Tuesday, July 26, 2011

"Oh, my ______!"

This morning I was thinking, "How would I feel if, when my kids faced a surprise or a frustration in their daily routines -- they said, "Oh, my Rick!" Would I feel honored? Or would I feel put-down?

What got me to thinking about this is that the expression, "Oh, my God!" has become totally acceptable in our culture. This morning, ABC was running a commercial about an upcoming reality show. You know, the kind where they show 2-second soundbytes. It seemed that in each soundbyte, the contestant would say, "Oh, my God!"

I challenge you to watch a sitcom and count how many times this expression is used.

Right after Jenny died, there were days in which it seemed that is all I could pray: "Oh, my God!" But it was not a phrase used as an expression instead of, "Wow!" or "Good grief!" It was all my pained heart could utter. I was SO seeking Him -- but had no words.

But to use that expression so cheaply in the course of everyday communication seems to me to violate the very heart of the 3rd commandment -- to NOT take the name of the Lord in vain.
To me, that means to hold God's name in reverence.

The Jews took the command so seriously that they would not even utter the name YHWH, and as a result we don't even know for sure to this day how to properly say the name God gave to Moses in Exodus 3.

That may have been an extreme approach, but at least it came out of reverence for God. Our culture has swung to another extreme -- an extreme with NO redeeming value. That is, that God's name has become a common oath. It suggests NO reverence for God.

I pray that light might break through powerfully into the darkness!

"Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul." (Psalm 143: 8)


bp said...

Excellent post. Thanks for sharing. It really bothers me how often I hear this phrase as well as read it in advertising.

Jeff said...

Thanks for this post. It's something I've thought about often in the past but never written about. A great reminder of the power and importance of God's name.

Anonymous said...

Great Post! I must admit I say it a lot too.. I will have to watch myself. Thank you for blogging!