Have you ever set something apart from others similar to it because it had special meaning, significance or value?
We have three or four big boxes full of Christmas ornaments but a few ornaments are set apart with their own special boxes and receive special care and extra protection because of their value or they were a gift or they are extra beautiful.
I have a closet of “stuff”, things I have accumulated over the years that I cherish and have meaning to me… But in my desk drawers are a few items with extra special significance and value.
Some of the tools in my garage I don’t really take care of very well. Garden tools get lots of hard use and I always forget to clean them up at the end of the season so they sit in the garage with dirt clumps and get rust and wait for the spring. But my paint brushes get the best of care. I buy the best paint brushes and clean them meticulously so they are spotless and ready for the next paint job that comes along.
In the Lords Prayer (Luke 11:2-4) Jesus does an interesting thing. He tells us to address God as Father, which was a revolutionary intimacy for the Jews of the time, but in the next phrase he recognizes the holiness of the name. Holy is easily defined as “set apart”. While God is present and real, he is also “holy”, set apart, unlike any other. It is in recognizing that holiness of God that we give him not only a special place in our heart and in our lives but we recognize his leadership, his calling, his rule in our daily lives.
In this prayer, Jesus combines the intimacy of Father, and “set apartness” of God who not only calls us his children, but requires us to follow in his footsteps.
If our relationship with God in Jesus Christ is one we cherish, it seems to me that we will not only receive the love and grace of God, but will also make every effort to mold, shape, conform our lives to his call to follow, and his teaching that is the path of life.
“Our Father, hallowed be your name…” Make it so in your daily living.