If you have not had the pleasure of perusing the pages of Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, I sincerely hope you will do so soon. I know it starts to sound like the girly-girl cliché of a novel since thousands of females over the age of 14 have swooned over it. I was thinking about adverbs today (trust me, this was not one of my really strange thoughts as I was falling asleep… I was in church. I’ll explain in a minute.), and I think I have fallen even more deeply in love with the fictitious Mr. Darcy.
He said ardently. I mean, he used some other fabulous vocabulary too. Not that I would fall for a man just because of his vocabulary. That would be very shallow of me. But really, I mean “In vain I have struggled. It will not do. My feelings will not be repressed….” Then he declares his love.
Ah. What a lovely scene that is.
And what a lovely adverb.
Now, you might not be a fan of grammar, as about 95% of the population is not. I, on the other hand, particularly love it. Actually. It’s not just one of those nerdy things that I feel like I need to say to assert my intelligence and praise for academia. I love grammar. And I love having correct grammar.
That being said, if you find incorrect grammar (which you probably will… I don’t do much proofreading on these posts), don’t feel like you have to point me towards the straight and narrow of grammar.
Back to adverbs.
Adverbs are quite versatile words. An adverb, defined, is “a word or phrase that modifies or qualifies an adjective, verb, or other adverb or a word-group, expressing a relation of place, time, circumstance, manner, cause, degree, etc. (e.g., gently,quite, then, there)” (Thank you, Merriam-Webster’s)
So basically, adverbs make adjectives, verbs, and other adverbs better. More specific. More vivid.
And I think, as Christians, we need to be more like adverbs in the way we live.
If you’re not following the whole grammar analogy, please feel free to stop reading and pick a different post. I know we’re all wired differently.
Back to Christians and adverbs (am I getting sidetracked a lot this evening, or what?). Adverbs: they modify verbs which is their primary purpose. They modify other adverbs which is one of their secondary purposes. And the modify adjectives another secondary purpose.
As Christians, our primary purpose is to serve God. He is our verb. We serve Him first and foremost. Then, we have two other duties. To serve the lost world around us, but also to serve other Christians, to build up the body of Christ.
I was sitting in church tonight, hearing a request for meals for a family in the church and wondering if we sometimes neglect to volunteer in our churches because we don’t see the need. Or maybe the other way around, that we feel that our service is more valued if it’s done right in God’s house. When maybe a balance between the two is what we really need, to build up the body of Christ and then use that strong Body to serve the lost world.
If you understand exactly what’s going on right now, kudos to you. I’m not even sure I follow my thought processes sometimes. And I often make comparisons that leave the logical and sane population of the world a little confused.
Adverbs. Christians. We’re all the same.