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To those of you crying out in pain, thinking suicide is the only way for the pain to stop, this writer offers you these words of hope and testimony of freedom and joy. (Written by one who is now far more than a survivor and is helping others to get free. She was challenged to write one who was suicidal and talk her out of in within 20 minutes and she did!)

I'm So Glad I Didn't Commit Suicide!

A year ago, I came within minutes of a successful suicide. All of my possessions were laid out. My will was completed. Correspondence to family and friends was finished. Even my funeral wishes were on paper. I was furious when, for a few moments hours later, I regained conscious just long enough to see the hospital white lights and scream, "How the hell did I get in here again?!" I was still alive and furious. I didn't know how I was rescued but I was mad. The hospital staff kept me sedated for 3 days while they did respiratory and cardiac therapy and assessed the damage to my body.
During the psyche stay that followed, a friend of mine died suddenly in a car accident. The shock woke me up. Elizabeth's children prepared two years to be able to care for their mother in their home until she died. Tragically, on the way back from a wedding, Elizabeth died, leaving the children with a home furnished for her needs. Who would guess that she would be taken home first? I realized life is fragile and precious. We think we have a lifetime of 70-90 years yet any one of us can be gone in a heartbeat.
From that moment, I chose to live every day, giving it to God in the morning. I determined to make my imprint on today as though it were my last. What a turn-around! "God-surprises" popped up every day. It has been an exciting and very painful year. There are no quick fixes here short of miraculous supernatural healing of the soul. But my decision to treat each day as my last changed me.
Since December 2003, I was in the ER 3 times in 3 months with a suspected heart attack. Then they thought it must be GI related. In March I couldn't tolerate any food. Over 50 pounds has come off (which is a good thing). The best I could do was chicken noodle soup or broth. Sleep was hard and I wanted answers. By May I was near crazy. I was losing a pound a day and I couldn't eat. They couldn't find what was wrong with me and wouldn't treat anything without being sure. I was frustrated, angry, tired and miserable. Every doctor's appointment meant waiting more weeks with no suggestions for change.
One day I was picking up another lab request. I burst into tears. My anger flashed. The nurse gave me a hug, then permanently changed my attitude by saying "You will get through this. People do this every day all over this city." That night it was obvious I wasn't going to get much sleep. I asked God to show me what the nurse meant. My thoughts went to cancer patients, exhausted, in pain, having trouble breathing, hungry but unable to eat, bodies unable to move for disturbing a wound site. People in traction who depend on others to see them cry and to wipe their tears away. My dear friend who just lost her leg to gangrene! She is DID with 3 children and her husband just finished surgery and treatment for brain cancer. Yet she is growing and maturing so beautifully! I can't imagine how she's adjusting but God is showering her with His Love and Grace. A baby struggling to live. An exhausted mother who dares not sleep lest her son die in the night. In comparison, my life wasn't that hard. I had no reason to complain.
I decided to live and be thankful for the gifts God has given me. I chose to rejoice in His love for me because He is God and deserves our praise no matter what the circumstances. I chose to embrace suffering and be thankful for opportunities to run into God's heart, asking Him for comfort, strength, wisdom, and peace, etc. I accepted the fact that my doctors didn't want to further complicate things by adding medicines that may not be helpful in finding answers and that I, like so many others but to a far lesser degree, had to learn to adapt and endure. How I endured would be a personal choice. You disagree? You think I'm minimizing your pain? Not at all. I've been there for way too many years.
Choice is what the abusers stole from us. God will not violate our choice. To God, our choice is precious. It is by choice we love Him. It is by choice we accept His payment for our sin. It is by choice we bow down before Him and worship Him. By choice we dance in adoration in front of Him. It's by choice we open our hearts bare and let Him see what we can hardly stand to see ourselves. To move from victim to survivor to overcomer to thriving requires choosing to trust Him, what's written about Him in Scripture and choosing faithfulness to Him. Just as trust grows with a therapist, pastor or friend, we build a history of trust with Jesus that leads us to increasing insights of His goodness, which leads us into intimacy and a love relationship with Him that satisfies all the deep yearnings of our stripped down hearts. A relationship requires time, effort, risks, trust, honesty, communication, questions, listening and time, time, time. Falling in love with Jesus is the key to abundant living here on earth. It does require choices on our part.

When I'm in pain, I can run to God and tuck myself into His heart, thanking Him that He's in control, that He's present, He's watching over me and He's building in me a heart of gratitude, praise and worship. I can also whine, cry, complain, accuse God of all sorts of things He's not guilty of and ride a downward spiral of despair, anger, stress, blaming, bitterness and self-centeredness, leading me towards suicide. A single choice affects everyone around us like ripples in a pond caused by throwing a single stone into it. Will it be a life stone or a death stone you choose to throw in the pond?

Moses explained to the Israelites all the blessings and curses God set out for them in a manual for living. Then came the personal choice; the personal decision: "I lay before you life and death. Choose life!"
Yesterday is over. We can't change it but we can learn from the past. Tomorrow isn't here and we can't solve tomorrow's problems today. Jesus made it clear--there's enough trouble within each day. I'm to keep my focus, energy and choices available for how I engage life today. Today is all we are promised. Suicide is future focused. Suicide is a death stone that will send out ripples of pain. The future seems impossible to endure given the overwhelming pain of today.
God promises grace sufficient for today. He promises a way of escaping all our temptations. He assures there is a way to find His rest and grace each day, no matter what we face. He is always with us, whether we "feel" His Presence or not. He promised to never leave us or forsake us (abandon or reject us). Talk to Him. Tell Him everything. He already knows it all so why not share your inmost thoughts and "secrets." Cry with Him. Let Him hear your anger, your turmoil, your despair. Then be still. Listen for Him. Begin to thank Him. Can you identify 100 things you are thankful for? Take some time. Look around you. There are hundreds of things. Then praise Him for His watchful care over you, His promises to heal your broken heart and to give you life abundant. Let your praise transition into worship until God's peace soothes your tormented soul. Then list another 100 things you are thankful for. Every time you move through this process Jesus will reveal more of Himself to you and heal your pain. Trust will take root and grow.
You likely are saying, "Are you nuts? I can't do that! You don't understand how much I hurt and how far away God seems!" I do hear you. I feel your pain. It's taken me 10 years to be free from almost 40 years of trauma, pain and tragedy. I've learned the value of my choice. Please keep your heart open to hear me out for just a minute.
Life is a series of choices made every moment of the day. I choose to stay in bed under my blankets or I choose to change my attitude and put my feet on the floor and get up. The only two things I am able to control in life is my choice and my attitude. We think we can control so many other things but it's simply not so. Just like each destructive choice leads to hurtful consequences, so do healthy choices lead to healing opportunities. The CHOICE is always mine. And the great part? There's so much freedom in choosing the best path; the high road; the road to healing; the path to rest.
I've lived these principles. I've anguished over facing the truth of taking charge of my choice and attitude and trusting God for everything else. I've risked trusting Him when it seemed hopeless. He gives us peace in the storms of life but my choice and attitude are my responsibility. I look backwards now over the span of my life and I can't find pain anywhere. My life is my own for the first time in 49 years. My spirit is free, trusting and playful like a child. There's also a maturity that only comes by learning to test out God's character and principles that He gives us for our good. We choose to risk opening our hearts bare to Him even when it seems there's no change. He is faithful. His healing will come. His Presence will become your safe place, your recovery place, your resting place.
Keep your eyes fixed on Jesus. Give Him everything that holds you back, slows you down or stops you from finding Jesus as your Best Friend. Ask God to make you hungry to know Him; to fall in love with Him. The path isn't easy. A rare treasure is hard to find and costs us great amounts of time, energy, honest searching, sacrifice, endurance and patience. But when that treasure is found!!! Oh the joy. The peace. The thrill of possessing something that is rare, altogether lovely and precious, knowing no one can steal it for it's your gift from God - the gift of Himself living and loving inside of you. Enjoy "pillow talk" with Jesus, Who loves you more than you can ever fathom. One day you will understand some of how God dances wildly with every thought of you when your heart races, your feet dance and joy, giggles and smiles erupt from your heart with every thought of Him. Pray with David, "Give me an undivided heart that I may worship you."
Conquered and compelled by His Love,