Commandment three: Don’t misuse God’s name.
Some people think of this as the no cursing rule; I think bigger. I think this is a HUGE commandment, because there are a million ways I can misuse God’s name. When my kids were little we ALWAYS prayed before each meal, even if we were in a restaurant. Once in awhile someone would stop by our table and say, “Oh, it is so great to see young families like yours praying before your meal.” I thought that was nice, so much more pleasant than we we got kicked out of a restaurant because one child or another misbehaved.
In more recent years, it is no longer a law in our house to pray over a meal in public. The reason for this is…complicated. But I believe that to force my family to offer public prayers over meals in restaurants when some of us aren’t comfortable with that would be a misuse of God’s name. It’s too legalistic. Some in my family are proponents of only praying in private; there is actually scripture to support this perspective.
And so I think this: what a big commandment this is for it invites us to seek to understand the ways of God and grow in both knowledge and wisdom day by day. When I was a baby Christian, I had some rigid ideas about what faithfulness looked like. Today, every breath is a potential prayer.
Today, I pray for YOU. That you may find an awareness of God in the very air you breathe so that we might best know how to use his name for his glory.