by mr pine
The thing that's annoying me now (especially as Election Day is approaching) is politicians or celebrities using the phrase, "you are in my thoughts and prayers..." when they see people going through a tough time. Many times when I've seen a celebrity say this phrase, my instant response is "Really? You pray?"
This phrase has seen a spike in usage since 9/11. At first when people started saying this, I was encouraged. In fact, it even encouraged me to pray more. But, it's becoming just another meaningless politically correct phrase. It has become a sterile version of "I'm praying for you" that sounds less intrusive because it's in the passive voice. It's the new "Happy Holidays."
It could even be defended that the person who says "you're in my thoughts and prayers" really means, "If I were a praying person, I'd pray for you... but my version of praying is actually just thinking about you... so it's the same thing."
It is not... at least not to me.
It's not that I don't appreciate their trying to be consoling. What bothers me is that I think they are just using the phrase to instantly connect with Christians, whether they themselves are Christian or not, while at the same time trying to not offend non-Christians.
If you're not actually going to pray for me, I'd appreciate it if you didn't say that you were. I wonder how other meaningful phrases would lose meaning if we all decided to make them in the passive voice.
- "I'm sorry" becomes "I feel sorrow" or maybe even "Sorrow is felt by me for you"
- "I love you" becomes "Loving feelings exist in my heart for you"
- "Please stop choking me" becomes "I would appreciate it if your hands were not around my neck area in such a tight manner..."
Maybe if ever my local senator, upon seeing a news camera after my house burned down, tells me that I'm "in his thoughts and prayers," I will respond by saying, "Really? Thank you. If you don't mind, could you pray for me right now? I could really use it."
I think his response would be YouTube gold.
How often do you tell someone that they're in your "thoughts and prayers"?