We are taught that the holy and sacred name of God should inspire awe in us... and it should... but not just because we say so.
The Hebrew name of God, spelled with the letters yod, heh, vav, heh has become familiar to many believers. It is pronounced a great number of different ways (often with pompous disdain of all the competition). Yet, rarely, do we take the time to discuss what is so important about this name and and why we should treat it with such honor.
First, we have to understand the Hebrew idea of what a name really is. The word "shem" describes more than just the title we place on something or someone. Why is an orange called an orange? It's because someone, somewhere, decided to call it that and since then, everyone has accepted that if I am asking for an orange, then I am waiting for someone to deliver to me a specific species of fruit. In English, a name is just
So, the YHWH is more than just an agreed upon symbol or sound that tells us who we are talking about. It defines His character.
When Moses is introduced to the Almighty, he asks for an introduction. "Who is the Lord that I shall say is delivering His people?" The response is, "I AM" or "I Am that I Am", or maybe more accurately, "I Am that Is." Curiously enough, the phrase "I am that is" is made up of four Hebrew words that form the acronym "YHWH". (See, even God does it!). So, whenever we see the Hebrew name YHWH (in many Bibles it is denoted by LORD: all caps), we are seeing the identifying description that He gave to Himself, "I Am that Is."
But, it is more than just a declaration that God really exists. In Exodus 34:6-7, we learn that YHWH is just His nickname. The fill version goes like this: The LORD, The LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty; visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children's children, unto the third and to the fourth generation. We find this to be acknowledged in ancient Jewish sources as "the Name of God" because during the sprinkling of blood upon the alter, once a year on Yom Kippur, we are told that the High Priest would speak the 70 syllables of the Name of God. I don't care you try to pronounce it, you're not going to get 70 syllables out of YHWH; but you will when you annunciate the 13 attributes, or according to the Hebrew definition of the word "shem", the name of God.