Thanks for your excellent question:
You have already placed all the religious into the category of irrational, and you, yourself, into the category of rational. What makes you know anything more or better than anyone else - religious or otherwise? Why should anyone listen to you?
Tammy, I used to be extremely religious. About thirteen years ago a man suggested to me that I read a free online book, called "Software for your brain". This is not an anti-religion book... it's an objective book which explains what open mindedness and closed mindedness is, and how to become more open minded.
I read the book. Some of it sank in, and some of it didn't. The most important thing I learned from the book was the concept of "Cognitive Dissonance". That is when you hear something new, or not inline with your beliefs, and your brain immediately rejects it. The book teaches you how to enable yourself to consider new information, instead of rejecting it.
Over the next few years I started questioning my religion, but instead of realizing that I was questioning flawed concepts I presumed that my understanding was flawed. Because of this I started making up a whole bunch of excuses for the problems in my religion.
It was only after about ten years that I decided to have a chat with a preacher. He pointed out that the excuses I had made up contradicted the bible. Althought it was not his intention, he helped me realize that I should not make excuses for the questions that I have. I had many questions at this point, about things in the bible that made no sense to me at all.
In an attempt to be open minded I wrote many emails to religious people, asking them about my questions. Some of these emails took many hours to write. I also read everything they sent me, and everything they suggested that I read, trying desperately to find answers to my questions.
I put ten of my top questions in a video on YouTube, and received hundreds of views and about a hundred responses. Not a single one of my questions was answered in a way that makes sense to me.
The only reason I have been able to come up with for having so many unanswered questions about contradictions and illogical problems in the bible is the simple fact that the bible contains many lies or mistakes.
People simply believe the bible, and do not see the mistakes, because they have been brainwashed to believe that the bible is somehow perfect and does not contain any.
Many religious people believe that the bible is entirely true, but they do not have any rational reason to believe this. They may even use arguments like "it says that it's true".
I could go on and on about this, but anyone with strong cognitive dissonance will reject everything that I say that contradicts with their beliefs, so it's pointless to write any more.
This is why I asked the question, "Have you ever successfully persuaded anyone?" What makes people listen to reason?