Talking Jesus

I found out in college that people in Christian communities dropped Jesus and God into everyday conversations. People like college students, who were not pastors, talking about tests or boyfriends or intramural games.

I grew up in a Christian home. Went to church twice a week. But my parents were never Jesus talkers. Hot topics of conversation were libertarian politics, household insulation, and how much my dad hated being in the army. (In New Zealand they don't insulate their houses, like, at all. My dad was appalled.) We'd pray before dinner, but a prayer of rote. "Come Lord Jesus, be our guest..." None of this personal or emotional interfacing with the big JC before prandial repose.

My mom comes from good German-American stock, who, as a rule, talk about nothing. And my dad grew up in a house next door to a Lutheran church and across the street from a Presbyterian one. His mother sent him but attended neither.

Mitch and I recently moved in with my brothers in Fort Collins. They (my brothers) have a bastion of Christian community. People going to church two, three times a week. Sunday morning service, Life Group, Discipleship Group, family dinner, camp volunteering, church planting, marriage counseling, singles group. And as much as Fort Collins is a college town with the requisite debauchery, it is a veritable church buffet.

What I'm saying is, we're back around people talking Jesus.

Not that this is bad, but even as a life-long Christian I find it hard to fit in. I'm not sure when to God drop if we're not talking about religion. "Boy, do these carrots look God-intended rotten. How long ago did we, by the grace of Jesus, buy them?" It's like when I was new at swearing I just throw the ol' fuck around everywhere. (But with practice and observation, I have become adept, I would like to think.)

Somebody said to me, yesterday, "I really feel God speaking to me through this community." and I thought, What does that mean? I have to check out of these conversations because I feel like people are talking in code. All I hear is "I am Christian; I am Christian." I'd ask them to clarify but don't want to expose myself as one of the uninitiated.

My annoyance with mentions of faith leaping through all topics of conversation, I'll be honest, could rapidly be turning into resentment. I don't want to be a linguistic Byzantine, an outsider to the truly faithful. I don't want to have to prove that I'm a Christian while I'm talking about those jeans that I really like that have gone missing. I feel bad about myself for it.

If God has a conversational Google alert set up for His name, he's getting very few hits from me, and I hope He's okay with that.

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