Suicide is rarely a spur of the moment decision. In the days and hours before people kill themselves, there are usually clues and warning signs. The strongest and most disturbing signs are verbal – ‘I can’t go on,’ ‘Nothing matters any more’ or even ‘I’m thinking of ending it all.’ Such remarks should always be taken seriously. Other common warning signs include:
Becoming depressed or withdrawn
Getting affairs in order and giving away valued possessions
Showing a marked change in behaviour, attitudes or appearance
Abusing drugs or alcohol
Suffering a major loss or life change
let’s face it; all of us have struggled with depression at one time or another. Don’t feel as though you are the only one, or like you are alone when you are overcome by depression or confusion.
Many great people in the Bible felt suicidal:
There were many times when Moses felt like he was too weak, too ill-equipped, too inadequate to live the life that God had called him to live as a leader of the Israelites. Look at what he said:
This job is too much for me. How can I take care of all these people by myself? If this is the way you’re going to treat me, just kill me now and end my miserable life!
Ever felt that way, like you just can’t measure up? Well, Moses was able to overcome by continuing his task even when he felt like he could do no more. He faithfully trusted God to fill in the gaps in his strength, and worked through the tough times!
Overworked, exhausted and feeling as though nothing he did really mattered or made a difference, Elijah too felt like he had reached the very end of his rope:
1 Kings 19:4-5
He begged the LORD, ‘I’ve had enough. Just let me die! I’m no better off than my ancestors.’ Then he lay down in the shade and fell asleep.
But God spoke to Elijah and reminded Him that he was not alone, and that his triumphs and struggles had not gone unnoticed by God. Elijah’s life mattered to God and truly did make a difference to the nation of Israel, even if he may not always have felt like this was so.
Who ever suffered like this man of ancient times? Under spiritual attack on all sides, he lost everything, his family, his wealth and even his health. He held fast to his love for God, but reached critical lows emotionally and felt like dying:
What strength do I have to keep on living? Why go on living when I have no hope? Am I made of stone? Is my body bronze? I have no strength left to save myself; there is nowhere I can turn for help.
But Job found the strength to preserver, largely because he continued an open dialogue with God, praying and talking to God through every stage of his journey, allowing God to speak to him through prayer and tribulation. Rather than turn from God in these times, he sought God all the harder.
Disobedient and rebellious, Jonah was often reluctant to do what God was calling him to do. Even when he did step off in service of God, he was often unhappy with the results. In many ways, Jonah was a supreme whiner! His emotional journey was also turbulent:
During the day the LORD sent a scorching wind, and the sun beat down on Jonah’s head, making him feel faint. Jonah was ready to die, and he shouted, ‘I wish I were dead!’
God often had to scold Jonah and remind him that his life was not provided to serve himself, but rather to serve God. We too have to remember that we are not here to glorify ourselves but to Glorify God. When we re-focus on our true purpose, we can begin to evaluate our lives from his perspective!
God does not create junk! You are important. You matter. You are here for a reason….. The suffering won’t last forever