We are hindered in our progress toward becoming spiritually competent people by how easily we can explain away the movements of God toward us. … We live in a culture that has cultivated the idea that the skeptical person is always smarter than one who believes. … Partly as a result of this social force toward skepticism, very few people ever develop competence in their prayer life. This is chiefly because they are prepared to explain away as coincidences the answers that come to the prayer that they do make… In their pride they close off the entrance to a life of increasingly confident and powerful prayer.

The greatest of divides between human beings and human cultures is between those who regard the visible world as being of primary importance – possibly alone real or at least a touchstone of reality – and those who do not. We live in a culture that overwhelmingly gives primary, if not exclusive, importance to the visible. … But neither God nor the human mind and heart are visible.*

*Hearing God: Developing a Conversational Relationship With God, Dallas Willard, Intervarsity Press (September 2006).

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