• Architecture,  Art,  Christianity,  Culture,  Faith,  Paul Backholer

    Christianity & Architecture: Big Ben, the Bible & the Elizabeth Tower

    Big Ben is the most recognised timepiece in the world. The Clock Tower known throughout the nations by its crowd-pleasing name Big Ben derides from the Great Bell. It resides at the north end of the Palace of Westminster and at its heart are some intriguing Christian themes. My journey to Big Ben begins at Portcullis House. Once through the security checks, I walk into the majestic light-filled atrium of Portcullis House, looking for a glimpse of the prime minister. I head down to the tunnel which connects the new building with the Victorian Houses of Parliament. Walking underneath Bridge Street, I turn left and enter a small doorway to…

  • Faith Builders,  Mind,  Paul Backholer,  Soul

    Comparison Kills Your Joy

    You will never do as well, as your imagination tells you others are doing. In our mind, we create an invented world of perfection for others. They have the best relationships, income and position of influence. We compare the full reality of our lives to the imagined perfection of another. It disappoints us. Your real life can never match to the dream world you believe others are living. You shall not covet your neighbour’s house; you shall not covet your neighbour’s wife, nor his male servant, nor his female servant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbour’s – Exodus 20:17 Comparison is a mistake. Comparison kills joy. When…

  • Art,  Christianity,  Culture,  Faith,  Paul Backholer

    Christianity and Art: The Royal Collection & the Faith of Queen Elizabeth II

    Before the printing press and education made the Bible available to all, believers used their eyes and imagination to attempt to understand God. There was a danger of idolatry, which the Reformation sought to address, yet some paintings read like the pages of a book. On the 13 September 1940, a German bombing raid hit the Private Chapel at Buckingham Palace, London. From the charred remains, the Duke of Edinburgh decided to convert the Chapel into an art gallery and display elements of the Royal Collection. I have been privileged to view the Queen’s masterpieces in several exhibitions in the Queen’s Gallery, and at Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle and at…

  • Book Review,  Culture,  Faith Builders,  Inspirational,  Paul Backholer

    The Revelation TV Story: Hey Howie, Howard Conder & Gordon Pettie

    The sixties changed everything. The Beatles burst into a world gasping for breath, from an age of post-war bleak austerity. It was all just a laugh to begin with. Partying replaced serious life choices. Promiscuity shunned commitment and responsibility. Consumerism hypnotised the soul. “God is,” they said, “a myth.” Into this world a young Howard Conder made his mark, playing the drums for big bands and taking home a packet of money. Soon he drove a Rolls Royce, hung out with his mate David Bowie and Eric Clapton greeted him by name. Howard played gigs with the revered celebrities of this ‘golden age’ of the sixties revolution and he passed…

  • Faith Builders,  Mind,  Paul Backholer,  Soul

    Listen to Your Creator, not Your Critics: They’ve Dismissed You, God Hasn’t

    Listen to your Creator, not your critics. In life you will discover an endless supply of doubters, critics and cynics. There will always be people waiting to talk you out of God’s will, pull you down and belittle you. How you respond to this criticism will determine your destiny. Therefore let us not judge one another anymore, but rather resolve this, not to put a stumbling block or a cause to fall in our brother’s way – Romans 14:13 Abraham could have died in Ur if he consulted others on God’s call. If Joseph ignored his God-given dreams because of his family, he could have died as an unknown shepherd instead of becoming…

  • Book Review,  Culture,  Holy Spirit,  Paul Backholer,  Supernatural

    Revelations of Divine Love by Julian of Norwich – All shall be well

    “All shall be well, and all shall be well and all manner of thing shall be well” – Julian of Norwich Everything you need is found in Christ and all your heart truly desires, is found in Christ. Out of the abundance of God’s goodness, His love will flow into your soul. “God loved us before He made us; and His love has never diminished and never shall.” These are the words of Julian of Norwich, a woman living in self-imposed house arrest – permanent social distancing – in a single cell attached to the Church of St Julian, in Norwich, England. In her estrangement from the world, she found…

  • Faith Builders,  Mind,  Paul Backholer,  Soul

    Feelings, Faith and the Mind – How to Live Beyond the Emotional Roller Coaster

    God invented feelings. He gave them to you to enhance your life; not to dominate it. Have you ever felt sky-high one moment and crashed down to earth the next? Listening to your feelings about your self-worth is a mistake. They are not the arbiter of truth. Your feelings cannot tell you who you are in Christ; only your will can do this. One of the seven manifestations of the fruit of the Holy Spirit is self-control. You have the ability, in Christ, to tell your feelings to be quiet. “I feel depressed. I feel God is angry at me. I feel stupid for praying out loud at church. I…

  • Art,  Christianity,  Culture,  Faith,  Paul Backholer

    Christianity and Art: The Pre-Raphaelites

    ‘He has filled them with skill to do all manner of work…in blue, purple, and scarlet… and those who design artistic works’ (Exodus 35:35). You’ve been told The Mona Lisa is the greatest artwork in the world. That’s clever marketing after its theft and return. For most of its life, those with access to The Mona Lisa walked past, ‘just another portrait.’ If you visit The Mona Lisa in the Louvre, Paris, expect a two-hour queue, followed by a brief glimpse of a painting at a distance, shrouded behind thick bullet-proof glass. No time to linger, examine and ponder. If you want art to take your breath away, discover the…

  • Faith Builders,  Health,  Mind,  Paul Backholer,  Soul

    There’s Nothing Wrong with You: The Power to Think Better

    There is nothing wrong with you. God created you in His image. There is no one like you on earth; not one with the same thoughts, ideas, feelings, experience, creativity and purpose. God chose you before the earth existed for a specific plan only you can accomplish. You are His workmanship. I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made – Psalm 139:14 There may be something wrong with your thinking and choices, called sin, but you are more than your thoughts. God loves you, as you. However, there is a battle going on in your mind. Satan is bombarding you with thoughts designed to limit, hinder and…

  • Adventure,  Bible,  Biblical Archaeology,  Inspirational,  Paul Backholer,  The Exodus

    The Red Sea Crossing Evidence, A Miracle Repeated

    In 1882 Egypt, a British general and statistician, Alexander Tulloch, chronicles firsthand evidence for the parting of the Red Sea. Without trying, he authenticates the possibility of the Red Sea miracle with eyewitness testimony. The Red Sea parted for a second time and a trusted scientist, known for his expert studies in volumes of statistical reports, catalogued it. His documentation provides us with a powerful reason to examine the biblical text for a second time. In the Hebrew text, the body of water the Hebrews crossed is literally called, ‘Yam-Suph.’ Translated into English as the ‘Red Sea,’ its true meaning is ‘Sea of Reeds.’ Experts have judged the modern Red Sea to be too wide and deep for a crossing…