In Reverence and Awe :: By Holly Spate

Every now and then the same thought comes to my mind. I’m not sure if most of us have ever been taught what it means to truly, consistently, live our lives in awe of our Creator. It doesn’t seem to be a subject of many sermons, or at least not anything that’s deeply discussed; not in my experience anyway.

I’ve not seen too many “How-To” guides being shared in churches. It’s true that many Christians may experience moments of awe in their lives, but how many of us have really, truly experienced a reverence for our heavenly Father that has us in total awe?

How many of us can say we are in total love (heart, mind and soul) with the Creator of the world? How many of us can say we have a consistent sense of reverence for our precious, heavenly Father? What does true reverence for the Savior of the world look like, anyway?

First, let’s look at the meaning of reverence. Webster’s dictionary defines reverence as “honor or respect that is felt for or shown to (someone or something).” Awe is described as “a strong feeling of fear or respect and also wonder.”

Hebrews 12:28-29 gives us a glimpse, “Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire.”

Psalm 2:11 states we’re to: “Worship the Lord with reverence and rejoice with trembling.”

As Christians, God wants us to be in total awe of Him. He wants us to give Him our all. He wants all of us and He deserves all of us. His Son paid it all so that we could have it all. God has done so much for each of us. It is difficult to fathom the very depth of His goodness.

He’s given gifts we could never repay, yet so many times we forget to acknowledge them. It’s as though it’s all become commonplace and we fail to exude the gratitude that is due Him…a gratitude He so rightfully deserves. We sometimes lack in our appreciation for His many mercies. We sometimes don’t truly count the cost of His Son’s sacrifice on the cross. We’re not always as thankful as we should be for His unconditional love, His goodness, His forgiveness, and our future eternity.

We fail to always be in awe of His miracles—miracles that should motivate our hearts to move closer to Him and establish a deeper relationship with Him. We should desire His presence more every day, and be thankful that the Creator of all creation yearns to have a deep relationship with each of us. The God of all wants to have all of YOU…your attention, your love, your time, your heart. He loves you with an everlasting, never fading love and He wants a relationship with YOU!

Our heavenly Father’s perfect nature should propel us to sing His praises. Deuteronomy 10:21 says, “He is the one you praise; he is your God, who performed for you those great and awesome wonders you saw with your own eyes.”

Psalm 19:1 reminds, “The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.”

His promises should push us out of our comfort zones and create within us a desire to share His goodness and the good news of His salvation with others. After all, He breathed His breath into us and made us in His image. He amazingly calls us friend and loves us beyond comprehension.

Why do so many Christians struggle with being in awe and truly revering God?

Is it because we’re too distracted by worldly things? Is it because we’re so busy in the day-to-day affairs of life that we fail to give God but a sliver of our time? Is it a result of simply forgetting to listen to His voice and His command to be still and let Him speak to our hearts? Have we forgotten that He’s to be first in all things?

In 2 Corinthians 7:1 we read, “Therefore, since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.”

What does reverence for our Creator look like in the life of the believer?

Do we wake up excited, ready to hear God’s voice?
Do we spend time enamored by His creation?
Are we swift to do good and walk the walk of faith?
Do we continually praise Him for His presence?
Do we have hearts of gratitude that grow in grace?
Do we delight in His Word and ways?
Do we marvel at His miracles?
Do we obey His commandments?
Do we put Him first in everything we do?
Do we stand in awe at His awesomeness?
Are we overwhelmed by the very thought of His omnipotence?

What does it take to move us?
What does it take to amaze us?
What does it take to get our hearts pumping and feet jumping?

When does mere appreciation turn to extreme adoration?
When does revelation become elation?
When does our changed life become an effective agent of change in the lives of others?

What will bring us to our feet and put our faith in action?
What will get us to fall on our knees and fall in love with Him, over and over again?
What will compel us to cry tears of joy and bow before Him with humble hearts?
What will make us in awe of the Savior, the King of the whole world?

God has done all He can to get our attention. He set the world in motion and spoke creation into existence. He came, He gave, He saved, He rose.

Out of love, He gave it all. Now, what are we going to give Him in return?

As Christians, we each need to make it our goal to live our lives in such a way that we become more aware of His presence, His gifts, His sacrifice. We need to make it our mission to have our hearts stirred to the point that we live out the remainder of our lives with a sense of true awe and reverence for the very One that’s so deserving of our attention.

This stirring comes from spending time with Him and asking Him to move our souls, reach deep into our hearts, and help us be more in tune to all He has for us, and all He’s done for us.

Psalm 33:8 says, “Let all the earth fear the Lord; let all the people of the world revere him.”

Deuteronomy 13:4 states, “ It is the Lord your God you must follow, and him you must revere. Keep his commands and obey him; serve him and hold fast to him.”

If you are struggling and in need of a stirring that will propel you into a greater realm of reverence and awe, simply ask God to give you a deeper desire and appreciation for Him, and all He’s done for you. Spend your days putting Him first and learning to hear His voice. Make a commitment to faithfully obey His commands. Be assured—He is faithful and will honor your decision and do these things for you, because it’s His will and His best for your life.