Some time ago a friend of one of my boys put a gun to his head and shot himself. He was only 16 and the son of a wealthy, notable doctor.
A few days before this young man's death, our local newspaper reported that a well-known clinical psychologist in Portland committed suicide, leaving this note to his staff:
"Tonight, I feel tired, alone, and suddenly very old. The full understanding of these feelings will come only when you, too, are tired, alone and old."
Suicides are increasing at alarming rates. French philosopher Jean Paul Sartre expressed the despair many feel when he wrote, "Now I know, things are entirely what they appear to be, and behind them there is nothing."
Thousands of people feel like Sartre, the clinical psychologist and the high school boy. They feel that life is empty. Overpowered by the idea of "nothingness," they kill themselves or seek escape through drug or alcohol addiction.
God has plenty to say about our outer pressures, inner despair and everyday struggles. The following verses of Scripture could be entitled "The God Who is Sufficient for the Pressures of Life."
"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God. For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows. If we are distressed, it is for your comfort and salvation; if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which produces in you patient endurance of the same sufferings we suffer. And our hope for you is firm, because we know that just as you share in our sufferings, so also you share in our comfort" (2 Corinthians 1:3-7).
Are you hurting inside? Do you ever feel like giving up on life?
When a crisis arises, the worst mistake you can make is to pretend that nothing is wrong. To find relief from your problems, you must first acknowledge them and the inner despair they cause. Only then can you embrace the "Father of all mercies and the God of all comfort." Paul reminds the Corinthian church that it is God's nature to be merciful. God Himself is the believer's source of encouragement, consolation and forgiveness under all circumstances.
The secret of discovering God's sufficiency is found in spending time with Him. Do you spend time alone with God every day? Learn to share all of your problems and needs with Him. Say, "Oh, Lord, I believe You are the Father of all mercies and the God of all comfort. Please help me today, especially in this situation."
Have you met the true Comforter?
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