The silent battles we fight, and often alone

Published 12:55 pm Thursday, February 24, 2022

BY PASTOR BRANDON YOUNG
Recently, our church lost a member due to suicide. He was a kind and vibrant family man that loved the Lord, his church, and his family. He had been struggling mentally for the past few months and was trying to seek help medically. He never fully got the help he so desperately needed.
I have thought much about the situation since his funeral. There are so many around us every day fighting a silent battle. I shared the following poem I found online at his service.
Silent Battle
In your head, there was always a war.
A daily battle that tore you slowly apart.
I never realized it hurt so bad.
I never realized how scared and desperate you were.
Your face it smiled,
But it never really reached your eyes.
Still, you trudged through.
Only now do I know how hard you fought.
The raging battle to stay in this world.
In the end, it was just too much for your shoulders to take.
With your peace, my pain began.
Only then did I realize how blessed I was to have you in my world.
So in my heart, I cherish your soul.
I will carry you with me always.
Maybe as you read this column, you recognize you are fighting this silent battle, or maybe you know someone who is. What can we do to help those who are? 2 Corinthians 1:3-5 says, “Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; 4 Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God. 5 For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ.” Christians are comforted by the Lord. The word comfort means to give strength and hope to, and to ease the grief or trouble of.
We are commanded in the verse above to comfort those around us with the same comfort we are comforted of God. We are living in a dark time and morale is at an all-time low. Many fight a silent battle. Too many will stop fighting today and end their lives. It could be our neighbor, friend, family member, or even a stranger that chooses death over life. We must do everything we can to comfort and to encourage those around us. This may not prevent them from doing what they have decided, but it may. It definitely cannot hurt to lift up others.
The Holy Spirit of God is a Comforter, and he resides in those who are His children. Even we as children of God can find ourselves battling in our heads. God knew we needed one another. Please take the time to call, text, or ask someone how they are doing. Smile at the person behind the register and give an encouraging word. We are all going through something, and you pass people every day who are at a breaking point. Let’s reach out and show love before it is too late!
(Brandon Young is pastor of Harmony Free Will Baptist Church, Hampton)

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