A New Journey Begins

A New Journey Begins

Today’s Scripture Selection: Genesis 1-3

As I mentioned in my last post, today we begin an old journey in a new way.

Going “back to the beginning” we turn to Genesis – the book of beginnings.

Scholars are not in agreement about how this great, formative work came into being but – what else is new?

For our devotional purposes, I do not plan to worry over exactly how and when the ancient traditions were recorded.

What is important is that we recognize that without this book – much of the rest of scripture would be hard to fully understand.

These are our, and humanity’s, stories as told by one part of the family.

From the very beginning – the story unfolds.  If you try, you can probably picture our ancestors sitting around campfires spinning wonderful, exciting tales of the past which somehow, mysteriously are still part of our story today.

Creation, innocence, sin, guilt, murder, redemption, destruction, new beginnings, faith journeys that began long, long ago – and which still begin fresh today.

I encourage you to begin reading the “old, old story” once again – and, as much as possible, try to hear it as if you have never heard it before.

God still speaks to us from these ancient texts.  What is He saying to you today?

“In the beginning God…”

That says a lot – doesn’t it?

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 for “expectant hope.” 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, a member of the American Association of Christian Counselors, and a member of Spiritual Directors International. 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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