Scripture selection: Luke 4:42-44

At daybreak, Jesus went out to a solitary place. The people were looking for him and when they came to where he was, they tried to keep him from leaving them. But he said, “I must proclaim the good news of the kingdom of God to the other towns also, because that is why I was sent.” And he kept on preaching in the synagogues of Judea.

No matter what form ministry takes, the question of calling is always an important one to consider.  What exactly is one being called to do in God’s service and to God’s glory?

Pastors, chaplains, teachers, evangelists, counselors and all those in ministry, ordained and lay, ask these questions – or at least they should.

It was no different for Jesus.

He was “called” as well.  And, though some tried to call him in another direction – He kept pressing forward toward is final destiny.

How about your ministry?

How about your particular vocational calling?

Are you on track; do you feel that you are at peace with the direction you believe God has called you to go?

Some, in reading this, may respond, “I don’t have a ministry – you’re the preacher – not me!”

But I believe we all have a vocational calling from God, and we are all challenged to find it and answer it faithfully.

So, again – how about your ministry?  How about your particular vocational calling?

I pray God’s blessing for you as you seek that most important direction – to find your unique way – to serve the living God.

And to God be the glory!

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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