Author Unknown

THE FINAL INSPECTION

The Sailor stood and faced his God
Which must always come to pass
He hopes his shoes were shining
just as brightly as his brass

“Step forward now, you sailor
How shall I deal with you?
Have you always turned the other cheek?
To my Church have you been true?”

The sailor squared his shoulders and said,
“No Lord, I guess I ain’t
Because those of us who carry guns
Can’t always be a saint.

“I’ve had to work most Sundays
and at times my talk was tough,
and sometimes I’ve been violent
because the world is awfully rough.

“But I never took a penny
That wasn’t mine to keep.
Though I worked a lot of overtime
when the bills just got too steep.

“And I never passed a cry for help
though at times I shook with fear,
and sometimes, God… forgive me,
I have wept unmanly tears.

I know I don’t deserve a place
among the people here;
They never wanted me around
except to calm their fears.

If you’ve a place for me here, Lord
It needn’t be so grand
I never expected or had too much,
But if you don’t, I’ll understand.

There was silence all around the throne
Where the Saints quite often tread
As the Sailor waited quietly
For the judgment of his God.

“Step forward now, you Sailor,
You’ve borne your burdens well
Walk peacefully on Heavens streets;
You’ve done your time in Hell.”