My son is four and a half and having conversations with him is a lot of fun.  He often says random things that seem to come out of nowhere.  He repeats things that I didn’t think, and sometimes really hoped, that he didn’t hear.  He uses words that I didn’t know he understood, and it’s even more fun when he doesn’t really understand how to use them. 

I’ve also noticed that he has words and phrases that he has made a regular part of his conversational repertoire.  To be more specific, he finds a way to work the word actually into every other sentence.  It takes great effort for him to pronounce it correctly, but he usually makes it work.  After he had done this for a few days, I started to wonder where he picked it up and I started paying more attention to the words and phrases I use regularly.

As it turns out, I actually do say actually a lot.  I also tend to mumble things like daggum and dangit when things aren’t going well.  When things are going my way, though, I turn to words like awesome and woo-hoo.

We all have “catch phrases” that we tend to use over and over.  It’s usually something we think sounds cool at some point, or a phrase that we’ve heard others use a lot, or just something that we are comfortable with.  Some of them are pretty consistent when stepping on Legos and getting cut off in traffic, while others indicate a victory by a favorite team or a Todd Agnew song coming on the radio.

In my daily reading recently, I came across a passage that made me think about those daily catch phrases that I use.  Just after David drops a hot Psalm to celebrate the ark of the Lord, we get an immediate response from everybody in ear-shot.

Then all the people said “Amen” and “Praise the Lord.” (1 Chronicles 16:36b NIV)

Amen and Praise the Lord were responses that were ready and waiting on the lips of God’s people.  These phrases were obviously something they said regularly as they all shouted them in unison. 

Yes, I hear people saying these things in church and around Bible studies.  But why is this not our response to a well-cooked meal or hitting consecutive green lights?  Why do we choose to save our Godly catch phrases for what we consider to be Godly situations?

The next time you get the chance to proclaim a victory or celebrate a joyful occasion, try to remember to give a shout out to the Lord.  After all, shouldn’t we give credit where credit is due?  If we do it often enough, it might even become one of our go-to catch phrases.  I'd say that's a pretty holy habit to have, wouldn't you?

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