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The Blessings of Knowing God as Creator!!

Lorna Nichols - Monday, January 30, 2012

Genesis opens with the words, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.”  Genesis describes the beginning of the universe, not the beginning of God.   God has always existed and always will.  In the beginning, God created our world from nothing.   Before time began, the earth had no shape or form and was totally dark and lifeless.  There was no sun, no moon, no stars, no trees, no birds, no people, no worries, and no problems.  

Suddenly, The Holy Spirit began hovering over the waters” (Genesis 1:2).  God spoke and by His Word the world came into being.  God’s Word caused the action that created the world and everything in it.           

 What does this tell us about God? It tells us that God existed before the heavens and the earth were formed, and then at some point, years ago in the distant past, God created the world.  It tells us that God is our Creator.  The Hebrew word “Elohim” is the primary name of God in the Old Testament for God as Creator.  It means “mighty,” “strong,” or “all-powerful.”  The world didn’t come into existence by itself as a result of a series of random events, but rather our mighty, strong, all-powerful God created it.  As Creator, our God is not a hands-off God who sits back watching random events; but rather, our God is a hands-on God who is active and in control.

 I don’t know about you, but knowing God as Creator has greatly blessed me.  No—it’s more than greatly blessed me.  It’s exceedingly blessed me in an awesomely incredible way. I say this because knowing God as Creator gives me hope. When I’m troubled, I don’t depend on random events to uplift my spirits. When I’m sick, I don’t look to random events for my healing. When I need help deciding which way to go—OR— handling the stresses of life’s ups and downs—OR—remembering God’s promises in Scripture—OR—even recalling answers on tests, I don’t wait for a series of random events to happen at the right time. Instead, I call on God, our Creator, Elohim in prayer, for I know He is still in control.  Scripture tells us, God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them” (Romans 8:28).  

 When you need hope—OR—comfort—Or—protection—Or strength—Or guidance—Or revelation—Or revival—Or renewal—Or restoration, you don’t have to just sit back and hope a series of random events will make things better. You can call on God, our Creator, and know things will get better because God is working everything out for your good.

 

Written by,

Lorna Daniels Nichols

Website: www.bigpictureofthebible.com

I Am Praying for You

Lorna Nichols - Friday, January 27, 2012

"I am praying for you." These are some of the kindest words a friend could say. Just hearing them can lift one's spirit very quickly. They may not lessen the pain or sorrow immediately. But it does allow you to experience some light in an otherwise dark moment.

Not long ago I ran into an old friend. She is one of those people that you may not see very often, but when you do, it is easy to pick up from where you left off.  At that time I had shared something that was heavy on my heart. I did not intend to share, but the words started to flow. I now know that was one of God's divine appointments. Several weeks later, we ran into each other again. The first thing she said to me was those five powerful little words, "I am praying for you." She had taken my burden and had come to the Father's throne of grace on my behalf. Hearing her say those words lifted my spirit more than anything else could have at that moment.

There have been a few times I have shared what was on my heart and really had no idea if I had been heard. When my friend told me about her prayer, I was humbled. The Apostle Paul was always encouraging the believers to pray for one another and for him too.  My friend was a Paul to me that day.

As I reflected on that encounter, I thought about my own prayer life. Have I been as faithful to pray for others? Did I hear an unspoken prayer request? How many opportunities have I missed in coming before the throne of grace for someone else? I must confess, I am on the ball when there is a crisis. It is when everything is going well that I have dropped the ball. That is human nature. No excuse-Scripture reminds me that I have a new nature, the mind of Christ.

Is the Lord bringing someone to mind as you read these words? Pray for that person right now. I don't mean the generic "God bless everyone" type of prayer. Be specific. Then if you meet that person one day, encourage her heart as my friend encouraged me by saying, "I am praying for you".

Written by,

Barbara Hodges

For other musings by Barb, visit her blog at  http://www.purplepen-barbsmusings.blogspot.com.

 

Pointers on How to Read the Bible!

Lorna Nichols - Sunday, January 22, 2012

I’ve often heard people say they don’t enjoy reading the Old Testament. Some say they can’t understand the Old Testament and others say they just can’t relate to it.  With this in mind, I’d like to offer a few suggestions on how to get more out of your Bible reading, both the Old Testament and the New Testament.  

  1. Begin with Prayer: Ask God to help you understand His Word. I usually begin by praying something like this: Heavenly Father, Open my eyes to see the wonderful truths in your Word. Prepare my mind and heart to receive fresh new insights into Your Word.
  2. Start Reading at the Beginning of a Story: I used to flip through my Bible and grab whatever passage I came to first.  After reading a few sentences, I’d realize that I didn’t have any idea what was going on in the passages I was reading. Starting from the beginning helps you get the complete picture and message of Scripture.     
  3. Read Thoughtfully Asking Questions: If you want to get more out of your Bible reading, ask questions as you read.  Ask: Who, What, When, Where, Why, and How. This allows the Holy Spirit, who is our Teacher, to reveal more of God’s spiritual Truths. 
  4. Look for Lessons Learned: Look for what Scripture is revealing to you about God’s Character vs. Man’s Character.  Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal to you how these lessons apply to you personally.
  5. Identify a Thought for the Day: Before finishing your Bible reading, identify a thought for the Day. This is God’s personal message to you based on the passage of Scripture you read. You can then meditate on this “thought” periodically throughout the day. This will give you the inspiration, peace of mind, and spiritual direction you need to make it through the day.

Visit our website at www.bigpictureofthebible.com for resources designed to help you read and study your Bible.

 

 

Blessings & Love,

Lorna Daniels Nichols

Success through the Study of God's Word

Lorna Nichols - Friday, January 20, 2012

Do you want your life to be full of purpose and Godly success? Do you want your sisters, brother, sons, daughters, your entire family to be successful as well?  Deuteronomy 8:18 says, “Remember the LORD your God. He is the one who gives you power to be successful.”  It follows that if we want to be successful, we have to seek God for guidance and follow His direction. One of the best ways to seek God and walk in the success He has to offer is to read and study His Word on a regular basis.  God speaks to us through Scripture. Through regular Bible reading and study, God reveals Himself, develops a special friendship with us, strengthens us and helps us navigate through life’s challenges.  

Now, there’s exciting news, for anyone who wants to connect with God through Scripture!!  We’ve created a Big Picture of the Bible video series. The complete video series is available on our website and best of all – it’s free! Bible study is now easier than ever with our Big Picture of the Bible video lessons. We invite you to check out one or both of our introductory lessons and see for yourself just how easy and rewarding Bible study with Big Picture of the Bible video lessons can be.

Click to view Introduction to the Old Testament OR Click to view Introduction to the New Testament.

We’d like to see more people experience the blessings that come from connecting with God through Scripture. With your help, we can create a Bible reading revolution! Here’s how. Post this message to facebook or send an email to your family and friends so that they too can benefit from our free Bible study video lessons. Encourage them to pass this on to their friends and their friends to pass it on to their friends. For more free Bible study resources, visit our website at bigpictureofthebible.com.

Blessings & Love in Christ,

Lorna Daniels Nichols

Email Address: Lorna@Bigpictureofthebible.com

Big Picture of the Bible Video Lessons

Lorna Nichols - Thursday, January 19, 2012

I can still remember the first time I tried to read the Bible all the way through from beginning to end.  I thought I could pick it up and read it like a novel. I started with Genesis and enjoyed the stories. I continued with Exodus and enjoyed it as well. However, the next book, Leviticus, would not be as endearing. After reading the first few chapters, my head was spinning. "What happened to the story? What's going on here?," I wondered.  I couldn’t understand anything I was reading and so I gave up.

Does this sound familiar?

Well, I have some exciting news for anyone who wants to more fully understand the complete story and message of the Bible. We've created a Big Picture of the Bible video series. The complete video series is available on our website and best of all -- it's free!  Understanding what the Bible is all about is now easier than ever with our Big Picture of the Bible video lessons. We invite you to check out one or both of our introductory lessons and see for yourself just how easy and rewarding Bible study with Big Picture of the Bible video lessons can be.

 View Introduction to the Old Testament OR View Introduction to the New Testament.

Friends tell friends about a great find.  Just think-- You can help others experience more meaningful Bible study and it won't cost you anything. All you have to do is share this good news with your family and friends. Click one of the buttons below to post this facebook or send an email to your friends. For more free Bible study resources, visit our website at www.bigpictureofthebible.com.

       

 

Looking for Certainty in an Uncertain World? Look to God!

Lorna Nichols - Friday, October 14, 2011

The one thing that’s certain about our economic forecast is that it’s uncertain. The housing market is still shaky. People are still struggling. Unemployment is still at an all time high. You might be among the many who are out of work and looking for a job – or – if you have a job, you’re probably overworked and underpaid. With so much uncertainty, isn’t it good to know you can still have some certainty in your life?  How?  I’m glad you asked. Scripture tells us that Whatever is good and perfect comes down to us from God our Father . . . He never changes” (James 1:17). God is always the same.  When you put your trust in Him, you’re never on shaky ground. You can always count on God. He is solid as a rock!! 

As Christians, we know this. Yet during times of trouble and uncertainty, God can seem far away. So, how do we rid ourselves of the negativism of uncertainty and step into the blessed rewards of certainty that our All-Powerful, All-Knowing, Everywhere God offers? Again we find the answer in Scripture, Come close to God, and God will come close to you” (James 4:8). One of the best ways to draw close to God is through Scripture. The more you read and meditate on God’s Word, the more He speaks and reveals Himself to you. Through Scripture, God develops a closer, more intimate friendship with you. He helps you navigate through life’s challenges. He strengthens you and grows you spiritually to become more and more like Christ.

 If you’re looking for certainty in an uncertain world, try reading and meditating on God’s Word.  If you want your family and friends to enjoy the blessed rewards of certainty in an uncertain world, share this post with them.  Just click the buttons below to post to FB, Tweet, or forward this link in an email message.  For more about our ministry, visit our website at http://bigpictureofthebible.com/ .     

Blessings and Love, Lorna Daniels Nichols

Let the Joy of the Lord Be Your Strength!!

Lorna Nichols - Tuesday, October 11, 2011

My family and friends will tell you that for the most part I am a positive, upbeat, can-do-this-with-God’s-help kind of person.  For me, the glass is never half-empty. It is half-full and at just the right time I know God is going to fill it back up to overflow. But with so much bad economic news and people all around me drifting into despair, I am finding it more and more difficult to maintain my usual level of optimism.  How about you? After all, when I ask a friend how they’re doing, I expect to hear, “Great!” or “Fine!”  I don’t expect to hear things like, “I could be doing better; I’m still looking for a job,” or “Not so good; I’m not sure how much longer we’ll be able to stay in our house.”

 With such discouraging news all around, it’s becoming more and more of a challenge maintaining my glass half-full perspective. I find myself asking, “How much longer, Lord? When will it be over? And oh, by the way, Lord, what am I supposed to do while I’m waiting on You to turn things around? The other day, as I was reading the story of Nehemiah in my Bible, I found the answer to my questions. Nehemiah 8:10 reads, “Don’t be dejected and sad, for the joy of the Lord is your strength!”  Do you want God to fill your glass up to overflow? Let the joy of the Lord be your strength!  How? I’m glad you asked. Just Offer Yourself to God! 

Nehemiah was a Jew living in Persia and serving as the king’s cupbearer. One day Nehemiah heard some very discouraging news about how terrible things were going for his people back home in Jerusalem. The city’s wall was still lying in ruin and the economic picture in Jerusalem was all gloom and doom. With such bad news, Jews living in Jerusalem were feeling powerless, helpless, and hopeless.  Sound familiar? What did Nehemiah do after hearing such bad news? Nehemiah offered Himself to God.  He fasted, prayed, and then got permission from the king to go to his homeland. Nehemiah went to Jerusalem, organized the people, and led them in an effort to rebuild the wall. It wasn’t easy. Nehemiah and his people experienced numerous attacks and sabotage from local groups opposed to the rebuilding effort.  In spite of this, they rebuilt the wall in just 52 days. Under Nehemiah’s leadership, they accomplished in 52 days what they hadn’t been able to do in the 90+ years since their return to Jerusalem. How?  The joy of the Lord gave Nehemiah strength!  You too can find strength to succeed in tough times.  Just Offer Yourself!! Instead of asking, “How much longer” or “When will it be over,” ask, “Lord, What do you want to do through me?”  Remember, God speaks to us through Scripture. If you want to read and more fully understand God’s Word, visit our Website at http://bigpictureofthebible.com/.   Lorna Daniels Nichols

 

Welcome to Big Picture of the Bible Blog!

Lorna Nichols - Friday, October 07, 2011
Welcome to our new blog!