If recent events in Memphis are any indication, there may be more to the old saw about "God" being "dog" spelled backwards than just a peculiar misspelling. In a front-page story first reported by The Commercial Appeal on April 26, God's existence was finally proven beyond a doubt.
The headline reads, "God put us there at the right time": Firemen rescue tot from dogs. Firefighters Robert Mathis and Lloyd Delaney just happened to be driving past the home of Delandos Cotton in time to see Cotton's three rotwielers mauling a 2-year old boy, Cotton's great-grandson. Mathis and Delaney hosed the dogs down, driving them away. The boy, although injured survived the attack. The two heroes were quick to give the credit to God, explaining that God planned for them to be outside the Cotton home just in time to save the boy. "It's just a miracle we saw the child," reasoned Delaney.
The clouds were seen to part above the streets of Memphis at the exact moment that the firefighters turned on their high-pressure hose, and a beam of sunlight hit the benificent face of Mathis. At the same moment, Mayor W. W. Herenton reported a personal vision of a burning bush in the middle of the new ballpark downtown and visitors to Graceland witnessed the return of Elvis with angel's wings and a halo singing "Ain't Nothin' But a Hound Dog". The Pope instantly recognized the miracle and waved the normal rules, making Mathis and Delaney instant saints.
Two Satanists who were walking down the sidewalk across from Cotton's home, devising wicked plots to spread the shadow of evil across the Mid-South, saw the action of the firefighters and instantly repented. They dropped to their knees, prayed for forgiveness, and ran to the nearest Southern Baptist church to sign up for membership.
Yolanda Smith, president of the Memphis Atheist Conspiracy, quickly conceded that the rescue of the boy was absolute proof of God's existence. "We had a meeting," she explained, "and we just couldn't think of any other explanation. We've been through all the philosophical proofs against God, but none of them stood up to the weight of evidence of a divine intervention. At first, some of us tried to argue that firemen just happened to be driving by and did what they had been trained to do, but of course that's a ridiculous argument. No, it has to be a miracle. We've all dedicated our lives to Jesus now, praise the Lord!"
An emergency meeting of the Memphis Ecumenical Council of Holier Than Thou Churches (Also known as MECHT3) debated the meaning of the miracle late into the evening. "It proves that dogs are equal to young boys under the eyes of God," declared Father K.L. Mockingbird of the Catholic Franciscan order. The Southern Baptists disagreed, arguing that the boy's rescue was a message from God that all homosexuals are lower than dogs, that the Confederacy was a holy republic, that Disney is an evil empire, and that all non-believers must be burned at the stake.
The debate was stopped just before dinnertime as the Unitarian Minister W.L. Uneverknow raised some profound theological questions related to additional information about the miracle that had just come to light. "It comes to my attention that the reason the boy was attacked was that his great-grandfather forgot to put the dogs away safely for the night. Was this part of God's plan? Records also show that the three dogs had been impounded at least once before. The great-grandfather should have known that the dogs were dangerous. Why didn't God either make the dogs nicer to begin with or give Mr. Cotton enough brains to train them not to attack his great-grandson? Furthermore, if God was powerful enough to bring the firefighters to save the boy, why didn't He bring them 5 minutes earlier so that they could have prevented the boy from being injured at all? Did God enjoy watching the attack? Finally, it comes to our attention that Mr. Cotton intends to keep these dogs on his property again when they are released to him in 10 days. Is it part of God's plan to repeat the attack of the dogs on the boy so that we can have another miracle?"
After 10 minutes of awkward silence, MECHT3 passed a resolution stating, "Gosh, we hadn't thought about that." A few members even questioned whether the event had anything to do with God at all.
It was at this point that the Right Reverend A.W. Shucks of the First Missionary Baptist Church of the Junior High School Education offered a solution. "It's as clear as day," proclaimed Shucks. "The Good Lord, in His wisdom, saw fit to mutilate a little boy so that we could have this meeting to learn more about His goodness and understand how futile it is to try to understand His Will. We now all know that we must submit to His Hisdom in complete faith without bothering to think for ourselves. God works in mysterious ways, and we thank God that He does. It's a miracle!"
MECHT3 closed their meeting with a final resolution stating, "Never mind what we said before. Amen."
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