Monday, September 16, 2019

Jarrid Wilson's Suicide

I would like to comment on Pastor Jarrid Wilson's suicide.  In our effort to quickly answer the question of his eternal destiny, we are missing a lot of what will happen here from now on, from his wife, his children, his church and those contemplating suicide.

His heaven will lead many to a hell on earth.

Let me explain.  My family is a testimony to the long-term effects of suicide.  My grandmother shot herself in front of my grandfather after he accused her of having an affair.  That was in 1941.  My mother was just 12 years old.   She walked in after it occurred and so did her younger sister.

Strike one. 

My grandfather, who was an eminent cardiologist, ended up losing his license to practice medicine due to his increasing use of alcohol.  He married a nurse to care for his children.  My mother hated her and wished her dead.  When this woman died of ovarian cancer, my mother never forgave herself.  My grandfather died of cirrhosis of the liver when I was three, again devastating my mom. 

Strike two.

My mother's alcoholism destroyed her marriage of 23 years. My dad divorced her when I was 16.  By the time she died in 1984, the frontal lobe of her brain was merely interstitial fluid. Her alcoholism had destroyed her brain.  I cared for her in the last year of her life, watching her became an infant. 

Strike three.

Her sister also drank herself to death, leaving two daughters behind.  Her older brother shot and killed himself as an adult, leaving three daughters behind. 

My brother started using drugs and alcohol at a very young age, to numb the pain of our very unhappy home.  He married twice and alcohol and drug use destroyed his marriages.  He fathered three children and was estranged from them.  He died this year at the age of 62, severely mentally ill, and although he did not commit suicide, he spent the last six mouths texting his children and me that we should join him in doing so.

My family has felt the reverberations of that one day in 1941 for over 80 years. 

So, in trying to make nice with suicide, these well-intentioned pastors and commentators seemed to have forgotten the long road that now faces Jarrid's wife and sons, his church members and all of those who knew and loved him.

Grief is a balm.  It numbs the pain of loss and we do everything we can to comfort those who grieve.

But grief wears off.  Anger shows up.  Then those ugly questions arise and demand answers:

Why did Daddy leave us?
Did Daddy not love us?
Could we have stopped Daddy?
Why didn't my husband come and say he was at the end of his tether?
Why didn't we go to our pastor and tell him to take time off and really focus on healing?
Did our pastor do absolutely everything he could to ease the pain?  Do he see a therapist?  Did he take medications?  Did he engage in any therapeutic procedures (like EMDR)?  Was he seeing anyone at the time of his death?
Why didn't Dad follow his own rhetoric?  
Where was our church in all of this?  Didn't they see this coming?
Where was God?
Why did Dad do this to Mom?
Why did Dad do this to us?
Couldn't God, if He is so mighty and loves us so much, have stopped Dad?

Those questions will never be satisfactorily answered on this side of heaven.  This kind of abandonment is shattering. It shatters faith, families, friendships and fellowship for years and years, and even effects those not yet born.

Why aren't our well-intentioned pastors preaching on that?


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