Spiritual Roots

When you are gone, as we all will be one day, what will your legacy be?

I am not talking about how much money or property you will leave behind.  I’m not talking about how many children you will have borne.  Nor am I talking about how much – and what kind of – mark you will have made in your chosen profession. 

On the other hand, in a way I am talking about all of these things – and more.

Because I am wondering what kind of spiritual legacy you will leave for others.

Last week I began a new sermon series, an overview of the Scriptures, which will undoubtedly take my congregation and me down a lot of trails of exploration.  We began “in the beginning” – with the very first verses of the book of Genesis.  I spoke about spiritual roots – and how they are essential to have – in an ever changing, ever shifting world.

I spoke about how those first few chapters of Genesis ask three essential questions:

1. Where did you come from?

2. Where are you going?

3. Where is God in the process?

I suggest that if you don’t get the answers to those questions right, your life will only be a lot of rabbit trails ultimately leading nowhere.  I further suggest, no I implore you, to embrace the idea that following God and God’s purposes for your life are the key to everything else you will ever do or ever be.

For me, that means being a Christ follower.

How about you?

I don’t always know where I am going, or how I am going to get there but I am convinced that following Christ is at the core of it all.  I also believe that the spiritual legacy I will leave behind, if I remain faithful, will be a blessing to others.

Not because I am such a wonderful  or perfect person but because God is that good, that loving, that full of grace.

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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