Wednesday, April 05, 2017

As a disabled man in constant pain I still disagree with my RE teacher about euthanasia

I write this post whilst in agonising physical pain. Last night, I prayed that for God to help me finish the Imager Bearers discipleship program I'm writing, so that he might possibly let me die having left behind something of use to others. I write this just to let you know that I understand what its like to be disabled, in great pain, and desiring to die.

Last year the paralympian Marieke Vervoort who is in almost constant pain said she wanted to end her life. It reminded me of my own struggle, but also of Religious Education lesson discussions in school years ago. My RE teacher and most of the class would tell me I was wrong for disagreeing with euthanasia, they explained to me that its not fair for people to go on in so much pain. Years later, having spent many years in constant pain, and having prayed for God to take me from this earth, I still disagree with them, and here's why.

1. The onus should be on people around the hurting to bring them comfort. 

I remember watching a comedy sketch where a motorcyclist was injured, and a man came up to him, and said, 'Don't worry, I'll save you.' and then broke his neck, as though putting a suffering bird out of its misery. This is how I feel society's response to physical suffering is. 'Don't worry Duncan, you can go to a special clinic and be killed, and end your suffering.' 
How about if instead, society said, 'We will endeavour to bring you as much comfort as possible during your suffering.' 
This is what Jesus did with us. Rather than kill us because of our miserable sinful condition, he came and entered our suffering, and comforted us, at great sacrifice to himself.

2. Its not my choice when I die. 

That's up to God. He's wiser than me, knows more than me. I trust him that he has a better plan than I could ever think up.
I remember a movie about a husband and wife stranded in the Grand Canyon. The husband couldn't move, and wolves were about to attack them, so the wife killed him as a mercy killing. Right after he died, a helicopter arrived to save them. Same way, we might think all is lost, its time to die, when in fact God has some kind of rescue just around the corner.

Sorry for the terseness of this post. Written whilst in extreme physical pain! I figure its more effective to send it out like this, than to smoothen it out later.