Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Revisiting Cussing...

OK, I have some more thoughts on cussing in church. Since the last post on the topic, I've had a few conversations with Tracy and others on this. The clarification I need to make is about being offensive. That was not the right word. Every preacher knows you can't talk on any subject for 30 minutes and not offend someone. So offending people by cussing is not really the issue.

What is the issue? Glad you asked. It comes down to what image you project, and what image is received. I can't say I never utter four letter words, but it is rare, and always in an appropriate context and setting. When I talk to someone who cannot get through a single sentence without an f-bomb, all I can think of is that this person is either really lazy or just plain ignorant. Too lazy to think of a reasonable English word, so they just toss in the universal noun, adjective, adverb, whatever, thinking they communicated. Or ignorant, because they don't seem to understand the message that our language choices send about ourselves.

In either case, is this really the message that we want people to receive? Not me. Now I know, some of you will say that you don't feel this way about folks who cuss all the time, or even for those who cuss some of the time. OK, but I refuse to believe that my opinion here is unique. I'd rather err on the side of civility and let them learn who I am by all the words I say rather than the chosen few of the four-letter variety.

Here's another take on the matter.

That's it for now. This is probably not dead yet.


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