No Laughing Matter

Woe to you who long for the day of the LORD! Why do you long for the day of the LORD ? That day will be darkness, not light. It will be as though a man fled from a lion only to meet a bear, as though he entered his house and rested his hand on the wall only to have a snake bite him. (Amos 5:18-19)

I appreciate Pie in the Sky as much as anybody, maybe more. I like the idea of getting everything I want for free, having my own permanent parking space, and getting rid of jerks once and for all. There’s just something about streets of gold, pearly gates, endless feasts (with unlimited refills), and a personal angelic butler that tweaks my interest in the sweet by and by. Maybe the best part of all is that I’ll be able to gloat over all those unbelievers who are going to find out that I was right and they were wrong. As I float up into the clouds where a smiling Jesus will be waiting for me, I’m going to look over my shoulder, stick out my tongue, and go “Nya nya nya nya nya!” If I have time, I may even moon them just for the hell of it. Oh, baby. It’s gonna be sweeeeet.

At least that’s what I had been thinking until Amos fires a bombshell into my Parousia now you don’ta scenario. I mean, I was so ready for the flaming darts of death to come raining down like locust on all these irreligious suckers who deserve an eternity sunk in the celestial cesspool of perpetual putrification. I was mega pumped to watch these godless vermin writhe in everlasting horror and torment where their worms never dieth and the demons do the damnation tango on the heads of every single miscreant who ever messed with me. This was supposed to be my shot at holy revenge via the arm of God as I get cherry-picked singe-free into a heavenly full-service subdivision catering to my every whim. At least that’s what I signed up for.

Thank you, Amos, for splashing a little vinegar in my fantasy fruit punch. Nothing like a little damper on the whole Day of the Lord deal that was supposed to be a good time for the righteous (ie: those who, unlike the loathsome sinners in question, passed the religious exam). Come to find out, the Day of the Lord is going to be hell on earth for sinners and saints alike. Turns out that just maybe there isn’t going to be a special asbestos-lined balcony where we chosen folk can smirk at the destruction of the wicked while sipping mint juleps and relaxing to the easy listening sounds of weeping and gnashing of teeth. Apparently the big show is going to be so badassed that even the prissy Puritans among us are going to need to change their diapers.

It appears that God is freaking serious about this end of the world thing after all. I guess Peter wasn’t kidding when he said that the heavens are going to disappear with a roar, the elements are going to be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything in it are going to be laid bare. It sure as heck looks like we’re talking more than a slight interruption in our regular programming. This sounds to me like refried hell skewered and served with a side order of hot spiced tribulation. It sounds like the end of the freaking world for God’s sake!

And I’m not too happy about it either. I’m supposed to be exempt from this recompense stuff. The Day of the Lord was supposed to be fun doggone it. It was supposed to be something to look forward to. Geez Louise. Maybe I should make an appointment for a root canal so I can practice pain and suffering—and hold the Novocaine while you’re at it. Let’s make it as painful as possible. I wanna be ready.

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