Sunday, May 22, 2011

Big Picture

I cannot see the big picture.

I was watching another episode of House. In this episode, there was a patient who needed a kidney. Her girlfriend happened to be a match. Dr. Cameron, somehow, found out that the sick patient was planning to leave the girlfriend. Dr. Cameron spent most of the episode trying to convince the patient that she shouldn't accept a donation from the girlfriend she was planning to break up with.

Dr. Cameron often has morale issues on the show, but no one else on the team ever seems to care. In this particular episode, House was adamant that Cameron not tell the donor that she's donating a kidney to a partner who doesn't love her. House reasoned that their job is to keep their patient alive. If they didn't get the donation the patient would die. Cameron's argument was that the girlfriend deserved to know the whole truth prior to putting her life on the line.

I spent the episode sided with Cameron (as always). If the donor's motives were selfless, she would do it regardless. If not, then she really shouldn't be donating an organ anyway...

At the end of the episode, Dr. Cameron was sitting with the organ donor. The donor tells Dr. Cameron that she knows her girlfriend was thinking of leaving her. Surprised, Cameron said, "you donated your kidney anyway?" And the donor replies, "Now she'll never leave."

Her response threw me for a whirl. But it also reiterated to me one aspect of the Zen stuff I've been reading over the last year. Part of it says that we shouldn't judge anything as good or bad, right or wrong, positive or negative, because we can't see the future. We don't know how the whole story will play out, so we have no way of knowing whether a situation will have a positive or negative impact on our lives.

And like often happens, this Buddhist lesson perfectly complements Biblical truth. We cannot judge, because we are not omnipotent. Only God can see from A to Z and for us to prematurely judge something (or someone) good, bad, positive, negative, whatever, could potentially interrupt God's plan.

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