I think those of us who believe in God are sometimes too reluctant to acknowledge that first and foremost the religious experience is about emotion. It has an intellectual aspect, of course—but the intellectualizing of religion comes way after the swooning, singing, crying, hoping, and repenting it inspires.
First you cry; then you write a book. Even if you’re an atheist writing about religion, that’s the order. First you get upset about how wrong and harmful religion is—and then you cobble together an outline and call your agent.
Everyone operates the same way. Feel First; Think Second. That’s the Human Motto, for sure.
We Christians should consider spending less time debating, rationalizing, and trying to logically defend our faith. And though it’s true we’re kind of stuck doing that—since we know that breathlessly crying, “Can’t you just feel the truth of Christ?!” isn’t likely to move non-Christians to take us particularly seriously—maybe we should still declare some sort of moratorium on endeavoring to rationally “prove” the validity of our faith.
Religion addresses our emotions. Emotions are as personal as personal gets. When we Christians use the term “personal savior,” we mean that to a degree that … well, that we should fully and readily acknowledge.To put it brainiacally, the story of Christ contextualizes our emotions.
And that’s a beautiful thing.
It’s more than enough.
On this same General Topic, see also my posts Extra! Extra! Atheists Whip Christians In Debate! Again! And Again! and Rationalists/Atheists: Don’t Too Readily Dismiss the Believer, and Atheists of America Agree: Christianity Makes Eminent Rational Sense!. Or don’t. You know. Whatever.