Let Go and Let God – The Cliché Series – Part 1
Something I don’t ever want to be – and don’t want Pocket Fuel to be – is a cliché. I’m a Pastor's Kid from Australia, who became a Pastor, and is now no longer a Pastor – I’ve danced with cliché many a time.
We hate clichés because they feel fake. They feel easy. Simple. And too general. They don’t allow for nuance or personal complexity. They have felt like an apparatus that waves away the grey and insists things are black and white.
Here’s a few of my favorite (pet peeve) Christian clichés:
– Too blessed to be stressed.
– God said it. I believe it. That settles it.
– It must have been their time.
– Love the sinner, hate the sin.
– Let me tell you the truth in love…
– Let go and let God.
– Bless this food to our body.
– You can’t out give God.
– God is good all the time. All the time, God is good.
– Building God’s house.
– It is well with my soul.
– A Bible that’s falling apart usually belongs to someone who isn’t.
– Take it the Lord in prayer/have you prayed about it/I’m praying for you.
– God helps those who help themselves.
– Is God in the driver's seat? (Jesus please take the wheel!)
The first twenty odd years of my life were FILLED to the brim with clichés. So much so, I’ve wanted to avoid them come hell or high water. But of course, it goes without saying, that that’s near impossible. Cliché’s permeate our language and communication style; they're a dime a dozen. Much scripture is becoming cliché now, too. I blame those people who post typographic scriptures on social media sites… *wink*
A cliché becomes dangerous when we let them sit on the surface of things; when we use them to avoid getting messy, thinking deeply, becoming involved. But then, sometimes, they’re the only mechanism we have of trying to convey a thought, a feeling, an idea that we have no other words for. So, do we abandon our clichés? Or hang on to them for dear life?
To my horror, I’ve found that some of the clichés I hate the most, have just enough truth in them to actually work. That is when we pull them apart and really look at the heart of what they’re saying. Over the next week, I’m going to dig deep into some of my favorite (most annoying) clichés and see if we can’t unearth some gold.
I’d love to hear from you what some of your favorite/most hated clichés are. Send them to me at email@example.com, and I’ll talk about them on Instastories. You can watch along by following us @pocketfuel.
Today’s challenge: Take note of the clichés you use today and ask yourself why you used them. To gloss over something that you don’t have time or energy for? Or to try and convey an intangible thought or idea? What cliché do you use most? And yes, read into that… it’s trying to tell you something.
Written by Lizzy Milani
PLEASE NOTE: As always, please email your thoughts, suggestions, and questions to firstname.lastname@example.org. And remember: although we aren’t pastors (anymore), theologians or councilors, these daily blogs are our way of sharing our thoughts, prayers, and inspirations about God, faith, and life. We’re exploring and reading, engaging in community and listening to stories. We do not want you to take what we write verbatim. RATHER, we hope you engage in the conversation (whether with us or your own community) and are encouraged to seek out God in your life and the world around you. Awake, aware, alive.