Monday, February 7, 2011

An Agnostic's Prayer (written by a former atheist)

A Christian friend of mine requested that I write a prayer she could pray with her agnostic husband. He is, like almost everyone we meet in the world today, turned off by the self-righteousness of many Christians who see Faith as an elite club they've joined, a club they can use to beat other people over the head with. He is, like almost everyone we meet in the world today, pretty sure that "something's out there" but not sure what that something is or if anyone has figured that something out fully.

This is a very reasonable and potentially responsive position and one that calls for prayer; a prayer whose effectiveness Our Lord has guaranteed.

I have bracketed the first section, as only an agnostic can pray this provisionally. A Christian can pray the rest of the prayer with any agnostic, as we must all admit our belief is not yet full or perfect. If you pray this with an agnostic friend, you can pray the exact same thing, only your prayer will eliminate the proviso.

Here's the prayer.

An Agnostic's Prayer - To the Unknown God

Dear God,

[If you are there and if you answer prayer, please answer mine.]

Although I do not know you perfectly, I trust that my mind has not been created in vain, and that at least a limited knowledge and awareness of you is possible for all people. I also know that Jesus Christ said, “Seek and ye shall find; knock and it shall be opened unto you.” This is a great promise, and so I ask for your help in seeking you and in knocking on the door of the great mystery that is the universe.

I do not desire that I shall ever know you in a way that gives me over-confidence, that makes me judgmental of others, or that makes me despise my fellow man. May the knowledge you give me of yourself open my heart as well as my head and come with humility and not with pride.

Jesus Christ also said, “All things, whatever you shall ask in prayer, believing, you shall receive”. Of course I do not believe fully, and as far as I know I may never fully believe; but I ask fervently for at least some belief - belief not in a myth but in what is real - for Jesus Christ said that faith "as small as a mustard seed" can move mountains. So I ask you this in prayer, not yet fully believing, and I ask for the grace to believe, for the grace to hope that you will give me whatever I need to understand you and approach you as much as I am able, and for the grace to love.

As the father of the sick child called out to Christ, “Lord, I believe. Help thou my unbelief.”

Dear God of the universe, reveal yourself to me and give me the grace not to resist your revelation.


1 comment:

Mrs. Beazly said...

Thank you for writing and posting this. I'm sure I am not the only "mixed marriage spouse" who finds hope and encouragement in it.