There is a song that I love singing at my local church, it is titled "Our God is an awesome God", by Michael Smith. When we sing it, we only sing the chorus of the song, and repeat that chorus many times. The lyrics go like this:
"Our God is an awesome God, He reigns from Heaven above, With wisdom, pow'r and love, Our God is an awesome God (repeat)"
The lyrics are simple, but what I love about the song is how we sing it at church. Our church plays music via a band: electric guitars, bass, drums, keyboard and live singing. When this song is played, it starts off really soft, but with each increasing repeat of this chorus, we sing it even louder and the band plays their instruments even louder until finally the whole church is roaring this song away. I absolutely love that energy, but this song also has a metaphorical meaning for me.
My faith can be tested through various trials, big and small. Sometimes I personally struggle to keep my faith going through hard times especially when things first become difficult, but I remind myself to persevere and continue. Soon my faith grows even stronger and before I know it, it erupts in my soul ready to bring me through anything.
Like the song, sometimes my faith starts off slow, but with each impounding opportunity to scream my faith out louder in my soul I do so, and soon I am left with nothing but awe of who God is and what God can do in my life. Through anything in my life I know that I can rely on our awesome God because it is through faith and tested times that I "see" how awesome God is.
Without trials, we do not have the opportunity to have faith in our God. God becomes real and alive in us when we allow God to use us as His tools, and to reform us into what He originally intended for us to be in His image. He builds us up in His perfect timing for His glory alone.
Why be in awe of God?
For me I am blessed to be inexorably in awe of God because I feel there is a danger if I am not in awe of who God is. I feel when awe of God is absent it is quickly replaced by my awe of myself. I will start to acknowledge my efforts as something that I alone did without God at all. I start to exclude God in my life. If I am not living my life for God's glory and purpose, then I am living it for my glory and purpose. This breeds ignorance, arrogance, selfishness, a self-centred personality and hypocrisy.
But if I live in awe of God I live for God and God gives me the Holy Spirit to develop myself more for God's glory and purpose. In Galatians chapter 5 verse 22 it says: "But the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness and faith".
Another danger of losing our awe for God is that we no longer find that we are serving God with a great purpose. Our relationships fail, our work fails, our values decrease and our serving in ministry falters because we are relying on our imperfect, sinning selves when we should be relying on our perfect Creator who knows us and will lead us in truth, strength and joy if we let Him.
Be in awe of God!
If I am not in awe of God, I will not be able to go through anything in my life. I will not be able to trust in Him, rely on Him for strength and truly appreciate and find joy when God answers my prayers. If I lose my awe for God, I will also fail to have reverence for God, and my faith and Christian beliefs will falter and eventually be desecrated.
I stand in awe of an awesome God, one who is abundant in grace and mercy, slow to anger, who loves all who sin and redeems them, who is righteous and faithful to us, who is near to all who call on him, who hears the cries of the oppressed and weak, who watches over us, protects us and heals us. His splendour and everlasting kingdom are promised to all His children.
God is compassionate and glorious in every aspect and I stand in awe of how awesome our God is and everything He has done for an undeserving sinner like me.
Clarissa Yates is from Singapore but moved to live in Perth, Western Australia in 2008. Clarissa married in 2012 and obtained an International Scholarship to do her Doctorate at the Australian Neuro-Muscular Research Institute starting in 2013.
Clarissa Yates previous articles may be viewed at www.pressserviceinternational.org/clarissa-yates.html