Good old John Doe #83. He?s the envy of every man.
Not only can he get inside a woman?s head, he can actually make her see things she believes to be reality.
?Yep, honey, I re-tiled the bathroom floor yesterday. You hadn?t noticed??
?Happy birthday, honey! I hope you like your ring. Yes, that is a diamond; two carats. And those little guys on the side? Emeralds. Well, nothing?s too good for my sweetheart!?
?Funny you should say that; no one?s ever told me I look just like Brad Pitt.?
Of course, there are the suicidal tendencies that apparently come along with latent psychic abilities, but what?s a little potential death when you could be able to convince her that her mother doesn?t need to drop in for a visit because she?s already living in the guest room at the end of the hall? But here?s hoping you?re able to pull off those sorts of illusions??cause JD can?t. In fact, anytime he trips through woman?s mind, he leaves a nasty trail of visions that drum up fear, violence and death. But still?that mother-in-law thing might be worth it.
Long before he was playing heavies in films like Argo and Donnie Brasco and shows like Oz, 24 and Heroes, Zeljko Ivanek was busy trying to contain telepathic powers that nearly drown his psychotherapist in rats.? Yep, just another day at the office for Dr. Gail Farmer (Katherine Harold) in the eerie suspense thriller, The Sender.
Things kick off with a good old-fashioned suicide attempt when Ivanek loads his pockets with rocks and casually walks past the recreational park swimmers to drown himself in a lake.? After being rescued by the cops, he’s shipped off to a mental hospital where’s he’s quickly labeled as John Doe 83 thanks to his lack of ID and apparent memory loss.
When Dr. Farmer tries to get the skinny on his background, he reveals he has no father–and never had one.? And much like his? miracle baby contemporary, Anakin Skywalker, when he gets upset, bad things happen.
Each time he’s frightened or threatened, his anxiety manifests as mind-altering illusions in the people around him–with the goodhearted Dr. Farmer often bearing the brunt of his outbursts.
Farmer meets with John’s mother, Jocelyn (Shirley Knight), who warns her that interaction with him will only lead to danger.? According to one of? Gail’s s colleagues, babies have the ability to silently, almost psychically communicate with their mothers for a few months after birth, “sending” them unspoken messages.? But the weird relationship between John and Jocelyn may break the research curve, because apparently he never lost the ability to send, even when a jaw-dropping twist is revealed…
Dr. Farmer is the only person who seems to determined to stick by John, come what may (even if that what is shattering, bleeding mirrors that return to normal in the blink of an eye).? She advocates for him when everyone else tries to write him off or shut him up.? And it’s not always easy, considering that just about every time she’s around him she nearly dies or goes insane.
It’s a hard road to love the unlovable, but it’s the path we must walk if we call ourselves believers. In 2 Timothy 2: 23-26, we are commanded to “Have nothing to do with foolish, ignorant controversies; you know that they breed quarrels. And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil, correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, after being captured by him to do his will.”
And in the second chapter of his Gospel, Luke reminds us of Jesus’s words on the? Herculean task of showing love to our least favorite people.? “But I say to you who hear, Love your enemies,” Jesus says, and “do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you. To one who strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also, and from one who takes away your cloak do not withhold your tunic either. Give to everyone who begs from you, and from one who takes away your goods do not demand them back. And as you wish that others would do to you, do so to them (Luke 6:27-36).”
It’s up to us to love these folks, the ones who sometimes seem the most undeserving, not only because Jesus did, but because it’s what he would have us to do.? And if we honestly do so, that turn-the-other-cheek kind of love glorifies Him…because there’s no way we could come up with a love like that on our own.
?But I’m glad he didn’t say anything about loving the schizophrenic telepath who floods your fridge with? psychic cockroaches.