Genesis 1:1 – 2:3
Something From Nothing
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Genesis 1:1 – 2:3
Something From Nothing
Richard Niell Donovan
Have you ever experienced a trauma? Like the death of a spouse—or a child—or a best friend? Like coming home to an empty house and finding a note that reads, “I’ve left you.” Like living with an alcoholic. Like having the doctor say, “Cancer!” Like giving in to your boyfriend only to have him dump you.
Think about a time when you suffered such an experience. Get in touch with those feelings again. How did you feel? Lost in darkness. Alone. Numb.
Your situation is like that in which God began to create. There was no form or substance, only a void—a deep, dark hole of nothingness. Out of that nothingness, God created something. Out of that nothingness, God created everything.
Out of our nothingness—out of our most terrible experiences, God can create something good in our lives. Here’s how:
Genesis tells us that God creates by moving.…
“God’s Spirit was hovering (some translations say “moving”)
over the surface of the waters” (1:2).
But we are so caught up in our own ways of living and moving that we fail to experience God’s moving.
• Our own moving dominates us.
• We take little time to think about what God wants, because we are so busy thinking about what we want.
• We don’t give God much of a chance to control our lives, because we want to be in control. We must do the moving.
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But notice that creation didn’t happen until God moved. Our re-creation can’t happen unless we allow God to move in us.
• If we want God to create something from our nothingness, we must give him room to move in our lives.
• We must give up control to the Master Controller.
• We must open ourselves to God, giving him our hurt and pain.
• We must allow the Redeemer to transform our pain into Kingdom gain.
God creates by moving. We must give God room to move in our hearts and our lives if anything good is to come from our nothingness. God is the only one who can make it happen.
Genesis also tells us that God creates by speaking.
“God said, ‘Let there be light,’
and there was light” (1:3).
God is so powerful that he has only to speak, and he creates the world—he brings order from the chaos. When your world is chaotic, don’t you long for a word from God to bring sense to your life.
“He speaks, and the sound of his voice
Is so sweet, the birds hush their singing.”
(From the Gospel song, “In the Garden”)
That’s what we want to hear! A word from God reminds us that he is still in charge, so we can still hope.
God creates by speaking. He spoke, and that which had been void and chaotic took shape and became a living universe. When your life is void and chaotic, give the chaotic mess to God. He will speak again, if we will only let him.
Genesis also tells us that God creates by separating. And God separated the light from the darkness.
Catherine Marshall told about her friend, Marge, who boarded a plane bound for Cleveland. As they sat on the runway, waiting for takeoff at dusk, she noticed a strange phenomenon. Looking across the aisle, she could see through the distant windows a beautiful sunset that lit up the sky in wonderful orange and red colors—on that side of the plane. But, looking through the window beside her, she could see only darkness. As she reflected on that, she heard a voice from within. The voice said:
“You have noticed the windows.
Your life, too, will contain happy, beautiful times,
but will also contain dark shadows.
Here is a lesson I want to teach you
to save you much heartache
and to allow you to “abide in Me”
with continual peace and joy.
You see, it doesn’t matter which window you look through;
this plane is still going to Cleveland.
So it is with your life.
You have a choice.
You can dwell on the gloomy picture.
Or you can focus on the bright things
and leave the dark, ominous situations to Me.
I alone can handle them anyway.
And the final destination is not influenced
by what you see or feel along the way.”
Try to remember that story, and recall it when your life seems full of darkness. God created by separating the light from the darkness. Into the nothingness of our darkness, God brings his divine light.
The apostle John wrote about Jesus, the light of the world. He said:
“In him was life, and the life was the light of men.
The light shines in the darkness,
and the darkness hasn’t overcome it” (John 1:4-5).
John also told us about heaven. He said:
There will be no night, and they need no lamp light;
for the Lord God will illuminate them (Revelation 2:5).
After all, the light which God created was simply a reflection of his own eternal light—with which he wants to light our lives.
What about you? Is this a time of great light for you, or is it a time of great darkness? Is it a joyful time, or a painful time? Does God seem present and powerful, or does he seem distant and unaware?
God loves you, and can be a part of your life right now, if you will let him.
• Can you feel God moving within you?
• Can you feel God speaking to you?
• Can you sense God separating your darkness from his light?
Let God create something out of your nothingness.
• Let God move you.
• Let God speak to you.
• Let God separate your darkness by accepting the light of the world, Jesus Christ, into your life. Recommit your life to creative, Godly living.
Out of your nothingness, God can create something—all you will ever need—all you will ever want—if you just entrust your life to his power and plan—right now.
Scripture quotations from the World English Bible.
Copyright 2006, Richard Niell Donovan