I am a suicidal Christian:
Some may scoff or persecute me for using those two words in the same sentence. “Suicidal” and “depressed” seem to be the ugliest use of profanity in the Christian world. How can someone who claims to be a Christian be suicidal? To most, it seems impossible. Let me see if I can be a bit more clear.
I believe that God created us all in His likeness. I believe that Jesus Christ was sent down to earth to die for our sins. And I believe that He rose again, obtaining victory for all of mankind. However, that is just one part of me. God is too much of a genius to make human beings so simple. And it would be insulting to Him to think that He would. He made us to be complex creatures.
The other part of me is suicidal, depressed and filled with so much anxiety that I can’t speak aloud without first rehearsing the words in my head. And for a long time, I thought that made me a hypocritical Christian. Or maybe not a Christian at all. But I’ve learned a lot since then. So here’s the shocking truth: It is possible to be a suicidal Christian who is loved by the Creator. The problem arises when people forget about the existence of evil and humanity’s inevitability to succumb to it. People always seem to speak about the power of Christ, but they forgot to mention that Satan has power, too. He is the master of deception. And it doesn’t make you a bad Christian because you fall prey to him. If that were the case, Christ might as well never have come down to save us.
Longing to depart from this world and enter into a new one is a part of being a Christian. It means recognizing that this is only the beginning: a series of pit stops on the way to the final destination. It means understanding that even heroic figures in the bible, like Elijah and Job, were suicidal, but God still called them righteous. It’s okay to be hurt and sad and fearful. Because that’s when God can reveal Himself.
Saying “do not be afraid” is about as helpful as saying “don’t be so sad.” It isn’t that simple. Thinking it is that simple is naive. Life is hard and no written words can change that. They can only give us a way to cope.
So I beg of you, never ask a Christian how they can be depressed. They didn’t get to choose the way God wired their brain. And don’t judge them because they are on anti-depressants. Because it was God who created the men who created those life-saving pills. And lastly, please don’t crucify the suicidal Christian. Life is just a little bit tougher for some than others. Some brains aren’t equipped to handle the madness of this life. Maybe none of them are. That’s why we have a savior.
Being a suicidal Christian is challenging, to put it lightly. It’s a lifetime of remorse and guilt. But it is a part of my story, just like it is a part of so many others’. I applaud everyone who is suicidal and still here. And I sympathize and empathize for the ones now at rest. But I have hope in God’s undying mercy, and I have hope that God will provide for those who are struggling. And for now, that is enough.
If you or someone you know is struggling with a mental illness, please know you are not alone. Suicide is completely preventable. There is hope. PLEASE reach out if you are experiencing suicidal thoughts, or fear that someone you love might be.
If you need support right now, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255, or text “START” to 741-741.