Awesome in This Place

by Clayton Welch on April 24, 2024

A Prelude to Worship

As I come into Your presence
Past the gates of praise
Into Your sanctuary
'Till we're standing face to face
I look upon Your countenance
I see the fullness of Your grace
And I can only bow down and say

You are awesome in this place
Mighty God,
You are awesome in this place
Abba Father
You are worthy of all praise
To You our lives we raise
You are awesome in this place
Mighty God.

Me and My Music

I have been surrounded by gospel music my entire life. My mom sang to me while I was in her womb. At six years old I was singing in the Cherub Choir at First Baptist Orlando. At 11 years old I was selected as the most outstanding youth choir member at First Baptist Fort Myers and won a trip to Lake Yale Music Camp and accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior during the 13th verse of Just As I Am. I sang classical sacred music at Edison Community College as a member of the Chorale. At one point, I took a “Sabbatical” from religious music and was arrested for singing (breach of the peace) while in college, but that’s another story. When I came back to my senses and the Lord, I sang in the choir at Grace Presbyterian Church in Ocala. I was the president of the choir at Bell Shoals Baptist Church in Brandon and sang solos regularly for 24 years. I was in a gospel quartet called One Voice and we were the opener for a Truth concert in Lakeland. I have been on three mission trips where I was on the praise team which includes singing with four combined church choirs in Moscow, Russia at the International House of Music. This would basically be the equivalent of Carnegie Hall in the United States. I also sang a solo with the Bell Shoals Choir at the Southern Baptist Convention, and I am currently a member of the Bay Life Church Choir and a part of the Vocal Team.

I say all this to say…I’m really not that into music! LOL! I guess what I mean to say is, I don’t really listen that much to Christian music on the radio or online. I’m not good at knowing which artist did what song and I don’t attend many concerts. But I do love to sing and worship the Lord! I sing loud and proud. Maybe too loud. I’m not really singing to anybody except God unless it is to motivate others to worship and serve. Although singing loud and proud to the Lord is great, there is also a time for soft, quiet worship, which leads me to one of my favorite worship songs, Awesome In This Place.

Awesome in this Place

This is one of the great worship songs of the 90’s. You may have never ever heard this song before and that’s unfortunate. This is a song where I can mentally visualize and position myself approaching the Living God. I love this song. I often find myself singing this as a way to prepare me for worship. It’s a starting point to adjust my attitude and to guide myself to intentionally worship the Lord. Let me break down the verses.

As I come into Your presence

I picture a scene in heaven… Almighty God is sitting regally on His throne, overseeing the vast enormity of heaven. Jesus is seated at His right hand, listening to our prayers and continually making intercession for us with God the Father Almighty.

Past the gates of praise. 

Praise and Thanksgiving are the prerequisites for standing before the throne. Psalm 100:4 says, “Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise.” This is an act of humility and personal reflection as we prepare our hearts and minds for worship. As I think about this, I’m reminded of Psalm 51:10-11. In these verses, David sets this tone when he says, “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from your presence and take not your Holy Spirit from me.”

Into Your sanctuary. 

Again, my mind envisions the throne room of heaven, its magnificence and grandeur.

'Till we're standing face to face. 

Is it possible? Could I ever be this intimate, this close to my Creator? In Hebrews 10:19 the author reminds us that it is possible when they say, “... we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus.” We also see this truth in Ephesians 3:12 as Paul says, “In him and through faith in him (Jesus) we may approach God with freedom and confidence.” There it is! I have been granted access to God through the finished work of Jesus Christ my Lord.

I look upon your countenance 
I see the fullness of your grace

When we look into the face of God what do we see? An angry and fearful figure ready to accuse and proclaim judgment on me? No! I see a welcoming Father full of unmerited grace and favor toward me. John 1 tells us that through Christ there is glory full of grace and truth. I am received and accepted.

And I can only bow down and say. 

What is my only response? What is my only reaction? What else can I do but bow in humble reverence? In Romans 14:11, Paul reminds us of the words of the prophet Isaiah, “‘As surely as I live,’ says the Lord, ‘every knee will bow before me; every tongue will acknowledge God.’”
You are awesome in this place, Mighty God

This is where I pivot. To me the venue changes. Up to this point, this song brings me into the throne room of God, a feeling similar to that in Isaiah 6. Now, I am brought back to the present moment where I am seeking the Lord and worshiping. It may be in my room, my car, or the worship center at church but there I am experiencing the presence of the Living God.

You are awesome in this place, Abba Father

Abba Father is the defining term for father in Aramaic. It’s intimate and personal. It’s like saying daddy. It carries all the love and trust of a caring attentive father.

You are worthy of all praise.

The Psalms are full of songs that implore us to give all praise, glory, and honor to God because He fully deserves it. Psalm 145:3 states, “Great is the Lord! He is most worthy of praise! No one can measure his greatness.”

To you our lives we raise.

We have a God worth living our lives for. All of the good that we do in His name is a response of thanksgiving for the grace and mercy He has shown toward us. Matthew 5:16 encourages us this way, “Let your light shine before others so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.”

You are awesome in this place, Mighty God

Psalm 95:3-6 says it all, “For the Lord is a mighty God, a mighty king over all the gods. He rules over the whole earth, from the deepest caves to the highest hills. He rules over the sea which he made; the land also, which he himself formed. Come, let us worship and bow down before him; let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker!”

All of the reasons mentioned are why I believe this is a wonderfully engaging, engrossing, and absorbing song. One focused on our approach and preparation as we enter into worship. Give it a listen and let it carry you before the very presence of God.

Tags: worship, praise, awesome

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