These days Christianity has become bogged down with cliché’s. For example:
“Let go and let God”…..Sorry, but there are times when there are things God requires us to do in certain situations instead of sitting back and waiting for Him to act. God parted the Red Sea but He commanded Moses to raise his staff up into the air first. It was God who brought down the city of Jericho, but He commanded the Hebrews to march around the city for 7 days and blow the rams’ horns first.
“God won’t give you more than you can handle”…..Yes, He will!! If you never got any more than YOU could handle, you wouldn’t need God. Trials come to make us stop relying on ourselves and depend upon God.
“Everything happens for a reason”……While that statement is true, there are times when speaking those words bring no comfort whatsoever to the person it’s spoken to. Try using that statement to a young grieving couple whose 5 year-old daughter was struck and killed by a drunk driver as she played in the front yard. Yes, she was killed because that driver made the decision to drive after he downed 5 beers.
“Speaking life into someone”…..this one bothers me and is the reason for writing this post.
Charismatics are notorious for teaching that our words have power and that we can speak things into existence. The most famous example of this is false teacher, Marilyn Hickey, who told her viewers that if they need a financial blessing, just speak to their wallet and money would supernaturally appear (yeah, right!!). While our words can (and do) hurt or build up, nowhere does Scripture teach us that our words have the power to bring anything into existence. You can go to a person who’s dealing with depression and contemplating suicide and say you want to “speak life” into them, but what if that person ends up committing suicide anyway? You can’t say you spoke life into them at all. You brought them words of encouragement, but in no way were your words powerful enough to change their emotional state. Only God can do that. “Speaking life” is just a nice sounding cliché that people use that makes them appear “spiritual”.
In fact, ALL Christian cliché’s are incorporated in a person’s speech for the purpose of making them sound “spiritual”. The person who is not Christian, hasn’t stepped foot into a church ever (or at least in a few years) would probably look at you strangely if you walked up to them and said “I want to speak life into you.” They’d probably say, “Um, I’m breathing. I’m walking around so I think I am already living.”
This is in no way a criticism but just something to make us stop and think about our words and what they mean. To the person who isn’t saved and is unfamiliar with “Christianese”, our cliché’s mean absolutely nothing to them. If a person is going through a time of trial/adversity and nothing seems to be going right in their life, just speak words of encouragement without all the Christianese mumbo jumbo. If we feel led to go to someone for the purpose of being an encouragement to them, great! Do it!! But, don’t be surprised if they don’t respond to our efforts right away. We can’t boastfully say we “spoke life” into someone if we don’t see a change in their emotional state right away. Just as with Moses who was commanded to raise his staff, God may want us to go to them and love them and be an encouragement, but the outcome isn’t dependent so much upon our words, but upon God who has the power to change the person and their circumstances.