I caught the saddest story on the news today. A British man was freed after killing his wife in Cyprus. His defense was that death was his wife’s wish while battling cancer.
I don’t know the details. I will leave that to others. This post isn’t to debate details or justice. Just to remind us of true things.
The saddest commentary was this from Mary Ann Marsh, in response to a conversation about the helplessness you feel when a loved one is in pain.
You should never have been put in that situation. That is what the government is for. There is a growing movement…around the world whether it is medical marijuana, psychedelics…
Anything that can help people confront their mortality and the fear of dying. No one should have to help a loved one end their life. There should be rules and regulations so people can decide to do it in a process.
If that’s what they want to do, so be it. But if someone wants to end their life on their own terms, in many ways, given an illness, that is true love.
But this is the way of the world. If you are in Christ, there is no fear in death. Which does not mean there will be no pain. Or grief. In life and death, there will be both. But the context here was using drugs to numb the mind, to free it from fear, “…when confronting mortality and the fear of dying.”
And to a lost world it sounds like compassion. Death can be so frightening to those who do not know where their eternity will be spent or what their last breath will bring. It can be a fear so crippling that any “escape” from processing the reality of it is welcomed. I get it. Our family has experienced loss. My dad is a hospice chaplain. My husband is a pastor. We know death. We know suffering.
To the world taking a life in pain is “true love.” I can see that. I can understand how one would make that case. But I can’t understand how that case can be made while claiming to first love God with all your heart, mind, and strength. This is loving man more. This is loving spouse more. This is loving God less. Friend, there is no truly loving others apart from truly loving and obeying God. It will always be an inadequate version.
To the world, this is logical, this is kind. But is it acknowledging God as Creator, Ruler, Father, Giver, and Judge of ALL? Is it recognizing GOD ALONE as the authority over life and death? Or is it retaining that authority for ourselves and administering it to others as we see fit? Or even as they see fit?
God not only has authority over life and death, but He also has FULL KNOWLEGE of when and in what manner. He knows every moment, of every minute—not just the day, but the way in which we are born and will die. He is not in Heaven hoping we pass more compassionate euthanasia laws to ease suffering or formulate different drugs to eliminate fear. He is both in Heaven AND near to the brokenhearted, offering His grace, peace, and sufficiency in suffering. Yes, even in death.
He sent His Son to show us that even in death we can obey. I can’t even imagine what Christ endured for my sake. I can relate to His burden in zero ways.
But I do understand not wanting to die and knowing you will. And likely soon. I understand having a number put on your days and it not being a big one. I once faced having to choose between living in disobedience or dying in obedience. I do know that agony. I am telling you there was no comfort to be found in outcomes, all were catastrophic. There was no drug or intervention that made both life and obedience possible. There was no way to choose both my will and HIS. Or I would have.
There was no peace apart from what was found on my face before Him and in Him.
There was only faith and I either had it or I didn’t. There was only trust and I either did or I didn’t. I wrestled with both for sure. Someday I will tell you that story.
After walking through every scenario and weighing every option, where could I go but Him? HE IS LIFE. Or He isn’t. HE HOLDS ETERNITY. Or He doesn’t.
AND HE IS. AND HE DOES.
Believer, your God has overcome life, death, and the grave. He is our help. He does not need our help.
Are you in right relationship with God? Do not fear judgment. Do not fear tomorrow. Do not fear for your family.
If we live at all, death is the “situation we are all put in.”
This is what Christ is for.