This post is gonna be very personal and slightly raw. If you would rather not read I’ll understand, in fact I’d suggest you don’t. With that said, I’ve got to get something off my chest.
I will never look at the Golden Gate Bridge the same way again. I’ve never walked all the way across it, and now I never will. I only ever made it about half-way, and for some people that is as far as they ever choose to go. I’m of course referring to the jumpers.
It’s known as the most famous bridge in the world, and for more than one reason. It spans one of the most beautiful landscapes in the world,
along with one of the most beautiful cityscapes
(especially at night).
One other reason it’s so famous, people elect to murder themselves on it.
Sorry for being a bit strong with my language this early, but suicide is more than just killing yourself.
I whole heartedly do think it’s selfish. I’m not meaning to belittle people’s problems that lead them to do such things, but if they truly cared about themselves they would take into account the thoughts of other’s in this regard. Not to mention the various means at their disposal to rectify whatever their situation is that bemoans their own existence in this world.
It really comes down to a loss of purpose in my judgement, and that’s the bottom line.
Believing that, if you didn’t exist the world (and the people in it) would be a better off, if only you weren’t alive the suffering you presently endure will all be over.
In some ways both those statements may seem understandable, and to some even commendable. There is more than just one victim in suicides.
- Everyone who has a modicum of care for the deceased is a victim.
- The people who must care for the things left behind are victims.
- The deceased is a victim, on multiple accounts.
- But most of all, God is victimized.
Let me parse that one a bit.
God is a victim of the self murder of his image bearer. When someone takes their own life, they are in essence saying to God, “This thing you’ve implanted in me, the quality of my being created in your likeness, is worthless. Therefore you are worthless, and nothing can convince me otherwise, because I am worthless.” That is a sad thing to consider. Though it does happen, Christians should be the last people to commit suicide/self murder, for their life has attained (in the hope of final salvation via resurrection from the dead) ultimate purpose. They have an all together different quality to this “image of God” status. They share in the image that Jesus Christ has,
“And we know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose, because those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son…” Romans 8:28–29a
Along with this image they are the means God uses to bring the good news of what God has done in and through Jesus Christ to the world. They are who the Spirit is indwelling, they are whose feet are blessed to carry the gospel (Romans 10:15) to the ends of the earth. For a Christian to commit suicide is far worse than that of the unbeliever, one has already encumbered judgement,
“The one who believes in him is not condemned. The one who does not believe has been condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the one and only Son of God.” John 3:18
The other is in danger of a judgement of reward, or even worse a judgement of being a false convert. Either way, those who profess Christ Jesus as the supreme authority in this world and in their life have standing orders to proclaim the gospel in life, deed, and word. To kill oneself is a rejection of this command, and doesn’t speak well of their obedience.
Back to the impetus of this post…
One of my best friends in the world killed herself by jumping off one of my favorite landmarks in my favorite city in the world.
Some time ago she called me with a crisis. We talked for a long time concerning this crisis and I gave her the only thing I could give her at the time; a listening ear and then one of the longest explanations of the gospel I ever had given up to that point. This continued for months on end, until she came up to visit me. It was then that she explained she was like one of the seeds that fell on rocky ground, and that she didn’t have faith anymore. I convinced my atheist friend not of Christianity, but of basic theism.
I had since then pleaded occasionally, that this was a worse off plight. I’d sent her books with heartfelt notes reminding her of the blessings and joy that was a former confession she made, all to no avail it seems. All the while having her and a cousin of mine being the only people I purposefully went back to the SF Bay Area to visit.
Do I know where my friend is now? Yes, she is in the intermediate state, that place where the spirits of dead humans await the final resurrection from the dead. Is she with Christ in ethereal bliss, or in a place of torment awaiting something worse? I can’t say with any certainty, and that is what brought me to tears. Others who cared for her may speak of, “She’s in a better place now. No more suffering.” or “She did it her way. We should be happy about that” I can’t say those things. It would be dishonest, and a rejection of my Lord and his commands to adhere to his standards of thought and life.
I miss my friend and hope she, at those final moments, thought on the triune God of the universe. That she cried out to Jesus to reverse her plunge, for she had a last minute change of mind. That the demons who oppressed her for years would leave her be so as to enjoy the presence of the God she so richly desired to congregate with. That the words I said so long ago resinated within her intelligent beautiful mind.
But I am not one to speculate (with certainty) on things I have no ability to know. I can only mourn her loss, and get a tattoo of
a Super Mario Bros. “1 up” to remember why Christians mustn’t murder themselves, and to remember that Jillian Jensen is my testimony that in a life I lived in debauchery, there was at least one who witnessed God’s Spirit within me enough to seek an extra life when she was down to two lives left. Sadly there are no more 1 ups left when you’re dead.
I miss her soo much, her life has purpose for more than just me.