My expectations have no bearing on reality. I can't wish my thoughts into reality if reality isn't cooperating. That's why I say show me -- to this or any other proposition I'm not convinced of.
Your expectations may not directly change the physical, but they define your perception of reality. So if you expect evidence to be unconvincing, you will most likely perceive it to be unconvincing. (I would argue that the statement "my expectations have no bearing on reality" is a rehash of the old idea of dualism; That there is 'reality', where your body resides, and there is some other place that your consciousness resides that has no connection to 'reality'.)
What's the PMBOK for religious professionals? For the Methodist Church, there's the Book of Discipline, which gets revised every four years. Ordained pastors have to be at least passingly familiar with it.
It's what they do -- and fail to do -- that leads me here and nothing more.
I think I'm going to send this quote to my friends at church because it underscores why the church has been such an abysmal failure lately. It's always what we do, not what we say.
And that's part of why I don't buy this irrational hatred of organized religion. I've seen the televangelists, the Benny Hinns and Jerry Falwells, and I know they're full of s**t. They are doing terrible things and we're worse of, humanity as a whole, for their idiocy.
But I also know that they're not the only kind of christian out there. This spring I had the pleasure of talking to a nun who had spent the last forty years of her life as a missionary in South America. She's done a lot of great work, most recently building a program that serves street children in Bolivia. Before she started the program in Bolivia, she lived in a small village near Peru. She told us that one day, she saw a funeral procession for a young child and decided to find out what happened. This, at the time, 70 year old woman walked almost 10k back to where the procession had come from and found out that there was a man who's family was slowly dying from some sort of infection. The nun offered to help the man, but the local shaman convinced him that his family was beyond help. So he told the nun to go home. She did, but came back again the next day. And again the next day. Finally, the man said she could help. So she gave the family penicillin and they got better.
My goal is for there to be more people in the world like that old nun, who are willing to walk a lot to help people. I don't care what they believe, because when you're compassionate and caring, you believe the same thing I do. Besides, it's not what people believe, it's what they do that matters, right?