If you were brought up in a Christian home like me, you were probably taught never to say those words. To do so would be “taking the Lord’s name in vain” or “blaspheming”.

I think I only ever uttered them once, and that was under my breath lest God should hear me and strike me down with lightning.

To this day, I would still feel uncomfortable saying them.

So where does this taboo come from?

Actually, the Ten Commandments.

“You shall not misuse the name of the LORD your God, for the LORD will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name.”

– Exodus 20:7

So, the Bible tells us not to misuse God’s name, but I think that means something totally different to what I was raised to believe.

If someone calls themselves a Christian and then does things directly contrary to the teachings of Christ, is this not misusing God’s name? Attaching things to Him that do not match His character?

I think it is; and in light of this, I am guilty (many times over) of misusing God’s name.

Thankfully God sent Jesus for all those times we mess us. Which reminds me of why I think it might be okay to call upon the name of the Lord in moments of joy, or distress…

About the ninth hour Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?”—which means, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”

– Matthew 27:46