It was quite a night in Heaven. The angels were busy. The cherubim and seraphim were fluttering around, batting their wings, in preparation for the big party.
Moses, the commanding officer, was barking orders at the kitchen staff.
“Did you remember the queso dip?” Moses asked a subordinate angel. “God gets ticked off if we forget the queso.”
“He does?” answered the angel, private first class.
“Oh yes,” said Moses. “Remember Sodom and Gomorrah? That was because God ran out of queso dip during a big game.”
“Yep. And do you remember Noah’s flood? That’s what happens when God runs out of Old Milwaukee.”
So the angels were on top of things. They were making sure all the trimmings for the big party were in place.
They made sure the Igloo coolers were stocked. They made sure the hors d’oeuvres were perfect. They got a deli tray from Publix.
The Beulah Reception Hall had never looked lovelier. There was a massive radio tuned to 650 AM, out of Nashville, Tennessee, so everyone could listen to the “Grand Ole Opry.”
Barbecue had been catered from A&R Barbecue in Memphis. Ice cream had been flown in from Dairy Queen. The worker angels had hauled in enough queso dip to sink the U.S.S. North Carolina.
“I don’t see why this party is such a big deal,” said one of the angels. “I didn’t know God listened to the ‘Grand Ole Opry.’”
“He does,” said Moses. “God invented country music.”
This party, however, wasn’t just a run-of-the-mill soiree. God was throwing this particular party for one of His best friends. His friend’s name was John.”
“John must be very important for God to throw a party for him,” said the angel.
“He is. God loves him very much.”
“How did John die?”
Moses got quiet. “Does it matter?”
Soon, the party was underway. Guests started arriving. Within moments, the reception hall was full of people milling around, laughing, and eating from a chocolate fondue fountain roughly the size of Detroit.
Party goers were getting rowdy and out of control. One lieutenant angel was wearing a lampshade on his head and trying to sing “My Way” into an empty Dos Equis bottle.
“He’ll be a private by morning,” Moses pointed out.
Over in the corner, God was with his entourage, hanging out. His right hand men and women were people you would have never expected on Earth.
None of God’s besties were preachers, politicians, former U.S. presidents, or major historical figures. God’s closest friends were homeless guys with meth habits, drunks, those who died from overdoses, ex-prostitutes, people with mental illnesses. And lots of suicides.
And then the guest of honor arrived.
He was a tall man. Slender and lean. He had a bushy red beard. He was wearing khakis. He walked into the hall and looked confused.
“There he is,” said one of the angels. “That’s John, God’s best friend.”
God started the standing ovation.
The applause spread throughout the room. The whole place followed suit and stood for the red-bearded man. And everyone clapped so hard they almost broke their wrists. John blushed because redheads blush easily.
“What’s all this about?” said John.
“It’s your son,” exclaimed one angel. “Your son, down on Earth, something great has happened.”
“Your son’s on the ‘Grand Ole Opry’ tonight!” said the angel.
“My son?” said John. “You’re kidding.”
“Yes. I mean, no. I’m not kidding.”
“MY son?” John was crying now.
“Yes,” said the angels. “Your son is performing on the ‘Grand Ole Opry!’ Can you believe it?”
Then, the Big Guy himself whisked his best friend away into the corner. They sipped beverages and ate queso. Together they watched John’s son perform on the Opry stage. And when John wept because his little boy sang one of his all-time favorite songs, God held his best friend tightly and let John cry into his bosom.
Oh yes, it will be quite an evening in Heaven. And don’t let anyone tell you suicides don’t go to Heaven.
Tim - March 22, 2023 11:53 am
This would be a good storyline for one of those, that’ll be the day(time) “Soap Opry” shows on the television.
Just envision the ratings from all the Publix employees alone.
I’d tune in.
Sylvia - March 22, 2023 2:36 pm
. . . and, now, I have tears, too. I’m sure he’s proud of you, Sean!
Kathryn Baldwin - March 22, 2023 6:38 pm
I’ll be listening. Your Dad is so proud of you.
My Dad is in Heaven.
Lynne - March 22, 2023 9:28 pm
Love this. I know your dad is proud. I am too. Just ordered 2 more of your books off Amazon. I’m addicted. Please keep writing.
Peggy Alexander - March 23, 2023 3:41 am
Heaven WILL NOT BE LIKE THAT!!Brookhavenavonladyathotmail.com
Phil - March 24, 2023 7:05 pm
Congrats Sean! The Opry is such a grand ol’ place, you dont realize it untill you have seen it. At the end of the show your daddy I am sure gave you a standing ovation!
We are proud of you !!
Your big fans
Phil & Beth (nicknamed Birdie) Phillips