I’m a youth pastor and a practical atheist.
How do those two things go together? Let me explain.
I don’t pray as much as I should.
I don’t rely on God as much as I should.
I try to live by sight. Not by faith.
Simply put, I tend to drift into a mode in which I live and lead as though I don’t actually believe that God is in control. That’s what a practical atheist is.
When we find ourselves slipping into this, there’s a few things we should be focusing on:
1. Pouring the Word into our hearts. David said, “I hide your Word in my heart that I might not sin against You.” He got it right. When we pour (and I mean pour) Scripture into our heads and hearts, we tend to focus on Christ more. More specifically, our view of ourselves gets smaller, and our view of Jesus gets bigger.
2. Get alone, in the quiet, and seek Him in prayer. Jesus Himself taught us that when we pray, we should: “Go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.” I could say more, but that’s a promise from Jesus. There’s not much more I need to say.
Did you catch that? Did you see what I just did? I just gave you the all-time, quintessential, most typical Christian response to every, single question about Christianity anyone has ever had. And everyone hates the answer.
“Read your Bible and pray.”
And as much as we hate to get that response, that’s what God wants; for us to seek Him. And if we’re not connecting deeply with Jesus, what are we doing? Going through the motions?
It’s not worth it. Let’s pursue Jesus with every fiber of our being!