A Prayer Life, Part 3: Practice Makes . . .

Rick Mattson Devotion Leave a Comment

  This morning I was lying in bed trying NOT to hear God telling me to arise twenty minutes early to clean the shower stall before I leave on a four-day trip. Performing such a task would be speaking Sharon’s love lingo. It’s how she feels cared for. The voice persisted; I couldn’t get rid of it. Finally I relented. OKAAAAY Lord. I hear you. Or …

A Prayer Life, Part 2: Divine Doorways

Rick Mattson Devotion 4 Comments

              As mentioned last time, I write as an amateur on the topic of prayer. These posts are simply “what I know now” (or think I know), nothing more. I like to think of my walk with God as being punctuated by a series of doorways into rooms of ministry. I’m at the gas station …

A Prayer Life Part 1: Following God Around Town

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These are my gut-honest reflections on prayer. I write from the perspective of an amateur. But perhaps that’s exactly what may help you. In prayer I appear to be doing a lot of catching up. That is, catching up to what God is doing. His work seems to take place right in front of me, hidden in plain sight. I walk onto …

Love Your Atheist Neighbor Part 8: Secular Common Sense 1

Rick Mattson Apologetics, Atheism Leave a Comment

Atheists tend to be my crowd because they are forthright and not afraid or embarrassed to talk about religion. In fact, they usually have pretty strong feelings about religion. One common sentiment is that religion is just dumb. It’s dumb, they say, to believe in an invisible force that interacts very selectively with the world — that blesses Americans with jobs …

Love Your Atheist Neighbor Part 7: Science and Faith 2

Rick Mattson Apologetics, Atheism 1 Comment

In my last post I noted that atheists tend to set faith and science against each other by characterizing faith as subjective and feelings-based, and the Bible and its miracle claims as issuing from a pre-scientific era prone to superstition and myth-making. Science, by contrast, is based on facts, on objective observation of repeatable phenomenon. It excludes the miraculous. My …

Love Your Atheist Neighbor Part 5: Discern the Rhetoric

Rick Mattson Apologetics, Atheism Leave a Comment

When it comes to dialogue about the existence of God and other big questions of life, atheists have a built-in rhetorical advantage over Christians. They can draw at will from a well-stocked inventory of put-downs, insults and slander to cast believers in a negative light. No need to engage in substantive argumentation; smack will serve just fine. Obviously this disappointing …

Love Your Atheist Neighbor Part 4: Evolution as a Basis for Ethics?

Rick Mattson Apologetics, Atheism 7 Comments

Last week I asked whether feeling could be an adequate basis for ethics (moral obligation). My atheist professor friend thinks that evolution has given a high percentage of the population a feeling of empathy toward others, which leads to treating others with kindness and respect. Such treatment is commendable but evolution also seems to have produced feelings of hatred toward others, …