DROPPING THE F-WORD

I didn’t know him, and he didn’t know me, but I hurt his feelings. I didn’t mean to hurt his feelings, but I know did. I was just so caught off guard. What happened?

A group of guys had just gathered, and this man started to tell a story. He had peppered the story with plenty of curse words, and then to finish it off he dropped a couple of big “f-bombs.” They were all words I’d heard before. That wasn’t what shocked me. It was when we were introduced, and he learned that I was a minister. He said, “You’re a minister? Cool. I have a question about something that we were studying about in Bible class this week.” I immediately said, “YOU GO TO CHURCH?” The second I said it, I thought, “Oops, did I just say that out loud?” I didn’t mean to say it or say it that loudly, it just came out. I guess I was thinking it, and it just came out of my mouth. I could tell by the look on his face that I’d hurt his feelings. I wasn’t trying to, but I was just in shock. He’d just finished a story that used every profanity in the book, and then he turns to me and says something about going to church this past Sunday.

I apologized and explained to him, “I just didn’t know that Christians and people who go to “church” use all those kinds of words to tell a story.” I could see him thinking hard about what I’d just said. Then he apologized and actually said, “Yea, you’re right. Thanks for reminding me.”

I personally feel that there is no place in a Christian’s vocabulary for profanity. I can’t imagine someone listening to a person talk about Jesus, their faith or church, when they also have heard that same person use profanity.

And so blessing and cursing come pouring out of the same mouth. Surely, my brothers and sisters, this is not right! Does a spring of water bubble out with both fresh water and bitter water? Does a fig tree produce olives, or a grapevine produce figs? No, and you can’t draw fresh water from a salty spring. ~ James 3:10-12

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Article by Trey Morgan

I am a Christian husband and father, who moonlights as the minister for the church of Christ in Childress, Texas. My wife Lea and I have been married for 25 years. We are doing our best to raise our 4 boys, who are all growing up way too fast. Read 1182 articles by
26 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Anonymous says:

    don’t feel too bad, you did the man a favor. if you had thought about it and not said anything, he would miss out on the blessig of being reminded of who he is

    brian

  2. Falantedios says:

    Eph 4:29 Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.

    Eph 5:4 Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving.

    Col 3:8 But now you must put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene talk from your mouth.

    Col 4:6 Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.

    Matt 12:34 You brood of vipers! How can you speak good, when you are evil? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.

    Thank you for the reminder, Trey. This is a consistent struggle for me with my military and food service backgrounds.

    in HIS love,
    Nick

  3. Mommysmart says:

    You are going to have to scoot over on this soap box. I completely agree.

    Rocky especially has this frustration in coaching. Some really great christian men make regular habbits of cussing young and impressionable men as if it is ok. I actually had a mom tell me this last week that she was so impressed that Rocky does not cuss the kids on the field. I was surprised that she was so shocked about that fact. Have we really gotten to be a society that allows it to be ok for adults to talk to our kids like that?

    We need to be more like you and call other chrisitans out on this one so that it stops. I agree that you did him a favor.

  4. Anonymous says:

    btw–didn’t notice the picture earlier, great film

    brian

  5. Louie Mercer, Frank Mercer and Mike Ellis: The Church for Men Dudes says:

    Trey,

    Be sure to check out Brad Stine’s new CD/DVD. It covers the topic of Christians and curse words.

    Keep up the great work!

  6. Greg says:

    You did the right thing. I can’t tell you how many times I had my mouth washed out w/ soap when I was a kid for using profanity. That said, have you ever hit your finger with a hammer? There are only a couple of words that really seem to fit the occasion, and they don’t involve the use of God’s name!!

  7. Ray says:

    Trey
    I had nearly the same experience… the difference was that when I said I was a minister, the man said me too. I was in total shock. I waited around and got a moment where we could talk privately. I asked about his speech… he blew me off and said, “I’m just keeping it real. MY people like me because I’m real.”
    I was blown away – still to this day, I’m blown away.

  8. Bob Bliss says:

    Trey, I think most of us can dismiss the accidental profanity that comes out. It’s when profanity isn’t worried about and we use it without thinking. I really had to learn to control my tongue when I first became a Christian. I also worried the first couple of years I preached that I would slip up. Fortunately it never happened.

    I heard a story about a bunch of people at a party. The men were over in a corner talking and one of them decided to tell a joke. It was an off-color joke and he looked around and asked, “Are there any ladies around?” Another man answered, “No but the Lord is.”

    Thanks for the story. I may use it in a sermon and will give due credit.

  9. One Observationist says:

    I agree. Sort of. I don’t think we should walk around indiscriminately dropping f-bombs, but I think those words can be used in some situations to accurately express thoughts and feelings.

    I’m reminded of the movie About a Boy with Hugh Grant. Grant plays a bachelor who has no responsibility. A father-less kid comes into his life and they become friends. The kids mom attempts suicide. Now keep in mind this kid has been through some tough stuff. Lost his dad, almost lost his mom, and he feels all alone.

    The only word out of Grant’s mouth is the f-bomb. The kid is narrating the story and he says something to the effect of, “The word kind of shocked me. But it’s nice to know that someone else thinks that this is a screwed up mess.”

    I try to watch my language, but sometimes in my life I feel like there is a time and a place for more color. It’s obvious that many of you on this board disagree with me, but that’s how I feel about it. And I don’t think it goes against the things taught in the N.T.

    Also, I’ve been in private meetings with very Godly men that have used colorful language to express their thoughts and emotions for various situations and circumstances. It was appropriate. In my opinion.

  10. Monalea says:

    Excellent Post!!!

    I have a real problem with people who use profanity and slang words in their place…..preach on.

    Monalea aka www

  11. Amy's Gang says:

    Great post! Thanks for stimulating some actual thought into my day! Two and four year olds don’t always carry interesting conversation!!

  12. Neva says:

    One of the worst is when they say “Pardon my french” and then say it—

    I know this is a serious post but I have to share a funny with you. My mother had a small business in Oregon–when Wal-Mart came to town my mother was upset because it took business. One day my kids asked Grandma to take them to Wal-mart. Grandma said, “We don’t even say the W- word, we can say anything else except that–I don’t want to hear the W-word” To which my nine year old turned to me and said, “Mom, can you believe Grandma says its okay to use the F-word?” Grandma had to explain.

    :)
    Let your life keep preaching on, Trey.

    Peace
    neva

  13. Justin says:

    I totally agree. It really blows a Christian’s testimony when one minute they are preaching Christ, and the next minute they are saying the F-word.

    I used to have a terrible mouth, and it wasn’t until I got the Holy Spirit that I was able to change. I wasn’t delivered from swearing, but now I just look at it differently. I don’t want to hurt His feelings by using profanity.

    Great Post!

  14. Shane Coffman says:

    I used to work for a construction company that built facilities for several churches.

    Sadly, on just about every building committee there was at least one member who felt like they could or even needed to talk that way to me since I was just a contractor.

    To me, it’s a self-control thing. That’s a fruit of the Spirit.

    And you’ll know them by their fruit.

  15. JoAnn says:

    Cursing, like drinking, smoking, the Sin List goes on. Sure you can do them, but as a Christian, why would you want to?

    One thing thats helped me is if I couldn’t/shouldn’t say in front of a kid, I shouldn’t say it at all.

    And as far as some conversations/discussions meriting “more colorful language” …sorry, sounds like an excuse.

    But hey, a sin is a sin is a sin…and we all transgress and none are greater than another in God’s eyes.

  16. AncientWanderer says:

    I think you did just fine.
    No problems as far as I’m concerned.
    But then- It Is Me.

  17. One Observationist says:

    Joann – an excuse? Nice little dig.

    The interesting thing to me is that there is no leeway with most of the comments here. It’s completely black and white and I don’t see it that way.

    Some guy gets picked up on a DWI. His wife has filed for divorce. He grew up in a situation where his dad owned several bars and night clubs. His mom wants nothing to do with him. The guy has lived a horribly rough life. At an early age, teen years, he was presented with prostitutes, booze, and drugs. If he decides to use more “colorful language” to express his thoughts and feelings I don’t see a problem with that. It does not detract from his “testimony”.

    And I don’t mind if most of you on here disagree with me. But I do not understand the fact that it seems like you are saying there is no leeway with regards to profanity. Most simply say, “it’s a sin and we shouldn’t do it.”

    Where does the Bible state that we are not permitted to use profanity, ever?

  18. lisa says:

    Observationist, I appreciate that though you disagree with most everyone here, you have kept your comments rather respectful, and I want to continue the respect, though I do disagree.

    The Bible DOES say “let no unwholesome talk come from your mouth” but only that which will build others up and benefit them. If we’re describing some trying circumstances in our lives, how will it benefit others to use bad language?

    I doubt you would deny that Christ Himself went through some pretty trying times. He got rather angry about hypocrites. He was tortured and beaten near the end of His life. I think we ought to use His example of what we allow ourselves to say in front of others. Despite our circumstances, we are called to a higher plain, a higher standard of behavior. If we slack on what we say, we are giving an okay for others to do the same.

    Just my two cents.

  19. TREY MORGAN says:

    One O, I don’t think anyone’s saying, “only good people don’t” and “only bad people do” when it comes to profanity. I think we are talking about two different things here. I’m talking about a guy who claims to be a Christian, and at the same time, his speech is littered with profanity on a daily basis.

    I would have had a completely different reaction if the man I told about in the story had just had something bad happen in his life. I wouldn’t have thought as much about his profanity.

  20. Gilbert Kerrigan says:

    I probably would have responded the same way – total shock!

    Great picture. That is my all time favorite Christmas movie.

  21. David Kirk says:

    Trey: @#$%%! You are right!

  22. merry says:

    Joann said “Cursing, like drinking, smoking, the Sin List goes on. Sure you can do them, but as a Christian, why would you want to?” That’s a great thing for us to consider when making choices in our lives.

  23. Philip Murphy says:

    One of my recurring nightmares is that I cuss while preaching.

    My great grandma used to say, ‘if it’s in the bible, i can say it.’

    obviously my great grandma never preached.

  24. One Observationist says:

    Trey – I understand your point.

    Thanks for the conversation. Good group of people here and a great blog. I enjoy reading and thinking about what you write.

    Jeremy

  25. Jeremy Myers says:

    Trey,

    I am at a rather famous theological seminary in Dallas, and I am in my final preaching class. Today, the guy who preached showed a video in which two “F-Bombs” were dropped.

    I was a little stunned to hear this at a leading evangelical seminary…

  26. TREY MORGAN says:

    Jeremy … thanks for dropping by. I can imagine your shock. I would have felt the same way. I can’t imagine me doing that where I went to school in a preaching class. I probably wouldn’t have been going to school there afterwards.

About Me

Trey Morgan Here are my thoughts about marriage, family, raising children, humor, faith and the life God intended for us all. I am a Christian husband and father, who moonlights as the minister for the church of Christ in Childress, Texas. My wife Lea and I have been married for 25 years. We are doing our best to raise our 4 boys, who are all growing up way too fast.

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