This is one of my absolute favorite Pixar short films:
Maybe I’m stretching it a bit, but it kind of reminds me of this passage from Romans (5:3-5):
we even boast of our afflictions, knowing that affliction produces endurance, and endurance, proven character, and proven character, hope, and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out into our hearts through the holy Spirit that has been given to us.
When circumstances beyond our control alter our lives in a pretty devastating way (disability, disease, terminal illness, etc…) we tend to get so caught up in what is taken away from us that we almost completely lose sight of what is still good and possible. Like the lamb in the story above, we become naked, vulnerable, and begin to question our own personal dignity. What’s worse, these feelings are supported by a cultural movement to eliminate this kind of suffering by eliminating the suffering individual altogether. A movement quickly making its way, not just through progressive countries in Europe, but in some states here in America as well. Things are so bad that American assisted suicide pioneer and convicted murderer Jack Kevorkian can admit to a second murder on national television and hardly anyone blinks an eye because, well, it’s what the patient wanted, after all.
Here’s a thought: instead of affirming people in their misery, how about encouraging them, like Mr. Jackalope here, to re”bound” from feeling so hopeless and showing them what they still have to live for. Whether we find ourselves terminally ill, permanently disabled, or facing some other permanent or transitory hardship there is still some joy to be found amid the struggle. Not only that, but facing our fears and accepting and overcoming life’s hardships will shape our character and strengthen us as persons. And then there’s this:
Suffering is a great teacher. It reminds us that we are creatures and totally dependent on God. It teaches us humility and self denial so that the power of Christ may more easily dwell in us (2 Corinth 12:9-10). And that is always worth “boasting” and “bounding” about!
Now in this world of ups and downs…
So nice to know there are jackalopes around.
Yes – and we need more “jackalopes”! Be a Jackalope for others who suffer!