Religious Nuts

As we said earlier in this series, American churches often use their outdoor signs to announce scheduled events, share upcoming sermon topics, or give advice.  Happily for us, church employees often post clever messages and give passersby something to think about––or laugh at.  This week, our What's So Funny? segment returns to the series of clever American church signs.  Do you get what's so funny?


1. The expression "to bear fruit" means to give positive results (as farmers would find good harvest results after taking good care of their fruit trees).  There is this quotation in the Christian Bible: “I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last” (John 15:16).  

2. The expression "to be nutty" or "to be a nut" means to be crazy.  Some religious people are so serious about their religion that they lose track of their social relationships, and their family and friends think they are crazy.

What's So Funny?    

This sign contains two different food references: fruit and nuts are both delicious, healthy things to eat.  The person who posted this sign meant to say religion can give good results in a person's life (love, kindness, good relationships).  However, we shouldn't get too crazy about religion so that we make everyone around us angry or uncomfortable.

Alan Headbloom

Alan advises Americans how to be global citizens and expats how to fit in to Michigan culture without annoying their native coworkers and clients. He also tweets and blogs at the intersection of language and culture. Over decades, he's traveled, studied, or lived on six continents, putting strange foods into his mouth and emitting strange sounds from it. His use of English, German, Spanish, Portuguese, French, Swedish, Hausa, and Japanese all improve with alcohol use. He gives invited public presentations on culture and unsolicited private advice on English grammar and usage; the latter isn't always appreciated. Visit his website for information on consulting, coaching, or speaking engagements.