This weekend, my community lost a good person to suicide. I did not know him as well as many of my friends did, but I can very much feel the consequences of a life being taken from this world by one’s own hand. Suicide is the ultimate tragedy. From the days of Shakespeare to the media-centric hustle and bustle of today’s American life, it has never lost its potency or its devastation. We cannot bring John back to life, but we can learn from his mistake. We can take this horrible experience, and glean lessons on how to live our own lives, as well as relate with those around us. This is not a “suicide prevention speech”. No, it’s so much more than that. It’s a reflection on how each and every one of us can be a better person in this tragically unstable tightrope we walk, more commonly referred to as life.
First, no matter how much you can’t stand a person because of their social status or idiosyncrasies, always be sure to acknowledge and appreciate their existence. This person, no matter how they seem, is just trying to find their way to a put together an understandable life just like you. And if you are not willing to be partners with him or her in this journey, the least you could do is not try to trip him or her up. I understand it’s a dog-eat-dog world; I understand that he or she annoys or threatens you, but it’s important to treat that person with as much love and you can.
Second, take a look inside yourself and others. No matter if you are a king or homeless; we all have stresses, unmet desires, and debacled relationships. We live on a broken Earth, colliding with our broken emotions and relationships. Therefore, we all have our breaking point. That time when depression moves in and sets up camp in our very hearts; that time when what we have to live for seems unimportant in the wake of all the pain we feel. I’ve been there, and I know you have as well. It is at this point important decisions are made. Do I seek an escape? Cutting, alcohol, drugs, suicide? Or do I seek the things that hold me together? God, family, hobbies, relationships? Many of us choose correctly, but some of us make the wrong choice.
Third, remember to live. Remember your hopes and dreams, and structure your life from this moment on to seek them out with great vigor. Go after that relationship you’ve desired for so long. Pursue the job where you never have to “work” again. Live every day with the little things on your mind, like the beauty of a sunset or the smile of the person at the library. Genuine life is not lived on sex and coffee and working for unreasonable hours. Life to the fullest is found every day, in the simple things. Live in the beauty of simple things, accomplish big things, and never ever find a reason to lose everything.
Everyone. I know you are hurting from what has happened. So am I. But we can get through this crazy life with each other, and with God above.
We can do this…