Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Disconcerting Movie Theme

Warning:  Indirect, implied spoilers included in this post.

Last week, I watched Me Before You.  It was interesting.  The acting and filming were well done and drew me into the movie.  Afterwards, I looked up the sequel to the book that was turned into this movie and read a review with spoilers.  

Sometimes I watch movies to help me understand what our culture believes about right and wrong, what our culture values.  Me Before You is one of those movies.  

God cares about life.  He cares about our lives.  

Psalm 139:13  ESV

For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb.

Exodus 20:13  ESV
You shall not murder.

Me Before You is a movie ultimately about euthanasia and God is absent.  

Well, not really.  God is always there--even when people think He isn't.  But, the characters in this movie never mention God.  One character only says that life isn't what he wants and he enjoyed his life before, so it isn't worth living.  

I think most people could say at some point, or even all the way along that life isn't what they/we wanted.  But, I believe and trust that it is what God knows is best for us.  Sometimes that's hard.  Really hard.  And sometimes it really isn't what I want.  But, in the end, it is comforting that God is in control and not me.  

Romans 8:28 is one of the most comforting verses to me.  

Romans 8:28English Standard Version (ESV)

28 And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.
And Psalm 112:6-8a (ESV)
For the righteous will never be moved;
    he will be remembered forever.
He is not afraid of bad news;
    his heart is firm, trusting in the Lord.
His heart is steady; he will not be afraid,
Time after time I have learned later that what I wanted wasn't good for me--like the boy I dated before my husband who I later learned was someone I really wouldn't have wanted to marry.  But, at the time, I thought I loved him.  Lessons learned.  
Me Before You could be used as an example of such lessons.  The main character could have seen that he never would have even acknowledged the young woman he became enamored of in his previous life.  I think I remember that he did see this actually--yet it didn't overcome his overall feelings about the futility of his life as it was.
It was interesting to me to read about the plot for the sequel to this story.  It left me feeling "Blech." The futility of life and the unhappiness left me feeling a bit lost.  And then I came back to the realization that for these characters, God was not a part of the pictures.   But, he is for me, which is where my hope comes from.
This past weekend my husband and I went to NYC.  As we were eating dinner, I shared with him that I had come to feel that life is always hard.  This is rather ironic because I am always that half full person in my marriage and he is the half empty person.  He didn't agree with me, but rather felt that some times are harder than others.  I had felt this way until recently when I just felt like life wouldn't let up.  Every time I try to get a breath, I get pulled back down.  
But, the next morning, as I was eating delicious french toast at Sarabeth's in Tribeca, I realized that I could make what I was eating--it would only take a good loaf of bread.  And just like that, my cup was half full again.  It happened without me realizing it.  That's the thing about our hearts--often things happen when we don't realize it.
This morning as my husband got a late start (and so did my kids), I resolved to take a moment to fix breakfast for myself.  I pulled out the bag of frozen cornflake crumbs I had fixed for my fake fried ice cream a few weeks ago, the baguette I bought on Monday, and other French Toast makings.  In the next few minutes, I made myself cinnamon cornflake encrusted french toast with sliced bananas and maple syrup.  I shared a piece with each of my children, who immediately requested it for tomorrow morning's breakfast, and then asked them fro 10 uninterrupted minutes to eat my breakfast.  
Then, I sat and ate.  It was good.  Really good.  As good as the French Toast from Busick Court in Salem, Oregon, that I have longed to have again for twenty plus years since I graduated from college.  I expected an epiphany to come.  It didn't.  But, I was calm and enjoyed my breakfast quiet.  
Then, I got up and within five minutes my son had stubbed his toe on the fireplace and was wailing, needing tending and fixing (my son, not the fireplace).  
This is life.  A series of many, many choices that reflect our hearts.  As a friend said to me this morning, our actions reflect what well we're drawing from.  How we look at our own lives and the value of life also reflects that.


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