Week 33 Tuesday


Today’s scripture selection: First Chronicles 5-9

Key verses: First Chronicles 9:1

     “All Israel was listed in the genealogies recorded in the book of the kings of Israel and Judah.  They were taken captive to Babylon because of their unfaithfulness.”

Life has consequences – sometimes very serious ones.

While it makes for difficult reading, all of the sections of the Bible that talk about people being judged or exiled or losing their lives because of their unfaithfulness have this common theme.

This thread – that free choice carries with it responsibility – is an important one to see.

It’s tempting to sit back and cry out “How good a loving God be so unfair!  Where’s the compassion?  Where’s the love?”

But it seems to me that when we are most tempted to do that – it has something to do with our own unwillingness to accept the consequences of some of our own life choices.

It’s easier to blame

  • The bad guy (or gal) who just doesn’t understand us
  • Our parents
  • Our bad luck and the “rotten cards” we were dealt
  • The economy
  • Our health or fitness or lack of it
  • Washington
  • God
  • Just about anyone.

It’s easier to blame (you fill in the blank) than to admit that sometimes we make wrong choices, and suffer the consequences.  People get hurt.  We get hurt.  Our faith-walk gets hurt.  And there is no one to blame but ourselves.  That’s the bad news.

What’s the good news?  A loving, understanding, forgiving God listens when we admit our bad choices and turn back for guidance.  It’s called repentance….and grace.

Prayer: Almighty, all loving God, I thank you that you love all your children…even your rebellious ones.  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

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