A Prayer Life, Part 5: Prayerless

Rick Mattson Devotion 2 Comments

On occasion I realize with dismay that a day or two has passed, prayerless. For me prayer is a hard habit to keep, an easy habit to break; and hard to restore when I’ve lapsed. Sometimes I fret about my relative (un)worthiness to re-enter the throne room. The Lord is probably less picky about this than me. I picture him observing my internal civil …

A Prayer Life, Part 4: More is . . .

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I have a lot going on and I’m a busy guy. At church I teach adult ed. and participate in a study group. At work I serve at many college campuses. With so many commitments and projects to attend to, just staying on top of email seems a full-time job. I have to wonder, however, if I’m on the right …

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

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  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

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              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 …

Life of the Mind, Part 4: Responding to Former Evangelicals

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Recently I’ve been engaged in conversation with several intellectuals who’ve departed the evangelical* faith. Here are three accusations that emerge in their blogs, emails and oral communication. They say that evangelicals are . . . Overly certain of their beliefs — that is, of being too cocky about knowing “the truth.” Low on IQ: One former evangelical theology professor, a truly brilliant …

LIfe of the Mind, Part 3: Intellectual Virtue

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You’ve heard of moral virtues, such as honesty, selflessness, courage, generosity. “Intellectual” virtues are similar: When a person exercises virtues of the mind, such as humility and honesty, she’s more likely to find truth. Take, for example, the person who’s trying to settle a dispute between two parties regarding the agreed-upon price of a used car. One party says the …

Life of the Mind Part 1: Thinking or Feeling?

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In my ideal world I’d be a perfect balance of head and heart. Apparently, in God’s ideal world that’s not the case. My God-given “lead card” is definitely the mind. How about you? What’s your lead card — mind or emotion? I think the point is that we should seek to be well-rounded people of both intellect and feeling, but …

Marriage Part 10: The Body

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The early Gnostics valued spirit over concrete substance, mind over matter. The material universe — including one’s own body — was evil, they thought, or neutral at best. But NT epistles such as Colossians and 1 John take aim at Gnostic tendencies in church and culture by focusing on the value of Christ’s physical body.* The incarnation of Christ validates …

Marriage Part 9: Uncommon Interests

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Sharon and I don’t have a lot in common. Certainly not decorating, sewing, health food, or much of anything about home and garden. Ditto for board games, crafts. Surely not theology, writing, public speaking or spy novels. And with 100% philosophical certitude I can tell you: not golf. Honestly, it’s been a struggle our entire marriage of 32.5 years. Lack …