...or, at least, that's what some well-meaning (let's give them the benefit of the doubt, eh?) but completely unknown person in Charlottesville, VA wishes would happen.
You see, I came home from a hard morning of translating Biblical Hebrew (the irony!) to find this envelope in my mailbox
So I thought to myself: "Hey. I wonder who I know in Virginia who has the handwriting of a kindergartener or an 86-year-old with some kind of neurological disease?" I was, I fear, forever to be left in suspense, because the envelope contained no personal message and no identifying information of any kind. Just a copy of the following pamphlet (read at the peril of your sanity):
My Best Friend!
There's nothing in there of interest, and it's not really worth my time to try to pick apart. Just an example of the kind of logic that would only be compelling to someone already convinced. If you already think that you're condemned to damnation for one reason or another, then of course it makes sense to save yourself all that grief and aggravation by just saying "yeah! me too!" But chances are if you're already convinced of hellfire, you've also got the Jesus. They're a package deal, like the mafia.
Anyway, what I really can't figure out is: who in the world do I know in Virginia? The address they used is really the kicker, because it's wrong. If this fellow found me through my website (via my profile, via this blog), then they have no excuse for getting my address only partially right, because it's there as clear as day. But if they didn't find me through the interwubs, then the only thing I can think of is that they know me personally. I've got some family in West Virginia, and I think a few outliers in the Carolinas...but nobody in Charlottesville that I know of. I still haven't ruled out the possibility that Aaron sent it to me as a prank -- but I've yet to figure out how he could have gotten the VA postmark. He's sneaky, but not that sneaky.
In any case.
I ended up browsing the website of the publishing company for a while after finding the digital copy of the tract (I didn't feel like hooking up my scanner), and I made an interesting discovery. Apparently, it's part of their mission statement that they will send as many pamphlets as you would care to request free of charge in order to help spread the word of Jeezus.
Which got me thinking. I wonder how they make ends meet? They also have a donation page, of course, but I'm sure they don't have a 1:1 ratio of cash in/out. Chances are, they're breaking even at best, and probably losing money, which it seems they're willing to do as long as those pamphlets end up in the hands of real sinners, as opposed to, say, the bottom of sinners' rabbit cages, or the local recycling center. Imagine how terrible it would be if they received a whole bunch of orders for pamphlets which got used for confetti instead of evangelism. They might go out of business if it happened in enough volume -- and then nobody would ever feel the true joy of finding Jeezus in a pamphlet! I certainly hope none of my readers decides to order a bunch of pamphlets off of this convenient order form.