Nothing Funny About “Christian” Ignorance & Cruelty
Posted on August 14, 2014
One of the hardest things to do is to help someone live through a period of depression. Depression can be brought on by any number of reasons. Sometimes the depression is accompanied by or brought on by a post traumatic stress event. The mental and emotional toll taken on both care givers and patients suffering from depression is, at times, overwhelming in its intensity. The past history of how people with depression were treated is one of the most ugly things our society has ever done to a group of people who were ill. People who exhibited a non-normal way of speaking or acting were considered to be possessed by the devil or the devil’s minions. They were called “Crazy” ‘Insane” ” Evil” or “Nuts”. Families would hide any members of their own family who suffered from mental illness. Some mentally ill persons would be dunked in water, trying to wash out the evil spirits while others would be thrown into “Mad Houses” or “Insane Asylums”. Whipped, abused, exposed to horrific experiments and oftentimes, dying at the hands of those charged with caring for these patients, the medical past of dealing with mental illness and depression is not something we, as a society, can be proud of allowing to have had happen.
Now, today, we are supposed to be living in a much better time of understanding. Mental illnesses are recognized as being real medical disabilities. We are past the days of waving herb-filled smoke over patients and trying to expel by physical force the evil demons residing in the bodies of those afflicted with mental illness. Doctors specializing in the treatment of patients suffering from depression and mental illnesses are making a difference in the quality of life of those they treat. Families are more understanding and for the most part, do try to support and care for their loved ones being treated for depression. However, there is one chunk of our society that has shown me and thousands of others like me, how not to act as a Christ Follower. These “Self-Righteous Christians” spew their poisonous misunderstandings of God’s Word out of their mouths like vomit. Somewhere, they forgot what belongs to God and what is man’s responsibility in following God’s Word in a godly way. How anyone can say they have the mind of Christ and thus have a right to tell others exactly who is going to Hell and who is not is beyond me. No sorrier example of this can be found than in what is happening at the moment due to the untimely passing of Mr. Robin Williams.
Mr. Williams, a beloved comedian and believer in God and heaven, killed himself this past week. He had been battling severe depression, drug addictions and alcoholism for years. In addition to having open heart surgery in 2009, it was revealed today that Mr. Williams had also been battling the early stages of Parkinson’s Disease. What is worthy of praise is that he was able to resist the drugs and alcohol for years at a time, but the depression was a constant and unwelcome companion in his life. It was always there, waiting to destroy what he so desperately wanted to have, namely the happiness in his life that he gave away to others everyday. I have lost count of the times that our family has laughed until we had tears and aching ribs from his antics and jokes in movies and talk shows. His comedy and acting ability made us feel like we were on a first name basis with him. Robin had a way of bringing laughter to the surface in anything that he was talking about. He had the ability to turn that gift on himself too. He did not shy away from discussing his personal struggles and battles about trying to stay clean and sober and how hard it was to do that. His openness with us of his battle with depression was remarkable. He had honest eyes. You could see pain there and yet, the softness of his soul showed through too. He raised three wonderful and loving children. Each child has their own special recalling of their Dad being their Dad. He did all this in the spotlight of the ever present news media and gossip hounds looking for the worst in anyone. For them there was nothing like a good “fall from grace” by a celebrity to sell lots of tabloids and net thousands of media hits for networks. Robin didn’t have a fall from grace. Robin lost his battle with depression and as a result, the depression took his life. Our hearts were broken by the loss of this person, lost because of mental illness, lost because the pain of being here was greater than body and mind could bear.
During this time of people discussing and sharing memories of what Robin Williams had meant to them, I stumbled onto someone that has to be one of the most mis-informed experts on God’s Word and anything else having to do with forgiveness and God. He seemed determined to hold accountable any mentally ill person who killed themselves as being responsible for sending themselves to hell. His ignorance was in full view as he sputtered out his message of damnation about what happened to Mr. Williams as a “weak, sinful and shameful act”. I certainly hope that no one in that guy’s circle of family and friends has the unfortunate experience of being diagnosed with any illness that would damage their ability to remain in a sane and stable state. I shudder to think of how that sharp tongued critic would handle anyone who dared to show any weakness in any area of their lives. This commentator actually said that he didn’t want his children looking up to someone who is sick enough to “off themselves”. I couldn’t help but point out to this man that he had actually referred to the “offed” person as being “sick enough”. I wondered if his saber toothed blather also extended to those who, in the process of dying from cancer or some other horrible disease and used words that could be considered as cursing God, would be sent to hell too.
What I will fondly remember about Robin Williams will be how his sense of humor and ability to give love and laughter to people was like a refreshing drink of cool water from a mountain stream. His knack for trying to always leave people with a smile, even at the expense of his own health was remarkable. I remember when I was battling the pain of bacterial meningitis and the pain of the headache being so blinding that I was desperate for relief. By the time my husband, Mark and the nurses stopped me, I was in the hallway, IV’s pulled out and trying to get to our car which I thought was in the hospital parking lot. I knew we kept a gun in the car. I just wanted to stop the headache. I had a brain injury and my thoughts were not those of a normal and healthy person. Thinking back on that time, I do realize that had I have actually made it to our car and shot myself, I know that God would not have turned me away from heaven. True Christian people right now will remember, that in all things, God is our Judge and it is only He who decides what sins are in the lives of His Children.
There is also something that needs to be stated again. For those of us who are of the Christian faith, Jesus Christ was crucified and died for our sins. When we took the step of accepting Jesus Christ as our Savior, there is no such thing as not having time to seek forgiveness for a sin because we died before we had a chance to ask to be forgiven for it. Say for an example, if we have an argument with someone and say hateful words or if we have told a lie and we die before we confessed that sin or sins to God, we are still forgiven. As a Christian, our place in heaven is assured for no sin stands up against the blood of Jesus Christ who has died for our sins. Once we have accepted Jesus Christ as our Savior, human sin becomes a moot point. If you do not believe that then I suggest that you take my statement of sins covered by Jesus’s blood and see if there is an expiration date on the covering of that blood. You will learn that there is not any expiration date and we stand forgiven by His blood as we stand before God. THAT is in the BOOK.
Rational human thinking in a well and whole body would reject the ending of their life as something not done. It is only when intense pain, be it physical or mental, takes over our souls, that death is seen as a release from pain.Our legal system has laws that state that people deemed mentally ill cannot be held to the same accountability as a sane person would be when it comes to killing others or themselves. Temporary insanity is a recognized medical condition. Based on the fact that our earthly laws recognize this, how can anyone talk as if God would be less compassionate than our own earthly laws? Mr. Williams believed in God, thus the issue of the hows and whys of his death are for God alone to judge. I believe that mentally ill people, people who are suffering incredible pain and fighting to live, yet lose their lives due to their illness will go to heaven. Our Father in Heaven, our God, does not want nor does He need our fleshly and moral condemnations of any of His Children. It is His call. To pass judgment is not our job.
Let me end this posting by saying I believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, the Father and the Holy Spirit. Three in one, the Holy Trinity. I have read the Holy Bible, God’s Word, from cover to cover. Studying the bible and listening to those blessed with the wisdom to give us insight into understanding our heavenly Father is something that I truly enjoy. I firmly believe that God’s Grace and Mercy are overflowing for those of us who are His Children and also for those that He seeks to have join His family. I believe I will see Robin Williams in heaven, just as I will every other Christian family member, friend and person who has died from an illness that caused the action that took their lives.