28 Mar 2015
This week I heard of a place that always greeted people with, “Have a blessed day.” I have heard that addressed to me and I have said it back many times. On the surface, this looks like a very wonderful, encouraging and positive thing to do and I am all for it. I want everybody to have a blessed day.
Yet, according to the news (and they never get anything wrong!), a certain organization was threatened with a lawsuit if they did not stop saying the word “blessed.”
At first, I thought I was watching an old Three Stooges clip and started to laugh, but then I realized it was a part of the news. They were serious.
As the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage and I were listening to this news story we both came to the same agreement. Believe me, that is not an easy thing to do. If I had a good memory, I might think of several times in which this has happened, but right now, I cannot think of any. Maybe things are changing for me.
Both of us were a little confused by this action. We talked among ourselves while the story was developing and we were trying to find out what part of “Have a blessed day,” was harmful or objectionable. I was reminded of the old saying, “Sticks and stones…” I was at the point where I was looking around for some sticks and stones.
It seems to me, too many people do not have enough to do so they have to come up with something and this is it. Complaining about certain words as if it was important.
Objecting to certain words is, in some people’s thinking (if you can call it thinking), more important than dealing with crime throughout our country. For some people it is okay that the crime rate is rising, just do not use certain words or phrases.
For some reason, some people associate the word “blessed” with some kind of a religious connotation. After all, that word is used in the Bible many times. So, for some reason, this word is objectionable.
I was trying to figure out what part of “blessed” was harmful and objectionable. Obviously, the people objecting to the phrase do not know too much about the English language.
One of the definitions of blessed is, “blissfullyhappyorcontented.” Who doesn’t want to be blissfully happy or contented?
My solution was to use the word “great.” Everybody would be greeted with, “Have a great day.” I thought this was a good way to greet people, but then my wife brought in another objection.
“They can’t use the word great,” she said rather soberly, “because that word is also in the Bible and usually associated with God.”
She was right. The word “great” is usually associated with God in the sense that we have a "Great God.” There is just no way some people will use a word that is in any way associated with the Bible or with God and I am not sure why.
I have another phrase that could be used in place of “blessed.” Why not tell people to have a good day? After all, is that not the objective every day to have a good day? What is wrong with good?
But then, the word “good” is another religious word and it is also found in the Bible. So, good has become offensive to people because of its association with the Bible.
At this point, I got into a little trouble with my wife. Of course, that is not something new for me. If trouble is not my middle name, it is at least my destination.
“Why not,” I said quite cautiously to my wife, “tell people to have a cursed day! After all, if they do not want to have a blessed day what else is there?”
Well, did I get the lecture to end all lectures. I cannot repeat the lecture because there is not enough space in all of the newspapers in Americato handle it. Let me just say, I will never repeat that again.
Once the heat settled down and the room got quiet, my wife said something very thoughtful. “Why are people so terrified of the Bible?”
She hit it that time. The most amazing thing to me are people who do not believe the Bible are deathly afraid of the Bible. People who do not believe in God are deathly afraid of even the word God or a symbol associated with God.
Some people are really obsessed with God. They see a cross and think of God. They see two hands folded together and they think of God. They hear certain words and they think of God.
They see someone pray and are deathly afraid in spite of the fact that they say there is no God and so who in the world do they think they are they praying to?
The answer is quite simple. There is something deep inside everybody that believes in God. My advice is, quit fighting and get to know this God you are so afraid of, He is really great.
David understood this quite well when he wrote, “Blessed bethe LORD God of Israelfrom everlasting, and to everlasting. Amen, and Amen” (Psalms 41:13).
So, whoever you are, I say without any apologies whatsoever, “Have a blessed day.”