This morning, I shared a Facebook story on the conclusion of the Center for Disease Control study that found a significant correlation to the dramatic rise in teen suicide and the increasing distance society has with spirituality. My comment was an open challenge to start talking about Jesus as a solution. I was challenged by this, off-post, in that it could be perceived as insensitive to those whose loved ones committed suicide while having faith in Jesus. The danger was to risk implying that they did not have enough faith. In addition, it was pointed out that there are lots of effective treatment for mental illness. Points well taken, so I edited my post. I’m going to share that with you, for what it’s worth.
Again, let’s start having real discussions about Jesus. He is much more than any of us think. Let me add this. I believe the Bible is clear that suicide is not the unforgiveable sin. Greg Laurie of Harvest https://www.harvest.org/ offers a really good explanation on this. His son committed suicide. The main issue with any human (natural death or suicide) is whether or not they are saved in the first place.
That aside, there are many solutions to mental health issues. There are many solutions to all our problems. Jesus isn’t the only path to becoming a fruitful, happy person while here on this earth. Alcoholics Anonymous is clear that their primary purpose is sobriety. They promote spirituality through a higher power of your choice including the infamous door knob. No one will deny that millions are sober and content through the principles offered through the rooms of AA.
The issue of eternity is another story. The fact of the matter is that many people (if not most) reject the idea of biblical Christianity. Let’s set aside any opinions of a church we have come to hate. Let’s instead start talking about the Jesus that many, many people have come to know.
The fact is, millions of people have been rescued from a life of addition, violence, depression, or you name it, solely from their faith in Jesus. Yes, many won’t tolerate even talking about Jesus, but does that mean that we must exclude Him from any public conversation?
Honestly, I see so many transformed lives of people that come to Jesus for help. I can’t tell you how many said it was their last choice, their last hope. I testify to all that I was one of these.
If Jesus only was effective in 5% of our problems, wouldn’t that be enough reason to include him in our arsenal of treatment? Of course it would. Then why don’t we?
I think the reason we don’t may frighten us. Perhaps we can’t stand the idea that a son or daughter of ours may actually fall in love with Jesus. Perhaps we can’t stand the idea that someone close to us may actually take the bible seriously.
Each of us has the right to reject Jesus. Even so, do we have the right to exclude Him as a legitimate alternative to a sick and dying world? Take him or leave him, but please let me tell people about Him. More than that, please encourage me to do so.
Father, I ask that you send your workers out into the harvest to share the gospel of Jesus Christ. Jesus was a walking miracle machine while he walked this earth, and he still is today. Father, send us out to share this wonderful news of hope. And life. And peace. Amen.