copyright © 2006 Jeff Goode

Power of Prayer
by Jeff Goode

Dear Heavenly Father… Remember me?

Yeah, I know it’s been a long time since the last time we talked. But things were going pretty good. And I didn’t figure you’d want me buggin’ you about getting better gas mileage on my car. Or making my girlfriend stop holding out on oral sex when she wants me to do shit around the house. Which, if you ever see her up there, before you let her in, ask her: What’s with the teeth? Not that you’re probably gonna see her at all after some of the crazy shit we was into. But if you do, do me a favor, and ask about the teeth.

And not that I don’t appreciate the MPGs I already get on my car. I’m just saying, why can’t I get good mileage without sacrificing performance? Or having to trade down to some P.O.S. hybrid that costs an arm and a leg? But that’s what I’m saying. I’m not gonna waste your time with that kinda piddly dick. The car is fine. It’s my cross to bear, and I bear it.

And that’s the main reason you haven’t heard from me since the war. Trust me, if I thought you liked hearing people bitch and moan about every little problem, I’d be on my knees five times a day like a freakin’ Muslim. But I saw what you thought of those people when I was over there, so I’m not even gonna cross that line.

The way I figure it, you and me got an understanding, am I right? Don’t ask, don’t tell, no harm done, and see you at the Pearly Gates. And if you’re not happy with that arrangement, I’m sure you got ways of letting me know.

Only now I got this cancer.

And they’re saying it’s uncurable. Or, no, it’s untreatable. They probably got the cure right there in the desk drawer. But the treatment? That’s gonna cost you, buddy. And your insurance don’t cover it, so go to hell. The doctor says I shoulda got it looked at sooner, but how am I supposed to do that when I don’t even know I have it in the first place? I’m not telekinetic! And now it’s too late… So, yeah, thanks a lot for that Lord. That was real smooth.

So now I’m fucked.

And I know what you’re thinkin’, I do, but I wasn’t even gonna ask. I’m not sayin’ it wouldn’t be nice… But I figure if you thought I was worth a miracle, you wouldn’t have wasted time givin’ me cancer in the first place. So I wasn’t even gonna mention it. Like I said, I did all my askin’ in the war, and you really came through for me over there. Especially the time my platoon got wiped out by a roadside and all I lost was a toe. And I thanked you for that, if you remember. But I ended up missing that toe a lot more than I thought I would at the time. But still I never took back what I said. You were there for me. Well, 99% there. And don’t think I don’t appreciate that.

But I saw a whole lot of mother fuckers you weren’t there for, and I know some of them prayed a hell of a lot more than I did. Hell, the whole Muslim army prayed more than I did. But fuck them, right, Lord? So I get it. I was lucky. I dodged my share of bullets. But your time’s your time. And when it comes around you better be packed and ready to go, ‘cause there’s no use beggin’. You’re gonna die anyway. You just look like a pussy doing it.

So I guess this is my time.

And, at least I got some advance notice. Not like those fuckers in Iraq. Not even a warning shot across the windshield for some of them. So I guess I should thank you for that, too. For the heads up. Givin’ me a chance to get my affairs in order. And get right with you.

So I emptied out my bank account, so the ex-wife can’t get at it. I took the dogs out to my friend Arvid. He’s got a ranch. And I went down to Wal-Mart and charged up every videogame they had on my credit card for the kids. I may not be there to watch ‘em grow up, but I’ll make damn sure they’re the most popular kids in school. For this year, at least. It’s not like the credit card’s gonna repossess an orphan kid’s video cartridge. And it’s not technically stealing if I don’t default on the payments, which I’ll already be dead and gone to heaven before that happens. So fuck them. And I watered the plants. So that’s everything.

Now I figure I just got a get my soul straightened out, and you can take me whenever you’re ready. How’s that for cooperative? …So I guess I’m supposed to apologize for my sins now. But I haven’t really done anything. Nothing special. I mean, just the usual stuff. You can’t really count what happened over seas.

(has to think about it)

One time, I slapped my kid in front of my other kid, and they both cried. I feel bad about that.

I guess I did other things too. But you know what it is. Just go through my records and forgive me for the bad stuff, if that’s okay. I don’t want to take up your time. And God knows I don’t have any to spare. So whatever I did, I apologize. And please forgive me, how’s that?

Except the time I smacked that priest. I’m not sorry about that. And I don’t care if he did sue me afterwards. That was his fault and I don’t take it back. Where’s it say in the Bible you get to spit on people for serving their country? Yeah, I know there weren’t any witnesses. But that’s only because none of his peace protestor buddies would come forward and tell the truth. The same fucking hypocrites won’t turn in a priest for child molesting, so of course they’re not gonna squeal on one for spitting on a veteran. But I felt it. And you saw it, God. So case close. Regardless of what that activist judge says.

Because even if that’s not what happened, and I just imagined it, like they’re saying. He still spit on me just by being there. Me and every man over there. Who was just doing what we were supposed to. It’s called duty. Maybe you’ve heard of it? Why isn’t that in the 10 commandments, heavenly father? Can you tell me that? How come they don’t got a big peace sign symbol you can wave in the air for duty or patriotism?

You don’t tell a soldier in wartime that peace is a higher priority than winning. If you never been to war, you don’t know the first thing about peace. Talk to me about what’s right and wrong after you had to kill a few enemy insurgents in defense of your country, then try to tell me what’s so great about peace. Those protestors oughta thank me, ‘cause if they had it their way, we’d all be worshiping Allah instead of the pope. And I’m not even catholic.

Seriously, this is what I risked my life for? I gave up a year of college — and part of my foot! — for this asshole priest? And Kev Roy and Marty gave up a hell of a lot more than that, because they never came back at all. And I’m supposed to sit still while this most-likely child molester tries to tell me they shouldn’t have been in the line of fire in the first place?

So, yeah, maybe I hit him. So what? I’m glad I did. And, yeah, I called him some things that are a sin. But if sayin’ a sin’s a sin, then fuck it. That’s one sin. You’re not gonna keep me outta heaven for that are you, Lord? Better fuckin’ not, is all I gotta say. ‘Cause I’ll tear some shit up if I get to Paradise and they don’t let me in because of some bullshit I did in the war.

Especially if I get there and find out you let that priest in ahead of me. If I see that bastard grinning at me through the Pearly Gates, then they’re coming off at the hinges. ‘Cause I don’t put up with that crap. I fought for my country. I’m not gonna burn in hell while some faggot gets his wings. You’re gonna have war protestors outside your gates if that’s how it works. Only they won’t be a bunch of peacenik hippy faggots. Because I’ll go down and get every so-called baby-killer and Abu Ghraib prison guard in hell to march around outside your front door, Lord. And then you’ll know how it feels.

Only now I think about it, I don’t know if we even want in, if the place is gonna be full of people who think peace is such a great idea. Hell is starting to sound better and better. I’d rather spend eternity burning with my brothers, than sucking cock with a bunch of child molesters and cowards who like harp music. If that’s all it gets me, then fuck you. I don’t apologize. Go ahead and try to burn me.

I swear to God that better not be what this cancer is, Lord. If you’re too much of a pussy to kill me in the war, and this is how you take me out now? If that’s what this is, Lord, then you’re a fuckin’ faggot. And I don’t care who that pisses off. Fuck you. I did what I had to do, and if you don’t see that, then you don’t deserve to be God.


Sorry for yelling.


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