By, Benjamin H. Liles
Recently, after having written a latest article for this blog I came across an article of a different kind. A lovely wife lost her husband to suicide and depression. To be honest, I don't deal well with this subject, Maybe it's because it hits too close to home for me. I deal with telling the truth. I deal with talking about God and what He's doing. Where He comes from, and how He sees sin., So, this is unlike any other post I've written.
I don't really like showing my emotions much, but like I said, this has hit a nerve. And I said this back to someone I believe needed to hear this: "If in some way I can do through my blog what this man did in his life I will do so with all of my heart, all of my strength, and all of my love for my Lord and Savior. Andrew, you will be missed. I wish I had known you, brother [in Christ, is how I mean it]."
Here's a link to the article a pastor friend of mine shared: To my Andrew (God's Got This). sometimes it may seem I'm uncaring and don't understand where anyone is coming from, but rest assured, I deal with my own battles with both mania and depression on a daily basis. The struggle is real. I can't be false about that. I have wrestled with this since I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder since i was eighteen. I am now almost forty-five, with a lovely and beautiful wife of my own. I also have two cats I love and care for as well.
When I say I rest on God's word, and that Christ is my Savior, it doesn't mean I approach His word with any less grace or care than I approach my own life. All of this may sound cavalier, and may sound harsh; but to me, suicide is not an option. Yes, I tried it on more than one occasion. Both times God spared me from the pain and hurt I would have caused my family. There is a sense of shame, on my part, too, because had I succeeded some would have called me names such as "Coward, selfish, insensitive, and callous."
To that I have to say this. Do you know how much pain Jesus Christ was in the night He was arrested? Do you know how much torture and sorrow He felt for you and I? Those blows He took by the hands of Roman Centurions, roughly binding his hands behind his back? They spat on him, they reviled him, and mocked him as "The King of the Jews" (see Matthew 27:27-31; Mark 15:16-20; Luke 22:63-64). Jesus took our punishment upon Himself so we wouldn't have to suffer as He did. And I still maintain that even now.
Jesus went to the cross on our behalf so we don't have to suffer any longer on our own in quiet desperation. We can rely on our families--brothers, sisters, spouses, fathers, and mothers--all for the sake we live our lives productively and with the help we need. I'm a simple man, really. In a sense of the word, a minister of God's word. Could someone call me a pastor? Maybe, possibly, but I'm not licensed, nor have I gone or been through Seminary. I do, however, love others as God calls us to do through His Son, Jesus Christ.
Moreover than anything, I want to shed light on the seriousness on depression, anxiety, any and all mental health issues because I still seek treatment even now. I have to take my medicine daily, for failure to do so means I'm putting myself at risk, something I am unwilling to do. Please, for those of you who read my blog, who read and see my prayers, consistently for you: see my heart on this. To me, Jesus Christ is more than just my Lord and Savior. He's saved my life from doing the most impossible and most heart-rending thing I could have done. Call on Him where ever you are at, and if you need help in your own quest for joy and peace, talk to someone who can help you where you are at. I pray this in the name of Jesus over you, Amen.