• Jill Jarrell Newsome

Becoming Desensitized

I have been made fun of for not using bad language. A few years ago I was with a group of people who had all gone to Sunday school together. One man started laughing because I said that I do not cuss. I said I had never heard my parents cuss and that when I became a mother I wanted my girls to be able to say that. He laughed at me again and told me that was not the real world. I found out he was a youth minister. I would like to know if Jesus was physically sitting at the table with us would he talk like that? I don't think so. I believe it is all about self control.

I get very concerned about television and even commercials. And some songs are very offensive. I think about how we all are becoming desensitized to these words. We hear them everywhere. I am saddened by the people who think it is ok to use certain language in front of others!

The New York Times Magazine article from 2002 shared that years ago, "goodness" was a frequent name for God. Therefore, most people believed it should not be taken in vain. People started saying, "for goodness sake." Then people added gracious, which meant "by the grace of God." People started hearing, "gracious sakes alive" and "goodness gracious."

Later came "good grief", "good Lord", "great God" and "great Scott." Without our heads bowed we use "holy" as in holy cow, holy mackerel and holy smoke. There are many others like, "for Pete's sake", "hell's bells" and "mercy me."

I always heard those sayings and I never knew that they were referring to God. I think of how we say it and do not give God a thought. I think of how the Lord's name is used in vain today and it breaks my heart. I pray we do our part to stop using the Lord's name in vain so future generations will not be desensitized to it.

Cursing is definitely a sin. Ephesians 4: 29, "Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen." Luke 6: 45, "A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of." Jesus explained that what comes out of our mouths fills our hearts. When our hearts are filled with God's goodness our speech will indicate that.

James 3: 10, "Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be." When we live for Christ, our hearts are transformed and our speech will reflect this. 2 Corinthians 5: 17, "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!" Thankfully, when we fail, our God will forgive us. 1 John 1: 9, " If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness."

Shannon Alder said, "swearing doesn't make your argument valid; it just tells the other person that you have lost your class and control." Let us remember, when our hearts are filled with praise for God's goodness our speech will indicate that.

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