April 16, 2012

Names of God: Elohim

The Three Sisters area in Scotland

“In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” (Genesis 1:1)

I love the outdoors. The beauty of a sunrise in the crisp morning. The awesome wonder of a full moon. The power of the waves that surge and crash on the beach.

And yet, sometimes I forget—it didn’t just happen. There was a Creator behind it all.

In her book Praying the Names of God, Ann Spangler says that the ancient name Elohim “contains the idea of God’s creative power as well as His authority and sovereignty.”

I remember distinctly a time when God used His creation to speak to me. I was in Europe on a summer study abroad trip. My mom had just passed away less than a year earlier. My soul needed healing. I needed to know that, somehow, my life mattered.

Upper Lake near Glendalough in Ireland
And I found that in the British Isles. Lush green mountains, lakes that glistened, majesty beyond what I could have believed (remember, I live in the desert!). I’d seen pictures, but nothing compared with standing on a mountaintop, the wind breezing past me, and hearing the Creator of the Universe speak to my soul.

And you know what He said?

I’m a purposeful Creator.

At first, I thought it meant that He’d formed each of these amazing sights I was seeing on purpose. Every mountain, every rock, every stream glorified His name and was there because He’d created it.

And it did mean that.


But then, He spoke to my soul again, and revealed an even deeper truth.
Me and the Irish countryside
 
I’m a purposeful Creator.

It dawned on me. He’d created all of this beauty around me, but He’d also created me. He’d placed me in this world at just the right moment, with just the right family, in just the right place. He knew what I would experience and go through, how I’d doubt and question. He was sovereign and had full authority over my life and over the whole world. (And still does!)

I realized my life has purpose because He created me.

And I was created for a purpose: to glorify Him, the Creator. To glorify Elohim.

Your Turn: Has God ever used His creation to speak to you? If so, how?

18 comments:

  1. ALL the time! One of the strongest ways He "talks" to me.
    ~ Wendy

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    1. Isn't it awesome when we can see the Creator by seeing his creation?

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  2. I love nature! I grew up in a small farming community- I miss it now that I live in the "big city".
    Thanks for taking me down memory lane today. Great post.

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    1. Glad to help! I've always lived in the suburbs of a big city, but I do envy the "simple life" that people who live in those rural communities can have.

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  3. Yay! I love, love, love this. We need to have a chat sometime about studying abroad! One of the best decisions I ever made...(which I really didn't make so much as just sorta fell into). Yes, there were soooo many times during my time abroad where God's creation spoke to me.

    I love how you talked God being a purposeful creator. God's creative side is one of my favorite things about him...maybe because I feel like that's how I connect with him. But he didn't just create for the heck of it...he had purpose. Love it!

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    1. Agreed about chatting about our study abroad experiences! Mine was only for a summer, but it changed me totally. I loved it. I'm hoping to go back to Europe with my hubby next year! Fingers crossed!

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  4. Nature is one of my channels of connection with God. I can feel His presence while watching a bird taking a bath underneath my tree. Or when I study the perfect patterns of my tabby cat's fur. And yes, most definitely YES, when I'm outside feeling small in the midst of the overwhelming beauty of the landscape. (I'm jealous you've been to Europe...it's one of the things I'm saving up for so our whole family can experience it... someday, God-willing.) Welcome back.

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    1. It can be overwhelming to see the hugeness of God's creation, but it makes it that much more amazing to know He created us and He has a purpose for us.

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  5. Your post gave me chills this morning, Lindsay.
    Chills.
    So, so affirming.
    I can lose sight of the fact that God created me for this time, for a purpose ...
    And whenever I walk by the ocean, God speaks to me. I am reminded of his sovereignty and his power.

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    1. Ah, yes, the ocean. I love walking along the beach and hearing the roar of the waves. Such beauty. Such majesty.

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  6. Love this! Absolutely beautiful, like you! God has spoken many times to me through creation. One of the most powerful times was in Thailand!

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    1. Aw, friend! You're too sweet. I've never been to Asia but it sounds like a great experience.

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  7. I often think of His creation when I hear someone putting down another person. It just always grates on me, especially when God reminds me He created the "greatest of these" and the "least of these", and He loves them all the same.

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    1. Oh, Sarah, what a beautiful insight! Thanks so much for sharing that.

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  8. So pretty! I just LOVE all the green. Yes, I have had almost the same experience when I visited Slovakia. I'll probably blog about it when it gets closer to my trip there in June.

    Sigh. Isn't God so wonderful? What a personal God we serve. He knows each of His children.

    Great post!

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    1. I know...I miss the green for sure! And I can't wait to read your blog about Slovakia stuff. :) So glad you get to go this year!!

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  9. Wow, I read your post immediately after reading Lisa Jordan's post about finding quiet for God. Love it!

    God speaks to me a lot in "object lessons." Maybe because I'm a teacher at heart and a visual person, so these really speak to me.

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    1. I just love it when I hear God's truth in more than one place and He's saying the same thing over and over. Sometimes it takes that to drill something into my head! :P

      I'm a visual person too! One reason why nature leaves me breathless.

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