“You are in my prayers.”
“God will never give you more than you can handle.”
“Everything happens for a reason.”
Why, oh why, do we say those words to others when they’re hurting? Where do they come from? I feel like we resort to certain tried and true phrases when we just don’t know what to say. Or maybe we don’t care enough to try. Whatever our motive, when we use these phrases they are more hurtful than helpful. Our friend or loved one is hurting physically or emotionally, and we should never say something just to have something to say.
Let’s examine those statements for just a moment. What can we Jesus girls do instead that could be more healing and helpful?
You are in my prayers. – Don’t say you are going to pray if you really won’t. A better solution would be to pray with them right there and then. At the very least, ask specifically how you can pray for the person.
"God will never give you more than you can handle. – Guess what…He will. He often gave people in the Bible more than they could handle - alone. Christians will often be brought into seasons where we will struggle to rely on God more and ourselves less. Be present and prayerful, but keep your words of wisdom to yourself.
Everything happens for a reason. – Does it really? Bad things happen. Period. Good things happen to bad people, and bad things happen to good people. For no good reason. However, Christians know that “…in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose,” Romans 8:28. He can use the bad for His good, but don’t spout off pointless, meaningless platitudes to someone who is hurting.
When a friend or loved one is hurting, the best you can offer is simply yourself. Be present and respectful. Let God do the rest.