Enjoying the Journey
So much of our Christianity has become trite and cliche. Words often overused and under-appreciated are common place.
Do we even think about the things we are saying?
I hear this cliche Christianity in my own prayers. It is easy to criticize the “vain repetition” of other groups and false religions, but what about MY vain repetition? The same words used again and again. Without heart. Without thought. Without meaning.
I hear this cliche Christianity in so much preaching. All of us who speak frequently are guilty of it. We fall back on words and fillers that are comfortable. Easy. But are they true? Do they express God’s meaning to the hearers?
I hear this cliche Christianity in every day conversation. Believers frequently use their “church language” with very little consideration of what it means to them and to others. This is not to say that we should do away with old words and expressions – only that we should use them carefully and meaningfully.
One example may help. God commands, “Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain” (Exodus 20:7). Yet this principle is regularly violated by believers. Dr. Frank Sells said many years ago that we take God’s name in vain anytime His name is on our lips and not in our hearts! When we fail to honor Him and hallow His name in our hearts, we have used His name lightly.
Maybe it is because we have heard it so many times. Maybe it is because certain expressions have become part of the fabric of our society. The question is: Has the truth become a part of the fabric of our hearts?
Listen to yourself! Listen to yourself pray. Preachers, (as painful as this may be!) listen to yourself preach. Listen to the way you interact with other believers and the way you speak about Christ to nonbelievers.
- Are my words Scriptural? This is the first test – the test of truth. You will never find better words than God’s Word.
- Are my words sincere? Words should come from the heart. I have discovered that in my own personal worship it helps to keep my heart fresh to express my love and thanks to God in varying words. Trite expressions often become “a form of godliness” without the power!
- Are my words clear? Words mean something. They are God’s chosen vehicle for conveying truth. Christ deserves clarity in our witness.
This generation needs a demonstration of real Christianity. Authentic faith. Genuine expressions of faith. Cliche Christianity will never bring the spiritual awakening that we need.
Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer. (Psalm 19:14)