The wild look in his eyes was a silent cry for help.
A cry for help he desperately wanted but felt unable to get.
Trapped. That’s how he felt most days: trapped in a foreign country, where he was a stranger even to himself, trapped by the debts that were plummeting him to his death, and trapped by the constant thoughts of insignificance and low self-worth.
Suicide felt like the answer to his suppressed calls for help. The help that nobody had cared enough to offer. His life had taken a turn for the worse, and he felt rejected. Rejected by the boss who laid him off, by his wife who divorced him soon after, by the friends and family who didn’t care enough to reach out to him.
He made an attempt to run away from his problems, but they soon caught up with him. Alone with his thoughts most days, he sank deeper into self-pity. His tear-stained pillow told the story of a man who once had it all.
News of his suicide shocked those close to him. “He seemed so happy,” they said. If only someone had expressed Jesus’ love in John 3:16 for him; if only someone had recognized the onset of depression and tell him how Christ wants us to cast our cares on Him.
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
Depression, like a locust, had eaten away at his heart. Like many others in this world, he became another statistic.
How often do we stop to take the time to acknowledge those who are hurting, depressed and afflicted among us? Or are we so consumed in our own troubles that we turn a blind eye to their silent pleas for help?
“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’
The cry of the depressed is often heard in the resulting suicide, as many are suffering in silence. All around us, people are broken and in need of the comfort and love that is found in Christ.
In a broken world, broken people need the help of The Potter who can make them whole again.
Broken people are fragile, frail and feeble beings. Somewhere out there, someone has a smile on their face and goes home each day contemplating ending their life.
Symptoms of depression include “sleeping difficulties, anxiety or panic attacks, profound sadness to the point of pervasive hopelessness, stomach troubles, headaches, loss of energy, eating difficulties, sexual difficulties, chronic irritable anger at self or others, and suicidal thoughts.”
Here are three tips for offering support to someone who is depressed and might be contemplating suicide:
- Be available for them by calling, visiting, or just providing a listening ear. Be sensitive to the nature of their problem, and be the confidant that they need in the moment.
- If the issue is prolonged and seems to be more than you can handle, very gently, suggest the intervention of a trained person in the medical field.
- Pray, Pray, Pray. Pray with them and for them continually.
Reach out to someone today, you may just be the glimmer of hope in their dark world.
1 Larenz, I. Are You Depressed? Retrieved from Just Between Us website: http://www.justbetweenus.org/coping-with-depression
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