Ever since reading the news that Robin Williams had died, I’ve been thinking on death and depression. And honestly, I had to just get off of social media, because so many people’s words bothered me. As if any of us knew the actor, as if any of us absolutely know where he is now, and as if it’s our place to even give our opinion on his life and death. It just bothered me in a big way. So I’ve finally decided to just give my own thoughts on depression –
I would be totally lying if I said I never get depressed, never deal with negative thoughts, and never let my emotions get the best of me. Because the truth is that my husband deals quite graciously with his moody wife. And I see the same moods starting to surface in my firstborn. I wish neither of us were like that; I wish we were the happy, go lucky types like my second born is. I wish that I had learned how to control my emotions when I was young. I think this world is quite cruel to those who feel deeply, to those who don’t naturally see the cup as full or even half full, and to those who don’t know how to not over think every single thing possible. If you’re not like that, then you certainly do not understand people who are.
And I know this for a fact, because I went through quite a series of friends who didn’t like my negativity. Friends who thought I was purposely down, purposely trying to be negative, purposely choosing to not be happy. They’re no longer my friends, and I think that’s fine with both sides! And I hold nothing against them; they just didn’t get it. Now that I’m much more of a positive person, who tries really hard to find the silver lining, I have a heart for those who don’t know how to get out of their own feelings/thoughts. I feel for Robin Williams – immensely. If I didn’t know Jesus and know all that He’s done for me, who knows where I’d be in this life. If I didn’t purpose every day, to set my mind on things that are lovely, of good report, of value, things that are gifts and blessings, then I would spend much of my time in a dark hole. And I would guess that if we were all honest quite a few people would say that they could relate to the actor very well.
I would also say that as a whole American society tends to medicate through alcohol, drugs, TV, food, and partying, and then blames any depression, dark feelings, instability, etc. on mental illness. And I do think that when we dwell on very dark thoughts, when we allow demonic forces to influence our actions and thinking, it does damage our mind and our emotions. So is it mental illness? Probably. Can it be treated through more medication? I guess so, but to what affect? Medication upon medication does nothing for the human heart, the soul, the longing to be something, to know Someone, to feel more than just darkness or nothing at all. It never deals with the heart issues, and only Jesus can do that. He’s the only One capable of reaching into man’s heart and laying His finger on those areas that no one else can touch and heal.
My humble opinion is that people without the knowledge of Jesus are heart sick. Heart sickness leads to all kinds of issues, all kinds of terrible behavior, and all kinds of destruction and waste. It’s the devil’s ideal place for every human. And Christians who unmercifully judge or quickly criticize those who don’t know a better way just make it fifty times worse. We should be the ones leading those out of darkness. We should be the compassion, the love, the mercy, the kindness that Jesus was on this earth. I don’t know if Robin Williams knew any people who truly loved God; I don’t have a clue what his spiritual life was like. But I wish that someone had (I hope someone did) shared the true love and mercy of Jesus with him. I hope someone told him that all the mistakes (he admitted he felt great disgust at his behavior) he made were forgiven on the cross; all he had to do was repent and turn to Jesus. I hope someone told him that there was a Great Lover of his soul out there waiting to know him. I hope I would have told him that had I met him.
True joy, happiness, peace, rest, and anything worthwhile only comes from a daily relationship with the Lord. True positive thinking only comes from spending time in God’s Word. And as I know quite well, it takes a lot of effort on my part. It helps to have people (like my husband and my sister) who are willing to stick with us through all the negativity and roller coaster emotions. We need people in our lives who will walk with us through thick and thin. Who will say, “hey, I love you, and I want to help you in this area; I will walk you through the steps to get you to the other side.” That’s the type of person I aim to be. That’s the type of mom I’m trying (and mostly failing) to be. That’s my heart as I want to meet those who need Jesus. Those who need help. Jesus didn’t come to help those who didn’t need it; He came to help those who knew they needed help. (Read the New Testament if you don’t believe me on that . . .)
I know so many believe that suicide is the most selfish act a person can do; I know many others who believe that committing suicide is an act that sends a person straight to hell. I don’t have an opinion or an answer to either of those. I just know that God’s heart cries out to those who are in the depths of despair. I also know that there are demons whose main jobs are to take and keep people in despair. It’s a fight to get them out of that, but God’s love conquers all. Will we be warriors and carriers of His love and fight for those who can’t see clearly, who don’t know the way out, who don’t know that the Lover of their souls loves them with a perfect, everlasting love? Can’t we at least offer hope and something worth grabbing on to?
So in conclusion, the more I’ve thought on this, the more I realize that my heart is to be a carrier of love and truth in action. I want to be someone who knows that we were put on this earth to care for others; someone who knows that it goes beyond just me and our five. The people in front of us matter; even those who seem like the darkest, angriest, or as in the case of Robin Williams, the funniest. Every person needs someone to care for them, to reach out to them, and to be willing to walk with them. And it’s most often not an easy journey. But nothing easy in this life is really worthwhile. The journey from dark to light, from empty to full, from negative to positive, and from despair to hope is a hard one. It’s not for the faint of heart, but it’s definitely worth the effort.