Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Always Say A Prayer

Today's post is a very serious one, and it's written by an exhausted mind.  I experienced something last night that I never thought I would, and it's left me with many tired thoughts in my head that I wanted to put out to the world.

In a nutshell, one of my neighbors apparently got to a point where he felt he could no longer go on, and he took his own life in my backyard last night.  From the noise that I heard (I thought someone had broken my flower pot on my patio), to the phone call I received asking if anything was going on, to scanning the parking lot, and eventually discovering his lifeless body behind our townhouse building while trying to console his significant other, it's all a bit of a blur.

There were police officers rushing, and blue lights flashing.  There were people standing in the doorways of the twenty-five units of our little community.  There were questions, and note taking, and flashlights, and crime scene tape.

And there were the poor people who had to deal with the mess that this situation had left them in - someone they loved was gone.  Someone they loved was lying in the grass being documented by the authorities.  If it hadn't been for the fact that you could easily see the contents of his head, you would think he'd simply fainted. 

All in all, it was a horrific sight, and it leaves me feeling so saddened that this young man had reached a point in his short life where he felt he could not continue living.  I never knew his name, but he was always very friendly and kind to me.  We had to alternate the times that we took our dogs outside - his pit bull, while still a puppy, would certainly be able to eat my tiny babies alive, and with all of the animals outside at the same time, none of them could concentrate on the task at hand.

The entire ordeal lasted four hours, and I just keep going back to the fact that from the outside looking in, he seemed fine.  I'd seen him less than two hours before his death, and he seemed fine then too.  I'll probably never know what led him to this, but I can say this - I pray for him.  I pray for his family.  I pray for our little community - for the parents who had to explain to their children why there were so many officers in our neighborhood.  For the extended family and friends of this man, who will most likely have a very hard time coming to grips with the fact that they'll never see him again.

I also have used this time to reflect on the fact that this was another reminder of just how quickly life can be over, and it's important to do what you can to make this world a better place when you're living in it.  Part of me wishes I had gotten to know him - maybe I could have reached out and things could have been different.  The other part of me knows that it possibly wouldn't have been enough, and I'm satisfied with the fact that I could be there for the poor woman who is left alone in that house today.

If there's anything that has been renewed for me through this situation, it's that I have to rely on God when times get hard.  I know that I am not strong enough to handle the weight of the world on my own, and that He is always there for me.  He's protective of me, and He loves me, and He would never have given me life if He hadn't wanted me to be. Sometimes, being the control freak that I am, I have a hard time giving control over to anyone - even God - and that's silly because He ultimately has control of everything.  But, this has reminded me that sometimes, it's best to get on your face with God and ask Him for help.

I even thought back to one of the emails I received - you know the kind.  Sometimes, they are so annoying and usually, they bring the threat of bad things happening to you if you don't send them on.  This one, however, had a poem that made a lot of sense to me, and I thought of it again in light of the events of last night. 

There's work to do, deadlines to meet.
You have no time to spare.
But as you hurry and scurry...
ASAP - Always Say A Prayer.

In the midst of family chaos,
Quality time is rare.
Do your best; let God do the rest.
ASAP - Always Say A Prayer.

It may seem like your worries
Are more than you can bear.
Slow down and take a breather...
ASAP - Always Say A Prayer.

God knows how stressful life can be,
And He wants to ease your cares.
He'll respond to all your needs...
ASAP - Always Say A Prayer.

Today I'm saying a little prayer
That God will send a smile to you
And send you special blessings
Through everything you do.
- Lisa Englehardt 

I wish this young man could have been able to see past his pain and remember to Always Say A Prayer.  Since he was not able to do so, I ask each and every one of you to lift his family up today - lift them up tomorrow, and the rest of this week. Lift them up as long as you can remember to do so.  Lord knows they probably need that comfort and peace right now.

And if you are in need yourself - if suicide has ever crossed your mind - please do not keep this to yourself.  Talk to someone.  Let them tell you how special and loved you are.  Let someone help you.  Life is so precious, and the world will not be the same without you in it.  Always Say A Prayer.

Until next time,

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