Sometimes I like to use words I don’t altogether understand. It’s so I can sound smarter. And perspicacious, sagacious, and astutaquacious. Yes, I did make up that last one—hoping it would make me sound even astutaquaciouser. I admit, it does get embarrassing when I mispronounce a word I made up.
You know what really frustrates me though, linguistically speaking? People getting fuss-strated instead of frustrated. Equally frus-fuss-strating, the word “acai.” Ironically, I’m not so much frustrated with people for mispronouncing it as I am with the berry for being unpronounceable. “Ah-sai-ee”? Let’s try on some phonics, you crazy little berry.
I would smoothly segue into Worcestershire sauce here, but don’t even get me started on that one. Seriously. I don’t know where to start.
While we’re talking about pronunciations, may I give you a little advice? Don’t start a conversation with argumentative people about how to pronounce gif. Soft g? Hard g? How many decades has this battle been raging? I don’t even know. But I’m telling you, there are impassioned people who go near nuclear over this one. Or nu-cu-lar. Depending on who’s doing the pronouncing.
Wouldn’t it be so much simpler if we had one way to pronounce each word? Just one?
Okay, I know that won’t happen. And it’s fine, really, because then what would I (and all my word nerd friends) do for entertainment?
But when it comes to our relationship with Christ, having one way and only one way is oh so gloriously reassuring. He said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6 CSB).
Misunderstanding words? That’s one thing. But I want to altogether understand His way. His one and only way. It’s a beautifully complex simplicity.
Jesus doesn’t merely show us the way. He is the way. He doesn’t simply offer life, Jesus is life. He doesn’t just speak the truth, He is truth. Knowing Him as our way, our truth, and our life results in experiencing His presence. Here and now, and beyond this earthly existence. Just a few verses earlier, Jesus was comforting His disciples and said, “If I go away and prepare a place for you, I will come again and take you to myself, so that where I am you may be also” (John 14:3 CSB).
The cross was in front of Him when He said that. Suffering and victory were miraculously interfacing. Our Savior gave His life for us there and made it possible for us to experience Him, here and forever. Where He is, we will be also! It was a promise that went beyond His wondrous resurrection from the dead. He let them know He would gather them to Himself again. Personally.
Earlier in the book of John, Jesus said, “I have come so that they may have life and have it in abundance” (John 10:10 CSB). The life of abundance is about more than blessings. It’s about the Jesus, who is life, choosing to be with us.
Jesus. Our way. Our truth. Our life—life made abundant by His presence.
So guess what. I don’t need to sound smarter. I need to be smarter, relishing His presence, now and always.
If I were to try for next-level sagacity, however, I think I’d throw in a rhyme. People may question a pronunciation, but they rarely question the rhyme. And I think I have the capacity. And the tenacity. And way too much audacity. Astutaquaciously speaking.