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.