The Evangelical Press Association (EPA) website recently shared the following: Christianese is a language used in the Christian subculture and understood easily only by other practicing Christians. As Christian communicators it’s important to avoid words in our writing that could be misunderstood or fail to communicate – terms that have meaning only in the Christian subculture.

As a public service, here are some common phrases used in the church, along with their English-language equivalents:

Christianese: “If it be God’s will.”
Translation: “I really don’t think God is going to answer this one.

Christianese: “Let’s have a word of prayer.”
Translation: “I am going to pray for a long, long, long time.”

Christianese: “That’s not my spiritual gift.”
Translation: “Find someone else.”

Christianese: “Fellowship”
Translation: “Organized gluttony.”

Christianese: “The Lord works in mysterious ways.”
Translation: “I’m totally clueless.”

Christianese: “Lord willing . . .”
Translation: “You may think I’ll be there, but I won’t.”

Christianese: “I don’t feel led.”
Translation: “Can’t make me.”

Christianese: “God led me to do something else.”
Translation: I slept in instead of going to church.

Christianese: “God really helped me with this test.”
Translation: “I didn’t study but I guessed good, so I’m giving God credit in the hope that He helps me again.”

Christianese: “She has such a sweet spirit!”
Translation: “What an airhead!”

Christianese: “I have a ‘check’ in my spirit about him.”
Translation: “I can’t stand that jerk!”

Christianese: “I’ll be praying for you.”
Translation: “There’s an outside chance I’ll remember this conversation later today.”

Christianese: “Prayer concerns”
Translation: “Gossip”

Christianese: “In conclusion . . . “
Translation: “I’ll be done in another hour or so.”

Christianese: “Let us pray”
Translation: “I’m going to pretend to talk to God now, but I’m really preaching at you.”

Christianese: “You just have to put it in God’s hands.”
Translation: “Don’t expect me to help you.”

Christianese: “God wants to prosper you!”
Translation: “Give me all your money.” (Author Unknown)

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