Nathan Pratt: My Journey to Atheism

Journey

Something I’d like to get out of the way immediately is that this post is going to be very honest. It’s a brief history of my religious upbringing, my crisis of faith and the final pushes to search for truth. Nothing I’ll say in this post is said out of anger or malice. It’s an honest portrayal of the extreme difficulty of leaving something you’d held to be truth for almost 30 years. I imagine that some of the topics and points will offend, but please read to the end.

One of the more frustrating things to come out of leaving religion is that so many theists think I haven’t thought this out. That I’m just going through a phase. I’d be willing to wager that I’ve gone much farther in my pursuit of truth than about any believer out there. I’ve put a staggering amount of time into this journey. So when people wave it away as I’m simply misunderstanding or I just need to hear the right words or verses it’s extremely insulting.

I hope that even if we never see eye to eye you’ll see how difficult this journey had been and how extremely hard I tried to make belief work. Here we go….

– My History –

I was raised inside a Southern Baptist family. My home church was Sunnyside Baptist in Hobart, IN. Both of my parents came from pretty terrible childhoods and they viewed religion and god as the thing that saved them. I don’t blame them for wanting that for me.

Being baptists things were pretty legalistic growing up. This is the bible and its truth can’t be debated. It is what it is. Continue reading

Changing Dippers For The Glory of God

How can I appreciate and delight in God as I change my daughter’s dippers? And mostly when I have already done it 8th times in just 2 hours? 🙂

Richard L. Pratt, Jr., captured the spirit of Paul’s message in 1 Corinthians 10:31 as he reasoned that “Paul summarized his outlook into two principles. First, whether or not believers partake, they must do it all for the glory of God. The chief end of human beings is the glory of God; his honor should be the principle concern of those who love him (Deut. 6:5; Matt. 22:37)”.[1]

Pushing the boundaries of the application of 1 Corinthians 10:31 in our daily lives, does Paul mean, I should change our(Lea and I) one month old daughter’s, Eloise, dippers for the glory of God?

As I pondered 1 Corinthians 10:31, Colossian 3:17 “And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”(ESV), came to mind. Not only do I have to change Eloise’s dipper for the glory of God but in the name of the Lord Jesus and giving thanks to God the Father.

Changing dippers is a simple task. I, as a month newly father, could simply do it without thinking about it. But I wanted more. I wanted to delight, enjoy and take pleasure in all I do for the glory of God. I did not want to change Eloise’s dipper because I had to, but because I love to.

Commenting on Colossian 3:17, Max Anders wrote: “The life transformation process is to include any and all areas and activities of life. In all places, in all ways, the believer is to honor the name of the Lord Jesus. […] Genuine spirituality is found in having our lives transformed into the character of Christ.”[2]

Looking in our daughter’s eyes, when she is smiling or crying, I could not deny the infinity awesome and amazing joy and love she brings in our lives. Joy and love that I never thought exist in me. Every time I change her dippers, she stares at me with her beautiful mom’s-brownish color eyes. It was in those staring moments that I found my delight and joy in changing her dippers. I started working wholeheartedly, as for the Lord and not for me. As a result, I found out that I began to change her dipper not only for the Lord but also for me. I love changing her dippers, for every time I do it, I do it for the glory of God who has blessed us with such a joy.

Questions:

If you are a parent, how did you find joy and delight in changing your child’s dipper? (Mostly when is at midnight or many times in a short period)

If you are a theologian, did I apply 1 Cor. 10:31 and Col. 3:17 correctly? Give reasons.


[1] Pratt, R. L., Jr. (2000). Vol. 7: I & II Corinthians. Holman New Testament Commentary; Holman Reference (170). Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman Publishers.

[2] Anders, M. (1999). Vol. 8: Galatians-Colossians. Holman New Testament Commentary; Holman Reference (332). Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman Publishers.