A New Direction

c283837So…here we are – 2016.  Where would you like to go?  Better yet – where would you like to go with God – this year?

Would you like to grow closer to your friends or your family?

How about taking a look at a new job, or career, or vocation?

How’s your health?  Are you doing all you can to care for your mind and body?  How about your spirit?  Are you caring for your spiritual life as much as, deep down, you know you should?

Whatever you are feeling, hearing in the form of that “still, small, voice” within you – whatever you are sensing you are being called to be or do in this new year – I hope I can help.

In fact, I know I can.

This year, my wife and I are going to take this blog, indeed our ministry, in a new and exciting direction.  We invite you to join us regularly as we post devotional thoughts, Biblical references, articles, book reviews, artwork, links to resources, and much more.  We will do it with one prime purpose in mind:

To help you grow and live in faith.

This is why you might notice we have changed the name of our blog from THE MUSTARD SEED DAILY DEVOTIONAL to THE MUSTARD SEED – GROWING AND LIVING IN FAITH.

As a pastor, pastoral counselor, and certified PREPARE-ENRICH facilitator (more about that later) I want to use some of the great faith-based resources I have found to help you and those close to you grow, mature, and celebrate your relationship with God and with each other.  My wife Elizabeth will continue to contribute to this blog as well.  We hope that you will find the time you spend here well worth it.

We live in a world – a culture – that can be challenging for a person of faith.  It’s tough to have a strong marriage; raise your kids well; care for others – and yourself – as God intends.

There is a lot of help out there though.  Some of it is ancient wisdom, found in the Bible.  Some of it, though much newer, still taps into or compliments that same wonderful source.

If you spend much time on the internet – you know it can be a very mixed blessing.  In fact, there is much you are better to avoid, but I hope the offerings you find here will be something you can value and feel free to share with others.

I look forward to what is ahead – and to your joining us along the way.

Thank you “faithful readers” for staying with us in this time of transition.

Welcome new readers.

We’re glad you’re here.

Paul and Elizabeth












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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