I've been wanting to commit suicide for a while now.

Dear Ralph,

Thank you for your website. It is really beautiful that you cared enough to make it. I've been wanting to commit suicide for a while now. The people who wrote to you took the words out of my mouth: too much pain, I want to be home in heaven, I know Jesus but can't talk to him anymore, I have suffered enough . . . and I think I'll read your responses over again because it seemed like you were talking to me. Lately I have felt tongue-tied due to this enduring pain; I have little to say to anyone anymore and don't want to talk to any of my friends because they've heard it all a million times and things are not improving, despite their prayers in faith and mine that seem to be grasping at the air. I used to be such a Bible-thumper; I think I wanted to erase the pain by focusing only on God and preaching and all, but I don't think it was really my calling to wear Christian T-shirts everyday and starve myself and all of the weird things I thought God "told" me to do. Now I have faith but its not. . . I guess I'm so full of doubt and I've prayed for years that my Jewish family (I'm half-Jewish) would accept Jesus and we've had discussions about him, but no one is interested.

I try to be loving and kind and tell people "I'll pray for you" and I do, and I do, but... why won't God at least answer back? If he's not going to do what I've asking him to do, couldn't he at least be friendly enough to converse with me? I want him to be my best friend but he says not a word!! I didn't mean to tell you all of this, but I hold it all inside and it hurts so much. It hurts so much that I can't even journal anymore because I'm afraid I'll reread how much pain I'm in. I was also in a relationship, with a man who wants to be a minister, for a year and a half. We prayed together, shared our hearts, expected to be engaged, and he changed his mind. It's more complicated than that. (I'm only 20, I figured I'd tell you, because the next whine I have about life could only be spoken by one so young). My parent's are divorced, my step-father won't let me see my mom's new baby for more than five minutes. Oh, I'd tell you my whole life story if I could. But I'll just say that today, like many days, I was that close to suicide. I've been looking for so long for someone who is a Christian and understands how it feels to be suicidal (even if, of course, you would not recommend it). Thank you.

My response is in Green:

I guess you know from reading some of the other messages on my page that I can often be pretty blunt. I believe in telling the truth because that is what people need. There are plenty of people who will tell you something that will make you feel better at least for the moment, but often it is not the truth and only the truth will really help in the long run.

Anyway, thank you for writing me. I am glad that God spoke to you through my pages. You said some things that I have felt for a while. You said that you used to be such a Bible-thumper. I know many people who started that way and you know I think Jesus even described you in a parable He told. Please hang in there and don't get mad at me for this, I will try to tie it all together later.

(Matthew 13:3-8 NIV) Then he told them many things in parables, saying: "A farmer went out to sow his seed. {4} As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up. {5} Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow. {6} But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root. {7} Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up and choked the plants. {8} Still other seed fell on good soil, where it produced a crop--a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown.

The disciples did not understand what He meant so they asked Him to tell them in part: (Matthew 13:20-22 NIV) The one who received the seed that fell on rocky places is the man who hears the word and at once receives it with joy. {21} But since he has no root, he lasts only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, he quickly falls away. {22} The one who received the seed that fell among the thorns is the man who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke it, making it unfruitful.

Notice that Jesus says that those who hear and at once receives it with joy sometimes last only a short while because they have no roots. I think what He is talking about are people (and I don't know if this describes you or not) quick to accept Christ and then they carry their Bibles everywhere. They tell everyone about Jesus. The problem is that they are so busy telling others that they don't take the time to grow in their new faith and just as quickly as they gained the knowledge they lose it. This is not a hit on them, it is one of the things that Satan does to keep people from having what Jesus offers them. Or the people who believe but the cares of the world become so heavy on them that they lose sight of God because of the darkness around them.

If either of those describes you, the good news is there is hope. You need to grow in your faith. God tells us how to do that: (Romans 10:17 NIV) Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ.

It takes work, it takes a commitment to God too. It is hard to find the time to really read and study God's word, but it is the only way you will grow. It also takes time and effort to speak to God every day. Satan does not want you reading your Bible and praying every day so he will try hard to keep you from doing it. He will make it seem hard, he will make sure you are busy and can't find the time, he will give you so many problems that you can't think about God or reading your Bible. Yet the way to overcome those problems is to do just that. There is no other solution. You can talk to other people until you are blue in the face, but they can't help you, only God can. He wants to help you too, but you have to reach out and grab His hand. Remember back to when you were a Bible-thumper, were you happier? I bet you were. I am not saying you have to go back to being a Bible-thumper, but you do need to go back to that kind of faith and trust in God.

You asked why God does not just answer back. You need to reread your message to me. You said that what other people wrote to me was exactly how you felt, you said that it seemed as if I were talking directly to you. No, it seemed that God was talking directly to you. I try to write from my heart, but it is not me it is the Holy Spirit who gives me the words. I ask Him to take control and use me to reach others. I have no wisdom, if you look back on my life you will see that I am the last person who should give any advise, yet the Bible says God uses the ignorant things of this world to shame the wise. If anyone other than God said that I would call it a backhanded compliment, but I know it is true since He said it.

You said you have prayed for years for your Jewish family. Well I have two things to say about that. First don't stop now!! I pretty much walked away from my faith and stayed in rebellion against God for over 20 years. During that time, my parents, but especially my mother prayed for me. She continued to pray and I believe that the only reason I am where I am today is because she beat on heavens gate every day. Jesus even mentions that: (Luke 18:2-8 NIV) He said: "In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared about men. {3} And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, 'Grant me justice against my adversary.' {4} "For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, 'Even though I don't fear God or care about men, {5} yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won't eventually wear me out with her coming!'" {6} And the Lord said, "Listen to what the unjust judge says. {7} And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? {8} I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?"

He is telling us not to give up. God does not think of time as we do, so He may seem slow to us but He is not. Notice too that He asks the question will He find faith on earth when He returns? Wow, that hits pretty close to home.

Second, and I hope this does not upset you, but if you are struggling with your faith and it appears that you are, then what kind of a witness is your family seeing in you? My point is that we pray for people and we talk to them, but if our lives show that we don't have faith to really believe what we are telling them, why would they listen to us? I am really not trying to attack you, but it is the truth. Let me give you an example. You have been praying for your family, you tell them that they have missed the Messiah. The One who will save Israel, their only hope of being reconciled to God. They don't believe you, but they watch you. They want to see why you believe this stuff. Then one day you get so depressed that you commit suicide. You have not only sealed your own fate, but most likely you have sealed your families fate too. How can they believe in a savior who can't even keep His followers from killing themselves?

Well if you are still reading then maybe I have not made you too mad. You should not, not commit suicide because you don't want to be a bad witness, first and foremost you should not commit suicide because it is an offense against God. You should ask God to help you. You have to take your eyes off of yourself in order to look at Him. That is hard teaching but again it is true. It is so important too. If you will force yourself to trust Him and you will take your eyes off of your own pain and problems and put them on Him, in a short time you will realize that things are better. I guarantee it, no I should say God guarantees it! You will only take one more breath if He gives it to you. Do you believe that? Do you believe God loves you? If you answered both of those questions with a yes, then think about it. Why would God give you another breath if all that was going to happen to you the rest of your life was that you were going to be miserable and suffer? That would not be a loving God!! Now it is possible that He might allow you to suffer for a greater purpose.

What if your attitude while suffering is what finally brings your family to Christ? Would it be worth it then? I am not saying that is what it is, but who knows. I do know that God has plans for you and that they are for good not for evil. I also know that He loves your family even more than you do. So it makes me wonder.

Talk to Him. Tell Him how you feel. Be honest with Him. You can't tell God anything that He does not already know anyway, but you can lie to Him and yourself too. He wants to be your Father and your friend, but He can't if you are not honest with Him. Tell Him about your pain and your feelings. Get close to Him. Read His word. I know there are things in the Bible that will speak to your heart. It is God's word and He speaks to us through it.

Well I better close. I will pray for you. Please feel free to write me again. I don't mind long letters so write whatever you want to.



E-Mail Ralph (Whose comments are in green)

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