Cliches and God's Word

Until I started teaching, I never noticed how many clichés people use. Wow, do my ladies like to quote them to me often. One that always frustrates me is, “When God closes a door, He will open a window.” That may seem like a comforting group of words, but God does not have His children climbing into windows like thieves. God’s word reminds us in Rev. 3:8 and Isaiah 22:22 that when God opens a door, no man can shut it. Also, was the door determined to be closed because some resistance developed? I feel that when a little interference or hindrance is present that some may think that God is putting up the roadblock. If that was true, then why do we encourage each other with Deut. 31:6? “Be strong and courageous, do not be afraid or tremble at them, for the Lord your God is the one who goes with you. He will not fail you or forsake you.” Instead of saying pretty words to each other, I think we should seek God for each circumstance. For me, nothing in my life is “cut and dried.”
How about that phrase, “It’s going to be okay.” Where do I begin? In my house, the word “okay” can cause my head to implode. You ask your loved one’s opinion on a matter, only for them to say, “It’s okay.” You reply, “If you don’t like it, what would you like?” Then this weird back and forth goes on because in my husband’s world, okay means agreement, but in my world, it means not exceptionally good. So when I hear someone attempt to encourage themselves or others with this phrase, I want clarification. Are you saying things are going to be okay because you are tired, and you don’t have the will to keep trying? Are you saying things are good? Are you saying there is no way life can get any worse? How about “I have no idea what to say, so I am saying pretty words at you so I can feel better, and you leave me alone?”
In those areas of confusion, I suggest we just ask God?
One thing I refuse to do is comfort my ladies with human platitudes. I find it kind of mean to tell someone hollow words, especially if God’s name is in vain. Instead, we should attempt to grasp what others are trying to communicate and ask some questions. I have a dear friend who has shown me that questions show others that you are interested in them. For me, as you can read, I love truisms. Most people understand them, and they get the point across. Sometimes though, when it comes to those critically important moments for people, I think spending time with them is essential. Although the Holy Spirit will give me a verse for the moment, He does not want me to spew it at someone and run. Help other’s think deeply about what God’s word means and examine what His word looks like in action. Meditating on God’s word does not have to be a solo event. Enjoy discovering life with others because God put us here to develop a strong relationship. “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth” 2 Timothy 2:15.


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