When was the last time you told someone you loved them?
Last week I wrote an article citing six Christian cliches that I think, quite frankly, Christians should just stop saying. Growing traction quickly, I was surprised to see the post go viral (well, sorta, not really), and to see so many Christians in agreement (and disagreement).
With that said, however, I think a follow-up post is necessary, in which we discuss some things that Christians should say more often.
What are they?
Here’s six things Christians should say more frequently:
1) I don’t know. God is all-knowing, but we are not. When we pretend as if we know the answer, when we really don’t, we diminish our credibility. Not only that, we also hurt the people we speak to. Here’s a new idea: When someone asks a question and we don’t know the answer, it might be wise to say, “I don’t know.”
2) I’m grateful for ____. The seasons of our lives change. We might go through times of blessings or burdens, success or suffering, prosperity or poverty. But no matter what season we find ourselves in, the goodness of God never changes. We all have a myriad of things of which we can and should be grateful for.
3) I love you. Because no one ever gets tired of hearing that they’re loved.
4) You hurt me. Often times, we’re not really hurt. What happened was our ego and pride got in the way. But, when Christians legitimately sin against us, we shouldn’t refrain from confronting them just because they’re in Christ. We should repent of our own sin, overlook annoyances, and confront the sin in others — in love, and to build-up.
5) You’re great at ___. The author of Hebrews commands us to encourage one another daily (Hebrews 3:13). Now, we don’t want to flatter people, because flattery is sin, but we should be quick to spot signs of grace and godliness in others, and tell them about it.
6) (Say nothing). Job’s friends were the best counselors on the planet . . . until they opened their mouths. Paul tells us to weep with those who weep (Romans 12:15). James tells us to be quick to listen, and slow to speak (James 1:19). It varies case by case, but often the best thing to say to a sufferer is to say nothing.
Words are powerful; they can build up, or they can destroy. There’s lots we shouldn’t say, but also some things that we should say. And we’re responsible for both. As Martin Luther once noted, “You are not only responsible for what you say, but also for what you do not say.”
What would add to this list? Post your comments below.