As a member of the body of Christ, I can sometimes be very cynical when it comes to our Christian clichés. It is hard when we are immersed in the body of Christ, not to pick up on the language often described as “Christianese”. The reason I don’t like these clichés, is they often become so common place that they lose the gravity of their original meaning. It’s not that some of the clichés aren’t true. It’s just that we sometimes use them as ways to escape. We can use them to lighten the weight of what we know that God truly wants us to do.
One of my favorite, and also most irritating, Christian clichés is “Let go and let God.” On the positive side, this is a very true statement. We are called to let go and let God. However, I have seen myself and others, reduce this truth down to something on the level of a happy go lucky Bob Marley song. From the perspective of biblical truth, this statement carries so much more weight than Don’t Worry, Be Happy. The other problem is that sometimes it is easier to resort to speaking some Christian cliché, rather than actually taking steps to live out the truth behind the statement.
I was reminded of one of these moments in my life recently.
When the Lord called my wife and I to climb Kilimanjaro a couple of years ago, we needed to raise nearly $24,000. God had clearly affirmed that He wanted us to go on the trip, so we knew that He would provide. We did everything in our power to raise the funds. We sent out letters, put out posts on Facebook, and held fundraisers. It was time to just trust in the Lord.
Related Post: Teach Me How to Trust
If anyone asked how the fund raising was going, I would resort to my plethora of Christian clichés. Saying something like, “We know that God is going to provide.” I am sure that at some point I even said the words, “We are just letting go and letting God.” However, inside I did not fully trust God. I was looking at our finances with a fine tooth comb. Making preparations for how we were going to come up with the money if God didn’t provide everything we needed. I had even saved up some extra money as a “just in case we need to contribute” fund.
I had to let go and trust Him.
When it got to be about 50 days from our departure date, we had not even raised 50% of the funds. I came to a crossroads. Was I going to start using the money that we had saved up to make personal donations towards the trip? Would I do this even though God clearly told my wife and I that He would provide everything? Our faith was clearly being tested. I will never forget the day that I signed into our online donation account ready to make a contribution. I had all of the information loaded, and all I had to do was click the “confirm donation” button. However, I could not click it. It was as if the Holy Spirit grabbed hold of my finger and would not let me press down.
I cleared the screen, and instead of making a donation to our fundraiser, the Holy Spirit prompted us to make that donation to other climbers who had not yet met their goal. It was terrifying. Our plan B was no longer available to us. All we had was plan A, which was to trust in God. It was completely improbable that we would be able to raise the remaining funds. We were running out of time. However, after that day, the Lord began to provide in miraculous ways. Donations started to pour in. Not only did we raise every penny that we needed in advance of the trip, but we raised more!
Let Go and Let God
For every example that I have where I actually “let go and let God”, I probably have 3 where I said I was going to let go but did not actually do it. When faced with tests of our faith, it is easy to just default to the standard Christian responses. It’s a lot harder to actually step out and trust in the Lord. I am not proposing that we do away with our Christian clichés. I am simply proposing that we embrace them for what they really are. They are an encouragement to press deeper into God. They are reminders to step into everything that He calls us to be. It’s time to actually LET GO AND LET GOD!