Ron VanderwellRon Vanderwell

Ron Vanderwell

Ron Vanderwell recently became the senior pastor of New Life Church in New Lenox, Illinois. He has been a pastor for 22 years, serving as a church planter for the previous 12 years at The Gathering in Sacramento, California, and before that as a pastor in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Ron and his wife, Deb, have three sons: John, Adam, and Jake. Ron shares more of his reflections on “squinting” for God in his blog at

July 29, 2014

Living Without a Story

Luke 12:13-21
This is how it will be with whoever stores up things for themselves but is not rich toward God.
—Luke 12:21

July 28, 2014

The Importance of Telling Stories

Mark 8:34-38
If anyone is ashamed of me and my words . . . .
—Mark 8:3

July 27, 2014

One Page at a Time

Matthew 6:25-34
Do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.
—Matthew 6:34

July 26, 2014

Spoiler Alert: God Wins!

Revelation 21:1-5
I am making everything new!
—Revelation 21:5

July 25, 2014

Looking for Clues

James 1:5-8
If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God . . . and it will be given to you.
—James 1:5

July 24, 2014

Resisting God: Pretending

Isaiah 29:11-14
These people come near to me with their mouth and honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.
—Isaiah 29:13

July 23, 2014

Resisting God: The Silent Treatment

1 Thessalonians 5:16-22
Pray continually.
—1 Thessalonians 5:17

July 22, 2014

Resisting God: Defiance

Luke 15:11-24
The younger son got together all he had, set off for a distant country and there squandered his wealth in wild living.
—Luke 15:13

July 21, 2014

Wrong Story?

Ephesians 2:1-10
We are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
—Ephesians 2:10

July 20, 2014

Finding Your Story

James 4:13-17
You ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.”
—James 4:15

July 19, 2014

Just When You Think You Know...

Acts 1:1-9
They gathered around him and asked him, “Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?”
—Acts 1:6

July 18, 2014


Acts 9:1-9
He fell to the ground and heard a voice say to him, “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?”
—Acts 9:4

July 17, 2014

Trust in God’s Timing

1 Samuel 24:1-13
The LORD forbid that I should do such a thing to my master . . . for he is the anointed of the LORD.
—1 Samuel 24:6

July 16, 2014

Nervous About God’s Timing

1 Samuel 13:5-15
Saul replied, “. . . I felt compelled to offer the burnt offering.”
—1 Samuel 13:11-12

July 15, 2014

When God Shows Up

Genesis 39:1-5
The LORD was with Joseph . . . .
—Genesis 39:2

July 14, 2014

God’s Long Story

Genesis 12:1-7
The LORD had said to Abram, “Go from your country . . . to the land I will show you.”
—Genesis 12:1

July 13, 2014

God Is Faithful to His Story

Philippians 2:1-13
Continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.”
—Philippians 2:12-13

July 12, 2014

A Death to Life Story

Luke 9:21-26
[Jesus] said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.”
—Luke 9:23

July 11, 2014

Gospel Stories: Death, Then Life

Matthew 16:21-28
Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. “Never, Lord!” he said. “This shall never happen to you!”
—Matthew 16:22

July 10, 2014

Who Is My Storyteller?

Psalm 139:1-4, 15-16
All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.
—Psalm 139:16

July 9, 2014

A Story or a Picture?

Isaiah 43:1-4
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you . . . .
—Isaiah 43:2

July 8, 2014

Suspense in God’s Story

Romans 8:18-25
The creation waits in eager expectation . . . .
—Romans 8:19

July 7, 2014

Trouble in God’s Story

Genesis 3:1-19
In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.
—John 16:33

July 6, 2014

God’s Response: Writing a Happy Ending

Revelation 21:1-5
He will wipe every tear from their eyes.
—Revelation 21:4

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