There are some overused quotes that have held their positions for many reasons. I am here to name just a few. I was browsing through it when I realized how some of them are actually connected to many Bible verses. I am far from being a theologist or a philosophist, but I have learned a thing or two from my 26 years of life. Quotes have powers to remind and motivate us. They are usually short so that it is easy to remember. Let's turn the clichés into something more.
1. Everything happens for a reason
We hear this everywhere every time something dreadful happens. When someone becomes terminally ill or goes through a rough patch in life, we often say those words. Sometimes it is just because we do not know what else to say. But honestly, I am a firm believer it. Everything does happen for a reason. We just do not see it yet. Remember all those awfully painful things in the past? They are the reason you are where you are right now. So do not ever forget to stay positive and be grateful.
There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing, a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak, a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace. What do workers gain from their toil? I have seen the burden God has laid on the human race. He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end. I know that there is nothing better for people than to be happy and to do good while they live. That each of them may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all their toil—this is the gift of God. I know that everything God does will endure forever; nothing can be added to it and nothing taken from it. God does it so that people will fear him. Whatever is has already been, and what will be has been before; and God will call the past to account.
1 Corinthians 2:9
However, as it is written: What no eye has seen, what no ear has heard, and what no human mind has conceived — the things God has prepared for those who love him.
It says loud and clear that there will be good and bad times in life. It will not be always bad or always good, even though sometimes it feels like it. Also, there are much better things ahead that God prepared for those who love him. So whether you are going through a bad break up or a financial problem, just believe that this too shall pass. In the end you will see the rainbows after this rain.
2. What does not kill you make you stronger
Again, this one here is for consolation and encouragement. Life is a roller coaster. This another cliché saying is, well, entirely true. Sometimes life takes you downhill and uphill. Other times, life may give you twists, turns, and even inversions. After you ride that roller coaster, whether you realize it or not, it has made you a stronger human being. There are life lessons to be learned from the good and bad things that have happened to you. If you are still breathing through it now, you are already one step further.
Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.
Trials and temptations in life lead to tests on your faith and thus give rise to perseverance. Sometimes we need to “let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything”.
3. You reap what you sow
If you do good, you’ll be rewarded— if not now then on your next life. We all have heard that karma is a bitch. So do not let it get anywhere near you. Be kind, be good, and be diligent in whatever you do for none of it will be in vain. I am always intrigued every time Ellen DeGeneres, on The Ellen Show, repays other people's kindness in abundance. I remember one time when a boy mailed a lost wallet back to its owner expecting nothing in return, he was rewarded with so many toys in return. It was just a plain story but I love how Ellen spreads positivity and encourages us to help one another. Because truly, we will sow one day.
1 Corinthians 15:58
Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.
Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.
4. If you can’t say something nice, don’t say nothing at all
I am guilty when it comes to saying things I do not really mean when I am angry or upset. It has caused me a lot of unnecessary drama in life. But the point is, we have to keep trying. Trying to keep quiet when we have nothing good to say. Wait until your head cools down and talk. Wait until you are in the right mind. Conversing while your head on fire most probably will lead to more misunderstanding and rage. On another note, saying awful things may hurt people's feelings. If it is not helpful or building, refrain yourself from saying mean things. At least, try to.
Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
4. The grass is always greener on the other side
The saying is greatly associated with the feeling of dissatisfaction.
“Sadly, it is very easy for us to fall into this trap. It is easy for us to believe that what someone else has is better than what we have. There are people who believe that someone else’s house is better than their house or that someone else’s life is better than their life, so they covet what their neighbors have. There are men and women who believe they can find something better outside of their own marriages, so they fall into adultery. They wrongly believe they have more in common with a complete stranger than with the person at home to whom they have been married for years and with whom they have raised children. In all of these cases, the focus is always on the wrong thing. Instead of focusing on all of the blessings God has provided, when we focus on the things He has not provided we get into trouble.” — Kevin Griggs
I have seen another evil under the sun, and it weighs heavily on mankind: God gives some people wealth, possessions and honor, so that they lack nothing their hearts desire, but God does not grant them the ability to enjoy them, and strangers enjoy them instead. This is meaningless, a grievous evil.
A man may have a hundred children and live many years; yet no matter how long he lives, if he cannot enjoy his prosperity and does not receive proper burial, I say that a stillborn child is better off than he. It comes without meaning, it departs in darkness, and in darkness its name is shrouded. Though it never saw the sun or knew anything, it has more rest than does that man— even if he lives a thousand years twice over but fails to enjoy his prosperity. Do not all go to the same place?
Everyone’s toil is for their mouth,
yet their appetite is never satisfied.
What advantage have the wise over fools?
What do the poor gain
by knowing how to conduct themselves before others?
Better what the eye sees
than the roving of the appetite.
This too is meaningless,
a chasing after the wind.
Whatever exists has already been named,
and what humanity is has been known;
no one can contend
with someone who is stronger.
The more the words,
the less the meaning,
and how does that profit anyone?
For who knows what is good for a person in life, during the few and meaningless days they pass through like a shadow? Who can tell them what will happen under the sun after they are gone?
5. Laughter is the best medicine
It really is. Whenever you are going through a tough time, laughing, or even smiling, can make you feel better emotionally. Physically, laughters can help lower stress hormones and relax your body. The endorphins produced as you laugh is also known to encourage an overall sense of well-being and can even temporarily alleviate pain. So, laugh it off!
A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.
A happy heart makes the face cheerful, but heartache crushes the spirit.
All the days of the oppressed are wretched, but the cheerful heart has a continual feast.
Laughters heal the heart, slowly but surely.
6. Early bird catches the worm
In an article on what self-made millionaires have in common, one of the things is waking up early. Some wake up three hours before their working time so as not to rush everything. Easier said than done I suppose, but once you are used to it, it is not that hard after all. You may find yourself waking up before the alarm rings after some time. For some people, the challenge is getting out from bed. Have something to do every morning to force you to wake up. It can be as simple as stretching or washing your face.
“One of the simplest rules for success is to hate sleep. Of course, you need sleep, but you must learn to hate wasting time in bed. Life is short – each day is short – and time wasted in bed will come back to haunt you.”
Do not love sleep or you will grow poor;
stay awake and you will have food to spare.
Lazy hands make for poverty, but diligent hands bring wealth.
7. You are what you eat
All of us is made up of our body, soul, and spirit. What we put in our mouth goes into our body. What we put in our thoughts goes into our soul. What we put in our heart goes into our spirit. Therefore, we need to be careful of everything we eat. Not just physically, but also spiritually.
“We hear a lot these days about the importance of a healthy diet. You are what you eat and a lot of Americans eat a lot of junk food, resulting in a lot of serious, but avoidable health problems. Most of us could benefit by being careful about what we eat.
It’s the same spiritually. If you gorge yourself on the latest movies or on the fare that is offered every night on TV, and you seldom feed on the Bible, don’t be surprised if you’re not spiritually healthy. If your spiritual intake consists of a sugary devotional that you grab on the run, like a donut, and an occasional sermon when you aren’t doing something else on Sunday, don’t be surprised if you’re feeling kind of spiritually sluggish. You are what you eat.”
Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. For on him God the Father has placed his seal of approval.
Whilst it is important to feed your spiritual needs, your physical needs have to be properly fed as well. Stuffing yourself with lousy foods all the time is obviously not going to do your body any good. The food temporarily tastes good but in the long term it is damaging to a certain extent. I am not saying you should totally ban yourself from KFC, but eat in moderation. Refine your food choices. I always try to go by the 70:30 rule. I try to eat nutritious foods 70% of the time. Anyways, our body is God’s temple and we ought to take care of it.
1 Corinthians 6:19
Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; 20 you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.
1 Corinthians 3:16
Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in your midst? If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy that person; for God’s temple is sacred, and you together are that temple.
If you find honey, eat just enough— too much of it, and you will vomit.
1 Corinthians 10:31
So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.
I sincerely hope you learn a thing or two from this imperfect piece of writing. We are far from perfect but continuously pursuing it will be worth it in the end. Remember these quotes when you are in the midst of a struggle. They are really overused for a reason. They keep people going. Share the love!