What An AWESOME God We Serve

God is AWEsome. And I mean awesome. Not the watered-down version of awesome that we use far too often today. No, I mean jaw-dropped, eyes wide, awe-inspiring, AWEsome.

A simple Google search tells us that awesome can be defined as: “extremely impressive or daunting; inspiring great admiration, apprehension, or fear.”

That’s the type of awesome I’m talking about. The type that is “extremely impressive” and “inspiring great admiration.”

God’s impressiveness leads us to great admiration, aka worship. Worship really is the only we could possibly respond to God’s awesomeness. When we really understand who God is, we can’t help but worship Him.

So, can I just talk for a minute about just a few of the countless ways that God is awesome?

  • He created the world.

All of it. All of the stars, animals, plants, and people. That sunset we watched in awe the other day? God made that. The mountains we reveled in the beauty of? God made those too. The beautiful blue waters of the ocean that stretch on as far as the eye can see? That was God too.

Psalm 19:1-6 says:

How clearly the sky reveals God’s glory!
    How plainly it shows what he has done!
Each day announces it to the following day;
    each night repeats it to the next.
No speech or words are used,
    no sound is heard;
yet their message goes out to all the world
    and is heard to the ends of the earth.
God made a home in the sky for the sun;
     it comes out in the morning like a happy bridegroom,
    like an athlete eager to run a race.
It starts at one end of the sky
    and goes across to the other.
    Nothing can hide from its heat. (GNT)

Whenever we struggle to see God in our lives, all we need to do is look at the world around us. All of that proclaims His majesty.

  • He knows all seven billion of us, along with every single sparrow, dog, fish and all other animals.

God formed each and every single one of us. He knows us by name. Not only that, but he knows every thought that runs through our head. He knows everything.

He counts the stars and calls them all by name.

Psalm 147:4 (NLT)

But now, O Jacob, listen to the Lord who created you.
    O Israel, the one who formed you says,
“Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you.
    I have called you by name; you are mine.

Isaiah 43:1 (NLT)

  • He conquered death, for goodness’ sake!

As they stood there puzzled, two men suddenly appeared to them, clothed in dazzling robes. The women were terrified and bowed with their faces to the ground. Then the men asked, “Why are you looking among the dead for someone who is alive? He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead! Remember what he told you back in Galilee, that the Son of Man must be betrayed into the hands of sinful men and be crucified, and that he would rise again on the third day.”

Luke 24:4-7 (NLT) 

Jesus, the Son of God, humbled himself to the point of death on a cross, having lived a perfect life, in order to take the punishment for our sins. Because we can’t conquer sin, Jesus did it for us. And now we are able to live in Him if we simply place our faith in Him. That’s the joy of the gospel.

  • And now he reigns, King of kings, forever. 

The whole earth will acknowledge the Lord and return to him.
    All the families of the nations will bow down before him.
For royal power belongs to the Lord.
    He rules all the nations.

Psalm 22:27-28 (NLT)

Our God is the God of angel armies. He conquered death. And He reigns forevermore. There will come a day when Jesus returns and restores justice to all the earth. Then He will establish a new earth, in which He rules in complete and total perfection. When that day comes, all of creation will worship Him, just as we were first intended to.

 

Doesn’t that make you want to just open your arms and worship? I know it does me. So, just in case you feel so tickled, I’ve included a list of worship songs that proclaim God’s majesty.

“How Great Is Our God” by Chris Tomlin

“Indescribable” by Laura Story

“What A Beautiful Name” by Hillsong Worship

What are some ways you’ve seen God’s awesomeness in your lives? Also, do you have any songs you’d like to add to my list above? I always love adding new songs to my playlist! 🙂 

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Pursue: Becoming Who You Are In Christ

We all have a unique, personal identity that can only be found in Christ. Each and every one of us. It’s an identity that is so much greater than our earthly selves, so much fuller, so much brighter.

And if we pursue Jesus Christ with all our heart, mind, soul, and strength, we can become this greater version of ourselves.

I am so excited to announce the release of PURSUE Magazine, an online magazine for teen girls. The first issue talks about becoming who we are in Christ, such a relevant and real topic for so many girls today.

Instead of letting worldly influences shape our identity, let’s set our eyes on things above and let Christ define who we are.

If you’d like to read more about that, check out the first digital issue of PURSUE and stop by the PURSUE blog.

Feel free to leave a comment about what stood out to you the most in the issue. I can’t wait to hear how God works through PURSUE!

Too Much of a Good Thing

During finals week of my first semester of college I watched an entire season of NCIS and then some.

I know that might not be a lot compared to some of the extreme Netflix binge-watchers’ records out there, but for me it was a lot. And it was something I would jokingly brag about. I was proud of my crazy (for me) Netflix record during finals week.

But, really, though that might be a kind of silly example, it begs the question: Can too much of a good thing actually be a problem?

Oftentimes, we try to sort things into “good” and “bad,” but in truth, most things that we face day to day are neither inherently good (in the Christian sense of the word) nor are they inherently bad. Really, they’re pretty much neutral.

I’m talking about things like social media, TV shows, movies, and things of the sort.

All of them are probably things most of us enjoy, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that. However, I know I have a tendency to take that enjoyment just a  little too far.

I’ll spend all day long scrolling through social media, binge-watching Netflix, or even writing, and if I’m being completely honest, I sometimes let that get in the way of more important things. Things like spending time with family and having a daily quiet time with God.

The brutal truth-though I really hate to say it-is that these things can become idols in my life.

But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

Matthew 6:33 (ESV)

It’s sad, really. Harmless, enjoyable ways of spending my time turned into something sinful, when all I have to do to keep that from happening is have a little self-control amd impose limits for myself.

Yes, it’s that easy. I just have to give myself some limits. Say, “I’ll watch this episode of NCIS, but I’m going to stop after that.” Or, “I’ll check Twitter now, but I won’t check it again in 20 minutes.”

Sometimes, even, I’ve found it’s refreshing for me to take a day to completely step away from these distractions. It sounds too difficult to handle, to do something like not check social media for an entire day, but I’ve found myself actually feeling free when I put my phone away and refuse to check it.

Here, the verse I quoted above really comes to life. I’m choosing to not become caught up in worrying about earthly things, but instead focusing more on God. As a result, God provides abundantly.

So next time we all check social media for the twentieth time in one day, or find ourselves on our fifth episode of our favorite show on Netflix for the day, let’s remind ourselves to take a step back and enjoy the other good things in life. After all, I’d hate for too much of a good thing to turn into something bad.

Question for you guys: If you find yourself spending too much time doing something in particular, how do you combat it?