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September 29, 2006

Chapter-a-Day: 2 Samuel 3

The king spoke to his servants: "You realize, don't you, that today a prince and hero fell victim of foul play in Israel?" 2 Samuel 3:38 (TM)

I remember watching Ken Burns' documentary on the Civil War, and one of the things that struck me was the fact that those on opposite sides of the battle line often knew each other well. Men who were brothers, friends and comrades in arms at West Point found themselves facing each other on the battle field. David's conflicts with the house of Saul and the tribes of Israel were a painful struggle. David never lost sight of the fact that Saul was the anointed king and that Saul's followers were his fellow countrymen. When Abner, the general of Saul's army who had hunted David on Saul's behalf, was murdered - David called him a "prince" and a "king". Once again we see David as a picture of the coming Jesus, who would look at his executioners and say "Father, forgive them for they know not what they do."

September 27, 2006

Chapter-a-Day 2 Samuel 2

Violence One day Abner son of Ner set out from Mahanaim with the soldiers of Ish-Bosheth son of Saul, headed for Gibeon. Joab son of Zeruiah, with David's soldiers, also set out. They met at the Pool of Gibeon, Abner's group on one side, Joab's on the other. Abner challenged Joab, "Put up your best fighters. Let's see them do their stuff." 2 Samuel 2:12-14 (TM)

"Boys will be boys." Wendy and I were watching football on Sunday and Wendy commented on all the jawing, smack, and trash-talk that was going on between the players. It really hasn't changed in thousands of years. I'm not saying it's the most admirable quality, and it has gotten the world into more bad than good. John Eldredge writes about the more admirable side of these qualities in Wild at Heart. He discusses how God intentionally made males looking for a battle to fight, an adventure to live and a woman to save. In today's chapter, you can feel the tension between the boys, Abner and Joab, as they lead their respective teams to the pool of Gibeon - see each other across the pool. You can hear the trash talking begin, the boasting and challenges being hurled at one another until they just had to settle things once and for all.

Flickr photo courtesy of SvobodaIT

September 26, 2006

Chapter-a-Day 2 Samuel 1

Then David sang this lament over Saul and his son Jonathan, and gave orders that everyone in Judah learn it by heart. Yes, it's even inscribed in The Book of Jashar. 2 Samuel 1:17-18 (TM)

One of the things I love about David is that he is both warrior and artist. Through his youth the scripture tells us that he was constantly playing his harp and writing songs in his free time. When he hears of Saul and Jonathon's death, the first thing he does is write a song to express his grief. We all need a creative outlet - a way to express our thoughts and emotions metaphorically. It's part of being made in the image of a Creator - an artist - the Artist.

September 25, 2006

Vander Well New Briefs Sep 25

Newsies_1Extra! Extra! Here's the latest skinny:

  • On a sad note, Grandpa and Grandma Vander Well are closing up the playhouse on Lake of the Ozarks this week. Grandma said Tim was going to be there this past weekend for one last visit before the folks shut 'er up and head back to Des Moines.
  • Speaking of Tim, he's got his own apartment in Lawrence, Kansas. He'll be working on a project in Topeka for another year or so. He found the social life a bit more to his liking in Lawrence, and found an apartment where he can set up a shop and work on his guitars.
  • We had a great time Saturday in Iowa City with Wendy's siblings. We joined Becky and Josh at Jesse and Heidi's apartment. What a blast. We hadn't seen Jesse and Heidi since the Wedding, so it was great to all get together. Unfortunately, we forgot our camera!
  • Becky was inbetween work contracts but plans to head back for another stint in Rhinelander, Wisconsin. She still plans to sail as a nurse on Mercy Ships, but the ship is still under construction and so the mission trip is on hold for now.
  • Taylor and Madison had all the Homecoming festivities this past weekend. Sounds like all went well. Pella won the football game and the dance was a success - though Taylor looked particularly dead at play rehearsal Saturday morning.
  • Taylor is waiting for her confirmation packet from Global Expeditions so she can start sending out support letters for her mission trip to Costa Rica this Christmas.
  • Play rehearsals continue for The Christmas Post (plan now to attend Nov 30, Dec 1,2,3,7, or 8). Wendy's doing a great job and the cast is wonderful. Wendy has been pleasantly surprised at how quickly the cast is picking up the music and choreography.

September 22, 2006

Chapter-a-Day I Samuel 30

And suddenly David was in even worse trouble. There was talk among the men, bitter over the loss of their families, of stoning him. I Samuel 30:6 (TM)

As much success as David had enjoyed, there is no such thing as leadership without trial. When you lead human beings, you step into the spotlight - and standing in the spotlight makes you one easy target. You set yourself up for criticism, ridicule, derision and in extreme cases like David's - potential death or bodily harm. We all have our heroes of leadership, but I guarantee that every one of them took their share of shots from the peanut gallery. Why should your or I be any different?

September 21, 2006

It's Gansta Day!

Ganstuuh_day The girls' homecoming week continues. I received this picture from Taylor after "Gansta Day" (for you grandparental types - that's 'gansta' as in "gangster" as in the urban rap music you can get to the radio channel knob fast enough to turn off). What makes it funnier is that you couldn't get further from the urban gangsta rap culture than in white-anglo-protestant-small-town Pella :)

September 20, 2006

Why I Don't Golf

Golf_2 I played in the local Rotary club's annual golf outing last night. While I love being on the serene atmosphere of the course, I was reminded why I don't golf:

  • I would have to play ALOT to play well
  • The more I play, the more I care
  • The more I care, the more frustrated I get
  • I can't possibly spend so much money on a regular basis for that much frustration

I Samuel 28

Saul disguised himself by putting on different clothes. Then, taking two men with him, he went under the cover of night to the woman and said, "I want you to consult a ghost for me. Call up the person I name." I Samuel 28:8 (TM)

Isn't it funny how we try to hide, or disguise ourselves when we're doing something we know we shouldn't? Just the fact that we don't want to be seen should give us a clue, shouldn't it?

September 19, 2006

Girls' Homecoming Week

80sday0906lr It's Homecoming week for the girls. They spent Saturday decorating the hallways of the school with their respective classes. Madison stopped by yesterday to get all of her Vikings regalia (jersey, sweatshirt, earrings) for "Obsessive Fan Day". Today was "80's Day" and Taylor happened to stop by with her friend Rachel on the way to school. Oh my. I had flashbacks of my own high school days (1980-1984, thank you very much) - I lived that nightmare :)

Chapter-a-Day I Samuel 27

Godfather Achish trusted David and said to himself, "He has become so odious to his people, the Israelites, that he will be my servant forever." I Samuel 27:12 (NIV)

It's sort of amazing that David, who humiliated the Philistines and Goliath of Gath, would now be welcomed by Achish King of Gath to live amongst them. It's even more surprising that David could continue to earn Achish's trust and favor. I couldn't help but think of The Godfather: "Keep your friends close and your enemies closer." David had an uncanny ability (or God given gift) to understand people and win their favor, which served him well - especially throughout the 20 odd years that he was a renegade and a fugitive.

Flickr photo courtesy of capitrueno