The language we speak sets us apart, it places us in a group of individuals who all communicate based on the way we talk. You can take this globally and look at the languages spoken in countries and you can take this to individual homes and the language and verbiage spoken by families. Each community or group has a way of communicating that is only understood by that community. Most men have a way of communicating about sports, most women have a way of communicating about chic flicks. We all are separated into groups that speak our language. One of the biggest groups that speak a “language” is Christianity.
I wish we all spoke the same language. I have never been more frustrated then I was in Mexico, trying to communicate with a Mom and three children as we built a house for them left me frustrated and disappointed in myself for wasting three years of Spanish in high school. So much human contact is lost when you are unable to conversate and speak with one another. I have been thinking about this a lot lately (and you might notice from my blog post yesterday about Selling Christianity). How much of the message is lost in communication from Christians?
What troubles me the most is my blog. I talk so much Christianese here that I feel the most convicted about having a message lost in translation. I find this even more interesting that even Christians do not exactly understand all the Christianese. Saying words like Missional and Emergent bring about so many different definitions that problems arise amongst the Christian culture and communities are divided. I can talk Christian BS with the best of them, what Christian blogs are saying, what Christian artist are producing, even what Christian authors are writing about, what troubles me is I am only having these conversations and nothing else. I wonder if my language is losing influence?
Christianese is a way of dressing up Jesus to look appealing. The draw to have a system in the way we talk and operate is very appealing to us, that is what we have been taught from a very young age. A systematic way to learn Biblical truths have proved valuable to studying the Bible. Unfortunately we have become so systematic in our conversation and language that we sound more like robots then people who are marked by radical grace. I cannot help but think about the tower of Babel. The main goal was to become God, it celebrated mans achievement and ability to be on the same level of God. Seeing this, God put a little change of plans into effect and divided everyone by language. He did not wipe them out or send a dragon to kill them all, instead he took away the very tool that lead them to start this project, their conversation piece. Sometimes I think we get so concerned with becoming God that we start to lose our communication. We start to speak a language that no one understands or worse wants to understand.
Here is the question that I want to talk with you about today:
How can we stop speaking christianese and start conversating about life?
I am concerned that this blog and many others are all talk and no action. That the only people that read this blog are people that speak my language. This blog focuses on conversating about life as a 20 something searching to find meaning and call in life, but I feel it can turn into a language playground for a group of people who can decipher the code and know who Carlos Whittaker is.
What would a blog look like that discussed life, culture, faith, music, books, technology, and everything else that spoke no languagese, but just spoke and conversated?