountain again soon. It’s always a special time as you well know!
    Take care!

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