About the Author

Annie F. Downs is a bestselling author and nationally known speaker based in Nashville, Tennessee. Her most recent books include 100 Days to Brave, Looking for Lovely and Let’s All Be Brave. Read more at anniefdowns.com and follow her at @anniefdowns.

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  1. Annie,
    I live here in bonnie Scotland. Just outside Inverness up in the highlands of Scotland. It is a beautiful place, full of God’s gorgeous creation. I enjoyed your post today about AWESOME. God is so awesome and I’ve never actually considered ‘reserving’ this word for Him alone but I think it’s a good idea as you shared in your post. When we finally see our Lord we will be so amazed and awed by Him and His glory that all we can do is bow at His feet to give Him praise. Praise for who HE alone is! Thanks for giving me something to think about on this drizzling grey Spring day. Bless you heaps! xo

  2. Wow. A great confirmation, for me as I have thought that so often and find myself wanting to use it and I hesitate for the very same reason. Just like the word Amazing with Grace attached, I feel like I use the term amazing grace so often but then I go ahead and do it because IT IS AMAZING… its not just a song title. His grace is amazing and He is Awesome, worthy to be in awe of.
    That “valley girl speak” from the 1980s really twisted the way we North Americans use certain words. Awesome being one of them. πŸ™‚

  3. oh geez. i say “awesome” at least 20 times a day. but he makes a valid point. we use and abuse the english language in so many ways. there are some words that should be saved for exactly what they are. i will say ” great ” post….instead of my usual…awesome….i’ll be saving that for my creator who really is so AWESOME.

    thanks annie

  4. I hadn’t thought of that before! I cannot say holy *something*, such as cow, because what else is holy? And how could I use that phrase so flippant knowing it should be reserved for my Lord? Also the word “love”. We love pizza, love movies, love books, but what is love really? And if we love such simple things, what about the things that truly deserve our love? I think I will be doing some word studies today!

  5. My first reaction? That was an awe…OOPS wonderful post! I too am now convicted that I use that word way too much to describe things that bring me joy. Thank you so much.

  6. I loved this post! I’m a housemom of 7 teenage boys, plus 3 of my own children, and the word “awesome” gets thrown around this house on about an every-ten-minute basis (along with “sweeeeet!” and the always-lovely eye-roll). I’ve considered, before, that the concept of “awe” is sort of lost with the overuse of that word, but I love the way you told this story. And yes, He is worth saving awesome for.

    Thanks for sharing this, for reminding us what it means to be awestruck by an incredible God. <3

  7. Good post! My first thought when I read it was: same with “adorable”. How often to we use that one? Every baby is adorable. Handbags, shoes, jewelry, adorable. In reality, only Father, Son and Holy Spirit are worthy of our adoration! Isn’t it interesting how the world hijacks the superlatives appropriate for God alone?

  8. I so totally agree. I have just started doing this myself within the last 3 months. I have even started correcting my children. They will go on and on and say, “it was just awesome mom” and I’ll say, ” really?… only God is awesome”. They can’t help but to agree and it makes them think. I’ve started to use the word fantastic. It’s fun to say and you can enunciate it well. Great post!

  9. My first language is Spanish and I do realize that in English people says awesome a lot! I found myself, many time, saying it too! So, thank you for the reminder. God is AWESOME. I know that we can find many other words to use instead ot that. Plus, if we add a little or a lot of that animated spirit that many of us have… we will be ok. Thank you!

  10. Annie, I’ve felt the same way for a long time about the word “awesome” and recently I’ve stopped and been more deliberate about when I use the word “amazing,” too, and I try to only use it when I’m referring to the act of God – how He shows up in some-thing or some-one or some-situation.

  11. Yes! I few years ago I realized , as like Harry said, I was using the “A” word too much. I now (as much as possible) try to only use it in reference to God or His creation in praise. It has helped to return the reverence and …well…awesomness to the Word.
    Thanks for the reminder!

  12. I had a camp counselor years ago tell me this about the word awesome. For the longest time, I very much reserved that word for things that truly inspired awe (which, outside of God, are few). Working with kids brought it back to the surface of my vocabulary (because everything is awesome to 11 year olds), so thanks for the reminder!

  13. We tend to overemphazsize thingss in this world. Do we really know what is awesome? Only God & God alone is awesome to save us wretched human beings!

    Everything else pails in comparison!! We can use words like magnificant, beautiful, georgeous, etc. SAVE AWESOME!!!!!!!!

  14. *love*

    Annie, the more I read from you, the more I want to read more from you. Harry has it so right, and I rejoice every time I hear someone using glorious words to describe the most glorious being.

  15. I really enjoy your posts, Annie.

    In one of Aaron Shust’s songs, he uses the word “matchless” for God, and I really liked that. I had never really used or thought about that word before, but it certainly applies to our Wonderful Savior. πŸ™‚

    Blessings,
    karen

  16. Annie,

    A beautiful message!

    Thank you for sharing!

    I too tend to say “awesome” too much and this article really made me think!

    Now I’m saving “awesome” for GOD and God alone. πŸ™‚

    Sincerely,

    Alexis

  17. It’s so easy to get lazy with our speech. Just like Cara, I have a house full of teens and words are thrown around haphazardly. Thanks for the reminder.

  18. Glorious, Holy, magnificent, all sufficient, grace filled, extravagantly loving, all knowing, source of all wisdom and giver of every good gift…
    Truly, we don’t have words to describe Who our God is!

  19. Amen…what a wise man….Tozer would absolutely agree in his book, THE KNOWLEDGE OF THE HOLY he was troubled by how Christians have reduced GOD to a level that is “comfortable.” Our idea of GOD determines all our actions in this life….

  20. Great post…so true! Count me among those saving “awesome”.
    God cannot be contained by the superlative!

  21. I have been told the same thing regarding “love” as we use it for everything from “i love your hair” to “i love you” and “i love God.” The word is not powerful in meaning when we just throw it around. I don’t have an answer as to when to use Love, but just wanted to share how it loses its ability to accurately describe what you feel towards God or how He feels towards us when loosely used. Thank you for your “great” lesson learned here!

  22. Thanks .
    Before reading it .i often used awesome word for everthing that i liked but i have learned at where it should be used