In two days, we are having our Real Issues – Real Answers Event. We had trouble knowing how to describe it. Is it a seminar or a workshop or an event? We knew it was not a conference. Our conferences are intended to empower the women to go the next step, regardless of where they are presently. This event is more about helping the woman get out of bed in the morning. Our desire is to encourage the women attending and to let them know there is hope for their todays and tomorrows.
I keep thinking that for some of these women, it might be the only time in a long time that they talked to someone else or had the energy to meet a stranger. We had to really consider the type of music, the videos, and the personalities of the speakers for each topic as we do not want to drag anyone lower than they already feel.
But in all the praying and planning, there has been one area I did not expect the Lord to go out of His way to highlight to me. It is not light or cheery or even hopeful. I told the staff that I was going to write a blog on it and they laughed and said, “Can you make it light?” NO… why? because the topic is suicide.
From our radio show to our speakers and two friends who do not know each other, all have brought up the topic of suicide. Each of them has been personally affected by it lately. I was the listening ear to some of them as they tried to put in words their guilt and confusion in their present circumstance.
In each conversation though, I noticed a very similar trait: the selfishness of suicide. That was the hardest thing to hear or accept. It is much easier to concentrate on the sickness of the person who committed the suicide than the selfishness of the decision. My concern is not so much about enabling the suicide victim because that person was very sick who could take their life into their own hands. But my greater concern is for the living family members who try to rationalize or justify the action. Why? Because it seems like those justifications leave the door open for themselves to follow down that path too. When suicide has been an option in a family, you start seeing that the other family members think about it as an option too. If that door to your mind is not closed down, others look at it as a viable option. I believe that is why the Catholic church and so many other faiths preach that suicide is unforgiveable. Jesus didn’t say that but Christian culture does. As a result, no one talks about it and it is kept secret which makes it a quiet and very deadly (no pun intended) option.
Jesus is into life and having it abundantly. He is also into light and exposing darkness and dark thoughts. Demons flee like cockroaches when the light is turned on. This weekend at Real Issues-Real Answers, we are going to turn the light on to help women be set free. It is time to be released from the bondage of bad habits and patterns as well as poor role models.
We are looking forward to meeting a whole bunch of new friends who are coming because they want help or they want to help. God is good and we plan on having a really good day. If you can’t come, we would appreciate your prayers. www.realissues-realanswers.com Saturday, August 22 from 9-5 –TL