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Over the past few weeks I’ve run into a few previous members from my last church that I pastored.

It’s been six years since I left. I’ve changed. So have my beliefs. So has my language.

From what I can gather, they haven’t changed, nor have their beliefs, nor has their language.

In a word, I would describe these encounters as “weird”.

The thing is, they know I’ve changed. They know my beliefs have changed. I know they know because this is why we separated. They must know I no longer talk their language. But I think they assume that I still understand what they’re saying.

I do.

I don’t expect everyone to talk the same talk, share the same beliefs, participate in the same culture, live the same lifestyle.

So on the one hand I could say, “What the hell are you talking about, you weirdo!?”

On the other hand I could say, “I’ve learned your language and spoken it fluently before, so I’m going to practice cross-cultural communication and understand what you’re saying through my own paradigm.”

Ha! I guess which response I choose depends on what kind of mood I’m in.

Know what I’m saying?