The phrase used in the title here is not French or French Creole and I wouldn't exactly say that it is: "patois" by the first definition of patois in the dictionary. If you look at the 2nd or 3rd definition of patois then maybe you could say this phrase I am going to teach you about today is in fact patois; south Georgian Patois.
Shutcho Mouff is, at least in southern Georgia, an informal way of telling someone to cease any and all verbal communication immediately. Also, in some parts of Alabama and possibly Mississippi you might hear this phrase used if you have the discerning ear while among locals such as myself. When I went to college, it was suggested to me that I should abandon my south Georgian patois, so that people might take me seriously. By the time I got to law school, I spoke hardly no patois, although I could still interpret for others and occasionally I do slip back into my patois when I am back home.
So, what does all this non-sense have to do with helping people improve their marriage? Great question, thanks for asking. I thought maybe if I taught you a phrase in my native patois and then gave you a key Bible verse, tied to a biblical principle for marriage, the end result might be that you would remember the phrase and apply the principle in your marriage.
Ephesians 4:29 is a great verse to remember in marriage because this verse instructs us that sometimes we need to shut our mouths. That is what "shutcho mouff" literally translates as: shut your mouth.
Ephesians 4:29English Standard Version (ESV)29 Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.
Now read this passage in a paraphrase:
Ephesians 4:29The Message (MSG)29 Watch the way you talk. Let nothing foul or dirty come out of your mouth. Say only what helps, each word a gift.
Now how can this help your marriage? This can help your marriage the same way it helps my marriage. If I do not have words that build up, words that are fitting for the occasion, words that give grace to those who hear, then I should shut my mouth. This is wisdom for wives, as well as husbands; for parents and for grandparents.
Remember your most recent argument with your spouse? My most recent argument with Patty was this morning and God used it to teach me something. What God taught me is best expressed in Ephesians 4:29. if I had been living by Ephesians 4:29 there would have been no argument at my house this morning. ( As Tab Howell would say: "True Story")
So, this morning I realized that sometimes I need to just shut my mouth. better yet , not open my mouth until I know that my words are in compliance with Ephesians 4:29. You can make a big change in your life just by trying to live up to that verse. That means you have nothing bad to say about anyone and nothing harsh or mean to say to anyone.
Want to read something truly helpful? Read the whole chapter of Ephesians Chapter 4. I will be posting a sermon from that text on: andygoode.com very soon.
Andy Goode is a Biblical Counselor and Pastor in South West Alabama. This blog is about strengthening marriages and providing biblical direction for everyday issues.