My husband teaches congregational Bible study at our church about 2x a month. I can attest to the hours he spends pacing, reading, pacing, praying and pacing. I’m always amazed at the insights God gives him. Every time I write them down, I wish there was something more I could do with them. I’m going to be sharing some of those nuggets on here. They’ll just be brief thoughts, not lengthy posts. (Well, I may insert my 2 cents every now and then, can’t promise anything.) I have a feeling this will evolve over time – let’s see!
Anyway, I thought it would be a good idea to introduce you to my hubs before the first edition of Nelson’s Nuggets is posted later this week, so I asked him a bunch of
annoying fun questions.
Hi Honey! Thanks for telling my readers a little bit about yourself!
- Where are you from? I was born and raised in Kuwait – a small Muslim state in the Middle East that borders Iraq and Saudi Arabia. That’s where I spent my childhood days (except for 2.5 yrs during the Gulf War) and went to school. But ethnically, I’m from a southern state of India, called Kerala. That is where I lived during my college years and my initial career days.
2. How did you end up in the U.S.? Here’s the short version – after college, I was working for an IT company in India. During one of my assignments, there was a need for someone to be stationed in New York City, and I was asked to move to the U.S. That was back in 2005.
3. I’ve already mentioned to my readers that you’re a Bible teacher extraordinaire by night. Can you tell them what you do by day? I’m a Quantitative Finance Analyst for a big bank. The title sounds complicated, but what it means is I help analyze, monitor and regulate the trading business we engage in by ensuring the risk is something we can handle as a bank.
4. Who is your favorite Bible teacher? Jesus, and I say this without trying to sound obnoxious or superfluous. The parables and answers Jesus had to people’s questions just fascinate me. Who else, when asked “Who is my neighbor?” would respond by telling a story, that not only answers who your neighbor is but also answers (I believe) the real question, which is “what is love?” This helps me to pay more attention when people ask me a question, to really hear them, to respond to not just what is being verbalized, but to what is motivating the question.
But if I were to pick another, it would be a fellow Indian – Dr. Ravi Zacharias. He has this incredible gift of teaching and explaining how one is to reconcile what we see around us with history and with the Scriptures. This approach really forces you to reconsider your own worldview, and then look at the Christian worldview more favorably, which then means you respond to the truth of the cross.
“When I read God’s Word, I understand and embrace the fact that God is revealing Himself to me, almost in an engaging way.”
5. What’s your process when you study God’s Word? I think what has really helped me in my studying the Word is fully grasping the truth of what is said in 2 Peter 1:16-19. Peter was one of the special disciples who had the privilege of witnessing Christ’s glory during the transfiguration on the mount (Matthew 17). Where would one rank this experience among all of their experiences with God or in their walk with God? It would be pretty high, if not the highest. And yet, what Peter is saying in his letter is that this experience is still subordinate to the Scriptures, as the transfiguration event only further confirms the message in the Scriptures. That is a very profound statement – the God of the universe reveals Himself most completely (as far as we can currently handle it) through the Word. And so, when I read God’s Word, I understand and embrace the fact that God is revealing Himself to me, almost in an engaging way. And this deep engagement is what nourishes my mind and soul richly.
6. Can you give Karina Speaks! readers one tip they can employ to make their time in the Word better today? This is a two-part answer. First, it is important to understand one of the main objectives for reading Scriptures. Simply stated, it is for His Word to be written in our minds and our hearts (Hebrews 10:16). And so this is why we need to internalize scriptures. So read the Word with the intent of internalizing it.
But how do we internalize it? This is the second part.
See if you can answer any of these questions: Who won the Oscar for Best Screenplay in 2017? Who won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2015? What famous words did Nelson Mandela say upon being released from prison after 27 years? Or who won the Sports Lifetime Achievement Award in 2017?
Now how about some of these questions: Which teacher impacted you the most in your school days? What did your spouse say to you during your wedding vows? Name someone whose life has influenced you the most.
It was easier to answer the second set of questions, rather than the first, right? Why? Regardless of the importance of the achievements and honors highlighted in the first set of questions, we hardly know the answers, especially as time passes. But no matter how much time has passed, the answers to the second set of questions will always remain with you; because they are personal and relevant.
“When you read the Word, make it personal, insert yourself in the story.”
When you read the Word, make it personal, insert yourself in the story. Visualize Peter or Paul speaking as you read the epistles and make the words relevant. We all have deep questions, questions that come to us when in deep thought. And the Bible has some deep answers. So, as you read the Word, I encourage you, to ask (and you shall receive), to seek (and you shall find), and to knock (and the door shall be opened unto you). And as you find the answers to those deep questions, His Word will begin to be written in your heart and mind, just like He promised.
Do you guys have any questions for Nelson? Ask away!