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May 3, 2013

Verna Davis: Find the ‘awe’ again in ‘awesome’

In any given gathering of grade-schoolers or even a gaggle of teenagers, in all likelihood, you will hear certain words over and over. “Like, I was like walking the dog and like this other dog came running around the corner and like my dog didn’t like the other dog and like the other dog just kept coming and like pretty soon there was like this real live dogfight like right in front of me.”

The listeners of this tale will, like, nod their heads in agreement/amazement, and if you listen, like, real closely, you will be able to hear someone answer, “Awesome.”

At any given dining experience, a fabulous dessert makes its way to the table. After the first couple of tastes, someone, with eyes rolled back in culinary pleasure declares, “This is awesome!”

On any given prom night, some young man will catch a glimpse of his date and breathlessly tell her she looks “awesome.” And any given book lover will be known to declare his/her latest read as “awesome.”

We use the word “awesome” so much it has lost its awesome meaning.  Whatever is “awesome” inspires an overwhelming feeling of reverence or admiration, induced by that which is sublime or extremely powerful. I wonder, do we live day after day without any awe whatsoever? Is there anything awesome in even one hour of our day? Do we live without wonder and amazement, without the awe-inspiring moments our souls crave?

Exodus 15:11 says, “Who among the gods is like you, O Lord? Who is like you —majestic in holiness, awesome in glory, working wonders?” Deuteronomy 10:17 says, “For the Lord you God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great God, mighty and awesome, who shows no partiality and accepts no bribes.” Psalm 47:2 declares, “How awesome is the Lord Most High, the great King over all the earth!”

Yet, we were created to live in the shadow of awe. Every spoken word, every action, every attitude, every decision, every desire of our hearts should be covered by awe. We are meant to keep our eyes fixed on Jesus, the Awesome One. We are meant to live with hearts that are yearning for the Awesome, eyes that are searching for the Awesome, mouths that are praising the Awesome.

When awe leaves us, we leave room for depression, doubt, anger, bitterness, jealousy. We are no longer amazed at God’s creation; we lose sight of the miracles in front of us. We pray words coming from hearts without praise, honor, belief, trust, and watchfulness for God’s answers. We begin to drift when nothing impresses us anymore, when God’s Word and God’s World no longer amaze us. When awesomeness goes, dissatisfaction moves in to fill the void in our souls. Not a very awesome thought, is it?

In order to restore our wonder of the Divine, Psalm 66:5 invites us to, “Come and see what God has done, how awesome His works in man’s behalf.” So, this week, let us daily (maybe hourly) remember God’s awesome works.

Now wouldn’t that be an awesome thing to do?

Verna Davis, author and speaker, writes in Frankton. She can be reached at Vrdspeaks@yahaoo.com.

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