Tag Archives: suicide

Job 3-5; John 21; Psalm 108

 

There are times in my life when I either act like Jesus is not around or actually do not feel His presence. When I act like He is not around, I am usually doing something that I want to do and do not wish to discuss with Him His thoughts on the matter. When I sense His presence not near me, I look for Him. It is a weird feeling sometimes when He does not engage.

I wonder how the disciples felt when Jesus rose from the dead and they had a bit of a distant relationship with Him. There was this real thing about Him having to ascend first before He engaged with them too much – He shared this thought with Mary. He did not see them that often or that regularly.

 This was now the third time that Jesus was revealed to the disciples after he was raised from the dead. – John 21:14 ESV

In this space of some awkwardness, the promise of the Holy Spirit who would always be with them, mattered most. Of course, we have that same promise.

In my imagination I cannot but help feel how alone Job must have felt. This is what he says —

After this Job opened his mouth and cursed the day of his birth. – Job 3:1 ESV

I do not talk about suicide a lot because I do not know the pain, but it sounds awful when you look at your life and decide that you no longer matter. That is why I like the Christmas movie, It’s a Wonderful Life.” We see both sides of the coin and I am glad that we have the Holy Spirit as part of our life these days.

David found the cure for His loneliness with God – worship. I sense many of us do, including myself.

My heart is steadfast, O God!
    I will sing and make melody with all my being. – Psalm 108:1 ESV

In fact, after a time of meditation, repentance and worship, I find that whatever I was going through, having placed that into God’s hand, I sense my relationship with Him back on track.

Father, thank you for sending the Holy Spirit to reside in me and  who calls me to walk with You. I am pretty sure that in my moments when I think I am alone, those times could make me express my life like Job. However, because of You, I can express my life more like David – I am so thankful for that. Jesus, I know that I spend too much time away from You. May may heart be more sensitive to Your calling and may I let my heart seek You always.  Thank you for caring and loving me so much. Amen

Erwin (evanlaar1922)

 

 

 

 

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Filed under 66 Books, Bible in a year reading plan, Job, John, New Testament, Old Testament, Psalms, Uncategorized

Psalm 88-89; Romans 10

“Mehalath Leannoth,” “A Dance of Affliction.” This is the title of Psalm 88, a lament to God from a songwriter who knows the darkness of troubled souls. He describes his hopelessness as being “adrift among the dead.”  How desparate – how low.  He asks, “Shall the dead arise and praise You?”  Then in Psalm 89, we read, “How long, Lord? Will You hide Yourself forever?” What is so strange about these questions is that we, who know Christ, are convinced that nothing can separate us from God’s love, “…neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord!” (Romans 8:38, 39).

It reminds me that even God’s anointed may become unsteady, filled with sadness, filling hopeless and helpless. Romans 10 asks, “How will they hear without a preacher?”  I’m not a preacher, I can tell you that truthfully, but I feel responsible to bring God’s love to a starving, depressed people.

Today we celebrated my husband’s birthday, the first since he nearly died last autumn.  The talk at the table turned to the afterlife. Weird, I know, but when you have passed your 60’s, it is common to link those two topics together.  In fact, my husband joked that any day above ground is a good day, and another said that having a birthday is better than the alternative.  The conversation turned to observations about tragic endings, and someone asked what I thought about a person’s chance of getting into heaven after committing suicide. It seems this man’s friend shot himself, and the widow was told by a preacher, nonetheless, that anyone who commits suicide does not enter the kingdom of heaven. As you might imagine, the widow walked out of the church that very day.

To add pressure to this touchy subject, I knew that four of those sitting at the table were going to attend church with me for the first time.  I felt led to give familiar examples from the Bible that highlighted suicide: Judas Iscariot and King Saul who committed suicide after disobeying God.  The former was buried in the dreaded Potters Field and the latter was buried with kings. After speaking, I literally saw the furrowed brows smooth, and bodies poised to make a quick exit, relax.

“How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace, Who bring glad tidings of good things!” I want this in my life and to pour out of my life: The gospel of peace that reminds others of how truly great is God’s love (Romans 10: 15).

Janet

All Biblical quotes were taken from the Trinity Fellowship 25th Anniversary Commemorative Edition Nelson Study Bible, 2002.

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Filed under Bible in a year reading plan, New Testament, Old Testament, Psalms, Romans

Genesis 22, Matthew 21, Nehemiah 11, Acts 21

Abraham is called by God to demonstrate his faith.  We all know the story I’m sure, I can vividly remember the cartoon version I watched on VHS as a little boy, of Abraham and his young son traveling up the mountain to the place, which God had called him.  The young Isaac realizing part way up the hill that they hadn’t brought a lamb for sacrifice, and asking his father what they were going to sacrifice.  Abraham’s response demonstrates a large amount of faith, he knew God had promised him descendants and blessing, and he trusted in God to provide the lamb for sacrifice.

There are times in all of our lives where we have to put flesh and bones on the faith that we have claimed.  Even Abraham’s great faith in telling his son God would provide the sacrifice, didn’t stop the process, because this time, words were not going to be enough.  I can remember the first time God called me, it was easy to respond.  I was at the end of my rope, after my 3rd attempt at suicide which by all means should have worked, I realized that God wasn’t going to let me go, and he spoke in my heart that he had things here for me to do.  It was easy to follow that call, because what else did I have going for me? Absolutely nothing. I was broken, and lost.

A little over 4 years later, and I think about the comforts in which I now rest.  God has provided schooling at a great biblically centered university, the wife of my dreams, a job in ministry, great friends and supportive family, and a place to live.  What else could I ask for?

Abraham had already received much of what had been promised, but he was then asked to give that up, to receive more than he could ever comprehend.  Am I content with what I have now so much so that when God asks me to give up the comforts of my current situation for something more, will I trust him? Or will I be so nearsighted as to withhold things that God has given, and miss out on all that he wants to give.  My pastor gives a great analogy, which says that you can’t accept a gift with closed hands.  If you hold everything you have been given with open hands, how much more can the Lord bless you!

I must remember when it seems like God asks the impossible, his desire is to bless and take care of me, and he always fulfills his promises.

Sam A. (guest on 66 Books)

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Filed under 66 Books, Bible in a year reading plan, Genesis, M'Cheyne Bible reading plan, Old Testament