Language choice is key. What you choose to say to others is important. Using foul language, for example, has no place in any society, except to display the poor character of the speaker. We hear off color jokes, privately told at the water cooler, as well as routines on Comedy Central (cable television). We overhear snide remarks made to a co-worker. We hear defamatory lyrics that top the music charts. The choice to use foul language is pervasive; so also is the cultural norm to accept it as part of the fabric of our society – a stained fabric, but nonetheless, a fabric of our society.
How we speak makes a difference, not so much for others, but for ourselves, in the view of our own self-worth. With the use of foul language, the offender shows disrespect for others and for himself. The offender may think he/she sounds cool when cursing, but actually this person only sounds crass. Nothing good comes from using curse words. As with lewdness, this behavior also desensitizes the offender’s conscience regarding prudent action, because.the offender has sinned against his neighbor and against God and thusly, has moved further away from God. The offender loses sight of what is appropriate versus inappropriate use of language. The offender lacks the virtues of Temperance and Modesty.
Watch your mouth!
The choice of language dictates whether one embraces the virtue of Modesty or not. If you say things to be deliberately offensive, or to sound “cool,” knowing that your choice of words will come across as offensive, then the Holy Spirit is telling you, by means of your conscience, not to say it! If on the other hand, you have respect for others, you will refrain from using foul, defamatory language, out of charity and kindness for others. You would be respecting the dignity of others and yourself. You would demonstrate high self-worth and others would be drawn to your goodness.
How does modesty of dress breed success? We’ll discuss the answer to that question in our next reflection. Don’t miss it!