Wednesday, September 10, 2014

When I Wanted To Die (World Suicide Prevention Day)

Today is World Suicide Awareness Day. Before I share my story of when I wanted to die, I want to give those who don’t have an understanding of how real suicide is. According to, “suicide is a major public health problem. The psychological pain that leads each of these individuals to take their lives is unimaginable. Their deaths leave families and friends bereft, and often have a major ripple effect on communities. Every year, over 800,000 almost people die from suicide; this roughly corresponds to one death every 40 seconds. The number of lives lost each year through suicide exceeds the number of deaths due to homicide and war combined. Suicide is the fifth leading causes of death among those aged 30-49 years in 2012 globally, and is the second leading cause of death in the 15-29 years age group in 2012 globally. Overall, it is estimated that during 2012 for each adult who died of suicide there were over 20 others who made suicide attempts. In 2012, suicide accounted for 1.4% of all deaths worldwide, making it the 15th leading cause of death. Mental disorders (particularly depression and alcohol use disorders) are a major risk factor for suicide in Europe and North America; however, in Asian countries impulsiveness plays an important role. Suicide is complex with psychological, social, biological, cultural and environmental factors involved.”

That says a lot, and while I was writing my novel Deaf, Dumb, Blind & Stupid (DDBS for short) between 2010 and 2012 (addressing child sexual abuse – based on my real-life story of abuse – and teenage suicide), I went through a suicide spell in December of 2011. Part of the note is in DDBS, but I want to share it with you in its raw form (not to glorify suicide, but to let you know how real it is and that we must have a heart for those who are struggling with life).

December 3, 2011 (an e-mail to a few people close to my heart):
My life is a constant fight, considering I have mental problems through the neglect of my parents during the course of my abuse - which I am not trying to claim the victim role - it's hard. People are saying I should be married. If I'm not then I'm a homosexual. I am tired of fighting. My life has been constant suffering - over my life - for the concern of others. When it’s all said and done, everything is my fault! It's my fault if I'm not married, if people turn their backs on me. I am trying to keep things in perspective here. I want to grieve over what God grieves.

One thing about my family, they are so nosy and paranoid of what I do (considering I'm the oldest). This is partly why I'm writing this novel about my childhood abuse and the main character is going to lose his life (maybe this suffering is for the novel).

Moving along, here's what I really want to say. I'm like this when everyone acts as if I don't exist in their world. Everyone is important to me. I understand about the concept of letting go (that's not so bad). I'm trying hard and want to. Everything is my fault. People are saying to me, "you need to be married, you need to be married; if you're not, you're a punk!" And sure I'm trying to look for love. But when I get this kind of treatment from women (for the past 25 years of my life, you want to give up and say love isn't meant for me, and I've had enough of trying to find a marriage partner). Women are typically saying, "you did this, you're not my type, I only see you as a friend - from Christian and non-Christian women. Why am I on a quest for love when I'm just taking up people's space? Sure, I play a role in other people's lives, but I guess that's it! And again, it's my fault and no one cares of what I do. I wanted to give this an example, because this is the pain I feel in my life. If I had a weapon to my head, people would simply say, "I'm sorry, or I'll pray for you." What? I am about to take my life and that's all you're going to say? That's painful (from Christians & non-Christians). Again, I'm not going to do anything rash, but this is what I feel. Yes, it's a casting down imaginations case, and I know God loves me (though I don't understand when my life is so full of suffering). Sure, I have my life, but my brief moments of smiles are turned to deep sadness. Everybody's saying, enjoy everyday life (how, when everything is crashing - unless I'm supposed to wear a plastic smile). Other than God, there is no happiness in my life. Of course, I can't wait to be with Him when my life is over; meanwhile, I'm miserable and don't know how much more I take. Everyday, it's a constant battle in my mind and I'm already in the looney bin! I just want to be free.

I'm not trying to say I'm a victim by any means. I just want someone to say it's going to be alright!

When I look back at the note, you would be surprised as to how many responses I got. They ranged from “you should be thankful for the pain you went through,” to “you need to just get over it (in short, I don’t want to hear it).” A month later, I called the suicide hotline here in Tallahassee. I told them what was going on and that I didn't want to live. Their response wasn't what's going on, but it went like this, "try to think of something positive." I thought to myself, that's not the wisest thing to say when a teen or an adult has a gun to their head. It made me think long and hard as to why the suicide rates are so high.

I remember a woman posted on social media stating that she was going to take her own life. It was baffling to see how many people were telling her to get over it and talking down to her. I just inboxed her and said this: “if you happen to get this message, give me a call and here’s my number.” About 4 hours later, she called me and all I said was this: “you have my undivided attention, talk to me.” She shared what was on her heart and all I did was listen to her heart. Just a simple ear to a hurting soul can help prevent suicide.

In closing: Many people who are on the verge of suicide really do care about the hearts of others, and many of us probably overlook what they’re going through by saying they are oversensitive or melodramatic. When they realize they are not heard, they will do something rash. If we would stop and understand the hearts of others instead of being so judgmental, we could speak life and encouragement to broken and hurting people.

Many suicides are linked to past abuse, and here’s my take on that: We are on the brink of losing the next generation. And it’s sad that the only remedy for an abused child is drugs or illicit sex. This is part of the reason some kids and even adults commit suicide. It’s a tragedy that shouldn’t happen this way, considering we “so holy people” are re-victimizing the abused, while the abuser gets away with a crime they should be charged with. If we don’t care for those who are abused, they will either take their own lives, or they will become sadistic and take somebody else’s life.

People who are considering or attempting suicide REALLY don’t want to die, they want to live. We must be willing to help them live.

Because today is suicide prevention awareness, I want to do something special. If you were intrigued by this, I encourage you get the book that addresses suicide prevention. It’s entitled Deaf, Dumb, Blind & Stupid: Michael Anderson’s Fight for Life. I will personally autograph it and send you a special gift along with the book. Attached is the link:  

I am totally committed to sounding the alarm on how real suicide is and what we can do to prevent it. Here’s a blog I did a few months back entitled How Suicides Can Be Prevented.

And a bonus: Why People Are Oblivious to Abuse & Suicide:

The Mayne Man

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Jabez Vs. Solomon

Colossians 2:8 says this: See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ.

Philosophy according to the Greek dictionary means the love and pursuit of wisdom. When we think of philosophy today, it's considered the study of men and women and their ideologies. The passage above warns to not to be taken captive to it especially if it takes you away from Christ. I love reading bios of people but I also have to keep in mind, they are flawed, human and sinful, just like me. God is the ultimate Philosopher, which we will see as this blog progresses.

Some of you might be wondering now, what does that have to do with Jabez & Solomon. A lot. In fact, we emphasize the prayer of Jabez over Solomon's prayer (1 Kings 4) & the prayer of Jesus (in John 17). Now I'm not saying that's a bad thing, but it should give you something to think about. Let's look into the prayers of Jabez & Solomon.

Jabez was a man of God according to 1 Chronicles 4:9-10.  What I found interesting through all of this was that Jabez is only mentioned in 2 verses within the entire Bible. His prayer is one of those 2 verses: Jabez called upon the God of Israel, saying, "Oh that you would bless me and enlarge my border, and that your hand might be with me, and that you would keep me from harm so that it might not bring me pain!" And God granted what he asked. 

Now many of you can quote that verse back & forth and sing the song by Donald Lawrence back and forth. I have my thoughts & opinions on that, but I will say this: I'm not saying that monetary blessing should not be your desire (just don't let that be your idol), but I ask that you be careful and to not throw your fist at God because He chooses to bless you differently than you expected. Remember, His ways are not our ways; in fact, His ways are better than ours. One more thing: many people are praying for increase and are expecting God to drop it out of the sky. That creates a mentality of entitlement if not a spirit of laziness and/or complacency. Many times God is requiring us to do something in order to reap the increase, but I don't want to minimize what He can do supernaturally!

I found that my greatest blessing from God has not been monetary. My greatest blessing has been meeting people and communicating with people. Many people have blessed me in many capacities and I have been blessed to bless others in many capacities. No money in my opinion can compare to that. My prayer is probably more along the lines of Solomon.

Solomon prayed in 1 Kings 3:5-9: At Gibeon the LORD appeared to Solomon in a dream by night, and God said, "Ask what I shall give you." And Solomon said, "You have shown great and steadfast love to your servant David my father, because he walked before you in faithfulness, in righteousness, and in uprightness of heart toward you. And you have kept for him this great and steadfast love and have given him a son to sit on his throne this day. And now, O LORD my God, you have made your servant king in place of David my father, although I am but a little child. I do not know how to go out or come in. And your servant is in the midst of your people whom you have chosen, a great people, too many to be numbered or counted for multitude. Give your servant therefore an understanding mind to govern your people, that I may discern between good and evil, for who is able to govern this your great people?"

And Solomon's prayer pleased The Lord (actually, Jabez's prayer pleased The Lord as well, just wanted to clarify that - smile)

Now look at what God did for Solomon (and this blessed my spirit): verses 11-14: And God said to him, "Because you have asked this, and have not asked for yourself long life or riches or the life of your enemies, but have asked for yourself understanding to discern what is right, behold, I now do according to your word. Behold, I give you a wise and discerning mind, so that none like you has been before you and none like you shall arise after you. 

Verses 13-14 are crucial: I give you also what you have not asked, both riches and honor, so that no other king shall compare with you, all your days. And if you will walk in my ways, keeping my statutes and my commandments, as your father David walked, then I will lengthen your days."

The wisdom that God gave Solomon was amazing. Sadly, Solomon ceased to use the wisdom that God gave him once you reach chapter 11. Anyway, on your own, look at verses 16-28 within chapter 3.

In chapter 4, it's recorded that Solomon spoke 3,000 proverbs, and his songs were 1,005. Many of us read Proverbs every day (a chapter per month - and I do it too). I don't know about you, but Ecclesiastes & Song of Solomon are powerful books in itself. 

But I just wanted to share my thoughts on these two prayers by two powerful men of God (Jabez & Solomon).

By the way, this wasn't a planned blog :)


The Mayne Man