1. Good morning Kathy,

    This morning as I was having my quiet time with the Lord, this post came to mind again as I read in 2 Cor 5:17, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold all things have become new.”

    Certainly language would be part of the evident change of a “new creation”.

    Now, may it not just be “bad” language removed, but any words that are not reflective of a heart following hard after Him.

    • Kathy Schwanke

      Amen! Thank you Joy, for your encouragement and for sharing my post. I published it in fear and trembling…so your encouragement meant a ton!

      I wish everyone read Oswald Chambers… After your post today I was thinking about how God has used his little devotional to form my heart over the years. My Utmost for His Highest. {YES!} May we all give our all.

      Love you!

  2. Jillie

    Well Kathy, it appears I am in a quandary. There is one blogger I subscribe to who kinda fits your description today. She is gut-level honest in her writings. She comes from a past I can only be grateful I did not experience, at least not to the level she has. Her life has been one of great difficulty. When she writes with a glance backward, she has a tendency to use some “choice words”, and has been chastised for it. Her choice of words often adds significantly in attempting to express the pain and regret she often feels. The very real struggle of being Christian while still trying to work out feelings and memories. Maybe I read her because it gives me a chance to feel naughty? Or to relate on a deeper level, as I understand her frustrations and her desire to be honest and not sugar-coat what’s happened to her. It’s an ugly world out there and, at least with her writings, I feel I’m getting the true low-down of what it means to live in her head. I know cursing and swearing does not reflect well on who we are as Christians. As you say, we all let fly sometimes and it doesn’t sit well with me when I do it. And yet, I feel a kinship with this girl. I can often overlook the written words easier than I can tolerate the happy-clappy-I’ve-got-it-all-together-because-I-know-Jesus world that so many portray. Please understand that I’m not meaning you, okay? And I’m not saying she’s right in doing it. Therein lies my quandary, I guess.

    • Kathy Schwanke

      Hi Jillie,
      Thank you for sharing your heart. I’m guessing the same quandary exists for many people. And we are all in process, we need to allow for that and give grace when others are not where we are yet. (and keep in mind that this is not geared toward a specific situation, but broadly) That said, every true ‘new creation in Christ Jesus’ from the new heart should have the deepest desire to honor the Lord and become like Him to reflect Him. The new heart at the core has the desire to do what is pleasing to the Lord. We should hate all sin in our heart. I am reaching out and spending time with such a woman currently. No one would want her past. But honestly, I don’t need any “choice words” to understand the horror of her life. She hasn’t yet surrendered her life to Christ, but is very aware when a word “slips” around me and apologizes. Not that I have ever said anything to her about it, it is just her own conscience. I would pray for the Lord to give the blogger that you read a heart for honoring God with her words. James 3:11 clearly states that what comes out of our mouth is indicative of what is in our heart.

      We can pray Romans 6:13 for her which says, {13 Do not offer any part of yourself to sin as an instrument of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer every part of yourself to him as an instrument of righteousness.}

      • Jillie

        Thank you, Kathy for your reply. I hear you. But does that kinda mean that when someone uses “choice words”, they may not truly be “new creations”? I don’t think that’s what you’re saying. We are all a work in progress and I agree with praying for this blogger. I guess you’re right that a person needn’t use foul wording when writing on certain touchy subjects. This is obviously her struggle with the flesh.

        • Kathy Schwanke

          I know it could sound like that, but no…and yes. (how is that for clarity?) It totally depends on level of maturity, surroundings, and the leaders and mentors in ones’ life.

          What you described about the blogger having been reproved for her language -I’m guessing, is what I’ve seen in other blog comments: public, shaming rebukes. Which, if we discern the spirit behind them, it would be pride and not love and definitely not wisdom! If someone is openly doing something we feel is harmful to their faith-walk or the reputation of Christ, then in love, and certainly after much prayer, we should privately confront in gentleness knowing we are capable of the same thing.

          And really, the ‘right’ to do that should be either earned by loving friendship or by one God has put in authority over that person (as in Pastor, mentor or parent)

          And really, blog-land is complex because the connections are distant and the words come without facial expression. God means for our growth to come in loving community. It is difficult to create that kind of community without personal contact. It would be in that kind of community that one could be safely confronted on something like that and where one could safely face what ails her heart.

          I would say if someone is repeatedly sinning in any way and is confronted (hopefully in LOVE) about that sin, but refuses to see it as such…then I’d question if they truly are a sister in the Lord… and I say that with great caution because as you say, every soul and the road it travels is unique. Walking in the Spirit is essential to walking in grace and seeing through God’s eyes.

          I so appreciate the chance to dialog with you Jillie. Thank you for joining my journey.

  3. We are constantly be refined, aren’t we? I’m so grateful for the ways the Holy Spirit whispers new life into me–into my words, into my thoughts. Too many times I let my flesh rule. I’m listening to your words, Kathy. And praying my words will build up, not tear down.

    I hope all is well in your world! Allume seems far away but I am still thinking of that time and glad to have met you face to face.

    • Kathy Schwanke

      Yes, constantly refined…and I’m so grateful for God’s patience in the process… 🙂

      It was wonderful meeting you too Laura. You exude grace!

      I have been in a bloggers’ Bible Study with several bloggers this fall. Pursuing being ‘promise-driven’ bloggers creating Isaac blogs rather than (flesh-driven) with Ishmael blogs.

      I often hit publish in fear and trembling wanting to bring glory to God.
      Thank you for stopping by beautiful friend!

  4. This is so true. I’ve seen so often in my own life that I swing from extreme to extreme. I’m so thankful for the Holy Spirit within who faithfully nudges me back to tried and true place of balance.

    I too have cringed at what I’ve seen in writing. It seems that we’ve lost our filter when communicating online.

  5. Very well said Kathleen, and by the way your plane pic’ is good! I realate with you
    about what the curse words do to one. I never like hearing them and really sickens me more when coming from christians. I remember one saying I’m free to swear, I say I’m free to speak rightly and pleasing to my Lord. I grew up under “law” but not the Law. So much condemnation, now I’m free to obey the Law, God’s Word. Such a difference so much deception to come away from. Now we have a place to turn when we find ourselves falling, Praise God for His grace.
    Thank you for your posts! 🙂

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