Through Shades of Grace Ministries, Natalie Nichols and her mother Sandra strengthen and establish others in their faith by teaching a lifestyle of dependence upon Jesus and God’s Word. Through the presentation of enthusiastic messages, Biblical truth, and personal illustrations, they teach others how to live by faith upon the Word of God – while also presenting a balanced message about suffering and healing. With a degree in vocal study and years of music experience, Natalie often sings, plays the piano and adds music to each session.
Natalie and Sandra allow God to tailor the topic to each specific event, theme, and group of people. No two messages are ever the same, whether they are sharing their testimony, teaching, or appearing on a radio or television program. The variable times listed below represent how content can be altered to accommodate a desired timeframe.
Examples of Natalie’s speaking topics include but are not limited to the following:
Package of Pure Gold
The apostle Paul declared in Philippians 3:10 – “I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his suffering.” Little did Natalie Nichols know just how great a test of faith it would take to bring her to know Jesus more intimately than she ever did before. But suffering through a horrible illness, Natalie realized she had not experienced loss – but rather she had discovered a package of pure gold in knowing Christ deeply. Discover how you can look at life’s trials with an eternal perspective – and grow deeper in your love for Christ! (30-50 minutes, but adaptable to any timeframe)
Note 1: Natalie’s story can be adapted to any audience, adjusted to fit any timeframe and can also incorporate music.
Note 2: This presentation is ideal for an occasion when it is desired that both Natalie and her mother Sandra speak within the same session.
Lord, Show Me Your Glory
“Lord, show me your glory” is a phrase we hear often in Christian circles today. But what is it that we are really asking? During her years of severe illness, God spoke to Natalie through Exodus 33, the passage in which Moses originally made this request. In Moses’ encounter, Natalie saw how God was working through her suffering – and how He works in all of our lives through the difficulties we face. Natalie relays these insights to audiences through an in-depth study of Exodus 33:18-23.
Whether we’re challenged by life’s daily struggles or seasons of indescribable suffering, the truths contained in this passage enable us to embrace the eternal blessings God gives us through them and to rest in His sovereign rule. Discover how you can know God more fully in seasons of suffering – and live in joy and peace no matter the circumstance! (40-50 minutes)
Note: Natalie can combine her testimony with this teaching in a 40-50 minute session, but the teaching content will be less comprehensive. In order to hear the full teaching and Natalie’s testimony, a retreat/conference setting in which Natalie can use a session for each is most ideal.
The Resurrected Life
None of us can ever fully express our gratitude for the price Jesus paid so that we might receive eternal life and live in a relationship with Him. Not only did His crucifixion make a way for us to live in a close relationship with Him eternally – but it is also the sacred resurrection ground upon which He inhabits our lives daily. Too often we want His resurrection power only if we can bypass the cross. But according to John 12, the experience of the cross is unavoidable if we are a follower of Jesus Christ.
We may be willing to follow Jesus to conferences across the nation, to Bible studies, even down the aisles of our churches. But the place that matters most is the cross – For it is the ground upon which God relates to us and allows us to live by His resurrected life. Discover a new perspective of your crosses and losses – and live a resurrected life! (40-50 minutes)
Faith for the Supernatural (Series)
Throughout the Bible, scripture repeatedly demonstrates that God moves upon the earth in response to the faith of His people. And yet, the days in which we live, the devil and our human nature are constantly battling against our faith—threatening to erode our confidence in God’s promises and the actions that bid His eternal truths to become reality in our lives. This three-part series will inspire and enable you to walk by greater depths of faith.
Consider the Loaves: Unwavering Faith in Hard Times
Do life’s difficult seasons cause your faith to waver? Do you become fearful and anxious when times of hardship arise? Jesus’ disciples faced the same challenge. Their faith wavered—their hearts were hardened—in the storm because they did not consider Jesus’ miracle of the loaves. What was it about this miracle that could have transformed their shaky faith? Natalie Nichols shares from this passage five prerequisites to unwavering faith in hard times – five things to consider that will keep your heart tender in faith and liberate you to receive riches of Christ in tough times. Discover how you can experience unwavering faith – and be liberated to enjoy the riches of Christ in hard times!
Don’t Flake Out! Get Rid of the Fake Out: Move Beyond Powerless Substitutes to Effective, Biblical Faith
Do you find that you are more hopeless and discouraged each day? Do you believe that God can fulfill His promises for your life, you just wonder if He actually will? Beloved, you are on the verge of flaking out on your faith! You have come to accept a spiritually suffocating substitute for faith, slowly adopting a standard that seems like faith, but one that is really a fake out— sure to cause you to flake out! And fast!!! In John 6:28, Jesus said that the work God desires of us “is this: to believe…” It’s time to throw off spiritual laziness and deception and walk in real, Biblical faith. Discover how to move beyond powerless substitutes – and walk in effective, Biblical faith!
By Way of Mouth: The Path to the Promise
God’s Word contains powerful promises—plans and declarations He wants to fulfill in your life. But there is a route to their fulfillment that must be traveled in order for this to occur. The apostle Paul declared, “I believed; therefore I have spoken” (2 Corinthians 4:13). Discover the role God has ordained for your words in the fulfillment of His promises. Learn what enemies of faith lay disguised in your daily life — and live in victory and see God’s promise come to pass!
- Sandra offers a presentation that works well with this series: “Faith of our Fathers…and Mothers,” Sandra’s personal story of faith in the face of great challenge, is a message that offers unique encouragement to women of all ages, especially those who are mothers.
- This series can be condensed into a two-part series.
Hope Against Hope
In this session, Natalie teaches the spiritual principle that brought her through the years of devastation – living by faith in the revealed Word and thus the revealed will of God. Through Romans 4:17-22, Natalie answers the question, “How do we have hope when our circumstances contradict it?” Jesus demonstrated it. Abraham illustrated it. And the Holy Spirit wants to facilitate it in your life! Discover how to live by faith – and hope against hope! (40-50 minutes)
During the years of Natalie’s severe illness, her parents were urged by physicians and family to put her in an institution and move on with their lives. Neal and Sandra made a decision based upon God’s word – they would continue caring for their daughter and fighting for her life. They would love her without condition, no matter what she could give back. No matter how useful her life seemed to be.
Meanwhile, Natalie was wrestling internally with her own existence. She did not want to live if it meant enduring such unbearable torment. Soon it became more than a matter of sheer desire. Even if she wanted to live, could she? The suffering seemed too much for her to endure. She wanted control over her circumstances. She wanted out.
Yet through these same overwhelming circumstances Natalie experienced God’s grace and strength. His power was accomplished in her weakness — though she was weak and unable to endure, Christ was strong! He could be trusted with her tomorrows. He would help her through.
This fact rings true whether the overwhelming circumstance is a crisis pregnancy or a terminal illness.
Every life is a gift from God, whether young or old, planned or unplanned, healthy or plagued with illness. Natalie experienced this truth and recognized it in the lives of others as well. All human beings are created in the image of God and their existence deeply impacts others: “None of us lives to himself alone and none of us dies to himself alone” (Romans 14:7).
From both sides of the issue, Natalie and her parents have experienced the temptation to devalue life. Her moving account will inspire you to get involved in the fight for life! (30-50 minutes. Adaptable to any timeframe.)
PRAYER AND FASTING
The Missing Link
Fasting was never meant to be the rare practice that it is today among Christians. In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus addressed three scenarios: “When you give…pray…and fast.” We are to give as much focus and priority to fasting as we do to giving and praying. If we are Christians, modern day disciples and followers of Christ, God expects us to fast. Not just some of us. Not just the spiritual leaders – but all of us.
Fasting takes prayer to a higher level of fulfillment!It launches us on a spiritual journey that changes our lives and helps us draw closer to God than ever before. Have you become complacent about your time with God and His Word? Are your desires dictated by the appetites of your flesh? Do you need a breakthrough in your finances, your relationships, your business? Discover the key to seeing a supernatural work of God in your life. (45-40 minutes)
Do you long for something more in your walk with Christ? Do you crave more of His presence, His power and authority? Do you see others living lives of great spiritual intimacy and influence – and you desperately want the same?
We will never have true spiritual power while living prayerless lives. If we want something more spiritually, we must invest time in prayer. As it is with a financial investment, so it is with prayer. We must part with something current (time, self-interest, personal agenda, comfort, entertainment) in order to invest and receive a great spiritual return. A commitment to prayer has to be made before God can use a person. Satan fears nothing from our prayerless studies and prayerless work, but He trembles when we pray! Be inspired to become a person of prayer!
Blessed Is She Who Believed
This study – based on Luke 1:26-38 – is ideal for a women’s event or female-focused service (such as a Mother’s Day church service). Just as God planned to birth the embodiment of His Word through Mary, He has a unique embodiment or work of His Word to bring into existence through each of our lives. An in-depth examination of this passage teaches us that God sends messengers and circumstances to declare it, the grace and favor to receive it, the power to conceive it and the faith to believe it. Discover how to recognize and respond to the unique calling of God – and see His promise become reality in your life! (50 minutes)
A Wise Woman
Society continually implies that a woman is wise if she has it all, does it all, and is the best there is at it. But the Word of God proclaims a different perspective. According to Scripture, a wise woman does indeed want something. She wants Jesus, “in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Colossians 2:3). A wise woman Watches for Jesus’ movement and regulates her course accordingly. When she Wants Jesus and Watches and Waits for Him, a wise woman Will Receive! Discover how to make Christ an indispensable necessity in your life – and become a wise woman! (40-60 minutes)
Awakening: Rising to Take Hold of Christ (Series)
“And do this, understanding the present time. The hour has come for you to wake up from your slumber…” (Romans 13:11).
Understanding the Present Time
Scripture speaks of the last days in order that we might live fully awake, ready for Christ’s return. Jesus said, “Now when these things begin to happen, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near” (Luke 21:28). It is imperative that the Church, the Bride of Christ, be aware of the season in which we live. Yet many believers are spiritual sleep walkers who have been intoxicated by the world. Understand the signs of the times – and live with eternity in mind! (45 minutes)
Rising Up and Taking Hold
The time has come for the Church in America to wake up from its slumber. To wake up means to rise up and respond to God’s voice, but many of us are lying lifeless and indifferent. The prophet Isaiah described this detrimental state: “And no one calls on Your name and awakens and bestirs himself to take and keep hold of You” (Isaiah 64:7). In these last days, it is time that we fasten ourselves to Christ. It is time to spare no effort and count no cost in pursuing His presence and power.
Spiritual awakening means that we no longer resist God’s voice. We talk, act, move and think as God does. The result is a lifestyle of true, Biblical faith. However, our natural man often gets in the way of this kind of lifestyle. Discover two vital steps you must take in order to wake up, rise up – and take hold of Christ!
Get Out of the Way
Every spiritual awakening in scripture has one key element: there is no resistance to God’s voice. When God spoke and created the world, nothing resisted His voice. When Jesus spoke to the winds and the waves, they did not resist. As Jesus arrived at the tomb of Lazarus (who he described as being “asleep”), everyone on the scene was filled with doubt and unbelief. The only one who did not resist His voice was a dead man.
Nature cannot resist God. Only man is created with the will to resist God. We must learn how to recognize God’s voice – and to respond without resistance! Learn how to refuse deceptive voices and deadly examples. Discover how to release the power of God’s Word in your life – how to get out of the way, stop resisting, and respond in faith!