Happy “Terrific” Tuesday!
I pray all are having a wonderfully blessed day and an even better week.
On this day, I’m contemplating the frailty of life. I was so very saddened to hear about the death of Robin Williams yesterday. He was such a wonderfully gifted and talented man who clearly – like many of us – struggled with his own inner demons for some time. I was truly saddened that such a tremendous talent was prematurely taken from this world. However, I’m even more saddened for his family. I pray they can find comfort in the days and months to come celebrating his memory and many gifts he left behind.
I myself have struggled with depression and know the feeling of holding onto and hiding deep pain within. Pain that never seems to subside and cannot be comforted no matter external efforts. Attempts at numbing the pain through various substances and vices – sex, food, alcohol, shopping, working – it still remains and lasts long after the temporary high is over. In my period of depression, I too contemplated suicide as the pain became too much for me to handle. Fortunately by the grace of God, I never acted on those thoughts. However, I know how real that pain is and can truly empathize with what he must have been going through.
On many of the news and talks shows this morning remembering his life, there was a great deal of discussion of how taboo it is to talk about “mental illness” and the shame associated with it. The reality is most of us struggle with some form of “mental illness”. We just don’t call it that. It might not be to the depth of his struggles – but it’s real and a part of many of our daily lives. Rather than call it “mental illness” we put up a façade for the world to see, while dying on the inside. Many struggle with deep sadness and depression, but due to the stigma rarely share it or admit it. And that shame is what perpetuates the pain. It is that shame that causes those struggling to believe there is no other option. We truly need to shift this conversation, and understand that at some level we are ALL in need of inner healing. Healing that will take away the inner demons, doubtful critical thoughts, anger, painful memories, repressed emotions so that we can truly live a life of peace. A “peace that surpasses all understanding”.
Robin William’s death put much in perspective for me. To remember that no matter how bad the pain gets, it is possible to overcome – it is possible to be healed. I believe that only God can take that pain away – at least that was my experience. I believe that as He did for me, only God can orchestrate the right supports, guidance and resources and through much prayer – heal and rid our lives of depression, sadness and pain. I continue to remain humbled and grateful that God healed me and saved me from myself.
His death is also a poignant reminder for each of us to truly be grateful for every single aspect of our lives. The song “Be Grateful” came to my spirit this morning (it’s actually a song that comes to my spirit often). I know it’s God’s way of constantly reminding me to be grateful no matter what my external circumstances look like. As the lyrics say “Be grateful, there is someone worse off than you, there is someone who would love to be in your shoes.“ I’m grateful to reminded that no matter what is going on in my life, I am tremendously blessed. I’ve been healed and transformed in a way I could have never imagined. To remember that God saved me and healed me for a Divine purpose. A purpose much greater than me. He healed me so that I could serve as an example and go forth and help others receive the same healing. To help others know that His gift of healing is available to us all.
Rather than bemoaning the fact that I no longer have my own home, my own car, my own money – I will focus on being grateful for the wonderfully blessed home I live in, the reliable transportation I have access to, and that nothing I’ve needed, He has not supplied. Rather than complaining about still living in my parent’s home, to truly treasure this time with my mother and father and know that I am blessed to still have them in my life.
So, on yesterday with this unfortunate loss of another life and after sitting in a hospital room praying over a lifetime family friend struggling to fight cancer and illness – I am reminded to be grateful, to truly treasure each and every day. To show love and kindness to each and every person I am blessed to have in my life – even perfect strangers I come across. To remember the frailty of life and to be grateful for the gift of still being alive. I’m still here and forever grateful for that gift.
Rest in Heaven Robin Williams. I truly pray that your soul is now at peace.