"A casual stroll through the lunatic asylum shows that faith does not prove anything."
"I enjoy mythology, but am not religious about it"
"Your faith is not inspired by some divine constant truth. It is simply geography"
"The doubt of your faith is not god testing you, it is the truth trying to emerge and free you."
"Science flies you to the moon. Religion flies you into buildings."
"Scientology. Because Mormons needed something to joke about."
"Jesus hates figs" (Mark 11:12-14)
"Staying in bed shouting 'Oh my God!' does not constitute going to church."
"Abstinence makes the church grow fondlers."
"If there there is a God, atheism must seem to Him as less of an insult than religion."
"I considered becoming an atheist, but there weren't enough holidays."
"My creation myth is better than your creation myth."
"Religion is a great comfort in a world torn apart by ... religion."
"Call my religion violent again and I'll kill you."
"The more I study religions the more I'm convinced that man worships only himself."
"Creationism doesn't required a leap of faith so much as a drunken tumble down Mount Dumbass."
"Science flies you to the moon. Religion flies you into buildings."
"I am against religion because it teaches us to be satisfied with not understanding the world."
"What can be asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence."
"Religion was invented when the first con man met the first fool. - Mark Twain
"If you talk to God, you are praying. If God talks to you, you have schizophrenia."

Successful Prayer Secrets

Successful Prayer Secrets picture
The secret to successful prayer is to be vague. And to beg.
We need to talk about the nonsense that is prayer.

We begin with a God who is omnipotent and omniscient, yet can somehow have his mind changed by us.  "Pray without ceasing!" cries the apostle Peter.  Look how Abraham was able to save Lot's family from the horror of Sodom and Gomorrah, just by pleading with God.

So we try to live with the continued paradox of freewill and predestination, of our choice and God's will, and fall on our knees to ask for things.

The first thing we notice is that God does not talk back.  The Scriptures speak of "still small voice" but it's too quiet for all but the most imaginative ear.

But we persist.  After all, pray until something happens (PUSH) is emblazoned proudly on our wristbands!

If something happens that is to our liking, then - God be praised - Hallelujah - our faith was not misplaced.  God is good all the time!  Of course, you don't know that it wasn't going to happen anyway, but let's not spoil the party.

A much more likely outcome, however, is that nothing happens, and we have to start wondering what's going on.  Has God said no?  Do we need to keep on praying?  Do we need to be patient?  Is God testing us?

We just don't know.

So we eventually give up, and trust that God knows what the fuck he's doing.  We eventually learn how to pray in a more effective way, full of vague, ambiguous requests, and not surprisingly, our prayers start being answered, and we become prayer warriors, heroes of the church.

Until that fated day, when over-confidence strikes, and we lay a hand of healing on the head of a poor amputee, forgetting that whatever prayers God does answer, prayers for amputees are certainly not on that list.