By Love Transformed, by R.T. Kendall

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Can Christians Cuss?

Feeling a little hypocritical today.

I have this amazing quote from a book that I want to share, but I’m feeling a little guilty.

I’m feeling hypocritical because of something I said and meant this weekend during my “Raising Teens” workshop.

I downloaded The Fault in Our Stars by John Green, and was instantly turned off by the “G–d—” and other cursing, and the fact that one kid is groping his girlfriend’s breast in public. I felt skeevy. Bleh. Stopped reading.

During my workshop, I shared popular movies with the parents and mentioned The Fault in Our Stars, since several of my middle-schoolers have read it and are dying for the movie to come out. I told the parents that I’d bought it but stopped reading it for the reasons mentioned—except I forgot to tell them about the groping.

Anyway, during my free time, I started reading another book. And this book also has some random cursing, and once in a while will say, “God” (minus the d-word after). And yet this book’s version of cursing doesn’t bother me the same way Green’s book did.

But since I said, “I stopped reading because I don’t like cursing in books,” I feel guilty now for wanting to share a quote out of a book that does have some cursing.

Dilemma.

Come to think of it, there are certain shows that I feel convicted of watching because of their language but other shows that use less of the language I’m not disturbed by. So I find that I have a “line” when it comes to language, and I’m having trouble putting into words what that line is.

Is it the specific words used? I hate the f-word. I hate when people put the d-word after God’s name.

Is it childish that I can’t even write the cuss word out?

The Bible says not to let unwholesome talk come out of your mouth (Eph. 4:29). So why am I OK with a little bit?

I don’t know. I just know when it feels wrong and my brain says it’s all wrong, but I don’t feel all wrong about all of it.

Here’s the quote, though, that started this, said by a 17-year-old character in The Fortune Quilt:

“I’m also not going to be pressured out of my virginity by a culture so obsessed with sex that no one cares if it’s any good or not.”

Am I alone in this?

Bethany Jett is the author of The Cinderella Rule, a youth minister and a blogger.

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