“What majestic trees!”
“What powerful rivers!”
“What beautiful animals!”
As he was walking alongside the river, he heard a rustling in the bushes behind him and he turned to look. He saw a 7-foot grizzly bear charging towards him.
He ran as fast as he could up the path. He looked over his shoulder and saw that the bear was closing in on him.
He looked over his shoulder again, and the bear was even closer. He tripped and fell to the ground. He rolled over to pick himself up but saw that the bear was right on top of him, reaching for him with his left paw and raising his right paw to strike him.
At that instant the Atheist cried out, “Oh God!”
Time stopped. The bear froze. The forest was silent.
As a bright light shone upon the man, a voice came out of the sky.
“You deny my existence for all these years, teach others I don’t exist, and even credit creation to cosmic accident. Do you expect me to help you out of this predicament? Am I to count you as a believer?”
The atheist looked directly into the light and said,
“It would be hypocritical of me to suddenly ask you to treat me as a Christian now, but perhaps you could make the bear a Christian?”
“Very well,” said the voice.
The light went out. The sounds of the forest resumed. And the bear dropped his right paw, brought both paws together, bowed his head and said:
“Lord bless this food, which I am about to receive from thy bounty. Amen.”