Many have spilled their share of ink in reflecting on the tragedy of Terri Schiavo's death. I, also, have the desire to vent at the injustice of court-ordered murder of the innocent, but I have intentionally waited for inspiration to write something that is in keeping with my calling.
I found it. An on-line article written by John Zmirak, a Terri Schiavo supporter, made my blood boil. I had to respond, because his point of view, although beautifully written, is at the heart of everything that's wrong with our church today. He begins with the following header:
We like to think that we’re better than the man who’s starving his sick wife to death. But think back to Palm Sunday. What part of “Crucify him!” didn’t you understand?
He goes on to say that he would likely choose to do the same as Michael, and implies that all honest readers would as well. "In our heart of hearts, don't we prefer Barabbas to Jesus, Michael Schiavo to Terri?"
My response? No! A thousand times, No! We are better men than Michael Schiavo, and to say otherwise is a slap in the face of Christ Himself. As a Christian man, I bear in my body the Holy Spirit of God. I followed Him in the long walk toward the cross, my own Gethsemane trail, and have been crucified with Him and rasied to new life.
Yes, there was a day when I would have shouted with the crowds, "Crucify Him!" but those days are in the past. I am not the man I once was. That man has died, and a new one has come to life, one that renounces the sins of the past and lives a holy life in the power of the indwelling Spirit of God.
Mr. Zmirak's thinking is a symptom of a greater tragedy; the church of today lacks understanding of the gospel's effect on the hearts of men. We are transformed by that gospel. As did Christ, we live sacrificial lives. Since we said, "I do" at the wedding altar, we keep that vow till death do us part, never seeking the comfort of another, even if our own is lying in sheets of ruin with bent frame and shattered consciousness. And we certainly would not seek to torture her to death in the most cruel fashion. Such a thought is beyond absurd!
Mr. Zmirak, you are wrong. True Christian men are better men than the selfish monsters you portray, and your implications that we are otherwise, are offensive to us and to the God who lives within us. Jesus was a better man than that, and since I imitate Him, so am I.