My Heart Stands in Awe: The Wisdom of God’s Word

The unbelievable one-handed catch in the endzone. The first bite of a steak grilled to perfection. A jaw-dropping sunset that no camera could capture. The first cry of a newborn infant. The gymnast’s perfect-10 routine. A choir’s flawless performance of Handel’s Messiah. These seemingly disconnected moments share one common thread: they each make our hearts do what they were created to do. They make us stand in awe of something great. Author Paul Tripp puts it like this:

It’s not something that only believers do. It’s something that every person who has ever taken a breath does. It’s not bound by family, culture, history, geography, language, or ethnicity. It’s not a matter of age or gender. It’s not about any of these things. . . . Human beings . . . are hardwired for awe. And so are you.1

You and I were born to worship. That’s why our hearts are drawn to what’s awesome, from a hole-in-one to the Grand Canyon. This drive for awe is God-given and a result of our being created in His image. Ultimately, the awe-inspiring feats and features of this world point us to our Creator. All awesomeness is derived from Him. I doubt that thought is anything new to you. But have you ever stopped to stand in wonder at the Word of God? 

The psalmist who wrote the literary opus we know as Psalm 119 certainly did. Though the whole psalm testifies to this fact, he states it explicitly in verse 161: 

Princes persecute me without cause,
But my heart stands in awe of Your words. (NASB 95, emphasis mine)

But what’s so awesome about God’s Word anyway?

It Delights (Psalm 119:16, 24, 35, 47, 70, 92, 103)

What delights you? A day at the beach? A piece of French silk pie? An evening at home with your favorite people? A perfect cup of coffee and a really good book? As we were created to worship, so we humans were also created to delight—to find great joy and fulfillment. God, the Giver of good gifts, could have made the world boring and plain . . . enough to live but without anything truly delightful. But He didn’t. In His kindness, He delights us in both big and small ways every day. I truly believe that God delights in delighting us. One way He does this is by giving us His Word. 

That last sentence may sound absurd to you. But I hope not. Unlike any other book ever written, the Word of God can truly delight the heart. The psalmist says that he delights in it more than in riches (v. 16) and more than in the sweetest honey (v. 103). His heart stands in awe of this book that brings him both joy and satisfaction. 

But maybe you have no idea what that’s like. Delighting in God’s Word? you wonder. Not me.

If I may borrow from the great mind of C.S. Lewis, perhaps you’re being delighted by far too little. Perhaps you’re settling for a bag of chips when a 16-ounce ribeye is on the table. Perhaps you’re distracted by Candy Crush when you could be gazing at the beauty and splendor of the Grand Canyon. 

Put those lesser things aside, and let your heart stand in awe of the delightfulness of God’s Word. 

It Sustains (Psalm 119:91, 116, 117)

The writer of Psalm 119 knew about weariness and suffering. Woven throughout the 176-verse song is not only the theme of God’s Word but also of persecution and pain. He mentions being slandered by the wicked (v. 69), having traps laid by and being oppressed by the arrogant (vv. 85, 110, 122), and experiencing persecution at the hand of princes (v. 161). This poet, whoever he was, knew about suffering. He describes himself as being as worn out as a “wineskin in the smoke” (v. 83) and that his soul “cleaves to dust.” He was completely wrung out by his circumstances. No doubt you know the feeling. 

While he does cry to God for help, the psalmist repeatedly makes it clear that Scripture is his lifeline. In the midst of these agonizing situations, he continually turns his heart to God’s law and finds strength. He prays, “Sustain me according to Your word that I may live” (v. 116). 

I don’t know about you, but I often look to other things for sustenance: chocolate, coffee, a good book, a movie, time with family. All of these things are good gifts from a loving God. And He can use them to give refreshment. However, we don’t need them to be sustained. They cannot be our primary source of strength. 

The world may (I hope not!) run out of chocolate or coffee. My family may not always be there. I may not have a screen to watch a movie on. But I can still be sustained. The grass may wither, the flower may fade, caffeine may disappear, but the Word of the Lord endures forever. It’s a well that will never run dry. In fact, the more I put my bucket down into it, the more refreshed I become by the water I draw out. 

The psalmist again testifies to this when he says, 

This is my comfort in my affliction,
That Your word has revived me. (Psalm 119:50 NASB 95)

Let your heart stand in awe at the sustaining power of the Word, even in your driest moments. 

It Gives Wisdom

We all want wisdom, at least that’s what the book market tells me. A quick search on Amazon for books on the topic of wisdom, just in the category of “religion and spirituality,” yields 50,000 results. Apparently, some people are so desperate for wisdom that they’ll even listen to a “psychic squirrel deity” for answers.2 (When we start turning to rodents for wisdom, I think we’ve officially hit the bottom of the barrel.) But the psalmist recognized that he didn’t need a deceased woodland creature or any other type of guru. He needed the same thing you and I need: the Word of God. 

Scripture, he says, makes him wiser than his enemies. It gives him more insight than his teachers, and more learning than the aged (vv. 98–100). He’s not throwing shade at his teachers or elders but demonstrating the sufficiency of God’s Word for wisdom. 

The enemy would love to convince us that wisdom is somehow lodged inside of us and that we just need to tap into it. Meditation, yoga, embodied living—the methods may vary but their end does not. They each lead nowhere. True wisdom recognizes that the problem is inside and the solution is outside. For this reason, Solomon tells his son, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding” (Prov. 3:5). Our own hearts cannot be trusted. 

We must turn to God for wisdom and when we do He has promised to grant our request (James 1:5). While we’d like for that answer to come via a bolt of lightning, the typical way God chooses to work is through the illumination of His Word. 

Want wisdom? Dig into God’s Word. It’s not an encyclopedia or a book of problems and solutions. It’s a book about the All-Wise God. As you get to know Him, wisdom will inevitably come. The process may be slow but it will not disappoint. 

Let your heart stand in awe at the wisdom found in God’s Word. Throw your bucket down into the well and find out for yourself the sweetness of the water it holds. 

It’s Revive Partner Month, and we’re on a mission to reach women of every age and stage with rich and applicable teaching of God’s Word. When you become a partner today with your commitment of $30 per month or more, your gift multiplies as together we fuel the effort to help women around the world thrive in Christ. 

When you become a partner this month, we want to welcome you to the team with this special Revive Partner Welcome Bundle: 
  • Our 2024 Revive Our Hearts Ministry Calendar
  • Incomparable: 50 Days with Jesus, the newest book by Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth
  • The Incomparable Scripture Card Set
  • Finding the Words to Pray
  • Ruth: Experiencing a Life Restored  

 Paul David Tripp, Awe: Why It Matters for Everything We Think, Say, and Do (Wheaton: Crossway, 2015).

2  I’m not kidding! You can see for yourself here:

About the Author

Cindy Matson

Cindy Matson

Cindy Matson lives in a small Minnesota town with her husband, son and daughter, and ridiculous black dog. She enjoys reading books, drinking coffee, and coaching basketball. You can read more of her musings about God's Word at

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