Thursday, August 11, 2011


Christians want to reach out to non-believers in their lives.

However, many times a barrier exists between those who have grown up in the church and those who haven't. Many Christians who have been Christians for years have a way of speaking that they have developed that may put other people off - a way of speaking that makes them sound condescending, even when they're not meaning to be.

Let's call it Christianese.

"My soul awakened..."

"I need to be intentional..."

"Let's get together and fellowship..."

"Spirit-filled experience..."

I don't think there is anything implicitly wrong with these phrases, and I have used many of them before. But I think there is a time and a place to speak Christianese - with people who are of the same mindset as you.

For those who did not grow up in the church, talking about the Lord instead of just saying God, fellowship instead of hanging out, intentionality instead of it would be good for me to do this, can make Christianity seem like a whole other universe.

Sometimes I even listen to others talk, and it seems like they are being over-the-top and fake in their faith, even if they're not.

I've heard a lot of talks recently about the need for Christians to be transparent. Ruth Graham said, "We don't have to make God look good."

Speaking Christianese doesn't make us any more faith-filled, but it can sometimes put a barrier between us and others not raised in the church.

("The church" is probably another Christianese statement, actually.)

It's important for Christians to set themselves apart, but in a way that people aspire to, not in a way that sets us above everyone else.

Looking up Christianese online, I found this site that translates common Christian phrases. You might get a kick out of it.

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