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When I lived overseas I heard quite a few of the missionaries from other organizations use curse words.  Not a lot and never in reference to someone else, but enough to make me wonder about it.  I was talking to a good christian friend about it once and she told me…

I don’t happen to think cursing is a sin.  What difference does it make to God if we say darn or damn?  Now he might get offended if we use his name in vain.

I thought a lot about those words.  They were freeing.  I never cursed nor did I feel the need to start peppering my speech with those words, but I felt the weight of judgement leave me.  Before, anytime I heard anyone say anything I deemed inappropriate a wall went up, and I automatically judged them.  It wasn’t a conscious thing.  It just happened.  Immediately I thought…oh, they must not be a Christian/have morals, or…too bad, they must have come from a dysfunctional family, or…what a shame, they probably aren’t the best parent.  I didn’t bother to watch and see if any of those things were true.  The words were enough to make it true.

On my other blog my audience started out quite narrow.  Family and friends from church.  Later friends I’d met and co-laborers were added to my audience.  It never would have occurred to me to use any sort of foul language due to my audience.  I knew their sensibilities.  I knew some of them might be offended.  Even as my audience grew to include people I didn’t know, people who said all kinds of things on their blogs, and a host of others I still never used curse words due to the fact that the original audience was still reading.

Now, on this blog, things have been slightly different.  I’ve used a few forbidden words here and there.  Not much, but enough that I’m sure it’s been noticed by the few people from the old blog who’ve been invited to read here.  And to them I offer this.  In my daily life I will on occasion say hell or damn or ass.  That’s pretty much it.  I will not use those words in front of those people who I know will be offended.  I don’t need to make a statement.

Furthermore, when I hear curse words used by those around me I don’t judge them.  I don’t let that be a barrier to friendship.  I don’t put up walls based on words.  I let actions speak louder.

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6 responses »

  1. I curse at times, depending on whose company I’m in. I’d far rather hear ANY cuss words than hateful or hurtful ones. Hate is NOT a ‘family value’.

    Reply
  2. When I was in 7th grade, my world ethics teacher told us that cussing wasn’t bad—it was just taboo. And you know, I think she was right. Only now, it seems like more and more, people don’t choose to use more eloquent language and rather just throw bad words in to otherwise lovely sentences. 😦

    Reply
  3. I remember your request on your old blog to keep the language PG because of the audience and I always respected that. I myself curse like a sailor. Hateful words and racial slurs offend me far more. But I make a distinction even with curse words and don’t use words that are, for instance, demeaning to women.

    Reply
  4. The Bible states that damming anything is bad, and that taking the Lords name in vain is not good. There is nothing in it about the other words.

    Reply
  5. One of my favorite writers is Anne Lamott. If you haven’t read Traveling Mercies you must. Immediately! She loves her some Jesus, is a very devout Christian, and also cusses like a sailor. I like her irreverence and reading her memoirs reminds me that as long as we “love God, love people”, all the rest of the things that we judge people for are trivial. Even being gay (gasp!)

    Reply
  6. I’m glad you don’t judge by that or you’d never visit my blog again. 😉 Generally I tried to find other words but sometimes that’s all I have left – people who know me generally realize that my swearing increases the more upset/frustrated I am and I try not to around people I know who might be offended by it but my blog is where I let it all out.

    Reply

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