(A special post in honor of people vacationing over the Independence Day holiday weekend.)
A man in Topeka, Kansas decided to write a book about churches around the country. He started by flying to San Francisco and started working east from there. He went to a very large church and began taking photographs, etc. He spotted a golden telephone on a wall and was intrigued with a sign on it, which read, "$10,000 a minute."
Seeking out the pastor, he asked about the phone and the sign. The pastor answered that this golden phone is, in fact, a direct line to Heaven and if he paid the price he could talk directly to God. He thanked the pastor and continued on his way.
As he continued to visit churches in Seattle, Austin, Minneapolis, Chicago, Milwaukee, Detroit and he found more phones with the same sign and the same answer from each pastor.
Finally, he arrived in northern Michigan. Upon entering a church in Central Lake, Michigan, behold, he saw the usual golden telephone. But THIS time, the sign read, "Calls: 25 cents". Fascinated, he requested to talk to the pastor.
"Reverend, I have been in cities all across the country and in each church I found this golden telephone and have been told it is a direct line to Heaven and that I could talk to God. But, in the other churches the cost was $10,000 a minute. Your sign reads 25 cents a call. Why?"
The pastor, smiling benignly, replied, "Son, you're in northern Michigan now and it's a local call."
Image source: Michigan Metal Artwork