Friday, October 18, 2013

10 Silly Things Christians Say

Just some common Christian-isms that bug the living heck out of me, in no particular order.

1. I need to learn how to forgive myself.
2. I just need to hold on to my faith. (Or, I just need to trust my faith more.)
3. Only God can judge me. (Usually said by somebody in defense of living like God won’t.)
4. “Nine out of ten people won’t share this…” (Or, If you love Jesus, please forward…)
5. God needed another angel in heaven.
6. Let go and let God.
7. I’m a pan-tribulationist, because I know it will all pan out in the end.
8. Lord, we just come to you, Lord, just asking, Lord, that you’d just help us, Lord, just to just keep loving you, Lord, just…
9. Follow your heart.
10. God is a gentleman. He will never give you more than you can handle. He will never violate your free will. He can’t work until you let him. Etc.
These sorts of sayings aren’t just silly, they are shallow and superficial, some of them just flat-out stupid. You can likely think of more of these kinds of phrases, perhaps a whole new set that makes you itch in your own unique way. (“Smokin’ hot wife,” “the worship is really rockin’ today,” “this Sunday is going to be the best ever/can’t miss,” etc.)
What shall we say then to these things?
Here’s what I am learning: It is my first instinct to jump all over this stuff, to sneer and snicker, to correct and nitpick. I have an odd, inflated sense of justice when it comes to these silly, stupid phrases. Even when I’m not correcting people, I’m thinking I really ought to. But this impulse says more about me than them. It is not the Spirit of Christ to ambush my brothers and sisters with smug nitpickery. It is not the way of Jesus for Christians to mock God’s children for their affectations, to bite, to self-righteously manage, or to otherwise shame. I am not the Holy Spirit of social media.
Instead, it is entirely like Christ to put on humility, patience, kindness, and — the quality I’m striving to cultivate through the gospel in my own life more and more — gentleness. Nobody ever became un-shallow through shame.

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