Monday, October 27, 2008

Warning Signs: What Are We To Do When We See Them?

My phone calls this weekend involved troubled family and friends of two different severely depressed people. Clearly one of them was putting out warning signs that he wasn't sure living was worth the pain. This other one has become so serious that everyone sees her growing sadder every day.

One of my family members would threaten suicide when I was growing up. I recall one time an aunt gave me such good counsel. She said never to believe that I could keep someone alive who had fallen so low in poor mental health that they decided to end their life. She made me come to see that while that troubled person was struggling. Fortunately, there never was a full fledged suicide attempt; only talk.

I drew from that well of experience as I heard my friends' pain on these two different situations. I told them the time to face our inability to help some people has to be early on. After someone takes their own life you just seem to run in circles on "what more could I have done...said....prayed? God has blessed both situations and there is more hope for all today.

I remembered my physician husband warning family members over and over, "If suddenly this person seems happy and there is no explainable reason for the euphoria; move fast because they may have come up with the time, plan and way to end their pain by taking their life."

I shared that with both sets of concerned folks. I am thinking and praying today for protection, breakthrough, and help in such troubled people. But I'm also mulling over my husband's advice....if bam! everything looks rosy be concerned. As I watch God move in my life and in other's lives, I see that the spiral down into depression, "darkness" occurs over months or years. Generally it takes time to get out of those circumstances also. Perhaps this is also the mercy of God. Just as coming into bright light when we've been in the dark is blinding; maybe we need the breakthroughs to be step by step.

Trouble still nips at these young adults. Any of you readers have wisdom I can share with my friends?

Lord, I want to thank you for life today. I thank You I treasure my life, and I have You filling my heart and thoughts. No matter what is challenging my peace; I see You as enough to cherish each moment of my life. I pray You will close Your arms around these two who feel life is more pain than gain. Shed Your life giving light into their worlds and renew their strength. Thank You for being Love; thank You for Your mercy on us all. AMEN


Dorothy Champagne said...

I, thankfully, have not come across someone who has been so depressed they wanted to end their life. I have, myself, been depressed and couldn't see the light at the end of the tunnel - destined to drudge out every day of my life one excruciating step at a time. But when you finally give in to God, fall on your knees and admit that you can't do it alone - He takes over and does it for you. It helps to have someone wonderful like you praying for you along the way as well. :)

Marilyn in Mississippi said...

Very thought provoking post today! We never know who we may come in contact with that may be in depression and we never know it. So I guess we need to always be on the lookout to help whoever we can whenever we can!

By the way....I don't know what you have done different to your blog but I like it! And it also loads in much less time!

Take care....

Kay Martin said...

Thanks Marilyn, I redecorate the blog occassionally. I don't know much about the technology but I tweak this and that. I'll leave it like this if it loads quicker. Thanks for commenting.

sailorcross said...

Good Morning, Kay!!

I don't know any specific things to do to help your friends. But, having been in this situation myself (depressed, suicidal) I know that the depressed person's thinking is askewed. I, for example, wrote all three of my children letters, telling me how much they meant to me, how much I loved them. Now, looking back at this, I can see where my thinking is totally off!! If I loved them so much, why was I thinking of leaving them!!

My best advice is to remain in contact with the person or persons you are dealing with and try to encourage them to talk. Let them know that you care, pray with them but don't push too much. And above all, if they are serious in this, then it's time to seek professional help.

When I was in high school, my aunt threatened time after time to end her life--so many times that after a while no one paid attention.

Not too long after that, she accomplished exactly what she had been saying she was going to do.

And, now I have searched--but what does the Bible say about suicide? I have seen this debated back and forth, and I'm still wondering after all these years--


Red Letter Believers said...

How come when we approach a sign that says, "Bridge out ahead" we still ignore it?

I dont understand people...I dont understand me

© 2008 Kay Martin

Thrive In Christ

Who I Am In Christ by Neil Anderson

For several months we will center on this book to pursue Thriving in our Christian journey.

Neil challenges us with: "Do you know who you are in God's eyes? We are no longer products of our past. We are primarily products of Christ's work on the cross. Who we are determines what we do.

You are not who you are in Christ because of the things you have done, you are in Christ because of what He has done. He died and rose again so that you and I could live in the FREEDOM of His love."

That's just the introduction. More to follow.