One of my childhood favorites, Robin Williams, took his own life. A life that brought joy to most of us at some point, could never seem keep that joy alive for himself.
Depression induced suicide was the lonely culprit and once again we were shockingly reminded of its powerful stronghold on the life it consumes.
I grew up watching this manic man. More than once my friends and I would try and imitate his funny voices and make our own “crazy” Robin Williams like recordings on tape. He just cracked me up. I will never forget his standup routine in the early 80s. My buddy Johnny and I would sneak into his parents living room and pull out that video tape “for adults only” and laugh so hard we were both in tears.
Good Morning Vietnam, Ms. Doubtfire, Mork N Mindy, Cadillac Man, Jumanji, Flubber, Dead Poets Society, Patch Adams…I could go on.
He was pure greatness.
I have to admit as a Christian that there are a handful of questions in life I can’t pin a neat little scripture verse to or really explain well at all. And as a Believer if you say you don’t have any…well, you’re just not being real or honest with yourself.
There are many things about this life we just don’t get and this illness is one of them.
Many theologians and those with bigger minds than mine do all they can to write books, preach sermons or talk on radio shows trying provide answers that make sense to these questions. But most of the time they fall short in explaining anything that makes sense to me and leave me back at where I started...
I don’t personally struggle with depression. Oddly enough, I actually like that feeling of being alone in a crowd – sometimes and only for a brief moment. Sure I have moments of being down and depressed...but not full-blow, life comes-to-a-stop depression.
But I know many of you do. And many of you love and know Jesus too.
Prayer helps some. Scripture helps some. Friends help here and there. Family has it place. Counseling gives you some hope at times. Certain prescription drugs provide relief and for many, abusive substances are used to try and mask the pain for a few minutes at a time.
No matter what is tried, for many, however, that oppressive grip of overwhelming sadness and depression merely comes back in full swing and the cycle starts all over. You can’t move. You don’t feel. You don’t care and worse of all, you can’t explain why.
For Robin Williams this was apparently the deadly thorn in his life.
I don’t have the answer to the mystery of depression. I studied it in school, got a Master’s in Psychology from Baylor and read plenty about it. Yet, I still don’t get it.
I just have to solely rest on my faith and the words of Paul that tell me “then we shall see clearly” as God does and that one day I will see and understand. Evil has its power and it many cases, try as we might, it simply won’t let go.
But in the end, God gets victory, and this too shall be cast into the hell whence it came.
That’s all I know.
“For now we see through a glass, darkly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; but then shall I know, even as also I am known.” I Corinthians 13:12
© 2014, J. Brady
"I say it how I see it and I make no bones about it."