Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God. (2 Corinthians 1:3&4)

A Tragic and Wasted Life
by John Hinton (written in August 2006)

Copper, my therapy dog, and I went into a nursing home a few days ago and met a young man named Shawn in a wheelchair. He is quadriplegic, missing both legs, is unable to use either arm, and must operate his wheelchair through a straw. I asked him if he was the victim of a car accident. He told me that ten years ago while on drugs, he had placed a gun in his mouth and pulled the trigger thinking that the gun was unloaded. He survived, but his life was seemingly destroyed, or so most would think. Copper and I walked about the building with him and talked about therapy dog training, his solo trips into the nearby and neighboring town, and topics relating to his condition. I told him about a young woman that Copper and I see every week in another nursing home who was paralyzed from the neck down, and could not talk.

Unlike Shawn, Rhonda can only communicate with her eyes. Copper’s visits appear to be the highlights of her weeks, but our conversations can only be one way. Shawn, who is very articulate, smiled and said that as bad off as he is physically, he knows that there are many much worse off, and those are his words, not mine. It was at this time that I asked him if he had a relationship with Jesus. He smiled again and said that if he did not he would have no life at all. To be sure of what he was telling me, I asked him if he had accepted Christ as his lord and Saviour. He confirmed that he had and that it was the best thing that he had ever done. Shawn’s life will never be the same due to a confused moment of sorrow and hopelessness in his youth that caused him to make one the greatest mistakes that anyone could imagine making, and there is no possibility of being physically whole again, but he is infinitely better off than he would have been if that bullet had taken his life. The odds of surviving such a shot are so minute, but God kept him alive. If he had died at that moment he would have died lost and damned. When Shawn’s life does come to an end, he will be made whole again and be welcomed in heaven by our Lord. Shawn will not walk again, but with the help of the Lord, he has not given up when so many give up with problems that are so very trivial in comparison. He cannot turn the pages of a book, but with help he listens to the Bible on tape. He cannot walk, but he rides his wheelchair into town. He does not complain about his life when so many complain about the most petty of affairs.

What a contrast there is between this gentleman and Hollywood’s quadriplegic “hero” Christopher Reeve. Reeve starred in four Superman movies in which the superhero was described as a god, the savior of the world, and similar epitaphs. Throughout the movies, anti-Christian allusions were made, and Nietzchean ideas of man as übermensch were slipped in. The not so subtle message of all of these movies was that man did not need God, and that God does not exist. Shortly before Reeve had his crippling accident I watched a film about the creation of the universe from an evolutionary perspective. Atheist physicists like Stephen Hawking were portrayed as great men of science, and evolution was presented as the only viable option to explain the origin of the universe. At one point in the film Reeve, with a grin on his face, makes the statement that it is no longer necessary to posit the existence of God to explain the origin of the universe, because scientists “have proven” that there is no need for God.

I am not saying that God laid him in a wheelchair on account of that statement, but his accident did occur shortly after this film. Throughout the years that Reeve was in his wheelchair he never repented. Instead he continued to express faith that science will heal him, and that he would walk again. He even promoted the murder of unborn babies out of a selfish concern for his own problem. Instead of putting his faith in the God that he had denied, and in whose face he had repeatedly spat, he continued to worship his god of false science. Not only did he die in his wheelchair, but he died lost and undoubtedly went to hell. His god did nothing but fill his life with false hope.

Reeve’s life was tragic and wasted, but not because of his crippled condition, but because of his crippled soul. Shawn, whose life appears to have had none of the glamour and wealth that Reeves had before being crippled, is nowhere near as tragic, and is not wasted at all, because his soul is anything but crippled.

I spoke to Shawn again today. He is working toward a GED so that he can go to college and get a degree in motivational speaking so that he can speak to young people about Christ and give them encouragement. I ask all who read this testimony to please pray for Shawn in Piketon, Ohio and Rhonda in Chillicothe, Ohio.

John Hinton, Ph.D.
Bible Restoration Ministry
A ministry seeking the translating and reprinting of KJV equivalent
Bibles in all the languages of the world.