GUEST POST: "Churchspeak: A Field Guide"

Today’s guest post comes from the beautiful and talented Tamara Lunardo. She’s the real deal folks and a big reason why I started a blog and have put myself out there even when it’s uncomfortable. Visit her blog and stay a while. You’ll be glad you did! ~ Joy

I was fellowshipping with Suzy, when she really ministered to me by sharing her testimony about getting in the Word. I felt so convicted that I asked her to shepherd and disciple me, and right away she began to love on me. It was totally a God thing.

If you read that without gagging, congratulations– you are officially churched and need read on no further. If you trudged blindly through all that cheese and still stuck around to see where I was going, your patience is about to be rewarded. I present to you Churchspeak: A Field Guide. Because sometimes, what we say gets in the way of what we mean. And we really do want you to come join our flock. (Oh, oops.)

“A God thing”: Used to explain events almost exclusively when they end in our favor and often when they are frivolous beyond justification. E.g., the availability of a designer handbag may well be “a God thing,” but acquiring jock itch is undoubtedly not.

Convict, -ed, -ing, v., adj.: The churchy version of an “oh shit” moment, this Courtroom Christianity term lets us know we’ve been dead wrong deep in the depths of our souls. We often get unreasonably happy when this happens, sometimes because we’re gluttons for guilt (not gonna call out any denominations here– you know who you are), but usually because it means our sleepy little hearts are finally snapping to attention.

Disciple, v.: Just when you thought “disciple” was a guy in sandals catching fish (Or is that “apostle?” You can never be too sure with all these poly alias Jesus followers.), we go and verb it up. So let’s break it back down: If a “disciple” is one who learns, then his teacher “disciples” him. See that? You just got discipled.

Fellowship, n., v.: We like to hang out with our friends, too, but we like to make it sound holy. If you and your church pals want to knock back a few at your neighborhood pub, just call it “fellowshipping.” Ain’t no one gonna judge.

“In the Word”: We don’t just read the Bible, we get right on in there. You should probably be super impressed.

“Love on”: Don’t be alarmed by the extraneous preposition tacked on the end– no one is trying to get all up in your business. This phrase simply employs the same redundancy as “where it’s at” to emphasize the point. We just really, really love you.

Minister, v.: Not everyone can go to seminary, but we can wax pastoral anyway. We won’t just help you out– we’ll minister to you, even without the little white collar.

Testimony, n.: Another nugget of Courtroom Christianity. Sure, we could just “tell what happened,” but where’s the drama in that? Stories are much more attention-getting when they’re called “testimonies.” I will testify that this is a true fact.

Shepherd, v.: Nothing says mini-Christ (or Little Bo Peep) like a person who shepherds. We could guide you, but then you wouldn’t have the fun and frolic of feeling like a little lamb. You’re welcome.

Churchy folks– What terms of churchspeak did I miss? Non-churchy folks– Have you ever been weirded out by churchspeak?



Tamara works out her thoughts on life and faith at the blog Tamara Out Loud, occasionally with adult language, frequently with attempted humor, and hopefully with God’s blessing.

Reprinted with permission from TamaraOutLoud.

1 thought on “GUEST POST: "Churchspeak: A Field Guide"

  1. I am not sure how I missed this post originally but I LOVE it!!!I have been on both sides of the dialogue and I am one of those unique few who find it funny from BOTH angles!!Thanks!Margaret (Faith Chaser)

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