**This is my first entry on Nine Moons and I just wanted to thank Rusty for inviting me over. I confess I feel a little unsettled out of the “safe zone” of my own blog and room of regulars. It reminds me of when I was on the drama team in high school and I brought a Woody Allen humorous reading to state competition. I killed when I performed for my own team, but when we went to finals at BYU– judged by BYU drama students– you could hear the cicadas across campus. I hope my thoughts here will find some resonance and touch on things relatable. Thanks.
It’s only too evident that my faith is far from what it should be.
Saw Million Dollar Baby again last night (that final half-hour is brutal) and my reaction was the same as before: I saw myself doing for Hillary Swank exactly what Clint did at the end. Turn off the machine, give her the injection. Send her on her journey. Put in the same position, I would have begged her not to ask it of me. I would have prayed, talked to my bishop, pleaded with my Lord. I would have given the woman a blessing– a battery of blessings. Then, when put to the test– when all efforts resulted in no results and it was apparent my beloved was destined to a long, drawn-out existence of paralysis, machine-assisted breathing, pustulent sores, persistent reminders of amputed limbs and endless days of misery– I’d drop the curtain on her.
I think I interpret the Church’s position correctly, that it agrees with me. But for those who’d immediately respond with “You’ll be held accountable for her murder,” I would fire back, “How’s the view from the cheap seats, bud? Seriously.” I’m not entirely convinced that, in such situations, the Lord expects us to sit by and wait for Him to do His will, and I think if those who disagree with me found themselves in precisely that same scenario, more than a few of would change their minds. “But there’s a reason the Lord is allowing them to linger in their pain. It’s a test for them, and their loved ones.” I agree, but what’s the test? Is it for them to learn patience in their afflictions, or is it for us to learn mercy by relieving them from their perpetual and inescapable hell? What more could they possibly gain from their mortal journey?
In truth, I’m torn. I would not fare well with this test. Either decision would haunt me, even if I almost convinced myself it was the right thing to do.
And now for a little Johnny Cash. See how many faces you recognize.