Week 47 Thursday

No Need to Shout

Today’s scripture selection: Ecclesiastes 9-10

Key verse: Ecclesiastes 9:17

Have you noticed how noisy our world has become?

Even though I live on the outskirts of a moderately large city; even though I try and make it a priority to have some “quiet time” each day – the noise is steadily encroaching upon my chosen lifestyle.

Sometimes I get up very, very early in the morning – and just sit with a cup of tea – not to read; perhaps not even to pray (though that’s a good time to do it) – just to sit quietly before the day begins.

Before the loud music; the blaring commercials; the sounds of demolition or new construction; the honking horns and squealing brakes; the insistent demands of busy day – I sit quietly.

And, before long, the noise comes.

In the midst of all this clamor, consider these words from Ecclesiastes:

“The quiet words of the wise are more to be heeded than the shouts of a ruler of fools.”

Let those words sink in for just a moment.

No need to shout.  No need to give in the counsel of fools just because they are shouting.

Let some quiet, prayerful reflection rule the day.

And, in the “still, small voice of God” – listen for true wisdom.

Prayer: Father, in a very noisy world; tune my ears to hear your loving and wise counsel.  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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