Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Potty Mouths

Aimee shared this blog with me on Facebook, Jamie the Very Worst Missionary.  This particular post was about her frequent use of language that seems to offend other people.
This may surprise you, but I was never given a list of God approved words. And I can’t imagine what would happen should such a list ever present itself. I know people who would keel over dead if “fart” was on the approved list, or “shut up”. And I know people who would straight up burn the list if came from Costa Rica where "b*tch" is part of common language that 4 year-olds use.

I really enjoyed her honesty.  Is she wrong?  I don't know.  As I've said before, I do tend to be a bit sweary at times.  I have tried over the years to cut back on it, as I'm aware that it's a dirty habit and my mother doesn't approve. In the grand scheme of things I have figured, be it right or wrong, that I have given up oodles of bad habits and I'd really like to keep this one.  I don't use God's name in vain.  I don't curse in front of children or my mother, nor do I curse other people out. But when I get mad I mutter & swear.  I don't know if the words I choose would be considered shocking or offensive to others.  I think it's like Jamie said, and that it would only offend certain people who have a different measuring tool than mine.

Cursing, Swearing & Vulgarity  This article had a lot of good stuff in it and I love a good topical Bible study.  It goes in depth and examines four categories of bad language.  I found it an interesting study, but they lost me a tad in the Slang & Euphemisms section.  I personally don't think that substitute words are a big deal.  Snap, frack, poo, gosh.... I just don't think these are a problem, even if they originally represented something else.

But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth. (Colossians 3:8)  I find myself, having re-read this verse several times, wondering if this is something subjective, such as dancing.  Some church folk believe that all dancing is sinful, while others dance at every social event.  Yet David danced before the Lord, celebrating his love for the Lord in a joyful display with his body.

I wonder if cursing is something that can be a stumbling block for some and not others.  I don't have any solid answers on this; it's just something I'm pondering.  I do want to be pleasing to God.  It bothers me when I hear people cursing in casual conversation for no purpose.  It makes them sound common and unintelligent, which is a shame.  But I'm also not interested in condemning them for this.  I think too often Christians get tangled up in how unbelievers are sinning, and forget that we all need the same Grace.  We need to meet people where they are.  I once heard a newly sober young man share in a meeting about what it was like to read the Bible.  He was in awe of God's word, and said, "This sh*t is amazing!"  He meant no disrespect, and was expressing joy at having been saved by God from his addiction. It was honest & beautiful.

Here endeth my random thoughts on this topic.  Oh, and I added the asterisks out of respect for those who would rather not see the actual words. ;)


Beacon2Light said...

Yes, Shay, I love the expressions of a new believer still going through the early refining process. If we are honest, we would know that God is still refining us too and won't be done until we see him face to face. What a day that will be!

Theresa said...

I love this post. I am not a fan of the word fart. We call it skunk in our house. If I say shut up, you know I am speaking out of anger. Stupid is another word that I don't like to hear my children use. I have been a filthy mouth offender for many years and was finally convicted of it when I started condemning others. Sometimes I curse in letters. Oh well. All we can do it try our hardest.