I am continuing a critique of a series of statements dubbed Stupid phrases for people to say to someone in crisis. This is the original article
Don’t worry. God’s in Charge.
True yet not helpful without a clear understanding of where the person is at in their relationship with God. Let’s break this into the two parts.
Many people that say this believe they are being comforting without realizing the undercurrents that cause havoc wrecking undertow. First part is telling someone that how they feel is not OK. Worry perhaps may be a useless emotion for getting things done, however, it exists. I know from experience that someone else telling me what to feel, my feelings has no value, or any of the variety of interpretations of your feeling is not important. I learned in a difficult situation, to let go and let God take care of it. But it is quite different for me to tell me to stop worrying and someone else commanding me to ‘don’t worry.’ When I worked with computers, I encountered several situations that one of the parties wasn’t worried. I quickly realized that they hadn’t grasped the enormity of the problem. What I am working on is recognizing what I feel concerned about, then create a plan to resolve that issue. If I worry about a problem then come up with a solution it is called persistence. If I worry about a problem and don’t come up with a solution then I’m wasting my time worrying. I learned to do two things with worry. I give myself a time limit. OK for the next 10 minutes I am going to worry about this problem At the end of the 10 minutes I give it a rest and work on something else. The brain is fairly marvelous. Turn it loose on a solution while you are doing something else and you will be amazed what the brain can come up with for a solution. The second thing is if it isn’t my problem to solve is to ‘let go and let God’ take care of the issue. The main draw back of the Don’t worry command is it minimizes or denies the other person’s emotion. I think a far more helpful attitude would to ask someone if they would like me to worry with them for a time. Most times they laugh and then I explain that worrying together sometimes we can work out a solution then the worrying becomes a brain storming session.
God’s in Charge.
Yes, I believe this. I also believe that God is in charge of a testing ground not a play ground. Too often, I hear people exclaim that because hard things are happening in their lives it is God’s fault since He is in charge. I do believe that God’s purposes are fulfilled but He allows us to be challenged and tested. Consider John the Baptist, beloved cousin to Jesus Christ, he was beheaded. Apostle Paul was imprisoned and shared that he had a ‘thorn in his side’ that was not removed. The children of Israel suffered the same plagues as the Egyptians until the last one when the Israelites placed the blood of the lamb over the doors. Today they still celebrate the Pass Over. God was in charge when the Israelites reached the shores of the Red Sea. They passed through on dry land and the Egyptians were buried at sea. God is in charge comforts me but telling someone else this may not be comforting for them. They may not believe as I do. They may be in a different place of their journey than I am. They may feel that God is failing them or saddest of all is when they start to believe that no miracle means they are not loved. I listened to prayers of protection and I wasn’t protected. I was told God loves His little children. So what was wrong with me that I wasn’t protected? I don’t know all the answers but I do know that my Heavenly Father loves me. What happened to me, why I wasn’t protected, I can only guess but time and time again, I know that God loves me. When I pray in Jesus name, I feel comforted. God’s in charge but these words are not always comforting to someone else. Although, they do bring great comfort to me.