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10 Christian Sayings That Need to Go

10 Christian Sayings That Need to Go

I have a problem: At 26, I still get mistaken for a high schooler. I thought for sure I would have outgrown this by now, but sadly I still get asked about prom and college applications.

While serving at a youth camp recently, Matthew, a pastor from a different church, struck up a conversation with me. It quickly became clear that he mistook me for a part of the high school crowd, but it seemed pointless to correct him. Then, in an effort to seem relatable to me, a “highschooler,” Pastor Matthew said the one phrase that has the ability to make me roll my eyes harder than I ever did as an actual teenager. He told me “Jesus was his homeboy.”

The worst part of this story is the fact that Pastor Matthew legitimately thought this phrase was cool and relevant to teens. But then it got me thinking. What other phrases are Christians using that are cringe-worthy, cliché, or contradictory to the Bible?

Here are the top 10 Christian sayings that need to go.

Photo credit: ©Unsplash / Isaiah Rustad

  • 1. #blessed

    1. #blessed

    Like Pastor Matthew, there’s a handful of people that try very hard to make Christianity socially relevant in an effort to increase its cool factor. This results in some pretty awful sayings. Perfect example: #blessed. It’s not just using the hashtag on social media either! Some people say the words “hashtag blessed” in day-to-day conversations.

    Now, don’t get me wrong: I think having a relationship with Jesus is the coolest thing. But being a Christian isn’t a fad and doesn’t need to fit society’s trends. Remember, we’re called to “not be conformed to this world.” (Romans 12:2)

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  • 2. Bless her heart.

    2. Bless her heart.

    This saying only ever follows a completely awful comment that a stereotypically southern woman just made. But if we criticize someone and follow it up with “bless her heart,” we aren’t really asking God to bless her heart. We’re just trying to not seem like a jerk while we gossip. Christians get a bad enough rap for being judgmental. We don’t need to add fuel to the fire. Remember that “death and life are in the power of the tongue” (Proverbs 18:21).

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  • 3. I'll be praying for you.

    3. I'll be praying for you.

    There have been countless times I’ve told somebody I’d been praying for them, only to forget to actually pray. After too many times dropping the ball, I decided to make a change. Now, instead of promising to pray later, I ask if I can pray with them right then and there. This prevents me from forgetting and it’s more encouraging to be prayed with than prayed for!

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  • 4. Do life together.

    4. Do life together.

    Quick quiz: I walk into a group of people and someone asks me to “do life together.” Am I (a) joining a cult, (b) being asked for my hand in marriage, or (c) visiting a new church? 

    The correct answer is (c), but the other two answers are sadly passable. Although the concept of community is wonderful, the saying “do life together” is off-putting and can turn guests away. Let’s drop the phrase and have our actions speak louder than our words.

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  • 5. Be Jesus to people.

    5. Be Jesus to people.

    This phrase is said with such great intentions, but it’s nonetheless inaccurate. I can’t be Jesus to you, and you can’t be Jesus to me. The only person who can fulfill that role is Jesus himself! 

    A better saying would be to “show Jesus’ love.” After all, all our actions should be done in love and through an outpouring of love Jesus has given us. Remember, “we love because he first loved us.” (1 John 4:19).

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  • 6. Hate the sin, love the sinner.

    6. Hate the sin, love the sinner.

    I get where we’re coming from. We want to love every person, but we don’t love their sin. 

    Well duh! We don’t love their sin because we don’t love any sin. Psalm 97:10 tells us, “Let those who love the Lord hate evil.”

    It’s not fair to let certain people know we hate their sins specifically, and it seems a bit exhausting to tell every person we know that we love them but not their sin. How about we just focus on loving God first and loving others like ourselves? (Mark 12:30-31)

    Photo credit: ©Thinkstock/vadimguzhva

  • 7. Just pray harder!

    7. Just pray harder!

    Shortly after going into remission, my friend Robert’s cancer came back. He knew it was a possibility, but what was completely unexpected was one acquaintance’s reaction to the news. “I guess you just need to pray harder,” she said. Talk about being a Job’s comforter!

    We’re not in a place to judge the intensity level of someone’s prayer. Plus, the Bible tells us that even when we are too weak to pray and don’t know what to say, the Holy Spirit intercedes on our behalf. (Romans 8:26)

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  • 8. Jesus, we just...

    8. Jesus, we just...

    Friends, I just ask that we just limit or maybe even just remove the word “just” from our prayers.

    That sentence sounds ridiculous, right? So why do we talk like this when we pray? 

    The word “just” implies one of two things: either I’m praying just for one thing or the prayer is just a small thing. Now, I can guarantee you that when I come before the Lord, I’ve got a long list of praises and prayers. Yes, my prayers are simple for the Lord to take care of, but they sure aren’t just small things for me!

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  • 9. Love on people.

    9. Love on people.

    What’s the difference between loving on people and simply loving people?  

    Loving people is living out God’s love for us. That love is patient and kind, it keeps no record of wrongs, and it never fails. (1 Corinthians 13

    On the other hand, loving on someone sounds oppressive. We shouldn’t force love on anyone, especially people who don’t necessarily want it. It’s seems aggressive and is not a great representation of Christ’s love.

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  • 10. It's just the way God made me.

    10. It's just the way God made me.

    I can’t begin to count the number of times I’ve heard this as an excuse for unsavory behavior. Greed? Lust? Laziness? Oh well! That’s just the way God made me.

    Yes, God made us and God doesn’t make mistakes. But God is also a loving Father who gave us the ability to choose. Free will led to the fall of humanity and an imperfect world. We must choose to fight against sin every morning when we wake up. We should stop making excuses, continue to grow in God’s will, and praise Jesus for unending grace!

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