My first post in this series of four, “Suicide – A Multidimensional Crisis” is here. My second post, “Suicide – It Begins With Suffering” is here. My third post “Suicide – The How-to Stratagem (Absurd!)” is here.
During my time of struggle––hopefully the three earlier posts told the story––I would have characterized my life as untethered. I saw myself floating head down far from the earth’s surface, arms outstretched as though I was reaching for someone’s hand. I was only a stick figure, unrealized as a human being. I wasn’t floating in an atmosphere that was quiet and undisturbed but one that was tumultuous.
As the turbulence thrashed me about, as the glass shards of reality wounded me, I floated farther away and I was in danger of leaving the gravitational pull of our planet. Panicked, I prayed that somehow I would find a connection, something or someone who would grasp my hand and stop me from becoming my own planet adrift in the infinite void.
I found that connection. God––the Truth I had always been searching for––grabbed my hand and has never let go. And as I became more accepting of His presence––through prayer––it wasn’t coincidental that I never again wanted for the basics of life. Subtle miracles I like to say. Family and friends and new relationships stepped up to help in so many ways.
I’m going to assume that there are people reading this post (as well as the three earlier ones) who have had thoughts of hurting themselves. It’s an amazingly frightful act to consider and I’m empathetic to your pain. When I think of your agonizing struggles––I’ve been there and never want to go back––with as much honesty and conviction as I can muster, I beg your attention for what I’m about to say.
By God’s miraculous grace, I learned that the most important connection in life is a relationship with Him. Ultimately, I decided that I couldn’t get through the rest of my life without Him. His absence created a vacuum wherein I employed boneheaded tactics and backsliding behavior that seemed to be my nature. The results spoke for themselves.
So, I made a pledge. Although my life was nowhere near the dismal circumstances of so many other poor folks on this planet, not even close––for which I’m forever grateful––it could depend on me no longer. I punted. My way of doing life’s business was over. The job of fixing it was now out of my incapable hands. Furthermore, the anxiety, indecision, tentativeness and despair that goes hand in hand with the faithless, the feelings I know too well, were no longer welcome in my universe.
With reason and faith as my stalwart foundation, I decided to trust Him completely, to acknowledge His authority and to surrender to His will.
You see, I was the protagonist in a spiritual intervention. I will concede something needed to happen, as my life had been devoid of purpose, wanting for love, and achingly lonely. I was a child needing a parent to push me off that couch. I used to revel in independence, but enough. Far be it for me to suggest to God that a new life was possible without financial devastation, but I’m only riding aboard planet earth as it hurls through time and space. He’s the conductor.
And I trust Him.
Can I say unequivocally that I grew closer to Him, that I felt His hand on mine as a result of my trials? Yes, I can. Maybe that was what my earthen hell was all about. I needed to empty myself out; I was still in my way. This must be what dying to self is all about. A necessary step before taking up the cross.
Strength comes from meeting resistance, from overcoming obstacles. The stronger the opposition, the stronger the faith. I was tested. My faith was compelled to grow. I understand.
As clay in God’s hands, I had sharp edges, irregular form. As well as a hardened and misdirected will. I was determined to live my life as I saw fit. God, as potter, needed to remold me without breaking me. This shaping process, as I’ve learned, is arduous and time-consuming.
As for the hellish fire of the kiln, every degree had its purpose.
My flippant exercise in morbid fantasy in the previous post hints at the absurdity of suicide. I would think that the finality of the act would be enough of a deterrent. At one moment exists the real possibilities of love, family, adventure, friendship, service, creativity, accomplishment, curiosity, emotion, resilience, wisdom, teaching, learning and most importantly, a relationship with God. However, to kill oneself eliminates all moments, now and forever. How tragic, selfish and unnecessary.
Created to live. I want this simple statement to rocket around everyone’s soul and carve itself onto a singular tablet deep within their memory. A commandment if you will. Through God’s grace, I never want it to be forgotten.