Friday, June 17, 2011

Our God is an Awesome God

Oh come on.  You know the song.  If you crossed the threshold of any Christian denomination church in the last 10 years, you know this song.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sd5IODevykM&feature=related  Are you aware that the catchy chorus of that song is only comprised of 6 notes?  Pretty awesome, right?  What you don't know is that I'm a closet Bill Gaither watcher.  Yep.  Bill is awesome.  Watching those old "homecoming" videos featuring a bunch of WAY happy people, many who are now dead.  But they weren't dead at the time of filming.  They were AWESOME.  And the venues that Bill chose were awesome, right?  And I once met Mark Lowrey.  He was a little awesome but he didn't treat me very nice.  But it was still awesome to see him.  And it's awesome that I write this blog, right?  No, no, no, no, no, no NO.  NONE of this is awesome.  My friends, GOD is awesome and nothing else is.  NOTHING.  YOU are not awesome and neither am I.  Your CAR is not awesome.  Sorry, but your parents are not awesome.  Neither is your dog, your smart phone, or your grandma's homemade strawberry pie, but it sure comes close.

When did we start using this tired word?  Webster defines the word to mean extraordinary or terrific.  Actually, if we are going to describe our Maker using some sort of adjective, then "awesome" fits.  But the word, just like God, goes waaaaay beyond "terrific".  Awesome is a good word to describe God.  And if we're going to use that word to describe God, then nothing less than God deserves that word.

A few years ago, our tired, old, worn out word was "cool".  Or "kewl" if you are younger than 12 years old.  Everything was cool.  God was cool.  Certain people and the space shuttle were cool.  The Beatles were cool, and don't you EVER forget that.  I even fell in the parade and started using "cool" to describe lots of things.  But because I respect words, I didn't use the word "cool" as much as the next guy.  I held it in reserve for things like really good wine or my friend Thad's really COOL 1957 Chevy.

And so with the advent (Catholic pun) of the word "awesome", I have decided to reserve that word to describe God alone.  Even in my brand of religion, the Vatican issued a directive that the "Y" word for God not be used.  Why?  The best answer I can come up with is that we have joined with our Jewish brothers and sisters and now hold that word in sacred reverence.  In the synagogues, the "Y" word isn't even written, let alone spoken.

So let's join our Jewish friends and only use the word "awesome" for when we are describing God's power, mercy, love, forgiveness, and salvation.

After all, you cannot argue that our God is an awesome God, right?

So what are we going to use now in the place of the "A" word?

I think we should go back to "cool".