The Rapture: Not everything it’s cracked up to be

It was a typical night for me as an undergrad.  It was 3:00 in the morning.  I was writing the 3rd page of a 10 page paper.  That was due in 7 hours.  It was my second year in college and I knew better, but I loved the rush.  So there I was hyped up on Mt. Dew and s’mores writing a paper on…something.

As I read through the 3 pages I had, and contemplated taking a quick “power nap”, I felt the ground shake.  And a low, yet distinct, rumbling sound.

What on earth was that?  I decided that I truly was exhausted.  And possibly delusional.  Probably not the best idea for my g.p.a.  to continue to try and write this paper.

I stood up from the computer to go to bed when I looked across the dorm room.  To my roommate/best friend’s bed.  No one appeared to be there.  My roommate was gone.  Vanished.

I’m going to interrupt this story for a moment for some “context”.

I may be what you consider a typical “church person”.  I go to church on Sundays, meet a group of women for a weekly Bible study, and have a prayer list on my blog.  I live in the “Bible belt”.  Church is kinda what we “do”.

Part of being a “church person”, particularly a Southern Baptist leaning church person, means believing in The Rapture.  The Rapture is, basically, the belief that Christians will be all “Beam me up, Scotty!” right before the crap hits the fan and Jesus decides to throw down with the heathens of the earth. I’ve heard many joke that “The Rapture” is their retirement plan.  And then The Recession happened and the joking stopped.  Now, The Rapture IS the retirement plan.

There is a very educated and theologically sound argument for The Rapture, but the above definition and the Left Behind series  are about the extent of my knowledge on Christian beliefs about “end times”.

When you combine my understanding of the end times, the shaking room, and the disappearing roommate, you can imagine where my mind went…

“SHELLY HAS BEEN RAPTURED!”

Followed closely by,

“Oh, $#!+. I’ve been LEFT BEHIND!”

Being “left behind” is, seriously, the worst thing that can happen to a Christian because it means that all those times that you prayed the “Sinner’s Prayer” so did NOT count.  And now you were going to have to be there for the Trials and Tribulations as God and Satan went at it on earthly turf.

I don’t know how well you know me, but I was NOT made to be a soldier in God’s Army.  I was meant to be Raptured.  Enjoying the end times from the safety of heaven.  Drinking a pina colada.  A virgin one, of course.

There were plenty of sensible things I could have done at this point.  I could have gone to Shelly’s bed.  Made sure she wasn’t there.  I could have turned on CNN to see what horrible things were going on around the world as all the Christians were being raptured.  You know, unmanned cars and all.  I could have called my mom.  Because if God really did zap all the Christians up into heaven, my mom would SURELY be part of the group.

But I didn’t do any of these things.  Instead, I cried.  I cried myself to sleep.  Because I had been left behind.  And tomorrow was the beginning of the end of the world.  There was nothing left to do, but cry.

When I woke up for my 8 am class I saw Shelly getting ready.  She hadn’t been raptured.  I would have a friend through Armageddon!  Thank God!

By the time I made it to class and walked past all the “good kids” that I KNOW would have been raptured if the The Rapture had happened, I was told that we had had an earthquake the night before.

Seriously?  An earthquake in Tennessee?  We get those?  Never would have thunk it.

This wonderful memory was inspired by a Jamie Varon tweet.  And crazy Christian paranoia.

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8 thoughts on “The Rapture: Not everything it’s cracked up to be

  1. Rebecca says:

    It’s hard to write about religion and be funny… and oh how I laughed out loud 🙂 I think I remember that earthquake too. Or maybe it was a different one. I was in Indiana in a hotel before a speech. It was a Hilton and I remember thinking, this is a crappy Hilton, haha.


    I bet it was the same one! I mean, how many earthquakes happen on this side of the Mississippi, right? (Gosh I’m going to be embarrassed if Indiana is NOT on my side of the Mississippi. I suck at geography.) How funny that there is a moment in time when you were critiquing hotels, Candice was going deaf, and I thought I was doomed to face the Apocalypse all at once.

  2. Secret Agent "CT" says:

    Oh my goodness!! I totally remember that earthquake!! I was in my “nice” apartment that was next to the train tracks. (I don’t think you ever went to my crappy “Carolina” apartment.) I had been asleep and thought that the train must be going by…but wait! I don’t hear anything. Am I now deaf? There is definitly shaking going on and I think my bed is ever so slightly moving by itself. It was 3 am and I had been asleep. That’s my excuse. I just decided that I would go back to sleep and figured that I was nuts. When I heard about the earthquake on the news the next morning, I realized that I wasn’t dreaming crazy dreams and that it really happened. What a relief!! Whew!

    PS. I am now wondering if I was one of the “good kids” that you saw… LOL


    No, I only visited the nice apartment. I think that earthquake made everyone insane 😀 And, no, the “good kids” were the girls on my floor that actually followed all those dorm rules about boys going home at 10 or something. That was practically sainthood in my book. Looking back, I really shouldn’t have been THAT surprised that I wasn’t Raptured…

  3. Susan says:

    Here’s a thought; the rapture has already occurred and the only person that was “taken up” was a little old lady in a nursing home somewhere that nobody noticed! hmmm? Wonder if we all got ‘left behind”?


    Ha! And now that you say it, wasn’t there a dude in the Bible who didn’t die, he just “disappeared”? Susan, I think you’re on to something…

  4. Too funny. I love how you manage to just be yourself here. Being yourself seems obvious, but I get the sense that it’s difficult for many people—especially Christians who don’t cater to all-Christian audiences.


    Aw, thanks, Kristin! There is a lot of “fear” in not just writing as a Christian when you’re not a “Christian blogger”, but writing on any topic that seems to go outside of the “niche” of your blog. I always think it’s funny when someone’s post starts with, “I know this isn’t a (fill in the blank) blog, but I just had to tell you about blah, blah, blah”. It’s very considerate of their audience (which is good), but I’m always thinking, “It’s your blog! There aren’t any rules! Write what you want!”

  5. Akirah says:

    That’s hilarious. I remember when “Left Behind” came out. Those books scared me crapless. I used to have nightmares about being left behind. I totally understand.


    Right? Totally scary stuff. They even had the “Left Behind” for teens series and I was like “Why on earth would you want to scare these kids?!?”

  6. lizam2m says:

    I wasn’t here for that earthquake as I was in Los Angeles dealing with other earthquakes, but I DID watch some show on earthquakes one time and learned that there is actually a ridiculously large fault right around Memphis that some believe could one day be capeable of letting off a force equal to 10,000 Hiroshima bombs. Well, that would certainly be the end of all of us. Just thought you might like to know. Oh, and tha fact that it let off a little steam while you were in college is a good thing. The longer it holds it in, the bigger the big one will be.


    Ha, so I wasn’t COMPLETELY wrong about the end of the world theory? Ha, and earthquakes are like farts. The longer you hold it in the bigger it will be. Always go for many little poots, people. It’s better for everybody 😀

  7. i just gave you a blog award! see my blog to check it out – thanks!


    You are too sweet! Checking it out now 😀

  8. Monica Evans says:

    WOW. I am not the only person this has happened to.

    When I was a teenaged church girl (my nickname at school) my family moved to a house that was deceptively close to a train track. On our first night in the house, about 3 am, I am awoken by a humongous roaring and shaking. I immediately think the same thing you did. It’s the rapture, and I’m still here.

    What do I do? Run to my mom’s room and make sure she’s still there. ‘Cause it ain’t the rapture if mama’s still sleeping.

    lo and behold, it was just the train.

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