“There but for the grace of God go I.”
My blood boils every time I hear those words. Now, you may be thinking, why would someone get upset about that? It’s meant to be kind, to assure someone it could have just as easily been you the bad thing happened to. Surely there are much worse things you could say.
See, I don’t hear it that way, even if that’s how it’s meant. What I hear is smarmy, self-righteous judgment. By uttering that phrase, you are in effect saying, “God must like me more than he likes you” (which means I’m better and have higher moral standards than you). It’s like saying, “I’m going to heaven and you’re not, nyah nyah,” only even more obnoxious because it’s less direct than that. Wrong headed or not, that’s the way I hear it, and that’s why I fly into a rage if someone says it to me. So just don’t.