Tag Archives: Silly

Silly Things I Could Be

Many are the plans in a person’s heart,
    but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.

Proverbs 19:21 (NIV)

I couldn’t help but think of my last podcast episode about “appointed time” when I read this proverb in today’s chapter.

Jesus said:

“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.”

Matthew 7:7-8

I have spent most of my earthly journey asking for God to lead me, seeking God’s purposes for my life, and knocking on doors of opportunity in anticipation that they might be the entrance to a new stretch of my journey that God had ordained. Which, in turn, leads me back to asking God to lead me. It’s been such a core motivation along the way that I don’t think I’ve ever stopped to think how much it has shaped and informed the entire journey itself.

There are so many plans I can make in my creative and never-tiring Type Four imagination. You’d laugh if you heard some of the crazy thoughts and colorful ideas I can come up with and the lives I imagine leading. The monk, the vagabond backpacker, the professor, the professional actor, the stranger, the road warrior, the recluse, the secret millionaire philanthropist, the ex-patriot, the lone biker of the apocalypse, the Dude… I could go on, but you get the point. My brain can constantly make up potential roles for myself of what I imagine would be really cool for my life journey to look like.

Then, there is the asking, seeking, and knocking that spiritually keeps my feet grounded on the actual journey I’m trekking (with all of its own cool peaks and painful, dramatic, valleys) that has led me to this place at this time. And, though I never planned to be here, like the proverb I have no doubt that I am right where God has purposed for me to be even though I don’t always see it all clearly. Life could look like a lot of things. I could even chase after any number of those crazy paths (To Wendy: Don’t worry, Luv. I’m just waxing hypothetical!), but my heart’s desire is for this life to accomplish God’s purposes. When my wayward, creative hearts starts spinning tempting fantasies, my spirit keeps my feet contentedly grounded.

In the quiet this morning, I’m enjoying laughing at all of the silly plans I could conceive and spin for myself. I also find my heart feeling so grateful for my life. My realization this morning, as I mull it all over, is that I continue to receive, I continue to find, and I continue to have new doors open even as I never cease asking, seeking, and knocking.

Time to seek what this day has for me, my friend. Thank you for reading.

<— Click on Solomon for an indexed list of previous chapter-a-day posts from this series from Proverbs!

About This Post

These chapter-a-day posts began in 2006. It’s a very simple concept. I endeavor each weekday to read one chapter from the Bible. I then blog about my thoughts, insights, and feelings about the content of that chapter. Everyone is welcome to share this post, like this post, or add your own thoughts in a comment. Thank you to those who have become faithful, regular or occasional readers along the journey along with your encouragement.

In 2019 I began creating posts for each book, with an indexed list of all the chapters for that book. You can find the indexed list by clicking on this link.

Prior to that, I kept a cataloged index of all posts on one page. You can access that page by clicking on this link.

You can also access my audio and video messages, as well.

tomvanderwell@gmail.com @tomvanderwell

My Life: A Photo Abecedarius

Crazy Family LRV is for “Vander Well.” We are slightly strange, but also fun and loving family. Seriously, I know I’ve posted it a million times, but I never get tired of this picture. It so perfectly captures the crew.

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The Misplaced Love of Tradition

Sheet music for the hymn "Now the Day is ...
Sheet music for the hymn “Now the Day is Over” (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good.
His love endures forever.
Give thanks to the God of gods.
His love endures forever.
Give thanks to the Lord of lords:
His love endures forever.
Psalm 136:1-3 (NIV)

A few years back a colleague of mine began grilling me over a period of time about worship. His church had recently eschewed the traditional old hymns of the church and switched to a more contemporary form of music. Being one for whom change is a difficult thing, my friend was distraught by this change and was anxious to make a case for why it was wrong for his church to have done so.

I can remember the conversation as we rode in the car together, my friend sarcastically referring to what he called “7-11” songs: “You sing the same seven words eleven times.”

He didn’t get a sympathetic audience from me, I’m afraid. I understood his emotions. I was raised on the great hymns of the faith, too. I miss hearing them and singing those beautiful four part harmonies. But, things change. Music changes. Styles change. As for my friends disregard for singing the same line repetitively, that is a musical device that has existed for centuries. You can use today’s psalm as evidence. The phrase “His love endures forever” is repeated 26 times in 26 verses (I guess this would have to be labeled a “4-26” song). Some of the psalms of ascent we’ve read recently are far shorter than most of the popular worship songs of today, and as traveling music I have to believe they were sung over and over again.

We human beings are funny people. Sometimes change is difficult for us, and I find that our love of traditions can at times be stronger than our love of the Creator or of others. Rather than experience the grief of change, we go through the mental and spiritual gymnastics required to cloak change in half-baked theological or biblical arguments which make it look “wrong,” “improper,” or even “sinful.” What a silly waste of time and energy.

I’m glad that despite our foolishness “His love endures forever.”

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“Yeah. He’s ‘That Kid'”

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The Pella VLs asked me to shoot some family photos of them in the fall colors this weekend. Wendy and Suzanna went along to help corral and entertain the three VL children. It is always a monumental task to get three young children to all look at the camera and smile at the same time. As usual, I shot hundreds of frames and came up with a handful of decent shots.

As I was going through the photos with Wendy and Suzanna last night, we found ourselves howling with laughter at the number of silly faces young Aaron [the middle child – shocking] created in an endless effort of non-conformity. I just had to share a few.