Breaking the Third Commandment

10commYou know the Big Ten right? No, I’m not talking college football, you should know me better than that.  I’m talking about the BIG ten:

“Thou shalt have no other God’s before me.”

“Thou shalt not worship any graven image.

“Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain.”

I could go on, but I stop at that third one, because I’ve recently discovered that I’m guilty of breaking that one more frequently than I realize.  Now, I don’t go around substituting four letter words for God’s last name, or use His name as a swear word.  But I may be just as guilty.

Throughout Scripture we are given countless names of God; El Shaddai, Adonai, El Roi, and each one of them carry a significant meaning, describing a unique facet about God’s character.  One of the names that Scripture ascribes to God is “Emmanuel,” which literally means, “God With Us.”  Some of my favorite Christmas carols have that name in them.  Its a beautiful name.  But I’m afraid that’s all this particular name has ever been to me, just a beautiful name of God.

Its a powerful name.  In fact its more than just a name, its a message. Although I know what it means, my usual unconscious response has been, “‘God With Us,’ oh cool. . .” and that’s about it.  I’m afraid I’ve blown that message off way too much.

God is with us. (Stop and let that simmer for a second).

God is with us.   You know the thing that blows my mind the most about that statement?  He WANTS to be with us!!  He’s always present, ever so close to you and me.  The problem is, I don’t take that name seriously.  I’ve taken his name in vain.  Its significance has been lost.

Some people live their entire lifetimes never realizing this truth.  As for me, I’m guilty of forgetting to remember that He is with me day to day.  I go about my day facing all sorts of challenges and circumstances, and when I get stressed out, overwhelmed, I find myself getting irritable, unsettled, wringing my hands, biting my nails, wondering, “What am I going to do?”  I might talk about my situation to someone else, get their advice or opinion. All the while, the One Being in the entire cosmos who has the very answer to all of my questions is RIGHT THERE WITH ME!!!!!

I’ve been trying to deliberately remind myself of that truth, everyday.  “God I know you’re with me today, help me to remember that all day long.”  I’m finding that when I’m consciously aware of this truth, life’s big circumstances don’t seem so big after all.

What are you going through right now?  What circumstances are you facing?

Take heart, God Is With You.  He’s not just hanging around cause He’s got nothing better to do.  He wants to be with you, He wants to be involved in the details of your life.

Don’t take his name in vain.  Lock on to that message and live with the hope it brings.

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