Staublog 01/23/04 Words Matter

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Words matter. God created the universe with words. Humans are unique in our ability to create symbols (words) and transmit ideas, knowledge and information with them. There are words that take us to the deep and true and jargon that requires little thought and no depth. Words can emanate truth or ring hollow and the difference is often discovered by observing behavior. These thoughts are on my mind as I think about some stories that focus on words. Did the Pope endorse “The Passion?” If so his alleged ringing endorsement was not two thumbs up but five short words, “It is at it was.” “His blood be on us and our children” are the seven words from Matthew 27:25 that has some Jewish leaders saying the film is anti-Semitic. Catholic Peggy Noonan is particularly vexed by the situation because she passed along the Pope’s words and wants reassurances that he actually said them.Pope As Movie Critic Jewish Leaders Upset Peggy Noonan Insider

Ben Affleck used words to proclaim his undying affection for the now defunct relationship with Jennifer Lopez. His representative used words to announce he would NOT use words saying, “I NEVER comment on my client’s personal life.”Ben and Jen Split for Good, More Ben and Jen Split for Good

Humans create words. Until marketers identified an exploitable economic niche, there was no such thing as “Youth Culture.” Now I read the word “Youthscape.” Youthscape

Pepsi wants a piece of that youth culture and will feature 20 teens sued by the recording industry who will pledge their determination to download music for free off the internet.Pepsi Winks At Lawbreaking Teens

The Mars Rover speaks a language and stopped speaking except for a “beep.”Silent Mars Rover

Jack Welch used words to define the characteristics of leaders: Energy, Energizing others, Edge (making tough yes or no decisions) and Execution (getting things done).Welsh: Four “E’s” of Leadership

Howard Dean and his wife employed words to do damage control after his emotive, half-crazed speech after coming in third in Iowa.Softer Gentler Dean and Wife

It is often said that “talk is cheap.” Explain that to advertisers spending millions of dollars for 30 seconds of time in the Superbowl. The culturally savvy Christian understands the value of words. We listen to them, savor them, evaluate them and use them to convey our ideas to a world that needs to know “the WORD became flesh and dwelt among us¢â‚¬¦full of grace and truth.”

A final note: I just received word that a man who loved to play with words has died: “Bob Keeshan, who gently entertained and educated generations of children as television’s walrus-mustachioed Captain Kangaroo, died Friday at 76,” his family said.

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