Here’s a term that needs no introduction among guys who are frustrated with their singleness.
Here’s a gift most people don’t want to find under their Christmas tree or next to their birthday cake. Yep, it’s the “gift of singleness.”
It sounds like the best of both worlds… missionary work and dating, right? Well, not so fast. This is a situation where a good thing plus a good thing turns out to be a not-so-great thing. Welcome to the concept of “missionary dating.”
“Smoking hot wife.” Is it a term of endearment a Christian man should feel free to give his wife in public? Or is it a potentially sexist label that should be carefully avoided? (And besides all that: where did it come from in the first place?)
The Proverbs 31 woman is not only alive and kicking in the pages of Scripture, but she continues to be held up as a model of womanhood as well as a model of who godly single men should be pursuing.
Here’s a word I worked on earlier this week: unclaimed blessing. This word is not used very often nowadays; its hey-day was in the 19th century and up through perhaps midway into the 20th century, though in some circles you still hear it used. And it’s one of a small number of words that I consider to be “sensitive words” because it is very easy for people to take offense at their use. As you can imagine, the thoughts and feelings of an unmarried person regarding the state of being married or not being married can be very intense and personal. For one to be called an unclaimed blessing, or for one to adopt that label for oneself, can be a complicated business.
Scroll down a bit to see my current working definition of the word.
Question for discussion: Do you think words that can have the potential to hurt should be included in a Christianese dictionary at all? After all, some people take offense at Christianese terms such as unchurched, heathen friends, heathen food, and EGR (“extra grace required”). Should we exclude all these words? (Notice how all these terms are ways of describing people—which is always a delicate matter in any language or dialect.) Some people say that the best way to move on from painful words or memories is to stop referring to them. And then there are those who say that when we stop talking about what has passed, then we are doomed to simply repeat it again.
My opinion is that it’s better for a dictionary to include all the words that Christians have used, and then to define and describe them objectively and fairly. In this way we acknowledge our entire history, not merely the parts we are proud of. But I am open to hearing ideas from all sides of the equation.
But what do you think?