I was watching King of Queens the other night when I got the idea for this post. I didn't catch the first part of it, but what I saw was hilarious and insightful at the same time. Doug and Carrie had given a $500 donation to the local library and were supposed to have their name on a plaque under the "patron category", but instead, they were listed under the"friend" category indicating a donation of only $50. This is where it got interesting. Carrie wanted the mistake to be corrected and Doug felt that was wrong because it would have indicated that they gave the money with wrong motives. When they consulted their local Catholic priest about the situation, he told them they should let it go.
But Carrie didn't want to let it go. Instead, she hung out at the library and, while Doug was reading stories to the children, she was trying to persuade a young child to talk to the official in charge to correct the mistake. Doug chided her saying that she was bound for hell. Carrie, on the other hand, did not see what was wrong with wanting a little credit for a good deed. Although it was never stated on the program, the reference to the teaching of Jesus on the sermon on the mount about not doing good deeds to be seen by men was unmistakeable. This, to me, serves as further confirmation that the human conscience naturally agrees with the teachings of Jesus. We don't think of Jesus as a moral teacher often, because we emphasize His role as the Savior. But Jesus is the perfect moral teacher and I am certain that He would have told Carrie to let it go.
But what about the question of heaven and hell? Doug and Carrie were both concerned that their hearts were not right and that they might be on the path to everlasting flames. Putting the question of the literal nature of hell's flames aside, I asked myself, "Would someone like Carrie Heffernan really enjoy heaven?" Heaven is a place where God is supreme and all who are there want Him to be the supreme focus of their lives. It would seem to me that heaven would be hell for a person like Carrie Heffernan who is constantly focused on herself. When it comes down to it, heaven and hell are the natural consequences of our heart's desires. God will not force heaven or hell on anyone. But He will give us our heart's desires. The problem is that few realize the implications of where their hearts are leading them. Every person is either moving to God or away from God. As for me and my house, I choose to move to God. Knowing that He loved me first despite my sins and failures, why wouldn't I choose Him? I invite my readers to contemplate the same question.