July 06, 2016

Lack of Confidence

GrammarCheck put out a list of five words that writers should avoid because it makes their writing ineffective. One category was writing, “I feel/I believe/I think.” They explained, “These phrases change the focus of the sentence from the subject to the writer. They make the writer look unsure of what he is writing and do nothing to inspire confidence or persuade readers.” I’m struck by the fact that I frequently and repeatedly hear those phrases coming from preachers, teachers and believers when they are witnessing. Saying “I think” does take the focus off the Gospel and puts it on the speaker…and if the speaker appears to lack confidence people will, even subconsciously, not be persuaded.

1 comment:

Steve Corey said...


-----Imagine the entire population as being 350 million buckets. Each bucket is full of what that person knows. GrammarCheck is probably right about the contents of all those buckets containing some aversion to “I feel/I believe/I think“. Wonder about how all those buckets got that aversion so similarly alike? Is it in the galvanization of the bucket metal? Were they just made that way? Is it in their shape? How do all the buckets get any information, ideas, beliefs, feelings in them?
-----Now, imagine all these buckets were born moments before you started reading this. So they’re all empty, aren’t they? Well, they do have some basic “bucket” tendencies. But tendencies are operators, not things. They’re more like verbs than nouns. They act upon bucket contents more than they are bucket contents. They’re more like the galvanization. So the buckets are yet born quite empty. How do the buckets get filled?
-----Each bucket notes what it observes. It even relates to what it notes. But starting as just an empty bucket, there’s little understanding, if any, either about what it notes or how it relates. So personal observation fills the bucket by “Drip. Drip. Drip.” Let’s hope they weren’t born on a hot sunny morning, because those drips won’t last all day, and our population of buckets will be quite empty by nighttime.
-----But our population wasn’t born all at once. Baby buckets are born to momma and poppa buckets who quickly begin pouring their own contents into baby buckets. And as the baby buckets grow, sibling, friend, neighbor, and even nemesis buckets pour some into them. Of course, all these pourers aren’t just making it up. At least not most of it. Buckets aren’t that creative. Neither are humans. We are a little bit, but most of our creativity is sparked by something we’ve observed, and that is usually something another bucket has done or produced. So, this pouring from one bucket into another makes culture as all the buckets pour around. And thus, when this around pouring combines with normal bucket tendencies, the common aversion to “I feel, I believe, I think” is cultivated and even husbanded (GrammarCheck.)
-----Have I quoted any Scripture here? Scripture is a pouring into the bucket by God. What a blessing it is to the culture of all the buckets! But this isn’t about God’s revelations through Scripture. This is about what people think; it is about bucket contents. Some of you buckets might think that all of this is plagiarized. But those buckets are the exception because all of this is so whacked off the wall that most buckets recognize it could only come from an idiot like me. So, the majority of you buckets pretty correctly gather that all of this I’ve written is what I feel because I believe it because I’ve thought carefully about what I’ve observed, heard, and read. But if I were to have written that truth, “I think, I believe, I feel,” more than just those few readers bright enough to have gathered it themselves would have shut their minds off to what I was saying even though I would have been being more honest about from where what I was saying came. Most of what everyone says comes from their own feelings, beliefs, and thinking anyway. So what’s so wrong about saying it? This is where GrammarCheck is correct: the rest of the buckets put up their umbrellas because they just don’t like to hear what other buckets feel, believe, think.
-----Now, having observed that inconsistency about the buckets, let’s ponder why the Clintons can commit every crime imaginable and always skate away Scot-free.

Love you all,
Steve Corey