Wednesday, February 2, 2011

God, Google, and Suicide: Thoughts On Suffering

Exodus 3:7
The LORD said, “I have indeed seen the misery of my people... I have heard them crying out...and I am concerned about their suffering."

I was browsing through my blog patrol the other day, taking a look at some of my most recent blog visitors, when I came across something rather disturbing.

In the "keyword" section of words searched- I found the phrase 'How to Kill Yourself' .  Apparently, someone had searched that phrase and somehow for some reason unbeknown to me, Google had led them to my blog. 

I immediately felt a sense of sadness thinking that just a few moments ago, some unknown person, for some unknown reason had searched such a heart-breaking phrase.  Questions flooded my mind about who this person was, what they were like, and why they may have been searching such a morbid phrase.  I wondered if they were in pain, or suffering.  I wondered if they were alone.  I wondered if they felt loved.   These questions I will never know the answer to, but one thing I DO know: God cares.

According to this passage in Exodus, God's emotions are moved in response to ours.  He is concerned about the things that break our heart and cause us pain.  He is affected by our suffering, and He listens when we cry out. There is something amazing about a God who would take the time to feel for people like you and me...for people like this individual, searching for a way out of their suffering and their pain.,

After the sadness subsided, and I grasped the reality that this individual was in the end led to my blog- I felt a sense of responsibility.  What had I posted that day?  What message did I send?  How seriously did I take my words?  I felt a sense of responsibility, not just in my blogging, but in all areas of my life.  It just really hit me that you never really know who is suffering around you.  You never really know the emotional state of the person in line behind you, the woman sitting next to you on the train, the man shaking your hand at church.  

It reminded me of a story I had heard from a friend of mine last week- about the tragic suicide of one of his friends.  An educated, well-to-do man who seemed to have it all together.

You never really know, unless you take the time to find show some concern...and to allow your self-absorbed self to take a moment off in order to look into the eyes of another.  We are all living this life together, fellow travelers on the same road, all walking toward the final destination of love.

Christians, may we take the time to recognize this as we live our day to day lives.  May we find a moment to really invest into the words we write, and the things we speak.  May we learn to take seriously our interactions with others, and begin to show some concern for the sufferings of our fellow man.  Because you'll never really know, unless you take the time to find out. 

Lord, break our hearts for the things that break yours


  1. i like to think that maybe god used google as a tool to lead a broken heart to a person who has love to share and a message worth hearing.

  2. Thanks for the encouragement, Blair. I hope and pray that I am always having "love to share" with others.

  3. I was thinking all kinds of things reading this post....but ya know...Maybe Blair is right...maybe God did use Google..I mean you never know right? Of course I'm stuck on .. who was this person and did they find out they were not alone...and that others are there for them...But ...maybe ..just maybe...God used Google...I'm sharing this post Debra...think others may need it..thank you...As always..XOXO

  4. I was drawn to your blog from a share Bongo did in our group. This is a powerful post with a powerful message! It is very sad to think that someone searched something like that. But, I am a firm believer that God works in mysterious ways. Why wouldn't He utilize google if that is where she was at that particular time? If God brings you to it, He will bring you through it. Hopefully, she found something to distract her from her current search, and she went on to another subject.

  5. Hi Debra,
    What a meaningful post...
    I appreciate your gentle admonition to pause and ponder how we use our words in writing. You never know, it could mean the difference between life and death for someone crying out in their darkest night.
    (Proverbs 18:21).

  6. Bongo, some great thoughts. I believe you, God can use anything, can't He? And He uses US when we least expect it. Appreciate your encouragement, and always appreciate your feedback!!! Thanks!

  7. Mary, I appreciate that Bongo shared this post and that you were so proactive in finding my blog as well, thank you for reading! I'm with you, hoping that whoever this person was...that they ended up feeling loved. Thanks for your comment!

  8. Debra, glad you found your way to my blog. I appreciate your thoughts as well...we can't take our words seriously enough, can we? God uses us beyond our abilities...and sometimes, beyond our comprehension. May God use you in your circle of influence. God bless.

  9. Debra...your words make me ponder...right now I'm feeling pretty disconnected....but then you read something like you posted and makes me think..ponder .. it's always a good never know when words..reading words can make a difference and touch a life...Thank you..As always..XOXOXO

  10. Wow...good reminder and an experience sparking great empathy. God does care and may He bless that person who was googling that prhase with hope, and life and light and a path to Him.

    This was a really thought provoking post and I think it challenges every one of us who blogs. That people, living all kinds of lives coming from all different perspectives, are reading our blogs, and we need to be careful about what we say.

  11. Bongo, it's amazing the power our words a double edged sword. The power to heal and the power to kill.

    Jessica, thanks for reading and for your comments. It really is a challenge to bloggers out be deliberate in how we live and what we write. Glad you were encouraged!!

  12. Wow Debbie!!! That is such a really moving post... I'm so glad you shared!

  13. Thanks Amanda, and thanks for reading!

  14. I came from a post Bongo put out, I am looking forward to reading more however I do know that God moves in mysterious ways and in a brief moment, a cry for help someone found you. A really interesting and heartfelt post oxox

  15. SJ, thanks for taking the time to find my blog and for your thoughts! God does move in mysterious ways...sometimes so subtle. Thanks for your support!


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