This week I found myself preaching on Jeremiah 29. It has some great and important things to say about God’s faithfulness through calamitous disaster and the formative role that cataclysm plays in our lives, but it’s hard to get at that with the giant neon sign pointing out the memory verse at verse 11.

Everyone’s seen graphics of this verse popping up all over their social media feeds. It’s the go-to verse for anyone needing a an out-of-context pick-me-up and it’s a classic. I did a google image search and was amused but not surprised by just how many there were. These are a sample of the best ones, lifted straight from a Google image search. I haven’t messed around with any of them, not even to correct the spelling or punctuation in some cases.

The verse is supposed to be about speaking comfort to exiled refugees taken captive to a foreign land following the destruction of their temple and their city, but we’re more familiar with it superimposed over deep waters

Or a sunset

Or an attractive white person meditating near a big tree.

The trifecta, of course is an attractive person watching a sunset over deep waters

But I don’t know why it’s always the backs of peoples’ heads.

The mosaic of images just keeps going.

I started to wonder how many other verses might have similar images. I started running searches for the most random verses I could think of to find one without a social media graphic to match it. And Google images did not disappoint

I can only assume these images are produced by a computer algorithm somewhere that’s been tasked with producing visual materials for every verse without worrying too much about the content. Please, please please God tell me there isn’t someone out there making these things by hand.

I… have nothing further to add. That’s enough theological research for one day.

Make of that what you will.




Garry with 2 Rs

Fathering a toddler with whom this blog has nothing to do has meant I haven’t had much room in my life for community theatre. But when a good friend of mine put out a casting call for my favourite Shakespeare with a vacancy for one of my favourite characters, I had to come out of reclusion for a few weeks.

Read more: Much Ado About Nothing

Hasn't been one of these for a while: Have a contextless plug for a community theatre show.

Read more: A Spider's Web

I swore I wasn’t going to do this. So I didn’t.

But then I swore I was going to write more, and then I also didn’t do that.

The thing is that the reason I don’t write much any more is because of the thing that I swore I wasn’t going to make this blog be about.

Perhaps it’s inevitable.

Read more: Anything but that

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