As you can imagine, almost all of my meetings for work over the past year have been virtual instead of face-to-face. Even though we are all in the same office building, it is better for social distancing to meet over the computer at our respective desks, instead of in a conference room. Due to the fact that we interact less than we used to, my team has been doing fun activities in some of our meetings. At one recent meeting, we played “Two Truths and a Lie.” In this game, you provide three statements about yourself. Two are the truth and one is a fib. Then the group is supposed to guess which one is the fib. My three items were (1) I can say the alphabet backwards, (2) I know the alphabet in Spanish, (3) I know the alphabet in American Sign Language.
Which one do you think was the lie?
I will give you a moment to ponder…
…Insert Jeopardy! music…
The fib was number two. I do not know the alphabet in Spanish.
But the point of this post has more to do with the first item on the list – being able to say the alphabet backwards. You might wonder how this came about. When I was a child and had trouble sleeping, my grandmother encouraged me to silently recite the alphabet backwards in order to occupy my mind until I fell asleep. Before long, I had it memorized. As an adult, when I have had trouble sleeping, I have tried different things. Sometimes I will pray. Other times I might go through different Bible passages that I have memorized. Recently I did something new. I wish I could share it with my grandmother, because I think she would get a kick out of it. I went through the alphabet and thought of different words to describe God and His character. I have since done this on numerous occasions, picking different words. Sometimes I will go through this in my head as a way to praise God for His goodness, not just as a means to get to sleep.
Below is a list I have compiled, with Bible verse to go along with each word. However, when I put this particular list together, I did not create this list in alphabetical order, but added items to the list whenever I stumbled across a pertinent Bible verse. The last letter to get filled in was N. And when I found that particular Bible verse, I was a bit giddy with excitement. I felt as though God wanted me to find that one last so that it would make a big impact. And it did. Now anytime I hear the word “near,” it resonates in my heart like a sweet promise that God is near. I hope you enjoy going through the alphabet in this way, as you focus on how amazing our God is!
Awesome: “You, God, are awesome in your sanctuary; the God of Israel gives power and strength to his people. Praise be to God!” – Psalm 68:35
Beautiful: “One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple.” – Psalm 27:4
Compassionate: “If you return to the Lord, then your fellow Israelites and your children will be shown compassion by their captors and will return to this land, for the Lord your God is gracious and compassionate. He will not turn his face from you if you return to him.” – 2 Chronicles 30:9
Delightful: “Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.” – Psalm 37:4
Everlasting: “Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom.” – Isaiah 40:28
Forgiving: “You, Lord, are forgiving and good, abounding in love to all who call to you.” – Psalm 86:5
Good: “Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.” – Psalm 34:8
Healer: “He said, ‘If you listen carefully to the Lord your God and do what is right in his eyes, if you pay attention to his commands and keep all his decrees, I will not bring on you any of the diseases I brought on the Egyptians, for I am the Lord, who heals you.’” – Exodus 15:26
Immortal: “Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory for ever and ever. Amen.” – 1 Timothy 1:17
Just: “He is the Rock, his works are perfect, and all his ways are just. A faithful God who does no wrong, upright and just is he.” – Deuteronomy 32:4
Kind: “But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy.” – Titus 3:4-5a
Love: “Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.” – 1 John 4:8
Merciful: “For the Lord your God is a merciful God; he will not abandon or destroy you or forget the covenant with your ancestors, which he confirmed to them by oath.” – Deuteronomy 4:31
Near: “But as for me, it is good to be near God. I have made the Sovereign Lord my refuge; I will tell of all your deeds.” – Psalm 73:28
Omniscient: “If our hearts condemn us, we know that God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything.” – 1 John 3:20
Powerful: “Even when I am old and gray, do not forsake me, my God, till I declare your power to the next generation, your mighty acts to all who are to come.” – Psalm 71:18
Quencher: “But whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” – John 4:14
Righteous: “For the Lord is righteous, he loves justice; the upright will see his face.” – Psalm 11:7
Spirit: “God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.” – John 4:24
Truth: “Jesus answered, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.’” – John 14:6
Unchanging: “’I the Lord do not change. So you, the descendants of Jacob, are not destroyed. Ever since the time of your ancestors you have turned away from my decrees and have not kept them. Return to me, and I will return to you,’ says the Lord Almighty.” – Malachi 3:6-7a
Victorious: “But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” – 1 Corinthians 15:57
Worthy: “You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being.” – Revelation 4:11
eXalted: “God is exalted in his power. Who is a teacher like him?” – Job 36:22
Yours: “Teach me to do your will, for you are my God; may your good Spirit lead me on level ground.” – Psalm 143:10
Zealous: “Of the greatness of his government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David’s throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the Lord Almighty will accomplish this.” – Isaiah 9:7
© 2021 Bridget A. Thomas