snowflakeAt the time of this posting I am sitting comfortably inside a warm house, sipping a cup of rich black coffee, waiting for the snow storm to pass – an event which someone at USA Today has called an “epic blizzard.”  Well, I don’t know about that, seems like overkill to me.  Then again, should the power go out and our little house in the woods grow slowly cold in the dark – I might re-think that labeling.

For now, though, I’m warm enough – and content enough – to simply muse on the theme of waiting.

Waiting can be difficult, no question about it.  Waiting for answers, for direction, for an apology, or the right time to make one.  Waiting for some sense that you are on the right path, or that it’s finally time to make that change you have been contemplating for so long.  Waiting for that conversation, or that second chance, or perhaps even that first chance that you know will make all the difference in the world.

Difficult or not, there is one thing that is helpful to keep in mind.

We do not wait alone, no matter how lonely the waiting might seem at times.

The One who created us, the One who watches over us, the One who determines how and when and why the universe ultimately unfolds as it does, waits with us.

Sometimes the waiting is confusing, frightening, seemingly pointless, but I do not believe it is.  In fact, I believe that sometimes the most important thing we can do is wait – if we consciously and prayerfully wait with God.

How can we make this period of seeming inaction the most fruitful it can be?

Sometimes by reading that which we have somehow been led to read.  Sometimes by listening to that music that draws us inside.  Sometimes by doodling.  Sometimes by letting ourselves take that much needed nap.  Sometimes by praying.  Sometimes by doing nothing at all.  Nothing, that is, except trusting that God – in God’s perfect timing – will lovingly reveal to us what that next most important step is to be.

Watching the snow fall outside my window, starting to slowly pile up around our little house in the woods, I am tempted to turn on the TV, double check the water supply, see if there is a new forecast, check to see if there is some new take on the “epic blizzard” moving up the coast.

I am not going to give into any of those temptations.

I am going to choose instead to “Be still” and “know that God is God.”

I am, for now, just going to wait – and trust – that all is just exactly how it is meant to be – “epic blizzard” or not.







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


  1. I just came upon your blog post and I love it. I can only imagine being in a little house in the woods, in a snow storm, writing, and drinking coffee. That sounds heavenly to me, but what I loved more than that is your faith in waiting on God. I have had some practice waiting, but when I finally got over the hump, I could look back and see how He was preparing me for where He wanted me to be. I am not always ready for what I think I want. I am grateful for the waiting today. God bless.

Leave a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: