“Okay, I want you to prove that this god of yours actually exists,” said O. “Go on, convert me.”
I was in my second year in college when a friend of a friend “found out” that I was a Christian and subsequently challenged my faith. I knew it wouldn’t be wise to accept the challenge. For one thing, my relationship with God wasn’t going pretty well that time. For another, I suck at confrontations, especially ones that revolve around religion. But I took the bait anyway and proceeded to say things that I learned from my pastor and I was sure I made what I felt at the time were thought-provoking and more or less solid arguments.
But then he began to ramble on about science, logic and a whole lot of other intelligent-sounding statements; all the while his voice was getting louder and louder and I was getting smaller and smaller. The whole thing ended with him laughing in triumph and me outwardly indifferent but inwardly mortified.
So conversations with atheists? They don’t always go well, obviously.
But sometimes, they turn out the way they should be – civilized.
A friend of mine, Drew, was telling me about the difficult situation with his family. I wasn’t sure if he believed in God since we never talked about the subject but I decided take a chance anyway just in case he did or was thinking about it.
“Try praying about it,” I said. “It might help you.”
“Don’t you know?” he replied. “I don’t believe in God. I’m an atheist.”
“Oh, I didn’t know.” After some thought, I added, “Then I’ll pray for you.”
“Okay, that’s fine. Thanks.”
Yes, sometimes conversations with atheists don’t end in war. Sometimes, if both people aren’t plagued with the desire to prove the other wrong in order to prove themselves right, these conversations end with “Okay” – which, in my opinion, is perfectly okay.