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Sunday, January 18, 2009

Wholly Holy


I am a visual worshipper, so a trip to somewhere grandeous is all it takes for me to get perspective of how awesome God is. It is truly amazing after being a Christian for all these years that I can make GOD such a casual name in my vocabulary. As if He were the mailman delivering Good News…..or the maintenance man, making repairs in my life….an entertainer, performing music inside my heart and mind.

I was convicted as I sat, hiked and biked in the beautiful mountains of Colorado last summer that His name had become too ordinary to me. Don’t get me wrong, I uttered His name as "holy" in my prayers and in my worship, but in everyday living, I had not exalted Him to His proper place. I've been grappling with this ever since. Even today, I struggle with finding the balance between reverence and relevance, though I know it is His desire that I am both at the same time. This culture is full of Twittering "omg"s and variants of His name as an interjection to the most common of subjects. Yes, even among Christians. I've done it myself. But ever since the Holy of Holies opened my eyes to His view, I've wholly reconsidered.

Will you now consider God's position in your life? Is He your "Main Man?” The contemporary human on the movie screen? Has He become an exclamatory clause to your conversations? Or is He your ALL? Your everything? The only name worthy of total respect. How do you use His name? Is it “Oh, my God, You are so holy and good.” Or could it possibly be “Oh my (bleep), I love your new shoes!”

My heart is to challenge all of us as believers who long to grow up in our faith to be different from the rest of the mainstream in regards to God’s position. I’m not talking about non-Christians, I’m not referring to young Christians, and I’m not suggesting we judge others who don’t know any better. I'm also not saying that we stop being edgy or relevant in our modern day culture. 
I’m exhorting us to think about our God who is wholly holy, research it in the Scripture, pray about it, and see what an incredible adjustment He does in our minds as a result. Personally. Individually.

The following are just some of the Scriptures that convicted me on the subject:

Isaiah 8:13a:
“The Lord Almighty is the One you are to regard as holy.”

Isaiah 26:8b:
“…Your name and renown are the desire of our hearts.”

Exodus 20:7 (The Message):
"No using the name of God, your God, in curses or silly banter; GOD won't put up with the irreverent use of His name."

1 Timothy 6:15b-16:
“…God, the blessed and only Ruler, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone is immortal and who lives in unapproachable light, whom no one has seen or can see. To Him be honor and might forever. Amen.”

Hundreds more verses exist throughout the Bible about God’s name and His holiness, greatness, etc. The good news is that as New Testament believers, we can approach the throne of grace with confidence, thanks to Jesus. And we can call Him "Friend" as well (John 15:15).

 But may we never lose sight that God is wholly holy, resplendent with light and worthy to receive our most humble praise. May He increase in our minds as we walk in the light of His presence today. It won't just change the way we talk about Him. It will change the way we live for Him too.


Abba, Father, You are Holy. You are the Lord God Almighty. You are high above any other god or any living creature. We're so sorry for misusing Your name. We exalt You and will treat You with the utmost respect. Make Your name and renown the desire of our hearts and be glorified in our words, thoughts and actions today. In Jesus’ name, Amen.


In the Key of HE,

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13 Comments:

Blogger Denise said...

Very beautiful my friend, love you.

January 18, 2009 at 1:04 AM  
Blogger Janet said...

Thank you, Laura Lee! I'll take up the challenge with you. Our God is amazing--we should take time to think on that every day. And when we do, He changes our perspective on everything else, too. He's God, He's in control, He deserves our worship and praise!

January 18, 2009 at 5:38 AM  
Blogger TCKK said...

Amen!

January 18, 2009 at 7:41 AM  
Blogger Susan said...

Thanks for such a great word!!

Blessings to you this day♥

January 18, 2009 at 8:49 AM  
Blogger Sita said...

My sons go to Christian Reformed schools---and that is a big NO-NO--any version to using God's Name in vain--but in just looking at the Family Channel shows...even Extreme Home Makeover...I cringe whenever I hear them say 'it' over and over again---so casually...
yes we have lost the grasp of the Holiness of God..
Father, sensitize our hearts once again, so our words reflect our fear of a Holy God..
In the Name of Jesus, I pray,
Amen

January 18, 2009 at 9:05 AM  
Blogger ktwalden said...

Very, very good! I, too, cringe whenever I hear my Lord's name used casually. I am afraid we are in the minority who feel this way considering how many times we hear this done throughout the day, by Christians and non-Christians alike. May we all pray that our words always honor Him who is worthy of our praise!

January 18, 2009 at 12:52 PM  
Blogger Elaine Bateman said...

Thank you so much! Amen and Amen for He is wholly Holy above anyone or anything else that we could ever imagine!

Thank You, Laura for sharing which helps to keep everything in perspective of who we Serve!

January 18, 2009 at 1:35 PM  
Blogger Joanne Sher said...

SO excellent, and an important reminder. Finding that balance between reverence and relevance IS hard, but SO necessary. Thank you, my dear, for the so needed reminder.

January 18, 2009 at 2:20 PM  
Blogger Betsy Markman said...

This is absolutely a message that needs to be shouted from the rooftops. Our God is holy and so is His Name! Thank you for this.

You know, I can't comprehend how our culture has made the shift from judging the relevance of a message by its content to judging it by its style. If someone comes up to me and tells me the building is on fire, am I going to look at him and say, "You know, man, you just weren't cool enough in the way you said that. I'm not interested in your message. If you'd thrown a few cuss words in, why then I'd know you have something to say!" No, I'd get out of the building!

Those who say that we need to "make the gospel relevant" are insulting the gospel. It IS relevant...more relevant than anything else.

I'm not saying that it's wrong to reach out to people in ways that they can relate to. I am saying that if the holiness of God, if the meat of the Gospel, if the TRUTH is in any way compromised, then you've lost relevance, even if the world thinks you've gained it.

January 18, 2009 at 2:53 PM  
Blogger elaine @ peace for the journey said...

There is no other name that brings me more pause than that of my God. I haven't always revered him like I should, but as my faith grows, so does my awe of just exactly what's he's done on my behalf. When we get our minds and heart around that concept--the immeasurable grace that has saved us from the pit of hell--then his name will never be spoken casually. We need the understanding; thus, the reason so many are content to liberally throw his Name out without even thinking.

Love this, per usual.
peace~elaine

January 18, 2009 at 3:46 PM  
Blogger Melanie @ This Ain't New York said...

Awesome post! We believers could take a lesson in reverence. Even in worship I find myself using His Name too casually. My heart must be right to even say it out loud.

Thank you for this!

January 18, 2009 at 9:21 PM  
Blogger Patty Wysong said...

This is so important. SO important. So many times we miss it--even if our mouths are clean--and we forget His Holiness. Too many times I barge into His presense, forgetting how wholly Holy He is. Thanks so much for this post!

January 18, 2009 at 9:26 PM  
Blogger lori said...

perfectly said! ;)
Lots to think about...WHOLLY HOLY...I LOVE it!

hugs!
lori

January 19, 2009 at 2:30 PM  

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