Recently, the news told of two tragic celebrity suicides. We try to understand: “Why?” “They seemed to have everything.” Some would say they were selfish, only thinking of themselves. I disagree. Taking one’s life is an act of desperation. The intensely overwhelming darkness of pain and hurt boxes in a person until the only way to stop the pain, they feel, is to exit this world. I have been affected by the attempted suicide and suicide of some I know. My why is “why not ask for help?” There is no shame in asking for help. We are meant to be community, supporting each other. Social media makes life look so perfect. Well, I, personally, DO NOT post my deepest hurts on social media. That doesn’t mean I don’t have hurts. It means I guard what information I put out for public display. No one on this earth has a perfect life.
Jesus befriended the most unlikely: the Samaritan woman at the well John 4:1-42; Zaccheus, Chief Tax Collector Luke 19:2-10; many leapers and blind healed by Jesus, and more. Jesus looked for those who were most likely to be alone in the world. He demonstrated genuine love to them. He was interested in each individual.
Ponder this: How do you (we) demonstrate genuine interest, like Jesus did, in your (our) community? Do you offer the drive-by “how are you?” not really wanting or expecting an answer, let alone a truthful answer? If you are asked, “how are you?”, do you answer honestly? Or play the game with a “fine”? We need to take time, make time, to REALLY listen to our friends and family. Check-in on a deeper level. We need to reconnect to each other.
In the 18th and 19th centuries, communities had barn raising. Multiple families gathered to build one farmer’s barn. They went to each property until each barn was raised. I imagine a giant potluck of food went with each raising! And, the children would run and play nearby. Most people knew everyone around them. How many of us don’t even know the next door neighbor? You know, the one you have seen frequently at the mailbox? We are meant to have fellowship.
Connecting in fellowship, friendship, community on a deeper level will help to expose the darkness to the Light. By talking about hurts, depression, anxieties, helplessness, we can share the burdens and bring them into Light. Where there is Light, there is no darkness.
Pray! Ask God to bring you help! I have prayed for help and God is faithful to answer!
Pray! Ask God to show you someone YOU can help! I have prayed for this and God is faithful to answer!
2 Samuel 22:29 “for You are my lamp, O Lord; and the Lord illumines my darkness.”
So, can we bring Light to the darkness of depression and hopelessness? lg