JEFF PEARLMAN

Coming October 2022: "The Last Folk Hero: The Life and Myth of Bo Jackson"

What has to happen?

What has to happen for people to not believe in God?

I don’t mean this in a mean way. I’m certainly not trying to convince people to believe in one thing or another. Hell, it’s your call. But …. well, I just don’t understand how so many folks continue to believe in this traditional, seemingly inane version of an all-knowing being.  To many people (and many of my friends), God understand everything. He is up there, or in us, or up there and in us. He feels our thoughts, and knows whether we have accepted his son into our hearts. And if we have accepted his son into our hearts, which he knows, we spend eternity in bliss. And if we haven’t accepted his son into our hearts, which he also knows, we’re doomed to hell.

Oh, that’s not all. He’s coming. Back here. Through his son. And we’ll know it when we see it. Which means, thanks to this craziness, millions of Bible-swearing Christians will see climate change not as a call to betterment, that as the signal that (praise Jesus!) the world is coming to an end. And that’s a good thing, because they’re all going to heaven, to live happily ever after. So what if our kids and grandkids and great-grandkids are going to die under the unshielded glare of a 250-degree sunshine? Hey, it’s God’s will! Ya!

Lastly, because clearly I need some bed, how can so many people look at, say, a child dying of starvation in Ethiopia and say, “God’s will!” What? God’s will? It’s God’s will that the kid died, meanwhile I’m still here? It’s all part of a plan? His plan? Really? Well, what about the friggin’ kid who’s dead? It doesn’t seem like a great deal for him. Or his family. Or his friends. Truth be told, the people I most hear bellowing “God’s plan” are those whose “God’s plan” includes a nice house, food on the table and an SUV or two in the driveway. It’s easy to say “God’s plan” when you know you’ll go to sleep in a warm, snug bed, then wake up next morning to a bowl of Fruity Pebbles.

Dang.