Content Warning: Depression & Suicide

If you know me personally, you know that I have struggled with mental health issues for decades. I don’t keep that a secret. In fact, I announce it, I slip it into conversations, and I’d scream it from rooftops if I weren’t so afraid of heights. I believe with all my heart that we all need to talk about mental health a lot more than we do.

Since I was raised very religious, the majority of my mental health education efforts have been inside the Christian church. I have given testimonies (told my story). I have lead several study groups about mental and emotional health and how they are inseparable from our spiritual selves. I have started support groups for hurting people. I’ve written articles for a church magazine about mental health. I know that change–particularly institutional change–takes time, but knowing that doesn’t stop me from getting discouraged sometimes.

Lately I’ve been discouraged. It all started with an email:

[Name Withheld] is going through a difficult time health wise and is also feeling suicidal. He used to know the Lord

He used to know the Lord…
He used to know the Lord…
He used to know the Lord…

For over a month now, those words have been swirling in my head. I don’t personally know the person this prayer request was for, but I can tell you with 100% certainty: if he used to know the Lord, he still knows the Lord. Mental health struggles and suicidal thoughts don’t just happen to non-believers! Christians get depressed. Christians get suicidal. Christians die from suicide.

I really wanted to write more about this, but I haven’t been able to make myself do it. The muddy puddle of discouragement I fell into this time is pretty deep. So today, I’m going to reblog another author. If you are a Christian please read what she has to say. It’s so important.

I Love Jesus, But I Want to Die: What You Need to Know About Suicide by Sarah J. Robinson

Here is a teaser quote:

One tough Sunday, I stood alongside my students in worship, doing everything I could to turn my eyes upon Jesus. I told him I love him and would praise him anyway, even if I always felt like that. But when I closed my eyes, all I could see was an image of my body, swinging from the rafters.

I didn’t tell anyone.

© 2023 Ashley Lilley – First time commenting? Please read my Comment Policy.

2 thoughts on “Suicide Education for Christians

  1. Mental health is one of the cruelest health conditions. It is still poorly understood. It robs you of joy, and can have you feeling like you are stuck in a prison of fatigue and discouragement. I know the feeling all to well. Keep on writing, speaking, and talking about mental health. It is the only way to normalize talking about it.

    Liked by 1 person

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